Since 2001, we’ve spent roughly $2 trillion in Afghanistan – not to mention 2,400 U.S. military killed and over 23,000 wounded. It’s a steep price for these results. We should have learned from the Soviets.
from the Washington Free Beacon:
Nearly Half of Afghanistan Under Terrorist Control as U.S. Pours Billions Into Country
The Afghan government has lost control of nearly half the country to terrorist forces, the lowest levels of control since government officials began tracking the situation in November 2015, according to the latest oversight report.
The Special Investor General for Afghanistan Reconstruction, or SIGAR, noted a significant decline in the Afghan government’s ability to govern the district, a decline of about 16 points. Total Afghan government control stands at 55 percent, the lowest number since November 2015. Insurgent control and influence over key regions has risen about 5.5 percent, according to the report, which highlights the U.S.-backed government’s growing inability to retain influence in areas it once maintained control of.
The ongoing decline in the Afghan government’s control over key territories is awakening new concerns among security officials and others who have warned that the Taliban is experiencing a resurgence despite the United States pumping billions into Afghanistan reconstruction effort over the past decade.
Independent Afghanistan experts have confirmed in recent weeks, based in part on government data, that just over half of the Afghan population is outside of the government’s control.
Civilian casualties also have been on the rise, according to SIGAR.
There have been 650 civilians casualties as a result of aerial operations by pro-Afghan government forces from Jan. 1 to Sept. 30 of this year, a 39 percent increase from the previous year, according to SIGAR.
The Afghanistan National Defense and Security Forces, or ANDSF, also continue to struggle, hitting the lowest personnel levels since recording began in 2012.
“ANDSF strength decreased by 1,914 personnel since last quarter and by 8,827 personnel since the same period last year,” according to SIGAR. “The ANDSF is roughly 40,000 personnel, or 11%, below their target strength of 352,000 personnel.”