Marines Continue Afghan Battle

The Marine Offensive in Helmand Province Continues
The Marine Offensive in Helmand Province Continues

Surging violence in the days leading up to Afghanistan's presidential election has not kept Afghan President Hamid Karzai and his main challenger, former Foreign Minister Abdullah Abdullah, from campaigning cross country.

But one place neither of them will be visiting is the town of Dahaneh in hostile Helmand province, as Chief Foreign Affairs Correspondent Lara Logan reports.

Read Logan's Afghanistan Blog Here

Some 400 U.S. Marines stormed into this Taliban stronghold three days ago to take control of the town and derail Taliban plans to disrupt the election.

"We will see attempts at spectacular attacks, hopefully we will disrupt them before they become spectacular attacks," says Col.George S. Amland, Deputy Commander of the 2nd Marine Expeditionary Brigade.

In Dahaneh, the aim was to get the Taliban out in time for people here to vote. But the town is still not secure.

Senior Marine officers told CBS news they believe the Taliban is trying to launch a counter attack.

"They will assess our security measures and they will probe until they have found a weakness," said Amland.

The Marines point out that it's only been six weeks since they launched major operations across this province. But the question is already being asked - do they have enough troops? What the people and the Marines here say they want are more Afghan soldiers.

But there aren't enough Afghan soldiers to fill the growing need here so it will be up to U.S. troops for now.

  • Lara Logan
    Lara Logan

    Lara Logan's bold, award-winning reporting from war zones has earned her a prominent spot among the world's best foreign correspondents. Logan began contributing to 60 Minutes in 2005.