Considered one of the most dangerous countries in the world, Afghanistan has been wracked by continuous war for over three decades. The U.S., U.K., Australia, France, and Afghan United Front began Operation Enduring Freedom on October 7th, 2001 in response to the September 11th attacks in the U.S. The mission focused on the the overthrow of the Taliban government, as well as the ouster of Al Qaida and it leaders, including Osama Bin Laden. With over a decade of combat, it has become the second longest war in the U.S. history. The conflict has resulted in over two thousand U.S. troops killed.
With the death of Bin Laden, the U.S. is formulating plans for withdrawal from the region. President Obama has announced an end to combat operations, but an unknown number of troops will likely remain in the country after the 2014 deadline. Afghanistan is currently seeking financial assistance from other countries to assist in the reconstruction process.
Afghanistan has been populated for millennia, seeing the rise and fall of empires, kingdoms, and religions. Islam -- which influences much of its current culture and politics -- is the most popular religion in the region. The current estimated population is over 30 million, with Pashtun and Tajik as the two largest ethnicities.
YOKOSUKA NAVAL BASE, Japan -- China's new white paper on military strategy indirectly criticizes the United States for "meddling" in South China Sea affairs but also calls for a strengthened relationship to prevent crises from occurring. The document, released Tuesday, outlined China's defense posture, which includes plans for a rapid expansion... more
The Russian Defense Ministry says that its air forces have begun a massive exercise involving hundreds of aircraft and thousands of service personnel. In a May 25 statement, the ministry described the four-day drill as a "massive surprise inspection," to check combat readiness. "The inspection involves about 12,000 military service personnel, ... more
A squadron commander at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland was relieved earlier this month for having an unprofessional relationship with an airman in his command, the Air Force said Tuesday, but questions about his exit remained unanswered. Brig. Gen. Robert LaBrutta, commander of Joint Base San Antonio, issued a brief statement that went beyond ... more
MAYPORT NAVAL STATION, Fla. -- A Navy submarine sailor was sentenced Tuesday to two years in a military prison after he pleaded guilty to illegally making and trading videos of female officers undressing in the shower. Charles Greaves, a missile technician, entered his plea and apologized to the four women officers, all of whom testified agains... more
FORT RILEY, KANSAS -- For more than a decade, troops here have been schooled in counterinsurgency. "Mission-specific" training, they call it: going house to house, busting down doors, rooting out terror cells, recognizing crude explosives. Now, after a pair of mission-specific wars, an Army in transition aims to get back to the future. The tr... more