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[AllGov.com]

Friday, August 24, 2012

By Noel Brinkerhoff

Sgt. Louis R. Torres of Oberlin, Ohio, died August 22, 2012, of injuries sustained by an explosive device in Kandahar two weeks earlier.

Now the longest conflict in U.S. history, the Afghanistan war has taken the lives of 2,000 Americans, half of whom were killed in just the past two and a half years.

During the first nine years of the war, about 1,000 military personnel died. Then, the Obama administration decided to deploy a “surge” of new troops to the conflict, resulting in a dramatic increase in casualties since 2010.

It took only 27 months for the U.S. to experience 1,000 fatalities following the deployment of 33,000 more troops to Afghanistan.

Of the second 1,000 who have died, 75% were Caucasian, 90% were enlisted personnel, and half were killed in either Kandahar or Helmand provinces, where the U.S. focused much of the surge in an effort to cripple the Taliban and other forces. Their average age was 26, according to The New York Times.

The U.S. Army has endured the largest number of casualties. The units hit hardest were the 101st Airborne Division, based at Fort Campbell in Kentucky, and the 10th Mountain Division out of Fort Drum, New York.

The Marine Corps unit suffering the most wounded and dead was the Third Battalion, Fifth Marine Regiment out of Camp Pendleton, California.  At 128 months and counting, the Afghanistan war is the nation’s longest conflict.

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