U.S. Helicopter Crash: Afghan Navy Seals Investigation Ongoing

The investigation into the helicopter crash that killed U.S. navy seals and other American service members this past weekend has continued, with NATO troops securing the area of the crash.

It has been reported that nobody is being allowed into or out of the crash site as the investigation proceeds, and as pieces of the Chinook helicopter continue to be collected.

Spokesman for the U.S.-led coalition, General Carsten Jacobson, told reporters, "We are still investigating this incident so we have no picture of what was the cause for the incident. That is what the investigation is all about."

The SEALs and American service members died while on a rescue mission for Army Rangers that had come under heavy attack in an eastern province of Afghanistan.

What remains uncertain though, is whether the Navy SEAL team was able to accomplish their mission and help the Army Rangers, or whether the aircraft they were flying in was shot down as they approached.

According to the Associated Press, one official said that the SEALs had accomplished their mission and were shot down upon their departure, while another official said that the helicopter had been shot down as it approached the Wardak province in eastern Afghanistan.

Wardak province borders the Afghan capital of Kabul on the west.

Border regions of the capital have seen an increased presence of insurgency fighting even though NATO troop presence has been increased in the country over the past year.

Suleoman Kahil of the Logar provincial council argues that security has deteriorated in the provinces around Kabul due to the unwillingness of international forces to pay attention to local traditions and customs of the people.

Kahil told the New York Times, "They were doing night raids, and since they don't know the area well they are mistreating the people, which increased the gap between government and the people; and they were detaining innocent people."

As troop pull outs remain imminent, the U.S. government will be increasingly relying on special operations in the form of night raids to carry out activities in the country.

With the increased presence of insurgency groups in the typically safer regions of the country, and President Hamid Karzai vehemently condemning the night raids international forces use to disable these groups, it remains to be seen how the troop pull-out will effect security throughout Afghanistan.

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