Afghan Reserve Police = Tribal Militias, Redux?

01.06.09

Categorie: Afghanistan, David Axe, Police, Training |

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by DAVID AXE

U.S. Army Colonel James Harris, top police trainer for southern Afghanistan, says he needs another 5,000 Afghan National Police to bolster the 12,000 men under his command. “Some [police] checkpoints are over-run, not because of a lack of loyalty, but because they’re out-powered and out-numbered at that moment.”

I asked Harris if he is considering establishing a tribal militia force. U.S. troops in eastern Afghanistan recently stood up the first militia-based Afghan Public Protection unit, to reinforce the Afghan army and police. That program has not yet spread to the south — and might never, considering the U.S. and NATO’s unhappiness with the Afghan National Auxiliary Police militia. The ANAP was disbanded in early 2008 after the militiamen’s loyalties came under suspicion.

But Harris says he already has an auxiliary force that is similar to ANAP and the public-protection force. “We have a provincial reserve system in place,” Harris says. Compared to the ANAP, the police reserve is the “same thing, different name.” “The reserve force is sent through the basic course, and is fully qualified as police. They’re a reserve force for the police chief of each province to call on for emergencies, or large-scale events such as an election.”

But as with all Afghan auxiliaries, whether strictly tribal or not, there are serious problems with training and loyalty. “They don’t have amount of training that full-time police have, and that’s a detriment,” Harris said of the reserve cops. He added that he can’t vouch for the loyalty of all the men under his command. “I can’t say they’re 100-percent loyal to the Afghan government.”

(Photo: David Axe)

Related:
Afghan Super-Bases Undermine U.S. Strategy
World Politics Review: In Afghanistan, U.S. Experiments Again with Tribal Militias
Kandahar = “Black Plane” Playground
As with Iraq, Brits Losing Afghanistan

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5 Responses to “Afghan Reserve Police = Tribal Militias, Redux?”

  1. [...] Related: Afghan Reserve Police = Tribal Militia, Redux? Afghan Super-Bases Undermine U.S. Strategy? World Politics Review: In Afghanistan, U.S. Experiments Again with Tribal Militias Kandahar = “Black” Plane Playground? As with Iraq, Brits Losing Afghanistan? World Politics Review: Pakistan Drone Campaign Might Expand, Despite Risks CNN Wants Only Blood and Guts in Afghanistan Air Force General: Afghan Air War “Most Precise Combat Operation the World Has Ever Seen” No Comments so far Leave a comment RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI Leave a comment Line and paragraph breaks automatic, e-mail address never displayed, HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong> [...]

  2. [...] Related: Britain’s Bloody Week in Afghanistan Civilian Snoops Vex Afghanistan Forces British Colonel Latest Casualty in Afghanistan Offensive In Afghanistan, Germans Hamstrung by Strict Rules U.S. Comes around to Dutch Way of Thinking, on Afghan Poppies Obama Administration Mum on Civilian Dead in Drone Strikes Afghanistan, by the Numbers Afghan Reserve Police = Tribal Militia, Redux? Afghan Super-Bases Undermine U.S. Strategy? World Politics Review: In Afghanistan, U.S. Experiments Again with Tribal Militias Kandahar = “Black” Plane Playground? No Comments so far Leave a comment RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI Leave a comment Line and paragraph breaks automatic, e-mail address never displayed, HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong> [...]

  3. [...] commanders both agree that these fresh forces can’t come soon enough. After no fewer than five attempts since 2001 to stand up inexpensive, minimally-trained local militia forces, the U.S.-led alliance [...]

  4. [...] Afghan commanders both agree that these fresh forces can’t come soon enough. After no fewer than five attempts since 2001 to stand up inexpensive, minimally-trained local militia forces, the U.S.-led alliance [...]

  5. […] commanders both agree that these fresh forces can’t come soon enough. After no fewer than five attempts since 2001 to stand up inexpensive, minimally-trained local militia forces, the U.S.-led alliance […]

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