The Pentagon has called today one of the deadliest days for U.S. troops in the Afghanistan war. Fourteen Americans were killed in two separate helicopter crashes in different parts of the country.
The first crash occurred when two helicopters collided mid-air in the south of the country, according to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). NATO Officials said hostile fire was not a factor in the collision, and that instead, the helicopter went down as a force in western Afghanistan was departing after a firefight that left more than a dozen enemy fighters dead. Four American troops died in the collision.
The second incident occurred in western Afghanistan. The helicopter went down “due to unconfirmed reasons," according to NATO. The BBC reported the crash killed seven U.S. troops and three civilians, and injured at least two dozen Americans and Afghans.
“These separate tragedies today underscore the risks our forces and our partners face every day,” Army Colonel Wayne Shanks said in a NATO International Security Assistance Force news release. “I can never truly express in mere words our condolences for the families for their loss and sacrifice.”
Today President Obama meets with his national security team at the White House Situation Room for the sixth time to discuss troop levels in Afghanistan.