Details continue to emerge about the Taliban attack on Camp Bastion/Camp Leatherneck, a joint US-British base in the Helmand Province, which officials are now saying is the most expensive single raid by Taliban fighters in the war’s 11 year history.
The attackers were wearing US uniforms, a rarity in the long war, and went straight for costly Harrier II jump jets, destroying six of the pricey jets and damaging two others. The estimate is that they caused “more than $200 million in damages.”
The attack left two US Marines killed, and officials are describing it as having been carried out by “well-trained, well-rehearsed fighters.” NATO later said “we’ve lost aircraft in battle, but nothing like this.”
The attackers blew a hole in the exterior wall of the base, raced to the airfield, burned the jets and attacked refueling stations in short order, giving base security little time to react. Whether this was an unusually sophisticated attack or signs of things to come remains to be seen.