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September 1, 2010

Afghanistan, August, 2010

With four months left in the year, 2010 is already the deadliest year yet for U.S. troops in Afghanistan. 321 have been killed so far (out of 485 total coalition deaths), compared with 313 deaths in all of 2009. As coalition troop size has increased, and moves have been made into Taliban strongholds, attacks are on the rise, and, according to General David Petraeus, "the footprint of the Taliban has spread". As combat operations in Iraq have now ended, the Obama administration says it will focus even more of its attention on the nearly 9-year-old conflict in Afghanistan. Collected here are images of the country and conflict over the past month, part of an ongoing monthly series on Afghanistan. This month marks the 12th entry in the series - I've been putting these together for one year now, and see no reason to stop any time soon. (42 photos total)

Abdul Qahar, an interpreter with Headquarters Company, 3rd Battalion, 3rd Marine Regiment, finds one of the few shaded spots during Operation Big Wave in Khanagawr, Afghanistan, Aug. 18, 2010. During the operation the men spent two days in direct sunlight with temperatures reaching more than 120 degrees. The operation was conducted to disrupt the enemy from using supply lines to bring weapons and fighters into Nawa. (U.S. Marine Corps/Sgt. Mark Fayloga)

Cpl Ryan Belgrave with the Canadian Army's 1st Battalion, The Royal Canadian Regiment Battle Group, walks through a field of marijuana plants during a patrol near the village of Salavat, in the Panjway district west of Kandahar on August 4, 2010. (REUTERS/Bob Strong) #

A man pours fuel over a pile of illegal narcotics to be burned in Kabul on August 30, 2010. Nearly 9 tons of narcotics, including opium and hashish, were burned, according to the Afghan Anti-Narcotics Ministry. (REUTERS/Ahmad Masood) #

U.S. Marines carry a comrade wounded by an improvised explosive device (IED) to a waiting medevac helicopter, near the town of Marjah in Helmand Province on August 21, 2010. (REUTERS/Bob Strong) #

A medevac UH-60A Black Hawk helicopter from the 101st Airborne division, Task Force Destiny, is reflected in the glasses of a ground staff member during a refueling operation at Kandahar Air Field (KAF) in Kandahar province, August 29, 2010. (REUTERS/Oleg Popov) #

Afghan police carry away a wounded man at the scene of an attack in Jalalabad, east of Kabul, Afghanistan, Monday, Aug. 30, 2010. Police say a district government leader in eastern Afghanistan had been killed by bomb in his car as he traveled to a meeting to discuss security matters. (AP Photo/Rahmat Gul) #

In this undated handout picture released by The Little Family on August 21, 2010, U.S. aid worker Dan Terry poses at an undisclosed location in Nuristan. Terry was one of 10 members of a Christian-sponsored medical team shot dead by members of the Taliban in a remote region of Afghanistan earlier this month. (AFP/Getty Images/Courtesy of the Little Family) #

An emaciated drug addict rests as another smokes heroin on the dry banks of the Kabul river, located near a military installation, in Kabul on May 15, 2010. Some Eight percent of Afghans suffer from drug addiction, a rate twice the global average and a "major" growing problem for the world's leading narcotic producer. (MAURICIO LIMA/AFP/Getty Images) #

U.S. Army medic Sgt Bradley Robbins with Charlie Company, 6-101 Combat Aviation Brigade, 101st Airborne Division, treats an Afghan boy with gunshot wounds on board a medevac helicopter near the town of Marjah in Helmand Province, August 17, 2010. (REUTERS/Bob Strong) #

An Afghan man grieves hanging onto the coffin of his brother inside a vehicle in the outskirts of Herat on August 30, 2010. On August 29, police found the bodies of five members of a campaign team for female candidate Fawzya Galani, days after 10 of them were abducted by the Taliban, officials said. (Aref Karimi/AFP/Getty Images) #

Brothers-in-arms carry the coffin of two Spanish Civil Guards killed in Afghanistan, during the funeral in the central headquarters of Civil Guard in Logrono northern Spain, Thursday Aug. 26, 2010. Spanish Civil Guards, Jose Maria Galera Cordoba, Leoncio Bravo Picallo and an Iranian-born interpreter Ataola Taefik Alili was killed by an Afghan man Wednesday at a NATO base during a training class for local police recruits. (AP Photo/Alvaro Barreintos) #

Yesenia Mendoza (center) becomes emotional as she watches the flag-draped casket of her boyfriend U.S. Marine Sgt. Ronald A. Rodriguez pass by during his funeral at Arlington National Cemetery August 31, 2010 in Arlington, Virginia. Rodriguez, of Falls Church, Virginia, was killed while supporting combat operations in Helmand province in Afghanistan on August 23. (Alex Wong/Getty Images) #

The casket containing Lt. Tim O'Donnell is unloaded from the Air Force Hercules during a ramp ceremony for O'Donnell, who died on August 3 in the central Afghan province of Bamiyan. The ceremony took place at the Ohakea Air Force Base, near Palmerston North, New Zealand on August 8, 2010. O'Donnell is the first New Zealand soldier to be killed in the Afghanistan conflict, following an ambush which also left Lance Corporal Matthew Ball and Private Allister Bakerand, as well as an Afghan interpreter wounded. (Marty Melville/Getty Images) #

French President Nicolas Sarkozy comforts one of the sons of Captain Lorenzo Mezzasalma during a ceremony on August 27, 2010 at the 21e RIMA in Frejus to honor Captain Lorenzo Mezzasalma and Corporal Jean-Nicolas Panezyck 21st Marine Infantry Regiment, killed in the line of duty in Afghanistan last August 23. The soldiers were killed last Monday in a gun battle in the Bedraou Valley in the eastern province of Kapisa, Afghanistan. (GERARD JULIEN/AFP/Getty Images) #

The family of Lance Cpl. Cody Childers, of Chesapeake, Virginia, who was killed in Afghanistan, stand as "Taps" is played during his burial service at Arlington National Cemetery on Tuesday, Aug. 31, 2010 in Arlington, Virginia. From left, grandmother Peggy Ewell, grandfather Wade Ewell, sister Cassidy Childers, brother Ryan Childers, father Randy Childers, and mother Wendy Childers. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci) #

Members of the Patriot Guard Riders stand at attention outside St. Joseph the Worker Parish - Annunciation Church before the funeral service for Marine Lance Cpl. Abram LaRue Howard in Williamsport, Pennsylvania on Friday, Aug. 6, 2010. Howard, 21, was serving in Afghanistan on July 27, 2010 when he died of injuries from a roadside bomb blast in Helmand province. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer) #

Army Spc. Ethan Gronbeck gives his final farewell to his close friend, Spc. Christopher Wright Saturday, Aug. 28, 2010 at a grave site in Vanceburg, Kentucky. Both men were wounded in a firefight in Afghanistan last week. Wright died Aug. 19 in the Pech district of Kunar province, Afghanistan, of wounds sustained when insurgents attacked his unit using small arms fire. (AP Photo/The Ledger-Independent, Tammie Brown) #

U.S. Army soldiers from Bravo Company 2nd Battalion, 502nd Infantry Regiment of the 101st Airborne Division, participate in a joint patrol with Afghan Army soldiers near Forward Operating Base Howz-e-Madad, in Zhari district, Kandahar province, southern Afghanistan, Wednesday, Aug. 18, 2010. (AP Photo/Brennan Linsley) #

An Afghan policeman smiles during a joint patrol with U.S. policemen from the 504-th Military Police Battalion, 170th Company in the suburbs of Kandahar city, Kandahar province, August 18, 2010. (REUTERS/Oleg Popov) #

An Afghan girl reads the holy Quran, as a woman, right, offers prayers at a mosque during the month of Ramadan in Kabul, Afghanistan on Monday, Aug 30, 2010. (AP Photo/Musadeq Sadeq) #

Afghan girls pose for their mother at Qargha lake just outside Kabul, Afghanistan, Friday, Aug. 6, 2010. (AP Photo/Dusan Vranic) #

Afghan families, hit by the floods which have devastated Pakistan, work to rid their homes of mud, on August 7, 2010 in the south of Kabul, Afghanistan. More than 500 families have been forced to evacuate their homes due to flooding, which has originated from the country's border with Pakistan. (Majid Saeedi/Getty Images) #

Afghan National Army recruits take part in a training exercise on August 8, 2010 in Kabul, Afghanistan. (Majid Saeedi/Getty Images) #

People gather around body parts from the corpse of a suicide bomber after he detonated himself at the entrance to a guesthouse on August 10, 2010 in Kabul. According to reports two suicide bombers blew themselves up outside the guesthouse, killing two drivers and injuring a security guard. (Photo bt Majid Saeedi/Getty Images) #

An Afghan barber watches near the site where suicide bombers attacked the entrance to a guesthouse in Kabul on August 10, 2010. (SHAH MARAI/AFP/Getty Images) #

Children play in Karte Sakhi neighborhood in Kabul, Afghanistan, Sunday, Aug. 8, 2010. (AP Photo/Rodrigo Abd) #

Sgt. William Coggins of the 1st. Battalion 133rd Infantry Army National Guard embraces his son Daunte, 5, after a sendoff ceremony in Peosta, Iowa on August 3rd, 2010. Soldiers from Companies A and D, 1st Battalion, 133rd Infantry, and Det. 1, Company E, 334th Brigade Support Battalion are being sent to training before being deployed to Afghanistan. (AP Photo/Telegraph Herald, Jeremy Portje) #

In this photograph taken on August 14, 2010, US soldier Bush from HHC 2/508tn PIR 4BTC 82nd Airborne Division shaves at his base in the volatile and dangerous Kandahar's province Arghandab Valley. (YURI CORTEZ/AFP/Getty Images) #

A U.S. soldier's family photographs are hung on a wall of his living quarters at base Nolan in Kandahar province, south of Kabul, Afghanistan. Photo taken July 27, 2010. (AP Photo/Rodrigo Abd) #

A US soldier of Charlie Company 2-508 PIR Second Platoon, Second BTC, 101st ABN Div. (Air Assault) attaches a yellow flower to his helmet during a joint patrol with National Security Forces in the Arghandab Valley of Kandahar province on August 3, 2010. (YURI CORTEZ/AFP/Getty Images) #

US soldiers of HHC 2-508 PIR 4 BTC, 82nd Airborne sleep at the heliport as they wait for helicopter transport to fly back home from the volatile and dangerous Kandahar's province of Arghandab Valley on August 15, 2010. (YURI CORTEZ/AFP/Getty Images) #

A U.S. Marine with two tourniquets fastened to his upper leg is transported to a military hospital on a medevac helicopter after he was badly wounded in an IED blast near the town of Marjah in Helmand Province on August 22, 2010. (REUTERS/Bob Strong) #

A U.S. Army medevac crew member attempts to revive a Marine mortally wounded in an IED blast near the town of Marjah in Helmand province on August 22, 2010. (REUTERS/Bob Strong) #

Hospital personnel attempt to revive a mortally wounded Marine after he was brought in by medevac helicopter at Camp Dwyer near the town of Marjah in Helmand Province on August 22, 2010. (REUTERS/Bob Strong) #

US Soldiers of Bravo Company 2/508th PIR, 4th BTC, 82 Airborne patrol with Afghan National Army soldiers in Kukaran in Kandahar province on August 6, 2010. (YURI CORTEZ/AFP/Getty Images) #

Soldiers eat dinner in a T.G.I. Friday's restaurant located on Kandahar Airfield, Afghanistan, Saturday, July 31, 2010. Kandahar Airfield is the largest military base in southern Afghanistan and has a population by some estimates of at least 20,000 soldiers and civilians, and has many of the same services of a small American city. (AP Photo/Rodrigo Abd) #

A soldier sits with a bible, with his service weapon on the ground, during a Gospel service held on Kandahar Airfield, Afghanistan, Sunday, Aug. 1, 2010. (AP Photo/Rodrigo Abd) #

A man grooms himself in a "Hamam" or public bath, in Kabul, Afghanistan, on Tuesday, August 10th, 2010. (AP Photo/Rodrigo Abd) #

Sergeant Tyrone Jordan (right) and Sergeant Jay Kenney give first aid to a wounded Afghan army soldier on board a medevac UH-60A Black Hawk helicopter from the 101st Airborne division, Task Force Destiny during a mission over Kandahar province on August 31, 2010. (REUTERS/Oleg Popov) #

Avraz Ali carries his son Guhulamabac on a bicycle in Karte Sakhi neighborhood in Kabul, Afghanistan on Sunday, Aug. 8, 2010. (AP Photo/Rodrigo Abd) #

U.S. Air Force Medic-Mentor Master Sgt. LaTasha Carroway, of the Medical Training Advisory Group, or MTAG, plays "thumb war" with young recovering Afghan burn victim Abdul Rahman, at Kandahar Regional Military Hospital, KRMH, inside Camp Hero, Kandahar province, southern Afghanistan on Saturday, Aug. 7, 2010. The MTAG team, comprised of 12 U.S. Air Force medical professionals, is assigned to the Afghan military hospital, and are tasked with providing transitional guidance to local medical workers, who treat Afghan soldiers, civilians, and occasionally insurgents. (AP Photo/Brennan Linsley) #

Jill Warren, stepmother of Army Staff Sgt. Kyle Warren, holds a shirt he left in his room in Long Beach, California on August 3rd, 2010. The 28-year-old was patrolling an area of Tsagay, Afghanistan on July 29, 2010 when his military vehicle hit an explosive device. He died in the blast. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong) #