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As U.S. Intensifies Efforts To Make Peace With Afghanistan, Taliban Attacks Military Base

The Taliban continues to stage spectacular battlefield attacks in Afghanistan despite harsh winter weather.

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Afghanistan
An Afghan policemen stand guard at a check post in Kabul-Bamiyan road, on the outskirts of Maidan Shahr, capital of Wardak province Afghanistan, Jan. 9, 2014. Locals call it "Death Road." VOA

Taliban insurgents launched a major suicide bomb-and-gun attack against a military base in central Afghanistan, killing at least 18 security troops and injuring dozens more.

Authorities said the assault took place early Monday morning in Maidan Shahr, the provincial headquarters of Wardak province, about 50 kilometers from Kabul.

The key security installation was said to be manned by Afghan special forces assigned to the country’s spy agency, the National Directorate of Security (NDS).

 

Taliban, afghanistan, peace
Taliban fighters are seen in Shindand district, Herat province, Afghanistan, May 27 2016. VOA

 

The Taliban raid began with a suicide bomber detonating an explosives-packed U.S.-made Humvee military vehicle before several of his partners tried to storm the base, the provincial police chief told VOA. Wais Samimi said Afghan forces swiftly engaged and killed the assailants, he added, but declined to give further details.

Provincial health officials confirmed to VOA that ambulances transported at least 40 victims to local hospitals, including 12 dead. Eyewitnesses and area residents reported a much higher death toll.

The Taliban took responsibility for staging the deadly raid. The group’s spokesman, Zabihullah Mujahid, claimed multiple Taliban insurgents participated in the attack and “completely destroyed” the base, killing more than 90 Afghan forces and wounding scores of others. Though insurgents’ claims for such attacks are often inflated.

Afghanistan, Taliabn

On Sunday, a suicide car bomber rammed a high-profile government convoy in eastern Logar province, killing at least 10 Afghan security forces. The provincial governor and top security officials traveling in the convoy were apparently the target of the attack. The Taliban claimed responsibility.

Also Read: Peace Talks With The U.S. Stalled: Taliban

The Taliban continues to stage spectacular battlefield attacks in Afghanistan despite harsh winter weather.

The increased violence comes as the United States has intensified efforts to find a politically negotiated settlement to the 17-year-old war between the Afghan government and the Taliban. (VOA)

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This Decade to be Good for the Financial Health of Millennials

2020s Could Be Decade Millennials Finally Get Ahead

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Millennials
Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share via Email Print this page The 2020s might be the decade faltering millennials finally roar to financial health. Pixabay

By Dora Mekouar

The 2020s might be the decade faltering millennials finally roar to financial health and lifestyle after a tough start brought on by the Great Recession, which lasted from 2007 until 2009.

Coming of age during the worst economic downturn in the United States since the 1930s meant that many of these young people, who are now in their mid-20s to late-30s, experienced a delayed entrance into the job market or accepted lower-paying jobs for which they were overqualified.

Many millennials were hard hit due to a variety of factors, including high unemployment, student loan debt, and an increased cost of living, particularly if they graduated from high school or college during the downturn.

Millennials
Millennials Andy and Stacie Proctor stand in their new home in Vineyard, Utah. VOA

“Since then, we’ve really had a lot of wage stagnation, particularly given that so many millennials started behind where they thought they would be,” says Jason Dorsey, president and lead millennial researcher at the Center for Generational Kinetics. “And it’s taken them longer to recover — if they have recovered.”

Experts also say U.S. millennials are the first generation to feel the full impact of decades of rising inequality in America.

A recent study found millennials are significantly financially worse off than previous generations were at the same age. Since 1996, the net worth of people under 35 has dropped by more than one-third, or 34 percent.

But things could be looking up for these younger Americans now that the average U.S. millennial is over the age of 30 and poised to enter the wealth-accumulation stage of their life.

“They’ve had a lot of time to learn about what it takes to succeed? What are the kinds of decisions that lead to the outcome that you want?” Dorsey says. “And for many millennials, boomers [people aged 55 to 75] are finally going to transition increasingly out of the workforce, which is going to create opportunity for them to actually move up into more management-style roles.”

Millennials
Juan Hernandez, 25, is among millennials nationwide with student debt who are worried about being able to qualify for a loan and come up with a down payment for a home. VOA

Millennials are at the age when Americans traditionally buy homes, start saving for the future, and invest for their retirement. It also will help that many have paid down their student debt now that they’ve been out of college for a number of years.

“And at the same time, many of them will become potentially two-income households and that’s also really helpful for many of them,” Dorsey says. “It’s sort of a perfect storm. It just happens to align with the 2020s. It’s not that the 2020s are this famous decade, but more so that millennials are hitting the times when they should start really saving and investing, and earning higher incomes relative to their spending.”

Also Read- Lower Physical Activity in Adulthood Leads to Obesity: Study

And if millennials blame previous generations for their current financial straits, it might cheer them up to know this is also the time many of them can expect to start inheriting wealth from their more well-off baby boomer parents or other relatives. (VOA)