Karzai Orders More Forces to Kandahar

More Attacks Feared After Taliban Bombings

Afghan President Hamid Karzai has reportedly ordered a large number of soldiers and police to the city of Kandahar today, in the wake of major Taliban bombings in the city. Officials did not give exact figures for how many additional forces would be involved.

Suicide bombings in Kandahar over the weekend killed at least 35 people and injured another 57. 13 police were among the killed, with the rest as civilians.

Taliban spokesman Qari Yousef Ahmadi said that the bombings were a “warning” to NATO forces in the run-up to an offensive expected in the late Spring or early Summer.

NATO officials have been making much of the planned invasion of Kandahar, with Gen. Stanley McChrystal vowing to seize “absolute control” over the massive city and the surrounding province.

But with the offensive weeks and likely months from beginning, the increate in the number of Afghan forces is likely going to provide more targets for the Taliban, even as they struggle to avert more attacks in the key southern city.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for Antiwar.com. He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.