Just to clarify, Afghan security is not improving

The recent attack yesterday on the Afghan resort in Qaragha lake is yet another blow the American narrative that Afghan forces are ready to take over.  With ISAF leaving in two years time, a massive propaganda effort has been under way to show Afghan forces as competent and reliable.  Nearly all ISAF press releases laud the Afghan military as the strongest institution in the country.  Yet it was the Norwegian special forces who were responsible for the leading the operation that finally put an end to the bloodshed  at the lake resort.  As reported in McClatchy “reporters at the scene observed Norwegian special forces – trainers for the Crisis Response Unit, Afghan police commandos who supposedly had the lead in the operation – raiding the restaurant where the attackers were holed up, helping to bring an end to the fighting.”  In General John Allen’s press statement on the operation he noted that ISAF support was minimal.  This differed from the McClatchy reporters who “observed the Norwegian forces quietly removing from the scene rocket-launcher tubes that are used by NATO forces, not Afghans, a further sign that the international troops were heavily involved in the operation.”  Even if we were led to believe that the Afghan armed forces were improving the same can be said of the Taliban.  Taliban fighters time and again have shown that they can easily take hold of and maintain sieges of large buildings.

The other half to ISAF’s propaganda war against the Taliban revolves around portraying Afghanistan’s security as improving.   In the past five days at least 24 people have been killed in several different Taliban attacks.  The Afghan public by and large believes that security has deteriorated, and have little faith in an army they view as corrupt, illiterate, and incompetent.  The Taliban are by no means on the run.  So far their summer fighting season has proved to be going splendidly.

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