Wednesday, March 25, 2015
Essential Function 5 - Force Sustainment. EF 5 advisors "train, advise, and assist" the Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF) in the areas of logistics, maintenance, medical, information, communication, and technology. A recent posting on the U.S. Army's "Stand-To!" website describes EF 5 in greater detail. Read "Resolute Support Essential Function 5", Stand-To!, March 23, 2015.
Monday, December 29, 2014
Saturday, December 20, 2014
The report contains 14 observations resulting in 28 recommendations. Some of the issues identified include the lack of ANA logistics planning capability, ANA equipment disposal processes, issues with the unity of effort among the Coalition staff, obtaining the required number of logistic advisors with the right experience and expertise, and planning for post-2014 contractor support.
There were a number of recommendations to include ensuring functional Security Force Assistance teams have the capability and resources required to continue effective development of ANA logistics, assist the ANA in procurement of contractor support, and providing oversight on the Regional Military Training Centers.
Read or download the report at the link below (Adobe Acrobat, 114 pages, 5 MBs).
Wednesday, December 3, 2014
Anderson, LTG Joseph and MAJ Matthew McCreary. “International Security Assistance Force Joint Command 2014: The Year of Change”, Military Review, January-February 2015, pages 16-25. This paper describes the transition from SFA to FbSFA and the ‘thinning up’ of the advisory effort with the ANSF taking place at the same time that a significant retrograde of personnel, equipment and closing of bases was happening. The article is essentially correct but takes too much credit for transition that had already transpired in 2013 – such as thinning up, move to Functionally-based Security Force Assistance, and advising at the higher echelons vice district center and kandak level. This editors’ opinion is that 50% of the credit taken in the paper was for work already completed in 2013. But . . . the paper by the commander of IJC is a good historical document for those who want background info or who are writing academic papers or books on the advisory effort in the Afghan conflict.
Sunday, February 9, 2014
The Afghan War started in the Fall of 2001 when a small group of CIA agents and several Special Forces teams assisted the Northern Alliance and some Pashtun resistance groups in overthrowing the Taliban regime. It is now 2014 - more than 13 years later - and we are now making great strides in the professionalization of the Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF). For the first time (again, 13 years later) ISAF has assisted the Consolidated Fielding Centre (CFC) in the conduct of "the first ever Combined Arms Training course". The course was organized by mentors from NTM-A in partnership with the ANA Training and Education Command (ANATEC). In the shift from combat-oriented, unit-based advising to functionally-based Security Force Assistance (fbSFA) the advisors conducting Security Force Assistance are concentrating on five functional areas - Leadership, Command and Control, Combined Arms Integration, Training, and Sustainment. The Combined Arms Training course is an attempt to provide more professionalism in the Combined Arms Integration of the five functional pillars for ANSF development and sustainment. Read more in "ISAF and the ANSF focus on capability integration", DVIDS, February 8, 2014.
Thursday, January 2, 2014
Each ISAF Commander comes into his one year (sometimes a little longer) tour in Afghanistan hoping to carry the football down the road a little further . . . and to shape the war effort as he sees fit. General McCrystal brought in Counterinsurgency, General Petraeus brought with him Population-centric Counterinsurgency and Partnering, General Allen introduced Security Force Assistance, and now General Dunford has now focused ISAF on Functionally-based Security Force Assistance. So what will the small number of troops in Afghanistan be doing in 2014? Well, they will not be doing much fighting (hopefully) and they will be helping the Afghans to be able to sustain their force into the future years as the Coalition presence diminishes even further. A recent blog post spells this out quite clearly for us. See "Future of Advising in Afghanistan", Flashpoint Blog, American Security Project, December 23, 2013.