At least 31 Special Forces soldiers dead in Afghanistan copter crash

The Taliban has claimed responsibility for the crash, and a US military official has apparently confirmed that the helicopter was indeed brought down by hostile fire: Insurgents shot down a NATO Chinook helicopter during an overnight operation in eastern Afghanistan, killing at least 37 people on board, a coalition military official said on Saturday. It was believed to be the deadliest helicopter crash in the nearly decade-long war, punctuating a surge of violence across the country even as American and NATO forces begin a modest drawdown of troops. Afghan military officials put the death toll at 38, including 31 Americans and 7 Afghan commandos. [...] The helicopter was hit by a rocket-propelled grenade in the Tangi Valley of the Wardak Province just west of Kabul, the coalition official said. The Taliban claimed credit for the attack. If confirmed, Saturday's crash would be the deadliest day for American forces since the war began. A NATO spokesman, Capt. Justin Brockhoff of the...(Read Full Post)