Showing posts with label AfPak-Hands. Show all posts
Showing posts with label AfPak-Hands. Show all posts

Thursday, March 15, 2012

How Advisors Can Regain Trust in Afghanistan

Fernandao Lujan, a U.S. Army Major, wrote a piece recently about how to re-establish trust between Afghans and the U.S. military. Lujan is a Special Forces officer, has spent some time in Afghanistan as an AfPak Hand, speaks a little of the language, knows some of the culture, and spent much of his Afghan trip working with Afghan military units as a member of the Counterinsurgency Advisory and Assistance Team (CAAT). He offers advice for those military members who will work in an advisory role in Afghanistan over the next several years.  Read Lujan's article in "How to get Afghans to trust us once again", The Washington Post, March 2, 2012.

Monday, February 27, 2012

AfPak Hand One of Two Victims in Afghan Ministry of Interior in Koran Burning Backlash

2/26/2012 - HURLBURT FIELD, Fla. (AFNS) -- An officer assigned to Air Force Special Operations Command died Saturday of wounds suffered from a gunshot in Kabul, Afghanistan. Lieutenant Colonel John Darin Loftis, 866th Air Expeditionary Squadron, was deployed in support of OPERATION Enduring Freedom and working in the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan Ministry of the Interior with the AfPak Hands program as the chief plans advisor. The AfPak Hands program stood up in September 2009 to develop a cadre of specially trained U.S. servicemembers skilled in Afghan and Pakistani culture and language.
Lt Col John Darin Loftis was an AfPak Hand who was working in Afghanistan as a plans advisor.  Read more about Lt Col Loftis here in "AF Special Ops officer killed in Kabul shooting", February 26, 2012, U.S. Air Force.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Assessment of the Future of Afghan War After U.S. Departs Afghanistan

Two military officers with recent experience in Afghanistan wrote an article about a visit to Zabul Province where they spent some time with an Afghan infantry battalion operating "independently".  They detail the struggle that the Afghan battalion faces as it confronts both the enemy and an ineffective Afghan logistics and supply system.  While the battalion does not measure up to a U.S. infantry battalion in firepower, training, experience, and planning ability; it is getting the job done.

The two officers recognize that the upcoming departure of the coalition forces and the shift to an advisory role for those coalition troops that stay after 2014 will put the Afghan Army in the forefront of the battle against the insurgents. Their article provides some insight on how Afghan battalions will fare when left on their own.  In addition, they discuss what type of individual is best suited for "advisory work" in Afghanistan after 2014.

Some info on the two writers; one officer is American and the other Afghan. The U.S. officer is a Special Forces Soldier who is in the AfPak Hands program and was working for the Counterinsurgency Advisory and Assistance Team (CAAT) in Afghanistan. The Afghan officer, a major in the Afghan Special Forces, is now attending U.S. military schools in the United States.

You can read their article here - "Two Officers Counter Bleak Assessment of Afghan War", by Fernando M. Lujan and Khosal Sadat, At War Blog, The New York Times, February 13, 2012.