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2 U.S. troops, dozens of Afghan insurgents killed
U.S. special operations forces have increasingly targeted Taliban field commanders as a means of attacking morale and discouraging other insurgents from taking on leadership positions, a strategy NATO hopes will turn the tide of the nearly nine-year war.
Also in Paktika, Afghan and coalition forces detained suspected insurgents linked to the Taliban-allied Haqqani Network in raids on compounds in Orgun district along the border with Pakistan on Tuesday and Wednesday nights, NATO said. The network, known for operating on both sides of the border, launched an assault on two U.S. bases last month that was repulsed with the loss of more than 30 insurgent lives.
Meanwhile, nervous customers flocked to Kabul Bank branches to take out their money following the resignation of two top bank executives amid allegations they mismanaged funds and spent money on risky real estate ventures. There was little sign, however, of a major panic.
Problems at the bank could have wide-ranging political repercussions since it handles the pay for Afghan teachers, soldiers and police in the unstable, impoverished nation beset by the stubborn Taliban insurgency and widespread drug trafficking and plundering of aid money.
The bank’s woes also tie into the web of corruption and personal connections that has soured many Afghans on their government. Mr. Karzai’s brother, Mahmood Karzai, is the bank’s third-largest shareholder, with 7 percent.
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