Afghanistan's phony army

Afghanistan's 'ghost soldiers': thousands enlisted to fight Taliban don't exist

Investigation found that 40% of troops in Helmand province are fake names or dead men, leaving Afghan border patrol filling the front line void indefinitely

Ghost troops are emblematic of an adversary possibly even more damaging than the militants: corruption. Toofan Waziri, a political analyst who recently visited Helmand as part of a government appointed delegation, said he found one base where the commander had ordered half of his 100 soldiers to leave, without notifying his superiors, only to pocket their salaries.

Another reason for the inflated numbers is that commanders often choose not to report accurate casualties or desertion in the ranks, to mask their failures.

One security official cited in the government report said 300 troops had been deployed to a base in Sangin, but when the base fell, there were less than 15 left.
There is much more.

Certainly corruption is part of the problem, but also the retreat ordered by President Obama has meant that Afghan troops have not had the proper supervision and training.  They also lack a logistic network to take care of the troops.


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