By T. Johnson
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Additional info for American Cryptology During the Cold War - Book 1 [TOP SECRET - DECLAS.]
Similar formations were frequently composed of members of the same national-ethnic group. In the majority of cases, the commanders of these local guerrillas had no direct contact with the Afghan counterrevolutionary groups located outside Afghanistan [an overstatement]. Their main advantage was the active support of the local populace. The semi-regular formations were usually found in their bases and in the Afghan refugee camps in Pakistan and Iran. They had good military training and were adequately armed.
The government of N. M. Taraki repeatedly requested the introduction of Soviet forces in Afghanistan in the spring and summer of 1979. He requested Soviet troops to provide his security and to increase the effectiveness of the fight against the Mujahideen. On 14 April the Afghan government requested that the USSR send 15 to 20 helicopters with their crews to Afghanistan, and on 16 June the Soviet government responded and sent a detachment of tanks, BMPs, and crews to guard the government of Afghanistan in Kabul and to secure the Bagram and Shindand airfields.
The assigned mission was blown, however, and the battalion commander belatedly decided to use maneuver to encircle the Mujahideen. 11 The battalion had eight KIA and six WIA. Two of the dead were officers. The battalion abandoned further action and returned to base. PHASES AND COURSE OF THE CONFLICT 23 "My memory often returns to this tragic moment. I seek an answer to the tormenting question—was there a way to avoid this tragic outcome? Of course, with hindsight, you have 20/20 vision. This aside, I have determined the following miscalculations, which had an adverse effect on the ability of the alert subunit to carry out its assigned mission.