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Pentagon warns against reading too much into helicopter crash

(Xinhua)

08:50, August 09, 2011

Pentagon spokesman Dave Lapan said Monday that reporters should not read too much into the tragic helicopter crash in Afghanistan which killed 30 U.S. service members.

Lapan told Pentagon reporters that the incident is not a trend, but an anomaly.

"This one single incident does not represent any watershed or trend," he said. "As we have said continuously, the Taliban was going to come back hard. They weren't going to take the losses that they have suffered lightly. They were going to try to inflict casualties not only on us, but the Afghans, and those are the things we are seeing."

NATO's CH-47 Chinook helicopter crashed Saturday in eastern Afghanistan's Wardak province, leaving 38 people dead including 30 soldiers of the U.S. Special Force, one local interpreter and seven Afghan commandos. It was the largest single-day loss of American forces in the decade-long Afghan war.

The Taliban are still on the run, and the coalition and its Afghan partners have reversed the momentum of the insurgent group, the spokesman said, adding that special operations forces will continue to drive on.

Lapan also warned against jumping into conclusions about the incident, saying "any conclusions are premature until we conduct an investigation to determine the facts."

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