Sunday, February 7, 2016


Vice President Dostum
Dostum on the Outs? It appears that Abdul Rashid Dostum is not happy with the National Unity Government (NUG). His nominations for selected personnel to be posted to the government have been ignored by President Ghani. Dostum's security plans for the creation of special units to fight insurgents has not received much attention either. He has been a constant factor in Afghan politics over the past three decades with great support from areas of northern Afghanistan. During the past 30 years Dostum switch sides in the conflict a number of times to include the Afghan civil war between the communist regime and muhjaheen - and also during the subsequent civil war after the fall of the communist regime and withdrawal of Soviet forces. Read more in "Afghan Vice President in Quiet Government Boycott Over Power Sharing", Gandhara Blog, February 1, 2016.

Rumored Resignation of MoI Minister? Twitter was raging yesterday (Sat) about speculation that the minister for the Ministry of Interior would soon resign. So the three most important Afghan Security Institutions (ASI) - MoD, NDS, and MoI could soon see 'acting' leaders is not encouraging. (Reuters, Feb 6, 2016).

Fist Fights in Kandahar. One of President Ghani's top aides got into a physical altercation with a leading tribal member of Kandahar province recently. The aide has been fired but there remains some hurt feelings that could be a major problem in the future if not smoothed over. Read more in "Afghan government rocked by Kandahar fistfight", Reuters, February 5, 2016.

Guide to Afghan Parliament. The Afghanistan Analysts Network (AAN) folks have put together an in-depth paper on the Afghan parliament. India just completed construction of a new parliament building ($200 million) and the two houses of parliament have plenty of seating in large halls. Read "New Building, Old MPs: A guide to the Afghan parliament", February 4, 2016.

No Elections? Afghanistan electoral institutions and processes are highly corrupt, inefficient, and ineffective. The recent history of the last presidential election resulting in the formation of the National Unity Government (NUG) shows just how bad the situation is. The deteriorating security and economic environment is not going to make things much better for the future parliamentary elections. Read more in "In Afghanistan, No Leadership Means No Elections", The South Asia Channel - Foreign Policy, January 29, 2016.

Corruption. The European Union issued a press release saying that the Afghan government needs to address the corruption found within government and police organizations. "Corruption remains endemic in Afghanistan", EU, February 2, 2016.

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