US Gov't Peacekeeping Issues

Afghan Force Will Be Cut After Taking Leading Role

Published April 11, 2012 by The New York Times
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WASHINGTON — Afghanistan’s defense minister said Tuesday that his government and the international coalition paying for the war effort had agreed in principle that Afghan security forces would undergo a significant reduction to about 230,000 personnel after the NATO mission ends in 2014.  Under current plans, Afghan security forces are to reach a peak of 352,000 by late this year.

From Afghanistan, the countdown to 2014

Published April 7, 2012 by Reuters
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The dusty streets of Kabul are choked with traffic, restaurants selling American fast food are bustling and there is a crowd of students and parents outside a girls’ school in the centre of town trying to slip through the shuttered gates at the start of the school year.  Returning to Kabul for the first time since December, there was no sense that the mood on the ground had changed significantly. But I couldn’t help wondering how all this might change once foreign troops who have propped up the Afghan state for more than a decade leave in 2014.

Defending Afghanistan: are Afghan forces ready?

Published April 9, 2012 by Christian Science Monitor
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The dirt roads through Balaqala in the Charhasya Valley south of Kabul are oozy with mud after recent rains, and the fruit trees just beyond low earthen walls are about to blossom and demand tending. Still, many of the village's 1,000 inhabitants have come out to hear what Brig. Gen. Said Abdul Karim, commander of the Afghan National Army Special Operations Command, has to say about the 15 Afghan elite troops who have set up camp in a nearby empty farmhouse.

Deal Close on Night Raids, U.S. and Afghan Officials Say

Published April 3, 2012 by The New York Times
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KABUL, Afghanistan — After years of insisting that American forces end covert nighttime raids on Afghan homes, President Hamid Karzai’s government was close to completing a deal that would give the Afghan authorities legal oversight of the raids, while allowing American forces to retain a guiding role in conducting them, officials from both countries said Tuesday.

Room for Debate: Should the US Leave Afghanistan?

Published April 4, 2012 by The New York Times
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More than two-thirds of Americans in a recent New York Times poll said the United States should not be at war in Afghanistan and even many Afghans are planning on leaving their country. With relations frayed by disturbing events like the village massacre tied to an Army sergeant, and riots set off by the burning of Korans by American forces, should the United States stick with its plan to keep troops in place until 2014, or should it withdraw as quickly as possible?

US hopeful of reopening NATO supply routes from Pak to Afghanistan

Published April 4, 2012 by Times of India
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WASHINGTON: Amid a crucial review of Pak-US ties by Pakistani lawmakers, the US on Tuesday expressed the hope that Islamabad would soon open the crucial supply NATO route to Afghanistan.  "With respect to the ground supply routes into Afghanistan, we remain hopeful that those routes will be reopened in the near future, and discussions with the Pakistanis continue on a range of issues," Pentagon press secretary George Little said.

Afghanistan Falls Apart

Published April 4, 2012 by Foreign Policy
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KABUL – Near a busy intersection where burqa-clad women beg for spare change at car windows, Mahmoud Saikal, Afghanistan's former deputy foreign minister, sat under a photo of this capital city's crowded hillside neighborhoods in the stately living room of his compound.  "If you are from Kabul," he says, "you can find your place of birth in this photo."  It's the only landscape not changing in Afghanistan.

With UNMIL Drawdown in Sight: Defense Minister Seeks Foreign Assistance in USA

Published March 27, 2012 by The Daily Observer, Liberia
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With the sole aim to seek for further assistance for Liberia’s security agencies, National Defense Minister Brownie J. Samukai, Jr. over the weekend headed a high-power team of security personnel to the United States.  The delegation’s aim is to seek resources to augment the strength of the Bureau of Immigration and Naturalization (BIN), Liberia National Police (LNP), including Correction officers, Customs and  the Armed Forces of Liberia (AFL).  At the U.S.

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