Showing posts with label village-security. Show all posts
Showing posts with label village-security. Show all posts

Sunday, January 23, 2011

US Special Forces Village Units to Expand in Afghanistan

"The U.S. military is drawing up plans to sharply expand a network of village security forces across Afghanistan, a program U.S. officials say could be a cost-effective way to make up for shortages in the regular army and police in rural areas. But the U.S. needs a green light from Afghan President Hamid Karzai, who has long been wary because such local forces could potentially threaten his government's authority unless they are kept in close check." 
Read the rest of the story in "U.S. Builds Afghan Village Force", Wall Street Journal, January 22, 2011.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Working With Village Elders in Afghanistan - Or how to Test Your Patience!

American combat leaders are tasked with building rapport with the village elders at the community level in an attempt to gather intelligence about Taliban activities, increase the level of support for the Afghan central government in Kabul (Karzai's corrupt cronies), and to provide for increased security within the community against the Taliban.  This is a difficult task at best given the many variables our young combat leaders must deal with.  Factored into this task is the language barrier, a lack of understanding of the Afghan culture, the Taliban's successful efforts to intimidate the local village elders (with death threats), and the fact that the U.S. will not be there in force in a few years while the Taliban will be there forever.  Read a news report that provides more info on this in "Reliance on Afghan elders tests troops", Stars and Stripes, January 10, 2011.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Local Defense Groups in Afghanistan Continue to Form

"The Afghan government has organized more than 2,000 villagers into armed local defense forces so they can keep out insurgents and support coalition and Afghan forces. The self-defense groups are part of an expanding U.S.-backed program that bears a resemblance to a similar tactic in Iraq, the program has helped protect villages from insurgent attacks and the plan could expand to up to 10,000 people, Interior Ministry spokesman Zemarai Bashary said. If the plan proves successful it could grow even larger, he said."
Read the rest of the story in "Afghanistan turns to local defense groups", USA Today, January 19, 2011.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Village Stability Operations, Tribal Militias, Special Forces, and General Petraeus

The military leaders in Afghanistan are now touting "Village Stability Operations" conducted by U.S. Army Special Forces as a remedy for the Afghan War. This is the bottom-up approach to compensate for a corrupt and inept Afghan government and Afghan security forces whose influence and control do not reach into rural areas.  Read more on this topic in "Petraeus Looks For A Rabbit Under His Hat",, December 28, 2010.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Counterinsurgency Leaders Course Attendees Learn about Village Stability Operations (VSO)

Students attending the Counterinsurgency Training Center in Afghanistan are learning about how the Village Stability Operations (VSO) concept is implemented in rural villages outside of the Afghan government control. The Afghan Local Police (ALP) initiative, a part of VSO, was also presented by speakers from CFSOCC-A.  Read more on this topic in "COIN Leadership Course Students Gain Insight", NTM-A, December 1, 2010.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Canada Considers Afghan Village Defence Initiative

"The Canadian military is considering taking part in a controversial program to help Afghan villagers defend themselves against the Taliban amid reports that a growing number of locals are standing up to insurgents in the incendiary Panjwaii district — often with violent results."
Read more in "Canada considers militarizing Afghan villagers", The Globe and Mail, October 8, 2010.  Learn more about village defense initiatives in Afghanistan.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Afghanistan - A Comprehensive Approach to Local Engagement - By Eric Furey

A retired Special Forces officer, Eric Furey, has produced a paper entitled "A Comprehensive Approach to Local Engagement in Afghanistan".  The author has experience in Afghanistan where he worked on tribal engagement and local security defense initiatives.  The next two paragraphs are from the paper's executive summary and provides a description of the paper.

This paper intends to provoke thought on the connection between Stability Operations and Improvised Explosive Device (IED) reduction. Stability Operations emphasizes the need for a simultaneous bottom-up, top-down, and whole of government approach in order to “…outsmart the insurgents and wrest away the initiative.” Ultimately, the end state is to link the informal (traditional) local sub-national consensus governance structures with the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan (Afghan Central Government) at the district level. Therefore, one may reasonably ask whether an engagement program with local villagers might also diminish the IED threat.

Experience demonstrates it can. Interviews with US Army Special Forces Operational Detachment Alphas (Special Forces Team{s}) conducting the Local Defense Initiative program from July 2009 until January 2010 provide evidence that a population-centric, bottom-up local engagement program within the rural areas of Afghanistan can reduce the number of IED incidents. What was further revealed was that indigenous reporting of IEDs and related information increased proportionately to the degree of trust, respect, and credibility developed between local village elders and United States Army Special Forces (Green Berets).
Good reading for someone who is headed that way.  The paper is posted on the Small Wars Journal website.