Showing posts with label logistics. Show all posts
Showing posts with label logistics. Show all posts

Sunday, March 6, 2016

Security News

Gen Austin - Spinning the Narrative.  The commander of U.S. Central Command, General Lloyd Austin, says that Afghan military is making progress - saying "The Afghans are very capable . . ." Um, okay. If you say so. Read more in "Afghanistan's Security Forces Making Progress, Centcom Says", U.S. DoD, March 2, 2016.

Another Deployment for 3rd Cav. About 1,000 Soldiers from the 3rd Cavalry Regiment will deploy to Afghanistan in the spring of 2016. The Fort Hood Soldiers will be part of a regular rotation of forces in support of Operation Freedom's Sentinel. Read more in a news report (Military Times, March 2, 2016).

Two Turks Killed. Two Turkish nationals were killed Saturday in a shooting in Kabul. The police are investigating.

Anniversary of Operation Anaconda. In March 2002 U.S. forces in Afghanistan launched Operation Anaconda to attack al-Qaeda and Taliban forces located in a mountain valley in eastern Afghanistan. Several U.S. servicemen were lost in the battle.

Pakistan Harboring Taliban Leaders? The Pakistani prime minister's adviser on foreign affairs has indicated that the leadership of the Afghan Taliban is living in Pakistan. A bold admission of something that many have accused Pakistan of doing for many years. Read more in "Why did Pakistan admit to hosting the Afghan Taliban?", BBC News, March 3, 2016. Read a related article entitled "Diminishing Control Motivates Pakistan to Assert Taliban Influence", Gandhara Blog, March 3, 2016.

Indian Consulate Attacked. A consulate in Nangarhar was attacked and several militants were killed. Read more in "Afghanistan militants dead in Jalalabad attack", BBC News, March 2, 2016. Civilians were killed and wounded in the attack as well.

Gen Dunford Says . . . . that the Afghans are applying security lessons learned in 2015. (DoD News,  Mar 4, 2016). Dunford was the commander for the International Security Force Afghanistan (ISAF) in 2013-2014. He is now the Chief of the Joint Staff and recently visited Afghanistan for the change of command ceremony for Resolute Support.

Lots of Hats. A recent news article contemplates the different types of hats found among the coalition forces at the Resolute Support base in Kabul. A stroll around the compound will find many styles and colors of berets, Australian bush hats with their unique chin strap, French hats with colorful feathers, and more. Then of course, there is the disconcerting habit of British military of not wearing any hat at all that throws U.S. SGMs into a significant panic attack. Read more in "Hats Point to Diversity, Size of Coalition in Afghanistan", DoDLive, March 3, 2016.

Former Governor Freed. The former governor of Herat province was abducted in Pakistan last month by gunmen and was released by security forces. It seems that the captors were transporting him by auto and they were stopped at a checkpoint. Read more in this news story by Kidnap and Ransom Magazine, February 29, 2016.

Badakhshan Opn Soon? There are news reports saying that the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces (ANDSF) will soon be mounting an offensive to clear insurgents out of parts of Badakhshan province. Read more in a news report by Tolo News, March 5, 2016.

Afghan Army Logistics. Philip Lere examines the good and bad of Afghan Army logistics system in "The Coalition, Scarcity and the Afghan Army Logistics System", Small Wars Journal, March 3, 2016.

CIVCAS in Paktia Province? The ANDSF recently (Jan 2016) conducted a multi-agency operation in Zurmat that seems to have caused some civilian casualties. Read more in "The ANSF's Zurmat Operation: Abuses against local civilians", Afghanistan Analysts Network (AAN),  March 4, 2016.

Districts Handed to Taliban by Govt? Chief Executive Officer Abdullah Abdullah has dismissed speculations about the planned hand over of certain districts to the anti-government armed militant groups. Some districts across the country have been abandoned by the ANDSF and that has led to speculation. Read more in "Abdullah dismiss speculations about planned hand over of districts to militants", Khaama Press, March 3, 2016.

District Falls to Govt Troops. The Afghan National Defense Security Forces (ANDSF) has retaken a district that had been under Taliban control for some time. Operations were launched to retake Dand-e-Ghori district of Baghlan province in late January. One of the side effects of the Taliban occupation of the district was the cutting of power lines providing electricity to Kabul. Read more in "Afghan forces take full control of Dand-e-Ghori in Baghlan from Taliban", Khaama Press, March 3, 2016.

Friday, March 6, 2015

DoDIG Report on ANP Log / Maintenance

The Department of Defense Inspector General's office has published a 100-page report entitled Assessment of U.S. and Coalition Efforts to Develop the Logistics and Maintenance Sustainment Capability of the Afghan National Police. The report, DoDIG-2015-067 dated January 30, 2015, contains 11 observations and 29 recommendations.

Core deficiencies n the ANP logistics system
Afghan budget laws
MoI logistics policy
ANP requirements generation
ANP logistics asset availability
Sustainment of ANP facilities
ANP fleet management
Regional Logistics Centers (RLCs)
ANP transition to organic maintenance
ANP attendance at the ANA CSS School
Advisor resources

There were key logistics issues found in three areas - resources, policy implementation and enforcement, and emerging logistics processes. One observation is that there are insufficient numbers of skilled, experienced candidates available to Coalition forces to serve as ANP logistics advisors. One recommendation is that incoming advisors meet rank, skill-level, and experience requirements (good luck with that one - see info on historic problems with advisor selection). The report contains recommendations to the leads for EF 1, EF 4, and EF 5. The EFs - or Essential Functions - are the way Resolute Support HQs has organized its advisory effort. the DoDIG report can be found at the link below.

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Combat Rations Database

Did you ever wonder what you were really eating in those Meal-Ready-to-Eat (MREs)? Well now you can find out. Check out the nutritional value of the Meal, Ready-To-Eat (MRE), First Strike Ration (FSR), and the Meal, Cold Weather / Long Range Patrol (MCW/LRP) at the "Combat Rations Database" (ComRad) at

Monday, December 29, 2014

ANA Logistics Still Broke

Despite an intense effort over the past two years to fix the Afghan National Army logistics and supply system prior to the departure of ISAF at the end of 2014 the ANA log system is broke, units are suffering from lack of ammunition, supplies, and material, and vehicles sit in boneyards broke and unusable. Read more on this deplorable situation in "Uh-oh in Afghanistan", by David Wood, Senior Military Correspondent, The Huffington Post.

Saturday, December 20, 2014

DoD IG Report - ANA Logistics

The Department of Defense Inspector General has issued a report (December 19, 2014) entitled Assessment of U.S. Government and Coalition Efforts to Develop the Logistics Sustainment Capability of the Afghan National Army, Report No. DODIG-2015-047. The primary focus of the report was to evaluate the progress made by U.S. and Coalition forces to train, advise, and assist in the development of an enduring logistics sustainment capability for the ANA. The specific objective was to assess the planning and execution of logistical processes developed and implemented by the U.S. and Coalition Force in Afghanistan for the ANA.

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).

Friday, November 21, 2014

ANP Logistics Seminar at ISAF HQs

A logistics seminar was recently held for Afghan National Police (ANP) senior noncommissioned officers at the Milano Theater on the ISAF HQs compound in Kabul on November 16, 2014. The seminar was hosted by the Combined Security Transition Command - Afghanistan (CSTC-A). Learn more in this news article by DVIDS (November 17, 2014).

Monday, November 10, 2014

MREs - Changes in Future

New styles of MREs are currently being tested by the Army and will likely be fielded in 2015 and 2016. White-meat chicken chunks are on the way in 2015 along with hash brown potatoes with bacon and applesauce pound cake. "What's new in your MRE - 2105 and beyond", Army Times, November 1, 2014.

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Marine Corps Logistics Unit of Year in Afghanistan

For the second year in a row, the Redeployment and Retrograde in Support of Reset and Reconstitution Operations Group (R4OG is easier to say) has been named as the Marine Corps' logistics unit of the year. Read a recent news article on this achievement in Marine Corps Times (February 18, 2014).

Monday, February 10, 2014

5th Combat Service Support Kandak Receives Training at Camp Eagle, Afghanistan

Members of the 5th Combat Service Support (CSS) Kandak, 2nd Brigade, 205th Corps recently received training in logistics from American advisors. The course increased the ANA logistics capability which will improve sustainment and mobility of the other kandaks (battalions) in the 2nd Brigade. Training encompassed the ability to order, transport, and receive mission-essential equipment and supplies. The training provided by the advisors is geared to helping the ANA sustain itself in the future once the coalition withdraws. This is part of the shift from unit-based, combat-advising at the tactical level to advising along functional processes at lowest levels to the ministries (something that ISAF refers to as "functionally-based Security Force Assistance). Read more in "Sustainment and mobility: Afghans train on logistics for continued success", DVIDS, February 1, 2014.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Construction for 215th Corps Logistics Unit Completed

Future home of 215th ANA Corps Logistics Unit
Photo by Bill Dowell, USACE, January 28, 2014
Construction is almost complete for the logistics unit that supports the 215th Afghan National Army Corps in southwest Afghanistan. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers acts as construction agents for numerous projects in Afghanistan. The Corps employees contract and oversee construction in accordance with Federal Acquisition Regulations and Corps guidance. It is a difficult working environment - a society rife with corruption, trade and construction skilled labor not abundant, harsh weather conditions, and very little security for the transit of equipment, material and supplies. In addition, Afghan construction projects have been well-renowned for not being completed and for shoddy workmanship. In this specific instance, the USACE feels the project went well (a dose of good news never hurts especially in light of recent reports on reconstruction efforts in Afghanistan by SIGAR). See "Construction projects some of the best, general says", DVIDS - U.S. Army Corp of Engineers, February 3, 2014.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

SFA Logistics Advisor

1LT  Robert Krueger is a logistical advisor to his Afghan counterparts in Parwan province, Afghanistan. Based on Bagram Air Field he advises and assists the ANSF on their logistical and supply system. The LT is part of a Security Force Assistance Advisory Team capable of rapidly moving to a location and providing assistance to the ANSF throughout Afghanistan's Regional Command East. Part of his duties involve coaching the ANSF prior to major operations and receiving accurate reporting following an important event. Read more in "2-4 Infantry, advising and assisting in Parwan", DVIDS, January 26, 2014. (Photo by 1LT Joseph Robinson, TF Patriot, Jan 18, 2014).

Sunday, January 26, 2014

SFAATs Train 205th Corps on Class IX Management

Photo of RC-South advisers checking "warlord" shipment
of class IX supplies for 205th Corps (photo CPL Mariah Best)
Security Force Assistance advisers working in Regional Command South are assisting and training their Afghan counterparts on how to manage and distribute class IX supplies from the 205th Corps down to the four brigades of the corps. The upcoming Afghan elections to be held in April 2014 are an important event. The Taliban have vowed to disrupt the electoral process with the intent of discrediting the election and the legitimacy of the newly elected president. The Afghan National Army, along with other elements of the Afghan National Security Force, will need to keep the Taliban at bay. To do this their equipment and vehicles need to be operating at a high state of readiness - and this is dependent on repair parts and supplies.

Unfortunately the class IX system for the Afghan National Army is broke. The push system provides parts from the national warehouse down to the corps and then the corps push these supplies down to the brigades. What is pushed is not what is usually needed. The established system for ordering parts that are required is not utilized effectively (despite many years of advisers trying to fix that). The end result is a glut of unneeded parts and supplies and a lack of critical items.

With the recent logistics training by the SFAATs in RC-South it is hoped that the class IX supply issue is alleviated. Read more in "ANSF and ISAF work logistics for upcoming elections", DVIDS, January 24, 2014.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Logistical Nightmare: Removing Excess Gear and Equipment from Afghanistan before 2014

A huge task that lies ahead of the U.S. military and other ISAF troop contributing nations as well is the removal of vast amounts of military equipment that has accumulated in Afghanistan over the last decade. According to some reports that equipment is valued at over $28 billion. There are thousands of armored and heavy vehicles in Afghanistan that need moving back to the states. The cheapest way to move them is via the land-route through Pakistan to some seaports but this route is subject to heavy tariffs, stolen equipment, Afghan corruption, labor disputes, and the political whims of a Pakistan bureaucracy and government.

An alternative land route is termed the "Northern Distribution Net" - which runs along part of the Old Silk Road. However, this land route is longer, traverses several countries, is subject to restrictions on shipping lethal weapons, and has different railway gauges. In addition, the route goes through northern Afghanistan which has the infamous Salang Tunnel and where the U.S. presence on the ground is minimal. In fact, the ISAF bases in the north are collapsing into one or two enduring bases so the security on the ground will be deteriorating soon.

Some equipment may just be left behind. The UK is leaving over 45% of their equipment behind and it will be signed over to the Afghans. Some equipment we need to leave behind or sign over to the Afghans as it is useless to us sitting in a metal container on some Army post in the states where it will rust away (the RIABs, for instance). The logisticians certainly have their work cut out for them.  Good luck with that!

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Pakistan and US Discussing the Opening of Supply Routes Through Pakistan

Pakistan and the United States may soon reopen talks about reopening supply routes through Pakistan. The routes have been closed for a few months as a result of an airstrike that killed 24 Pakistani soldiers along the Afghan-Pak border in November 2011. Currently all supplies are transiting the northern route through the Central Asian countries to the north of Afghanistan. Read more in "US-Pakistan to discuss supply routes soon", Miami Herald, March 23, 2012.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Accurate Airdrops in Afghanistan Resupply Remote Locations - JPADS

A record number of supplies were dropped by parachute in 2011 to remote locations in Afghanistan by the United States.  Advanced technology has provided the ability to resupply our troops with great precision. The new technology is called Joint Precision Air Drop System or JPADS.  The troops stationed at these small combat outposts can worry less about running out of water, food, ammunition, radio batteries, and medical supplies and concentrate on their mission.  The airdrops also provide for a safer method of resupply; reducing the amount of time that combat support troops spend on roads targeted with IEDs. This advance in resupply technology is especially important for special operations forces conducting Village Stability Operations in remote, austere locations that experience rough weather, roads in poor condition, difficult terrain, and the ever present IED threat.  Read more in "Pinpoint airdrops key to success in Afghanistan", USA Today, February 1, 2002.

Video of Joint Precision Air Drop System or JPADS resupply
to a remote location in Afghanistan.  (Video by Tech. Sgt. J. Wilcox)

Picture above depicts the GPS guided Screamer 2K bundle, Joint Precision Air Drop System after having been dropped from the back of a C-130 Hercules aircraft over Afghanistan.  (U.S. Air Force photo, Senior Airman Brian Ferguson)