Pendleton's 3/5 Marines Welcome Good News, But Questions Remain
The Camp Pendleton-based Third Battalion, 5th Marines have been hit particularly hard since taking over the area of operations in Sangin, Afghanistan on Oct. 8. The 3/5, also known as Darkhorse, has lost 23 men in that Taliban-infested region, and dozens more have been badly wounded. But there is some potentially good news.
According to an AP report, Maj. Gen. Richard Mills said Marine leaders in Sangin, an area that former Marine officer and author David Morris has referred to as "the Fallujah of Afghanistan," were 'cautiously optimistic' after the top Marine commander in Afghanistan said influential tribal leaders there have agreed to stop insurgent attacks and push out foreign fighters. The deal was reportedly reached with the Alikozai tribe, which controls most of the villages in a 17-square-kilometer region of the Upper Sangin Valley, Afghan officials told the AP.
This is obviously encouraging, and hopefully represents a real breakthrough in this volatile region for the brave warriors of the 3/5 who've sacrificed so much, but according to the Military Times blog, the announcement raises as many questions as it answers: