Showing posts with label Bilateral-Security-Agreement. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Bilateral-Security-Agreement. Show all posts

Sunday, December 21, 2014

ISAF Legal Update on BSA and NATO SOFA

The ISAF legal office has published an online update and Fact Sheet on the Bilateral Security Agreement and NATO SOFA as it applies to contractors.

"Office of Legal Advisor gives update on BAS, NATO SOFA implementation", ISAF News, December 19, 2014.

ISAF / USFOR-A BAS/SOFA FAQs (Dec 14, 2014).

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Afghan Senate Approves BSA and SOFA

The upper house (Senate) of the Afghan parliament has approved the bilateral security agreement with the United States and the Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA) with NATO. Only 7 lawmakers out of a total of 102 voted against the approval. Read more in "Afghan Senate Approves Security Agreements with U.S., NATO", Radio Free Europe, November 29, 2014. The NATO Secretary General seemed happy with the news - see a press release dated November 27, 2014.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Wolesi Jirga Votes Yes on BSA

The Wolesi Jirga (lower house of Afghan parliament) voted its approval of the Bilateral Security Agreement and the NATO SOFA. The Afghan Senate (upper house of the Afghan parliament) still has yet to give its approval; although it is expected. While the votes are there (parliament approval) there are still significant factions within parliament and the Afghan government that oppose the continued presence of the United States military and its Coalition partners. Read more in a new analysis by the Afghanistan Analysts Network (November 24, 2014).

Friday, November 21, 2014

Status of Contractors in Afghanistan Changes

The Bilateral Security Agreement (BSA) and the NATO Status of Forces Agreement will cover the military personnel who will work in Afghanistan post-December 2014. Essentially, the military will have immunity from prosecution by the corrupt Afghan judicial system. Not so much for contractors. Contractors will be subject to Afghan criminal and civil jurisdiction while operating in Afghanistan. Contractor employees may only carry weapons in accordance with Afghan laws and regulations. All contractors will be required to have passports and visas to enter and exit Afghanistan The two links below will bring you to more information released by ISAF on November 17, 2014.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Monday, October 6, 2014

Text of BSA

The Bilateral Security Agreement (BSA) was signed the day after President Ghani was inaugurated. You can read the text at the link below that will bring you to the Just Security website.

More than 10K Troops Needed for Afghanistan

Now that the Bilateral Security Agreement (BSA) is signed between Afghanistan and the United States (as well as the NATO Status of Forces Agreement or SOFA) observers are assessing the current security situation. The conclusion that some draw is that 9,800 U.S. troops is not enough to conduct the "train, advise, and assist" or SFA mission. While ISAF thinks it can cover down on 4 of the 6 ANA corps and the security ministries and agencies (MoD, MoI, and NDS) it is not really going to be able to conduct the "assist" part of the mission very well. A good chunk of the "assist" mission should be to provide air support in the form of close air support, aerial surveillance, air transport, and medical evacuation - something the Afghan Air Force (AAF) is just not ready to do on a big enough scale. But ISAF would need about 5,000 more troops to be able to do that. Read more in "Don't let history repeat itself", The Economist, October 4, 2014.

Sunday, October 5, 2014

BSA Made Simple

There has been lots of conversation in the media about the Bilateral Security Agreement being signed (and, oh by the way, something called the NATO SOFA). But, other than knowing that the agreement allows us to keep up to 10,000 U.S. troops in the country for another year, most people would be hard-pressed to explain the fine details of the arrangement. So . . . read all about it in "Explainer: Key Points in U.S.-Afghan Bilateral Security Agreement", Radio Free Europe, September 30, 2014.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Afghanistan to Sign BSA on Tuesday (Sep 30)

Reports in the media state that the Bilateral Security Agreement (BSA) will be signed on Tuesday, September 30, 2014. This is good news for Afghanistan. It is also a relief for the international community which has expended billions of dollars and countless lives to bring Afghanistan out of the 14th century and into . . . . a modern era (hard to pick which century) with cell phones and automatic weapons. Read more in "Afghanistan's new government set to sign BSA on Tuesday", Stars and Stripes,  September 29, 2014.

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Afghan Security Deal to be Signed Soon

Now that the crook Karzai is on the way out (so long!) there seems to be great optimism that the newly-elected (sort of) President Ghani will sign the Bilateral Security Agreement (or BSA for short). Karzai refused to sign it even though an Afghan loya jirga endorsed the agreement last fall. The BSA will allow U.S. troops to remain in Afghanistan next year (2015). The signing of the BSA will also allow the signing of the NATO Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA) as well. Read more in "US: Afghan Security Deal May Be Signed Next Week", AP, September 24, 2014.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

BSA to be Signed Soon

Now that the drama of the Afghan elections is concluded the next big step (from a U.S. perspective) will be to see the quick signing of the Bilateral Security Agreement or BSA. Learn more here in "Ending Afghan Poll Fight Opens Door to Security Pact", The Wall Street Journal, Septmber 21, 2014.

Friday, February 28, 2014

Hagel Comments on BSA

Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel commented on the lack of the Bilateral Security Agreement and the danger it poses for the future security and stability of Afghanistan. The United States has basically given up on the corrupt, ineffective, and erratic current president of Afghanistan (Hamid Karzai) - recognizing that the Bilateral Security Agreement will not be signed until Afghanistan elects a new president. There is concern that the Afghan elections scheduled in April 2014 will not produce a clear winner and a run-off election will be scheduled for mid-summer; thus delaying the signing of the BSA.  Read more in "Hagel: Lack of Agreements Narrows Options in Afghanistan", American Forces Press Service, February 26, 2014.

NATO Worried About Lack of BSA

At a recent NATO meeting in Brussels leaders reissued warnings about the lack of a Bilateral Security Agreement with the United States and how it would affect the future of Afghanistan. Read more in "Hard Talk Aside, Little Desire by the West to Leave Afghanistan", The New York Times, February 26, 2014.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Bilateral Security Agreement between Afghanistan and Australia

Australia and Afghanistan are close to finalizing a bilateral security agreement between the two nations that will allow about 400 Australian soldiers to remain in Afghanistan beyond December 2014. The Afghan defense minister - Bismillah Khan Mohammadi - recently visited Australia for talks on this issue. Australia has provided police mentors, special operations troops, and personnel for the Uruzgan province in central Afghanistan in the past. The 400 personnel in post-2014 would primarily be advisors. Read more in "Australian Troops in Afghanistan Could be Granted Immunity", Radio Free Europe, February 19, 2014.

Obama to Karzai: Time is Running Out on BSA

President Obama had a phone conversation with President Karzai (the Mayor of Kabul) to impress upon him that time is running out for the signing of a Bilateral Security Agreement with the United States. Read more in "Obama gives Karzai warning", DEFCON Hill Blog, February 25, 2014.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Taliban Takeover Post-2014: Not So Much

The Taliban have been confidently proclaiming that they will be resurgent in the post-2014 era in Afghanistan. Their information operations machinery works well in the rural countryside of Afghanistan but not that well in the well-educated urban areas. The likelihood of a Taliban takeover of Afghanistan is not strong. They will probably gain more territory in the remote areas of eastern and southern Afghanistan (especially among the Pashtuns). Some factors that will influence how well the Afghan government and security forces perform in post-2014 are the results of the Afghan election in 2014, the signing of the Bilateral Security Agreement, and the commitment of the international community to continue to fund the Afghan government and military. Jason H. Campbell, an associate policy analyst at the RAND Corporation, provides his thoughts on a possible Taliban takeover in "Take Two for the Taliban?", U.S. News and World Report, February 11, 2014.

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Look Past Karzai on the BSA

Most American officials and members of Congress are fed up with President Karzai. Many believe that we need to table the Bilateral Security Agreement until the next President of Afghanistan is elected (possibly in the April elections; probably in a run-off in mid-summer). Read more in "U.S. Looking Past Karzai to Post-Election Afghan Security Accord", Bloomberg Businessweek, February 12, 2014.

Explaining Karzai - Peter Tomsen Gives it a Shot

Peter Tomsen provides us with his insight on Karzai and his anti-American rhetoric. While we may feel that Karzai has left his senses others are thinking he is ensuring his future and his legacy in Afghanistan. Tomsen is a former U.S. special envoy and ambassador on Afghanistan from 1989 to 1992. He also published a book on the wars of Afghanistan. Read more in "What Is Hamid Karzai Thinking? And should we even care anymore?",, February 10, 2014.

Karzai Sidelined

The rhetoric of Hamid Karzai has been muted. The U.S. politicians and military brass (of ISAF) have be preening up to Karzai for so long that it was getting rather sickening. However Karzai finally pushed it too far. The most important event for the Afghan state and its security, next to the Afghan election this April, is the signing of the Bilateral Security Agreement that will allow U.S. and NATO troops to remain in Afghanistan in a counter-terrorist and Security Force Assistance role beyond December 2014. It was hoped that Karzai would sign the Bilateral Security Agreement in early Fall of 2013. Instead he delayed it time and again while verbally attacking the United States on every issue imaginable. We (ISAF) kept cow-towing to him but it would appear that has finally stopped. Someone (Obama, General Dunford, Hagel?) has suddenly developed a little common sense and a set of Br*** B****. It seems (hopefully) that we are now waiting on the results of the election to see if the new President will sign the agreement. Can you spell "Lame Duck". It is easy: "Karzai".