BBC: Corruption in Afghan Army

| February 25, 2013 | 43 Comments

No, really. I know it sounds like I must be kidding, but according to the BBC the Afghan National Army and the Afghan National Police are doing stuff. Bad stuff. Stuff that would get President Karzai upset if he knew about it – but he mustn’t know about it, because he’s busy tossing US SF troops out of Wardak province instead;

Because of the growing risk of deadly insider – or “green on blue” – attacks, the Americans live completely apart from their Afghan counterparts. Whenever the Americans enter the Afghan side of the base, they have their weapons cocked, ready to fire.

When they did go out, what the marines saw was far from encouraging. At one checkpoint, the Afghan police were openly smoking marijuana. Two other police officers, assigned to fill sandbags to fortify a watchtower, were high on something stronger – probably opium or heroin. When one of the police commanders was shot, three weeks after I left, the American medics who saved him found a bag of heroin in his pocket.

The article actually gets worse, if you can believe that. I know this will shock no one who has followed this war closely.

He said the police sometimes sell ammunition and weapons in the local bazaar, including rocket-propelled grenades. So weapons paid for by the allied forces could well be ending up in the hands of the Taliban.

In one instance, a patrol base was deemed unsafe to stay in because the Afghan police were selling off the security walls as scrap metal.

It keeps on getting worse – so bad that you’ll have to click over to read it. But, then a carcass rots from the head down, doesn’t it? We should rig it for demolition.

Thanks to ROS for the link.

Category: Terror War

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  1. MGySgtRet. says:

    Shocking, I tell you!!!!! Shocking!!!

  2. ComancheDoc says:

    not surprised at all; was on a joint patrol in 06 with some of these turds and they set up a perimeter facing inward and started to get high. when my PL told em to do the right thing; face out and stop smoking, they called a cab and left. I shit you not they called a cab because they couldn’t get high…
    I always favored giving all detainees and ANSF casualties we treated narcan, because you never really knew…

  3. CBSenior says:

    2014? Get the hell out now, 100% withdrawal. Sell excesss equipment to India to keep transportation cost down and screw over the Waki Pakis.

  4. Ex-PH2 says:

    I do not know why I am not surprised by this.

    I simply am not surprised, not even a little bit.

  5. 2/17 Air Cav says:

    Q: What do you call a pedophile, kidnapper, and thief in an Afghan Police uniform?

    A: It depends on his rank.

  6. Veritas Omnia Vincit says:

    So what are we doing in Afghanistan and why?

    I am fine with killing Taliban and anyone else who supports those who would bring death to our door, and toppling their governments.

    But what was the endgame supposed to be? No one actually thought that this place would ever be an ally with or without strong democratic principals did they? That would have been historically naive to say the least and extremely delusional at worst.

    Why are we trying to stabilize Karzai? It should have been clear from the start he was incapable of uniting this nation. He won’t last 6 months after we leave, or did we never intend to leave? Were we anticipating a never ending occupation similar to Korea but without any real local allies? Why does no one responsible for setting this policy in motion and carrying out ever have any actual answers?

  7. MCPO NYC USN (Ret.) says:

    Makes me sick and very pissed off!

  8. Richard says:

    Since 1945 and except for South Korea, can anyone provide an example of a place where the US provided training for indigenous forces that worked out well?

    Seems to me that there is something wrong with our training outline or that someone is setting up rules that prevent success. Has anyone else noticed that or am I just full of crap – again?

  9. Hondo says:

    I am shocked . . . shocked to find corruption and drug use in the ANA.

    Or anywhere else in the Middle East, for that matter.

  10. Hondo says:

    Richard: our support for Ramon Magsaysay in the Philippines during the 1950s in resisting local insurgency on Mindanao turned out pretty well as I recall. Ditto our efforts in Taiwan post-1949 and in Central America during the 1980s.

    Win some, lose some. IMO, two key factors are (1) figure out what “win” means, and (2) figure out early on whether you’re backing a horse having the will and capability to win.

    Screw up either of those, and you’re in deep dung.

  11. Cacti35 says:

    Working with the ARVN (South Vietnamese) we were not really impressed with their soldiering but I don’t ever recall hearing about anyone getting murdered by them. You can’t say that about that bunch of monkeys in Afghanistan.

  12. Ex-PH2 says:

    If you watch that brief BBC video, you can see quite clearly that the local police don’t give a crap and the Afghan guy with the jar of tea (?) doesn’t have a clue about anything, although he does say “all civilians are Taliban”.

    So why are we there, again?

  13. Veritas Omnia Vincit says:

    @10 Indeed, as always you are correct. Even Japan and Germany have become allies where once there were mortal enemies. But we have a difference in this Afghani culture in that, unlike Germany and Japan for instance, there was never a really homogenous society to start with. Tribal differences, geographic differences, religious differences have never actually melded into a strong national character historically in Afghanistan. Lacking any unifying force of national character and then assuming a single leader will emerge as a uniting force is not a very realistic assumption.

    As an occupier looking to eliminate those who would kill our citizens I understand our presence, but it does appear the endgame was never well prepared in advance of the ground operations. With our current administration proving to be an exercise in ineptitude on foreign soil, I am unconvinced they will provide any rational exit strategy to aid in the post occupation stabilization. I also don’t believe any of those in this current administration actually care about a post occupation stabilization. Thus, a hasty exit to avoid any more murders at the hands of our supposed ally would perhaps be in order at this time.

  14. AReader says:

    Has TAH done jumped the shark and now is saying subtly that we must leave Afghanistan? Reap what you sow, gentlemen. While everyone was pushing for us to stay, this is what happens. Should have never went there in the first place, but that’s a whole ‘nother ball of wax.

  15. Twist says:

    “Should have never went there in the first place”

    Yep, we should have sent Al Queda flowers and a thank you note after 9/11. sar/

  16. PintoNag says:

    @14 “Reap what you sow, gentlemen.”

    No, we’re reaping what vacillating, spineless, brainless, “progressives” forced us to sow. Instead of turning our military loose to fight a war, they were chained down with “nation building” and “social experimentation.”

    But you knew that already, didn’t you? Go smirk somewhere else.

  17. MCPO NYC USN (Ret.) says:

    @ 14 AReader …. branch check?

  18. MGySgtRet. says:

    @14, I thought Afghanistan was the “good war” and us taking our eye off the ball by going into Iraq was what got us into all this trouble!! At least that is what the media lackey’s have been pumping out for 10 or so years. And I am going to go out on a limb here AReader and surmise that you have never carried a weapon to a foreign land, never heard a shot fired in anger and have no fucking idea what you are talking about. But that’s a whole nother ball of wax.

  19. rb325th says:

    Areader is AMoron… No other explanation required.

  20. AReader says:

    @18: Actually, I served 9 years in the Army. I was deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan. I was discharged honorably after serving out my contract. I just don’t see a point in ever going to any of the aforementioned countries. Hindsight is 20/20, but we would be a lot better off if we never went. Oh well.

  21. PintoNag says:

    @20 So who, precisely, are you blaming for your unhappiness with the current circumstances? You point your finger at “TAH,” when you wore the uniform over there, too? That’s projecting a little, isn’t it?

  22. AReader says:

    @21: Not blaming TAH, I just think its funny that at one point all the articles were about how we need to stay and now its about how screwed up it is. We all knew it was screwed up, but the current hivemind-state is that we need to stay. Frankly, it was and is a colossal waste of time. As was alluded to in the post and quoted articles, they are all corrupt.

  23. MCPO NYC USN (Ret.) says:

    @ 20 … please tell us more about your 9 years in the US Army … units … ops … etc et al.

  24. MGySgtRet. says:

    AReader, thank you for your service. But you can stick your political commentary up your ass if it will fit up there with your head.

  25. 2/17 Air Cav says:

    @22. My sense of the sentiment here has been a consistent ‘all in or get out’ with the number one concern the troops and their families. I guess I missed that “one point” where all of the articles were about how we need to stay. Maybe I was on hiatus at that point. But, in any event, your opinion is just that and perspective changes–for better or worse–with age and the benefit of hindsight.

  26. AReader says:

    @24: Exactly why I stopped reading this site so much. Thank you.

  27. PintoNag says:

    @26 Our resident liberal, Joe, can come on here and take a dogpile, and you can’t? Aw, come on. You can do better than that!

  28. MGySgtRet. says:

    AReader, don’t mistake my disagreement with your politics and assessment of the situation in Afghanistan as the opinion of this group. I am new to this site. I don’t speak for anyone here but ME! But I have lost quite a few comrades and friends in both Iraq and Afghanistan and it chaps my ass raw for someone to come in and offer an opinion that is based on a snarky comment. “Reap what you sow”. So just let that butthurt flow through you young Jedi and don’t go away mad, just go away.

  29. AReader says:

    @28: I lost friends as well, but we need not follow blindly. Don’t mistake my disagreement with the wars as a lack of support, but we do reap what we sow despite your disagreement with that statement. How many would still be alive if we never went? Just think about it. We’ll never know.

  30. Mustang says:

    @29 How many would still be alive if we were allowed to actually do our jobs? Niether Iraq nor Afghanistan have ever been true “military” operations, but rather with one hand tied behind our backs and the servicemembers have paid the price for it.

  31. MGySgtRet. says:

    And how many angels can sit on the head of a pin?? We won’t know that either. As a member of the military, I don’t recall my chain of command giving a shit if I followed blindly, squinty eyed or sound asleep, as long as I followed. Don’t try to piss on the graves of our fallen with your half assed 20/20 hindsight.

  32. AReader says:

    @31: Whatever. You are missing the point.

  33. AReader says:

    @30: Sure, and I agree. How many would still be alive and the money saved if we never went? I have always been in favor of a less restrictive ROE but it will never happen.

  34. MGySgtRet. says:

    AReader, your debating skills are impecible. You have shut me down with a show stopping “Whatever”. Game over, you win. And as soon as you make a point, let me know.

  35. AReader says:

    @34: When you are ready to have reasonable conversation, just chime in.

  36. MGySgtRet. says:

    When you know what the fuck you are talking about, I certainly will.

  37. Old Trooper says:

    @22: What we “thought” we had was the will to do the job and get the hell out of dodge, however, when we are more worried about what the media thinks and what other nations think about how we prosecute our mission, then we have lost. Not because of the men and women executing the mission, but because we really don’t have the political will to see it through. When you do that, then you drag it out past the point of ever accomplishing the mission. That’s the point we’re at now. We have a government in Afghanistan that is openly hostile to how we do the job and making demands and applying restrictions. The whole bullpuckey about “hearts and minds” has gotten us nowhere in the past 50 years. The last time we worried about victory before winning hearts and minds was WWII.

  38. kp32 says:

    @22- I’m probably justing biting on troll-bait, but the truth sometimes changes over time. Opinions can also change over time, especially if you’re actually doing some critical thinking. So it’s actually not funny that ‘at one point’ opinions were different here, it’s to be expected.

  39. A Proud Infidel says:

    AReader, you remind me of a joke of a troop we had in our unit in A-stan. That boy was so brilliant, he shaved his face with a Women’s epillator thinking it reduce his need to shave in the future. The result? Most of his face was a scab for two weeks.

  40. AReader says:

    @39: you remind me of a dingleberry I had today hanging from my ass. Stinky but lacking substance.

  41. fm2176 says:

    # 37 Old Trooper

    “We have a government in Afghanistan that is openly hostile to how we do the job and making demands and applying restrictions.”

    To a certain degree, I can’t help but compare Afghanistan’s leaders to some of the homeless in and around DC. My Platoon Sergeant used to give one of them a few dollars on a regular basis, and after a few weeks the guy started trying to get more and more out of him. Finally, one day the PSG was short on cash but had just stopped by McDonald’s. He ended up stopped at the intersection where his homeless “friend” hung out, and offered the guy a cheeseburger. The guy threw it and started cussing. Needless to say, that was the last donation he got from the PSG.

    We’ve been giving Afghanistan money and aid so long now that they have forgotten that it is not an entitlement. So now America is expected to continue giving money (and more of it as we reduce troop levels) while bowing down to Afghan “sovereignty”. The funny thing is that Karzai and Co. would not be quite so “sovereign” had we not invested American lives and capital in the first place.

    We need to offer Afghanistan something that is not as easily mishandled as cash (they’ve been asking for jets and tanks–don’t we have any stockpiles of Cold War era stuff we aren’t using that wouldn’t be much of a threat if it fell in the wrong hands?). When Karzai throws the proverbial cheeseburger and curses America’s name we can then say “we tried, buh-bye”.

  42. B Woodman says:

    This entire Afghan debacle has reminded of VietNam for some time — the politicians are running the war and hogtying the military with silly ROEs from actually winning a war.
    In the beginning I thought that we never should have gone in, but since we WERE in, let’s finish the job and win.
    But since Obaomao became CinC (barf) the ROEs and green-on-blue attacks have gotten worse and worse. Time to just pack up everything possible, blow the rest in place to unusable scrap and come home. Then nuke the entire shithole from high altitude.

  43. PhillyandBCEagles says:

    @13, there are some basic cultural differences too. Germany, Japan, Korea, Italy, Vietnam are/were all civilized cultures. They may not have been traditional western democracies, they may not be culturally similar to us, they all committed brutal atrocities when we fought them (well the Italians may have been too lazy to do anything like that), they may not even place the same value on human life that we do but at their core they are all civilized, fundamentally decent human societies. Afghanistan is not.

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