U.S. Troops Battle The Enemy From Within
By: John Hampton
Two U.S. Special Forces members were killed by an individual clad in an Afghan police uniform on Monday. The tragic incident took place in the Jalrez District of Wardak Province, just outside of Kabul.
U.S. as well as Afghan forces had been in a meeting at the district police headquarters prior to the attack. Upon leaving the building after the meeting, the men were assaulted by the Afghan policeman firing a mounted machine-gun from the back of a police truck. In addition to the U.S. troops, two Afghans and the attacker were also killed.
This phenomenon, known as Green on Blue Violence, is not new to Afghanistan. Green on Blue Violence includes attacks against the U.S. or her NATO allies by Afghan soldiers, police or security guards. And of course, it is the U.S. and her NATO allies that are training and funding these very groups/individuals that are launching the attacks. Incidents of Green on Blue Violence in Afghanistan have escalated over the past two years. This forces our troops to live and work in an even more untenable environment.
With the previous paragraph in place, I must now report that the purpose of this article in not to analyze the causes of Green on Blue Violence. It is important however, that the reader knows what it is, and that it does in fact exist.
This most recent Green on Blue attack came less than 24 hours after Afghan President Karzai’s deadline for U.S. forces to vacate Wardak Province had passed. Karzai reportedly gave U.S. forces two weeks to leave the area after local residents complained of abuse and improper treatment at the hands of the Americans. No evidence has been found to substantiate these claims.
The majority of U.S. and NATO troops are scheduled to be out of Afghanistan by the end of next year. General Joseph Dunford, top U.S. commander in Afghanistan, related that he was not yet ready to remove his men from Wardak. An ill-timed withdrawal could create a situation which allows the Taliban unfettered access to Kabul.
To make matters worse, Karzai is now accusing the U.S. of colluding with the Taliban for the purpose of keeping Afghanistan weak. Karzai asserted that the two suicide bombings, which occurred on Saturday and killed 19 Afghan citizens, were evidence that the Taliban and the Americans were working in concert.
In 2010, Karzai threatened to quit the political process and join the Taliban if he continued to come under pressure from outside entities to reform his regime. And he has also accused the U.S. of conspiring against him in the 2009 elections.
President Obama has said that the U.S. is committed to its combat mission in Afghanistan through the end of 2014. However, incidents of Green on Blue Violence, along with Karzai’s accusations of unethical conduct on the part of the U.S. and his irrational statements about joining the Taliban have done nothing to improve the comity between our countries.
And let us certainly not forget the immense burden of blood and treasure borne by the United States and her citizens. More than 2,000 outstanding Americans have been lost in this sepulchral conflict and hundreds of billions of dollars have been spent. It is extremely difficult to feel that our presence in Afghanistan continues to be justified when President Karzai expresses such untoward sentiments.
Our military men and women continue to find themselves under enormous pressure. Not only from traditional battlefield hazards, but also from the ever increasing threat of Green on Blue attacks and now, the unintended consequences of President Karzai’s unfounded allegations.
In addition, on the same day as the Green on Blue attack described above, a U.S. military helicopter crashed in southern Afghanistan killing all five Americans onboard. The cause of the crash is under investigation; however officials have said there was no enemy activity in the area at the time. A total of seven Americans were lost in Afghanistan on Monday. Please continue to pray for our troops and their families.
John Hampton lives in Tehachapi CA and is quite concerned about the policies and motives of the current Administration. He believes in a system that holds our freedoms sacred, promotes personal responsibility, prudence and high moral standards.