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Afghanistan

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Index
  1. Afghanistan Main Page
  2. Soviet Invasion
  3. The Rise of the Taliban
  4. The U.S. Responds to the September 11, 2001, Terrorist Attacks
  5. Reemergence of the Taliban
  6. Taliban Attacks Become More Deadly
  7. Afghanistan Holds Second Direct Presidential Elections
  8. Support for the War on the Wane
  9. Osama bin Laden Is Killed
  10. Violence and Assassinations Diminish Confidence in Afghanistan's Security Forces
  11. U.S. Begins to Reduce Its Role in Afghanistan as Relationship Deteriorates
  12. Karzai Rejects Security Deal with U.S.
  13. Voter Turnout Unexpectedly High in Presidential Election; Runoff Marred by Allegations of Fraud
  14. Taliban Detainees Released in Prisoner Swap With U.S.; U.S. General Killed
Reemergence of the Taliban

The Taliban continued to attack U.S. troops throughout 2005 and 2006—the latter becoming the deadliest year for U.S. troops since the war ended in 2001. In 2004 and 2005, American troop levels in Afghanistan gradually increased to nearly 18,000 from a low of 10,000. Throughout the spring of 2006, Taliban militants—by then a force of several thousand—infiltrated southern Afghanistan, terrorizing local villagers and attacking Afghan and U.S. troops. In May and June, Operation Mount Thrust was launched, deploying more than 10,000 Afghan and coalition forces in the south. About 700 people, most of whom were Taliban, were killed. In Aug. 2006, NATO troops took over military operations in southern Afghanistan from the U.S.-led coalition. NATO's Afghanistan mission is considered the most dangerous undertaken in its 57-year history.

Attacks by the Taliban intensified and increased in late 2006 and into 2007, with militants crossing into eastern Afghanistan from Pakistan's tribal areas. The Pakistani government denied that its intelligence agency supported the Islamic militants, despite contradictory reports from Western diplomats and the media.

An August 2007 report by the United Nations implicated the Taliban in Afghanistan's opium production, which has doubled in two years. The report further stated that the country supplies 93% of the world's heroin. Southern Afghanistan, particularly Helmand Province, saw the largest spike.

The Taliban continued to launch attacks and gain strength throughout 2007 and into 2008. In February 2008, U.S. Secretary of State Robert Gates warned NATO members that the threat of an al-Qaeda attack on their soil is real and that they must commit more troops to stabilize Afghanistan and counter the growing power of both al-Qaeda and the Taliban.

Next: Taliban Attacks Become More Deadly
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