Sunday, October 2, 2016
Afghan Security News Update (20161002)
Nangarhar Province: A ISIS Enclave. The Islamic State attempted to set up base areas in several provinces within Afghanistan; but it's success was largely limited to Nangarhar. A writer from the Afghanistan Analysts Network (AAN) in "Descent into chaos: Why did Nangarhar turn into an IS hub?", AAN, September 27, 2016.
From Frying Pan to the Fire. Nangarhar residents are speaking out about the cruelty of the ISIS enclave. Read "From the Taliban Frying Pan to the Islamic State Fire", by Heather Barr, Foreign Policy, September 27, 2016.
Pakistan Attempts to Plug Illegal Border Crossings. The border between Afghanistan and Pakistan is remote, sometimes desert, sometimes mountainous and is extremely porous. The two countries share a 2,600 kilometer border that has several hundred irregular crossing points. Pakistan is building some outposts to try and halt some of the smugglers and 'terrorists' who cross unofficially. (Voice of America, Sep 27, 2016).
Training Foreign Air Forces a "Core Mission". The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Joe Dunford, recently called the training of foreign Air Forces a core mission of the US Air Force. He recently visited Afghanistan and was worried when told that being a U.S. Air Force trainer in Afghanistan wasn't a 'good job posting'. Read more in "Dunford: US Air Force Should Incentivize Foreign Training Mission", Defense News, September 26, 2016.
Afghan Medevacs Overworked. The heavy casualty rate experienced by the ANDSF during the Summer Campaign 2016 has seen the Afghan Air Force medevac system stressed. Read more in "One Week. Hundreds of dead and wounded. How Afghan forces are struggling with heavy casualties", The Washington Post, September 30, 2016.
Afghan AWOLs in U.S. Seven members of the Afghan military have gone 'absent without leave' in the United States in the month of September. All of them were attending military training in the United States as part of the International Military Student program. Read more in a Fox News report (Sep 27, 2016).
NATO Troops Injured by IED. According to some news reports four Romanian troops and an Afghan interpreter were injured by an improvised explosive device in Afghanistan.
Checkpoints: Still Hindering the ANDSF. According to the commander of the Resolute Support mission in Afghanistan the high number of checkpoints maintained by the Afghan National Police and Afghan National Army are caused by poor leadership and politics. It appears that the 'Checkpint Reduction' campaign waged by Resolute Support advisors last spring has been relatively ineffective. Read more in "Checkpoints Continue to Plague Afghan Security Forces", The Diplomat, September 27, 2016.
Insider Attack Kills 12 ANA. Afghan National Army soldiers were killed in their sleep last week by fellow comrades in an outpost near the city of Kunduz in northern Afghanistan. Two soldiers joined up with the Taliban after conducting the insider attack. (The World Post, Sep 27, 2016). See also a story by Radio Free Europe, September 27, 2016.