Weekend of Insider Attacks in Afghanistan Leaves Six Troops Dead

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Common Dreams

Weekend of Insider Attacks in Afghanistan Leaves Six Troops Dead

by
Common Dreams staff

File photo shows a US soldier, part of the NATO forces, patrolling a police station in Kandahar, south of Kabul, Afghanistan. (AP Photo/Allauddin Khan, File)

Update: An Afghan police officer has killed four American troops at a remote checkpoint on Sunday, Associated Press reports, bringing the death toll from insider attacks to six just this weekend.

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The trend of insider or "green on blue" attacks continues in Afghanistan with the killing of two NATO soldiers by an Afghan local policeman on Saturday.

Agenices report that the killing brings the number of insider attacks to 47 this year.

As TomDispatch editor Tom Engelhardt recently wrote, the message sent by the insider attacks is abundantly clear.

The message is certainly clear enough, however unprepared those in Washington and in the field are to hear it: forget our enemies; a rising number of those Afghans closest to us want us out in the worst way possible and their message on the subject has been horrifically blunt.  As NBC correspondent Jim Miklaszewski put it recently, among Americans in Afghanistan there is now “a growing fear the armed Afghan soldier standing next to them may really be the enemy.”

It’s a situation that isn’t likely to be rectified by quick fixes, including the eerily named Guardian Angel program (which leaves an armed American with the sole job of watching out for trigger-happy Afghans in exchanges with his compatriots), or better “vetting” of Afghan recruits, or putting Afghan counterintelligence officers in ever more units to watch over their own troops.

The question is: Why can’t our leaders in Washington and in the U.S. military stop “struggling” and see this for what it obviously is? Why can't anyone in the mainstream media write about it as it obviously is?  After all, when almost 11 years after your arrival to “liberate” a country, orders are issued for every American soldier to carry a loaded weapon everywhere at all times, even on American bases, lest your allies blow you away, you should know that you’ve failed.  When you can’t train your allies to defend their own country without an armed guardian angel watching at all times, you should know that it’s long past time to leave a distant country of no strategic value to the United States.

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