Reports Of Heavy Drone Activity Over Afghanistan’s Helmand Province
There have been reports this week of possible heavy drone activity over parts of Afghanistan, suggesting the Pentagon is continuing to carry out aerial targeting and strikes on Al-Qaeda and/or ISIS-K, one full year after the US military drawdown from Kabul in August 2021.
The reports follow closely on the heels of the July 31st CIA drone strike on longtime Al-Qaeda chief Ayman al-Zawahiri in a Kabul neighborhood. It seems the US “over the horizon” mission in Afghanistan could be going into full gear, despite American troops officially withdrawing from the country.
“A drone strike targeted camp bastion in Helmand around 5AM. AQIS and AQ members Abu Zubair, Abu Anas, Farooqi Qari Sulaiman and Abu Al Hassan have been present in various parts of Helmand province including inside camp bastion,” a well-known Afghan journalist and war observer Bilal Sarwary wrote Wednesday based on his sources.
“Residents in Helmand and Kandahar provinces report constant drone activity over both provinces for the last few days,” he emphasized.
Little in the way of details or even confirmation is known at this point, but given substantial rumors of ongoing clashes between rival Taliban factions in restive Helmand province, the drones could be US/UK coalition intelligence monitoring the conflict.
Other observers have also of late noticed apparently stepped up drone activity by the Western coalition…
More AlQaeda members targeted by drones in former US/U.K. base in Helmand. The base is used by the Taliban Dictatorship.
— Herbert Elizabeth (@OzymandiusUK) August 24, 2022
“Sources report that there were several al-Qaeda/AQIS members present at the site when drones struck Camp Bastion, a base that was formerly in use by foreign forces/ANDSF and now in control of the Taliban,” writes another prominent war monitor.
Given all of this, what does seem clear is that US intelligence isn’t hesitating to step up its drone activity over Afghanistan – likely a low risk venture at this point given the ruling Taliban’s lack of any sophisticated or advanced anti-air systems.
Aside from the Zawahiri operation, the first known US drone strike to have happened since August 2021 occurred in April of this year, and targeted a Taliban ammunition depot.
Tyler Durden Wed, 08/24/2022 – 18:40
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