by WorldTribune Staff, May 31, 2018
U.S. bombing raids and drone strikes killed up to 70 leaders of the Afghan Taliban this month, the Pentagon announced on May 30.
“These strikes represent one of the largest blows to Taliban leadership in the last year,” said Army Gen. John Nicholson, commander of U.S. Forces-Afghanistan. “The cumulative effects of which will be felt nationwide for quite some time.”
The Pentagon said a major part of the operation occurred on May 24, when more that 50 terrorists were killed in a strike on a stronghold in Helmand province during a meeting of high-level Taliban leaders.
The May 24 attack included the use of the M-142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS), one of the Army’s newest artillery rocket systems, the Pentagon said.
A separate airstrike carried out by Air Force A-10s on May 24 hit a Taliban “Red Unit” commander in Helmand who was in a vehicle traveling in Sangin province.
On May 26, an MQ-1C Gray Eagle drone attacked a senior Taliban bomb-maker who, over the past 13 years, had been coordinating improvised explosive device attacks against Afghan National Defense and Security Forces, the Pentagon said.