Afghanistan war marks 10th year quietly
October 7, 2011 11:08 am EDT
Politics, Government, Unrest, Conflicts And War, War, International Military Intervention
Friday marks the 10th year of the U.S.-led war in Afghanistan. The milestone will pass quietly. There was little observance by U.S. troops still in Afghanistan who just weeks earlier celebrated the 10th anniversary of 9/11.
There is not much to celebrate or commemorate. More than 2,700 troops from the United States and its partners have died during the 10 years of war, according to a CNN count. Of those, 1,780 were American.
During the decade-long war, two landmark events occurred. The Taliban has been forced out of power and Osama bin Laden was killed by U.S. Navy Seals.
Since the conflict began, the number of casualties has risen every year with a significant increase from 2008 to 2009. At least 296 coalition troops died in 2008. The number nearly doubled to 517 in 2009, the year President Obama authorized a surge of 33,000 U.S. forces to Afghanistan to combat the violence.
In 2011, plans were outlined to withdraw U.S. troops from Afghanistan, beginning with pulling the 33,000 surge troops out by the end of 2012, and the remaining 68,000 by the end of 2014. The move was followed by withdrawal announcements by most NATO nations.
The Afghanistan war was once viewed as a necessity by a majority of Americans. It has now become widely unpopular as U.S. concerns have turned to the ailing economy and high unemployment. And many in Afghanistan are equally disappointed, saying they don't see any changes in their country.
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