The Taliban Must Have Taken a Playbook From Baghdad Bob
One of the most accurate facts in our confusing, modern conflicts of counter-insurgencies is details on U.S. and ISAF forces KIA. The U.S. releases the name and location of every KIA after the family has been notified, and our NATO allies use a similar methodology. iCasualties counts 294 in 2008, but that didn't stop the Taliban from dishing out what the AP calls a "whopper" of 5,220 troops killed in 2008:
The Taliban has long exaggerated its military successes, but its figures for 2008 may be the militia's most startling claims yet.And they even get into their tactical successes, which would be hard to confirm since they use the "fight n' flee" method:
The Taliban claims its forces last year killed 5,220 foreign troops, downed 31 aircraft, destroyed 2,818 NATO and Afghan vehicles and killed 7,552 Afghan soldiers and police.
A Taliban spokesman, Zabiullah Mujahid, stood by the militia's numbers in a telephone interview Monday, saying that its fighters film every operation and verify the tolls.Well, I guess if Zabiullah Mujahid said it's exactly 2,818 vehicles, then it's gotta be true!
"The numbers I have given to you, that is counted one by one," he said. "When we say there are 2,818 vehicles destroyed, that is a correct number. Why aren't we saying 2,820? Because we have reports of 2,818."
It should be noted that the enemy has fudged their numbers extravagantly in the past, as the Iraqi insurgent groups use to claim that tens of thousands of U.S. troops had been killed by them.