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Taliban on the run: Pentagon

Defense Secretary Leon Panetta had recently asserted that the Taliban is on the run.

Washington: The Taliban is on the run and the
US forces have reversed the momentum, said a top Pentagon
official today, cautioning against reading too much into a
single combat incident in which more than 30 US soldiers was
killed in Afghanistan.

A single combat incident does not necessarily create
water shed that anybody should be reading into what this means
about the Taliban," Pentagon Spokesman Col Dave Lapan told
reporters during an off camera briefing.

"We still have the Taliban on the run and have reversed
the momentum that they have, he claimed, cautioned people
against reading too much into a single combat incident.

In one of the deadliest American casualties in
Afghanistan post 9/11, more than 30 US soldiers, including 20
from the elite SEAL commando force that was involved in the
killing of Osama bin Laden in May this year, were killed last

Defense Secretary Leon Panetta had recently asserted that
the Taliban is on the run and it is only a matter of time that
the terrorist outfit is eliminated from Afghanistan.

But the latest incident has made several analysts think

Lapan argued that while it is true that it was the
largest loss of life in one particular incident, it’s a combat

"Those things occur in combat, we take casualties, the
Taliban take casualties. This one single incident does not
represent any kind of water shed," he underlined.

He said the Taliban were to come back hard after the
loss suffered last year. He said they are going to continue to
inflict casualties not only on us but also the Afghans.

"Those were the things that we are seeing?," he told
Pentagon reporters.

Meanwhile, the International Security Assistance Force
(ISAF) in Afghanistan said that the CH-47 Chinook helicopter
was reportedly fired on by an insurgent rocket-propelled
grenade while transporting the US service members and Afghan
commandos to the scene of an engagement between allied forces
and insurgent forces.

The US service members on board included five aircrew
members and 25 personnel from the US Special Operations
Command, they said.


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