Get Task & Purpose in your inbox
The Taliban wiped out dozens of Afghanistan's most elite commandos
Editor's Note: This article originally appeared on Radio Free Europe/Radio Free Liberty.
An Afghan regional governor said 25 members of the country's elite commando units have been killed in fighting with the Taliban.
The incident, which occurred on July 15 in the northern province of Badghis, is the latest in which specially trained Afghan military units have suffered unusually high death tolls.
In comments to RFE/RL, Badghis Governor Abdul Ghaffar Malakzai blamed a lack of coordination as the main reason for the deaths of the commandos. He did not elaborate.
He also said that more than 20 Taliban militants were killed in the clashes.
Qari Yousuf Ahmadi, a Taliban spokesman, said that at least 39 commandos were killed. He said that the militants also captured 16 soldiers.
Badghis, located along the border with Turkmenistan, has been the scene of frequent Taliban attacks.
On July 13, Taliban militants attacked a hotel in the provincial capital, Qal-e Naw, killing at least six people.
The fighting comes as the Afghan army continues to suffer from high casualties and desertion rates as it struggles to fend off the Taliban.
Trained by U.S. forces, the elite commando units are the army's best fighters but number only around 20,000 and are overstretched. The United States has spent millions of dollars training and equipping the units over many years.
In November 2018, a 50-member commando unit was almost entirely wiped out during clashes with the Taliban in the southeastern province of Ghazni. In August, another unit was completely eliminated in fighting in the same province.
Copyright (c) 2018. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave NW, Ste 400, Washington DC 20036.
Search efforts are underway to find a West Point cadet, who has gone missing along with his M4 carbine, the U.S. Military Academy announced on Sunday.
"There is no indication the Cadet poses a threat to the public, but he may be a danger to himself," a West Point news release says.
Academy officials do not believe the missing cadet has access to any magazines or ammunition, according to the news release, which did not identify the cadet, who is a member of the Class of 2021.
Three soldiers were killed and another three injured when their Bradley Fighting Vehicle rolled over during a training exercise at Fort Stewart in Georgia on Sunday morning, Army officials announced.
KABUL (Reuters) - U.S. Defense Secretary Mark Esper arrived in Afghanistan on Sunday in a bid to bring talks with the Taliban back on track after President Donald Trump abruptly broke off negotiations last month seeking to end the United States' longest war.
Esper's trip to Kabul comes amid questions about the United States' commitments to allies after a sudden withdrawal of U.S. troops from northeastern Syria and Trump's long-time desire to get out of foreign engagements.
Mark Esper is the third person after James Mattis and Patrick Shanahan to helm the Pentagon since Donald Trump became president, and he's apparently not making much of an impression on the commander-and-chief.
On Sunday, Trump sent a very real tweet on "Secretary Esperanto," which is either a reference to a constructed international language developed more than 130 years ago and only spoken on the PA system in Gattaca or an egregious instance of autocorrect.
This rifle could be a dark horse candidate for the Army's next-generation squad weapon — and you can snag one next year
The Army says it's settled on three defense contractors to battle it out to become the service's M4 carbine and M249 Squad Automatic Weapon replacements, but at least one other company is hoping that a bit of consumer approval could help upset the competition.