Showing posts with label insurgents. Show all posts
Showing posts with label insurgents. Show all posts

Sunday, March 25, 2018

ETIM in northeast Afghanistan? Hmmmm

Map of Badakhshan Province Afghanistan

In February 2018 Resolute Support pushed out some news releases and videos describing an increase in air strikes against insurgents in Badakhshan province in northeast Afghanistan. The RS HQs and DoD news releases stated that the East Turkistan Islamic Movement (ETIM) was operating in the region and reportedly using some Taliban camps for training.

"U.S. Forces Strike Taliban, East Turkestan Islamic Movement Training Sites", Defense Media Activity, February 7, 2018.

"New U.S. air campaign expands to the North", Resolute Support Afghanistan, February 6, 2018.

The researchers at Afghanistan Analysts Network (AAN) took a closer look at the RS HQs claims of ETIM operating in Badakhshan and find the RS HQs claims about ETIM activity are slightly exaggerated.

Read more in "Tilting at Windmills: Dubious US Claims of Targeting Chinese Uyghur Militants in Badakhshan", Afghanistan Analysts Network, March 19, 2018.

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Trouble Brewing to the East

Afghanistan shares a narrow border with China. To the east of this border lies the province of Xinjiang or Uighuristan - where the Uighurs live. The Uighurs have long been seeking independence from the Chinese (unsuccessfully) and many have fled to neighboring Central Asian countries for refuge and to continue their independence related activities from outside China. However, China is expanding its influence in the Central Asian area and receiving more cooperation from these countries. This is having a dampening effect on the ability of the Uighurs living in exile to conduct their anti-state activities. Read more in "Dreaming of Uighuristan", BBC News, April 16, 2015.

Friday, November 28, 2014

Inequality in Afghanistan

Insurgencies have root causes and in Afghanistan these root causes are easy to identify. One of the biggest is the vast divide between the "haves" and "have nots". There are many ways of classifying the "haves" and "have nots" but one of the easiest is to use the urban and rural labels. Read more in "The Price of Inequality: The Dangerous Rural-Urban Divide in Afghansitan - Analysis", Eurasia Review, November 26, 2104. The author is Tamin Asey - a fellow at the Asia Society and a Fulbright scholar at Columbia University. He was also a former Government of Afghanistan official and taught at the American University of Afghanistan (AUAF).

Thursday, November 13, 2014

IMU - Alive and Well and Desirable

The Uzbeks from the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU) have acquired a reputation as experienced bomb makers in Afghanistan and in Pakistan's tribal areas. Since Uzbekistan has a high literacy rate they are able to read manuals on mixing explosives and constructing Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs). In addition, again the literacy thing, they can understand and utilize the Internet to provide propaganda on websites and through social media, exchange information (covertly), and gather intelligence (using OSINT or Open Source Intelligence techniques). While the IMU in northern and northeastern Afghanistan were hit hard in 'night raids' by the U.S. and ISAF special operations forces the past few years, the pressure has diminished a bit due to the draw down of conventional and SOF from Afghanistan. The ANA and ANP special operations units (ANASF, Commandos, CRU 222, PSUs, etc.) are capable but there are not enough of them and the ANSF intelligence structure is still in its infancy. Thus the IMU are starting to re-establish themselves once again. The members of the IMU are not only active in northern Afghanistan and western Pakistan; they are found as members of other insurgent groups in Central Asia. In addition, a significant number of Central Asians (members of IMU among them) can be found fighting with the Islamic State in Syria and Iraq. Read more in "Central Asia's Desirable Militants", Radio Free Europe, November 6, 2014.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Attacks Against Police Continue

The insurgents continue to attack the Afghan police. One of the favorite types of attack is the use of suicide bombers - a tactic very difficult to defeat; especially in an urban setting. Read more in "Attacks on Afghan police challenge security environment", UPI, November 10, 2104.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Violence Increases in Kabul in Ghani's First Month

The level of insurgent activity in Kabul has increased during President Ghani's first month in office. Car bombs and rocket attacks are on the rise. Read more in "Violence marks Afghan president's first month", AP Big Story, October 28, 2014.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Book - "Adapting to Win"

A new book about insurgencies has been published. It is named Adapting to Win: How Insurgents Fight and Defeat Foreign States in War. The author, Noriyuki Katagira, teaches in the Department of International Security Studies at the Air War College, United States Air Force, Maxwell Air Force Base. The book examines almost 150 instances of violent insurgencies against state governments (including Afghanistan and Iraq) and provides insights into guerrilla operations across the world. His research shows that successful insurgent groups have evolved into mature armed forces and demonstrates what evolutionary paths are likely to be successful or unsuccessful. The book is available at the University of Pennsylvania Press.

Monday, October 13, 2014

IMU Weakened

The Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU) has operated in northern Afghanistan, eastern Afghanistan, and northwestern Pakistan for a number of years. It suffered a high rate of casualties in the last three or four years as a result of stepped up targeting by U.S. special operations forces. At the moment it is severely weakened. In an attempt to strengthen its position it has recently allied itself with the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS or ISIL). Read more in "Helplessness forces IMU to call itself an ISIL partner", Central Asia Online, October 10, 2014.

Friday, February 28, 2014

Insurgencies Re-Examined

An Op-Ed by a Professor at the United States Army War College has been provided online that re-examines the role of counter-insurgents and the nature of present-day and future insurgencies. Dr. Robert J. Bunker works at the Strategic Studies Institute of the Army War College as a visiting professor. Read his Op-Ed in "Not Your Grandfather's Insurgency - Criminal, Spiritual, and Plutocratic", Strategic Studies Institute (SSI) published on February 20, 2014.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Chechen Terrorists in Afghanistan

A recent news report provides information on the secret fight between U.S. special operations forces and Chechen terrorists aligned with al Qaeda in Afghanistan. Read more in "The Secret Battles Between US Forces and Chechen Terrorists", ABC News, February 19, 2014.

Friday, February 14, 2014

Paper by Seth Jones - Back to the Future: The Resurgence of Salafi-Jihadists

Dr. Seth Jones testified before the House Armed Services Committee on February 4, 2014 about the resurgence of Salafi-Jihadists. His testimony is available in a publication by RAND Corporation entitled "Back to the Future: The Resurgence of Salafi-Jihadist". While relevant to the conflict in Afghanistan from the standpoint of the "Core Al Qa'Ida" being based in Afghanistan it is a paper that provides information on the worldwide network of Salafi-Jihadists. The testimony report is available on the RAND website at the below link:

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Thirty Years of Afghan Conflict - Anti-Government Mobilisation (AREU Paper Jan 2012)

The Afghanistan Research and Evaluation Unit (AREU) has published a paper that examines "  . . . the structural factors driving anti-government mobilisation in Afghanistan in each successive phase of the country's thirty years of conflicts".  The paper also looks at the Taliban as a political organization enabling and driving conflict. 

Thirty Years of Conflict: Drivers of Anti-Government Mobilisation in Afghanistan 1978-2011
Dr. Antonio Giustozzi
January 2012

Learn more about the roots of insurgency in Afghanistan.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Lieberman Says The Insurgency is Retreating in Afghanistan

The noted hawk and senior member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, Sen. Joe Lieberman, told a GOP conference today that he believes the Taliban are in retreat and cautioned that :“very few” American troops will be withdrawn from Afghanistan this summer.
“We really have begun to turn the tide. That means, very specifically, we are beginning to push the Taliban out in this very necessary war,” said Lieberman, who just returned from a trip to Afghanistan with Senators John McCain, of Arizona, Lindsey Graham, of South Carolina and Kirsten Gillibrand of New York.
Read more:

Monday, November 15, 2010

Interview with Qazi Mohammad Amin Waqad - A Veteran Jihadi Leader (By Jamestown Foundation, Nov 2010)

"Qazi Mohammad Amin Waqad is a former member of the Hizb-e-Islami leadership council, a party led by Gulbuddin Hekmatyar. Waqad was one of three key anti-Soviet leaders of the mujahideen and served as Hekmatyar's lieutenant. He is a graduate of the Islamic Law Faculty of Kabul University and is now a leading member of the National Front, an opposition group to Hamid Karzai's administration. Waqad recently spoke with Jamestown analyst Waliullah Rahmani in Kabul."
Read the interview here at "Afghanistan's Veteran Jihadi Leader: An Interview with Qazi Mohammad Amin Waqad", The Jamestown Foundation, November 2010.