The Purple Unit has carried out many of those assaults, Afghan officers stated, typically utilizing stolen army or police automobiles as Trojan horses to get near bases they plan to assault.
“The Taliban now are utilizing totally different techniques,” stated Qudratullah Khushbakht, spokesman for the governor of Kandahar Province. “They’ve their very own cellular particular forces unit which is provided with lasers and night time-imaginative and prescient gear, and they’re attacking examine posts and bases after which leaving the world as shortly as attainable to keep away from airstrikes.”
That was the case in assaults into the early hours of Tuesday in two districts in Kandahar Province, through which Mr. Khushbakht stated 23 cops have been killed and sixteen injured in rolling assaults on 15 police posts. Different officers, nevertheless, put the dying toll in these incidents within the Zahre and Maiwand districts at 70 officers.
Mr. Khushbakht stated that assaults started when insurgents drove a stolen police Ford Ranger pickup truck right into a police submit and detonated explosives, then moved on to assault close by bases.
Comparable techniques have been described in a Taliban attack early Monday morning within the western province of Farah, by which eight cops have been killed. The Taliban fighters used night time-imaginative and prescient goggles, officers stated.
Two Taliban models attacked different targets in Farah on Monday night time and Tuesday morning, killing three cops at one submit and 15 Afghan Nationwide Military troopers at one other, in accordance with authorities officers.
Within the Kandahar assaults, not one of the police posts have been captured and the police inflicted heavy casualties on the Taliban, stated Matiullah Hellal, a spokesman for the police in Kandahar Province.
A Taliban spokesman, Zabihullah Mujahid, contended in a phone interview that the insurgents had misplaced just one fighter.
“In face-to-face preventing the variety of our casualties could be very low,” he stated, “as a result of the mujahedeen are solely doing nose to nose preventing with the enemy when they’re stronger than the enemy.”
A police official within the space, talking on the situation of anonymity as a result of his account contradicted the official model, confirmed that losses by the Afghan police have been far worse than introduced, with 5 police commanders amongst 70 lifeless officers and most of the police posts utterly overrun by the insurgents.
When police reinforcements have been despatched to assistance from these posts, the official stated, “the Taliban have been utilizing night time-imaginative and prescient goggles and the police who have been despatched have been shot by laser-guided weapons towards which they might not defend themselves. The police haven’t any night time-imaginative and prescient goggles in any respect.”
The official’s account was corroborated by a number of different police figures, who additionally declined to touch upon the document.
Mr. Hellal, the spokesman for the Kandahar police, stated that officers at solely 1 / 4 of the police posts in Kandahar had laser sights on their weapons, and that none had night time-imaginative and prescient goggles.
“Night time-imaginative and prescient gear is utilized in ambushes by the insurgents and it is extremely efficient,” stated Maj. Gen. Dawlat Waziri, a spokesman for the Protection Ministry. “You possibly can see your enemy, however they can’t see you coming.”
Simply the place the Taliban are acquiring their costly new gear is the topic of dispute. Mr. Mujahid claimed that they had seized it from authorities models they defeated. However Afghan officers say that solely their elite models use night time imaginative and prescient and laser gear, all American-made, and never Russian, Iranian or Pakistani gear, which is what the Taliban have been utilizing.
One telescopic night time-imaginative and prescient scope for the M-four rifle, as an example, sells for $5,000 on the black market in Pakistan. Flush with money from its domination of the opium trade, the Taliban might merely be shopping for them. Whereas many Afghan models have the M-four, few of them have telescopic sights for it.
American army officers say they think each Russia and Iran are aiding the Taliban, along with its conventional patrons in Pakistan. During a visit in September to Kabul, the American protection secretary, Jim Mattis, stated each nations should know better than to help the Taliban, as that they had suffered themselves from terrorist teams.
Najib Danish, the spokesman for the Inside Ministry, which is answerable for the police, stated that assaults by the Taliban have risen sharply this yr, as have police casualties. Final yr, 6,seven hundred Afghan safety forces of every kind have been killed, the very best degree of the warfare. A lot of the lifeless are from the police, who sometimes are unfold in smaller models across the nation, guarding roads and buildings.
Along with utilizing excessive-tech gear, the Taliban have additionally shifted to a tactic by which they mass giant numbers of forces in ambushes, Mr. Danish stated.
“The enemy modified its tactic by gathering fighters from different locations to assault on a single place,” he stated.
Dadullah Qani, a member of the Farah provincial council, stated the state of affairs there’s essential. “The Taliban try to seize your complete province, they usually have trendy weapons,” Mr. Qani stated.
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