Life in Kabul Amid the Violence. Taliban attacks and bombings within the city of Kabul have increased significantly and the population is constantly on edge. Read "Kabul families struggle to smile amid rising violence", BBC News, August 30, 2015.
Small Victories Count. Angelic Young, worked for the U.S. Department of State for over ten years serving in positions in the counternarcotics and law enforcement fields. From 2001 to 2007 she was a "frontline civilian" and served as the DoS program manager for the Afghanistan National Police Program. Looking back, she says it was hard to recall positive moments but there were some small advances that made a difference. Read her article on the "Family Response Unit" of the Afghan National Police in "In conflict environments, little wins make a difference", devex.com, August 31, 2015.
Sweden, Germany, and "Kill Decisions" in the RS HQs CJOC. Looks like there are some tensions building over the presence of coalition officers being present in the Combined Joint Operations Center (CJOC) of the Resolute Support Mission at the RS compound in Kabul. The CJOC monitors all combat operations in Afghanistan (special operations and drone strikes conducted by the U.S. military and other coalition partners) and liasion and officers from various nations are present during these activities. Some question whether this violates the national caveats that a couple of the nations have. Read more in "Germany and Sweden Are Said to to Help Make Afghan 'Kill Decisions", The New York Times, September 4, 2015.
ALP: More Funding & Scrutiny Needed. "The Afghan Local Police (ALP) are playing an increasingly important security role, but questions remain about the accountability of this new and sometimes controversial force. Speakers at a series of IWPR debates held around Afghanistan in August called for action to curb corruption and abuses in order to ensure these police units enjoyed local support". Read more in "Afghans Want More Funding for Local Police, But More Scrutiny Too", Institute for War & Peace Reporting (IWPR), September 5, 2015.
Militias in Faryab Out of Control? The multiethnic province in the northwest has been troubled by the Taliban for a few years. The Afghan police and the 209th ANA Corps have been unable to secure the province. Vice President Dostum has made it a personal mission to establish security in the province and he is relying on some militias to accomplish this. Read more in "Return of Militias to Afghan Front Lines Sparks Allegations of Abuses", Radio Free Europe, September 5, 2015.
RS HQs Counter-IED Staff. "According to a report by the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan, in the first six months of 2015, 22 percent of Afghan civilian casualties stemmed from improvised explosive devices. The Combined Security Transition Command - Afghanistan Counter-IED Directorate is working to change that. The Kabul-based team of coalition service members, Department of Defense civilians and contractors at Resolute Support Headquarters trains, advises and assists Afghan National Defense and Security Forces on how to identify and disarm IEDs and unexploded ordnance and collect evidence following detonation". Read more in "Empowering Afghan citizens to counter IED threats", RS News, September 5, 2015.
AAF CAS Detailed. The Afghan Air Force is increasing its capability to provide close air support but it is still a very small capability. Read more in "Afghan Air Force Hailed for Creative Operations Despite Shortfalls", Khaama Press, September 3, 2015.
13 Civilians Killed in Balkh Province. On Saturday unidentified gunmen stopped civilian vehicles and killed the occupants.