Tuesday, February 16, 2010
Camp Pendleton Marines are part of NATO's biggest offensive against the Taliban in Afghanistan since the war began in 2001.
Los Angeles Times reporter Tony Perry, embedded with the local Marines in southern Afghanistan, says strict new rules of engagement are forcing them to hold their fire. "They have to engage in their brain more than they might otherwise before they engage their weapon," said Perry. "It is a risk. It is a risky, risky business counterinsurgency. And that risk is formed with young men with short haircuts from Camp Pendleton and Camp Lejeune."
Speaking on KPBS' These Days this morning, Perry said the Marines have faced almost constant attacks by the Taliban since they were dropped by helicopter into the insurgent stronghold four days ago. NATO says it hopes to secure the area within days so it can set up a local government and bring in aid.