The Associated Press submitted a FOIA to get the details of the insider attack at an Army base in Afghanistan which resulted in the deaths of U.S. Army Capts. Joshua Lawrence and Drew Russell. How no one saw this attack coming is beyond me. The two were murdered after a day of hosting about a hundred Afghan tribal and religious leaders at the base;
The investigation – a standard process in a war zone – found that security at the U.S.-Afghan command post was so relaxed that guards were not told to check anyone entering. Potential Afghan thievery, not treachery, was judged the chief threat. Thus the killers had unfettered access and moved about without arousing suspicion.
Only 10 designated Afghan security personnel were supposed to be in the compound, but U.S. guards were given no access roster. Unknown numbers “freely entered and exited the compound unchecked,” an Army investigator found.
The Americans had been told to treat the Afghans as if they were mingling in Iron Horse Park, a recreation area on their home base, Fort Carson, Colo., according to a staff sergeant who was present but whose name is blacked out on his sworn statement to investigators.
Yeah, it’s funny, not funny ha-ha, how the enemy always exploits weaknesses and doesn’t always use a frontal assault to kill Americans.
The Americans had convinced themselves, 10 years into a war whose successful outcome depended on empowering local security forces, that they could trust their Afghan colleagues.
As the attacks mounted this year, U.S. officials in Kabul and Washington insisted these were “isolated incidents.”
Yeah, because if you ignore the problem, eventually it will go away. AP says that 63 US troops have been murdered this year in these insider attacks, but we’ll never know how many incidents have occurred that didn’t result in deaths, because the Pentagon is hiding those numbers. I’ve been told by folks who know that they’re just the tip of the iceberg – that many more green-on-blue attacks are covered up at the highest levels of command when no one was killed.
Although the Benghazi consulate attack on September 11th was tragic, this, to me, is a worse scandal. For most of this year, many troops weren’t even allowed to arm themselves in the presence of Afghan troops to demonstrate our trust of our allies, in spite of the fact that there wasn’t really any reason to trust them. But, it won’t be a scandal, because in the minds of Americans, soldiers die in war. But, it’s the command’s responsibility to keep those numbers as low as possible.
This incident demonstrates the foolhardy and misplaced “trust” in our allies, costing two Americans their lives.