Kandahar Diary
This past weekend, Iain returned to the base at Kandahar
after having been in the field for two weeks. He sent these
pics after getting back to base.
Sent: Monday, July 24, 2006 12:00 PM

Subject: Me out and About

Here are some pictures of me out and about.  I did clean up eventually!


Canadians join in massive assault to crush Taliban stronghold in Afghanistan

Sat Jul 15, 5:01 PM

By Terry Pedwell

KANDAHAR, Afghanistan (CP) - Canadian and other coalition troops launched a
massive assault in southern Afghanistan Saturday, hoping to put a vice grip on a key
Taliban stronghold in what is being billed as the biggest operation the Canadians have
seen here so far.

The combined ground and air assault began at first light in the Sangin district of
Helmand province, west of Kandahar, where a Canadian soldier was killed in late March
and an Afghan police and military outpost was attacked just two days earlier.

The assault is considered the final push of an offensive known as Operation Mountain
Thrust, which has been underway since mid-June.
Iain at Sangin
This latest phase has been billed by the military as the biggest operation that
Canadians have been involved with since moving into the Kandahar region in February,
even if it has so far not been the bloodiest.

It's also the largest coalition assault conducted in Afghanistan since the Taliban
government was toppled in 2002, and the biggest joint Canadian-American-British
combat operation since the Korean War.

"It will probably be the largest operation that (Canada) conducts in our time here,"
predicted one Canadian military official who did not want to be identified.

"This is it. This is the real thing."
July 23, 2006

In response to a news report that the Kandahar Tim Horton's had run
out of doughnuts, Iain wrote:

"I don't care about the doughnuts as long as the coffee keeps coming.  
Two weeks of making coffee by leaving a bottle of water on the front of
the vehicle and then adding instant makes you appreciate a double
double (I had three today!)"

Globe and Mail Update July 23, 2006

Kandahar, Afghanistan - Just hours after two Canadian soldiers were killed and eight others wounded military convoys were once
again rolling in and out of the giant dust bowl that is the Kandahar Air Field base.

Corporals Francisco Gomez and Jason Patrick Warren died last evening in a double-barrelled suicide bombing attack on the
western outskirts of Kandahar City just as an enormous convoy of vehicles was returning home to the base after an astonishing 16
days of almost daily combat with the Taliban and insurgents.

In more than two weeks in the field moving over 400 kilometres of the most volatile parts of this complicated and tribal country, the
Canadians were in more than 35 major firefights that inflicted at least 100 Taliban casualties, destroyed nine ammunition caches,
seized opium paste and heroin worth as much as $15-million, dismantled two significant bomb-making factories, discovered and
blew up six Improvised Explosive Devices, or IEDs, along the route and established an Afghan government presence in six districts
in the remote heartland of Taliban strength.