ISAF: No evidence to support Afghan torture allegations

posted at 12:41 pm on February 25, 2013 by Ed Morrissey

Not that we expected to find any, and it’s not just the Americans who are nonplussed at the allegations.  The ISAF has yet to figure out what Hamid Karzai was talking about when he ordered Americans out of Wardak province, although the German general at ISAF pledged to work with Karzai’s government to discuss their concerns:

The U.S.-led coalition in Afghanistan has so far found no evidence to support Afghan allegations of misconduct by American special forces in a strategic eastern province, the alliance’s spokesman said on Monday.

German Gen. Gunter Katz said the International Security Assistance Force will work with the government to find a solution to the concerns of Afghans, but could not yet comment on the allegations that Afghans connected with U.S. special forces were involved in abuses that include torture, killings and illegal detentions. …

“We take all allegations of misconduct seriously and go to great lengths to determine the facts surrounding them,” Katz told reporters. “Over the past few weeks there have been various allegations of Special Forces conducting themselves in an unprofessional manner” in Wardak.

He added that “so far, we could not find evidence that would support these allegations.”

The allegations are not against US forces per se, but but local forces allied with them.  Karzai’s government wants the US to cough up the identities of those forces, which presents the US with all sorts of problems in the region.  The US has tried to put together an “Anbar Awakening” strategy in place, but that takes a great deal of trust between the US and tribal and community leaders — some of whom will surely not place much faith in the Afghan security forces’ ability to keep a secret.  Pushing for those names will bring that strategy to an end, and the US might as well pack up and leave the region altogether anyway if they comply with Karzai for all the assistance we’ll receive.

There is another issue in play, too.  The Karzai government wants to force an end to immunity for NATO troops accused of war crimes, in order to bring them to trial in Afghan courts.  The same issue arose in Iraq in the last two years of our operations there, and became an insurmountable obstacle in establishing a permanent advisory/logistical force in that country.  By accusing the US of complicity in war crimes in Wardak, Karzai is turning up the heat on this demand, which is going to make Barack Obama’s efforts to maintain a credible force in Afghanistan after 2014 a lot more difficult, if not impossible.


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But have they quit beating their wives?

OhEssYouCowboys on February 25, 2013 at 12:42 PM

Why do I envision a Vietnam type exit? We need a control exit to burn anything left behind that can be used against us later.

Oil Can on February 25, 2013 at 12:45 PM

But have they quit beating their wives?

OhEssYouCowboys on February 25, 2013 at 12:42 PM

Have not started that yet. Still working on school girls and polio vaccines.

Jabberwock on February 25, 2013 at 12:45 PM

Karzai ordered Americans out of Wardak province? No problem, since we can always station them in neighboring Kyrzakhstan.

petefrt on February 25, 2013 at 12:46 PM

The Left and the MSM propaganda do not care about evidence. Torture!!!!!11111!!1!

Jackalope on February 25, 2013 at 12:47 PM

…just makes stuff up!…he sees how our President does it!

KOOLAID2 on February 25, 2013 at 12:52 PM

Why do I envision a Vietnam type exit? We need a control exit to burn anything left behind that can be used against us later.

Oil Can on February 25, 2013 at 12:45 PM

We need to hose every square foot of arable land until it can no longer grow dandelions, so at the bare minimum the scum can’t go back to growing poppies the day we’re gone.

MelonCollie on February 25, 2013 at 12:54 PM

Karzai does this all the time. He is just trying to buy himself and his family time from being butchered by the Taliban, AQ, et al., by talking tough against his guests. Won’t work, of course.

Christien on February 25, 2013 at 12:58 PM

…No problem, since we can always station them in neighboring Kyrzakhstan.
petefrt on February 25, 2013 at 12:46 PM

So Biden-esque of our brand new Sec of State!

Another putz…

Scrumpy on February 25, 2013 at 1:10 PM

The US has tried to put together an “Anbar Awakening” strategy in place, but that takes a great deal of trust between the US and tribal and community leaders — some of whom will surely not place much faith in the Afghan security forces’ ability to keep a secret.

This would be a hilarious joke if Americans weren’t dying over there.

If the Afghans haven’t “awakened” after over three decades of war, including a couple with the Taliban either running things or trying to run them, why would they now when they know damn well Comrade O wants to and intends to get the hell out ASAP? And they have known that since the fall of 2009.

As far as “ability to keep a secret”, after Bradley Manning who there would trust us to keep identities a secret, much less “Afghan security forces” that are shooting Americans in the back on a fairly regular basis?

farsighted on February 25, 2013 at 1:12 PM

“The US has tried to put together an “Anbar Awakening” strategy in place, but that takes a great deal of trust between the US and tribal and community leaders — some of whom will surely not place much faith in the Afghan security forces’ ability to keep a secret.”

Well the official story always sounds better than reality. The “Sunni Awakening” had more to do with the awesome amounts of cash handed out by the military to Sunni sheikhs and tribal leaders under the heading “Incentive Funds” than with “trust”.

They (the Afghans) are NOT going to trust the US, because the US is incapable of protecting them (and we’ve said we’re leaving). There’s 68,000 guys in Afghanistan, 1/3 the number that were in Iraq, and Afghanistan is 1/3 larger than Iraq. The Taliban, HQN and HIG routinely announce who they’re going to kill (behead) for collaborating with the US via “night letters”…because these organizations know there’s not a damn thing the US or ISAF is going to do to stop it.

There’s no win here. Technology (ISR, UAS platforms and other electronic garbage we’ve spent $billions on) doesn’t hold ground, nor win hearts and minds or offer an ounce of protection to an Afghan.

John_G on February 25, 2013 at 1:14 PM

By accusing the US of complicity in war crimes in Wardak, Karzai is turning up the heat on this demand, which is going to make Barack Obama’s efforts to maintain a credible force in Afghanistan after 2014 a lot more difficult, if not impossible.

More jokes.

What makes anyone think Comrade O seriously wants “to maintain a credible force in Afghanistan after 2014″? There is little or no evidence of this. He announced our pull out timetable when he announced his temporary anemic increase in troop levels back in the fall of 20009 after procrastinating and dithering for five months after receiving the official request from McChrystal. If anything he has increased the pull-out pace.

American soldiers and Marines are dying in Afghanistan so Dear Leader can claim a Nixon-like victory in Afghanistan on the way out.

farsighted on February 25, 2013 at 1:18 PM

Our last act in Afghanistan should be a MOAB dropped on Karzai’s palace.

novaculus on February 25, 2013 at 1:22 PM

which is going to make Barack Obama’s efforts to maintain a credible force in Afghanistan after 2014 a lot more difficult, if not impossible.

Excellent. The fact that we are still in Afcrapistan, with our troops being used as Human Sacrifices on an Alter of Insanity, Lab Rats in a Sociology PC Experiment from Hell being conducted by Putrid Lunatics, masquerading as generals, now in the twelfth year of trying to build a Trillion Dollar Bridge To Nowhere, is a monument to shear utter mind numbing stupidity.

VorDaj on February 25, 2013 at 1:25 PM

“He announced our pull out timetable when he announced his temporary anemic increase in troop levels back in the fall of 20009″
farsighted on February 25, 2013 at 1:18 PM

.
20009?
.
20K? Ah..”In the year 20000 there is only war!”
.
Space Marines!

LincolntheHun on February 25, 2013 at 1:27 PM

Our last act in Afghanistan should be a MOAB dropped on Karzai’s palace.

novaculus on February 25, 2013 at 1:22 PM

Ideally with all 3 and 4 star U.S. Army generals in the palace with him at the time.

VorDaj on February 25, 2013 at 1:28 PM

Tell that jerk Karzai that his escape ticket just got cancelled.

mojo on February 25, 2013 at 1:39 PM

Tell that jerk Karzai that his escape ticket just got cancelled.

mojo on February 25, 2013 at 1:39 PM

Strap a wireless camera to his shoulder, kick him out of a plane flying at maximum altitude, and sell the film for ten bucks a download.

MelonCollie on February 25, 2013 at 1:52 PM

They need to tell Karzai to “blow -off” and get every last American out of that useless sewer today.

rplat on February 25, 2013 at 2:06 PM

Time to leave. These people won’t be bothering us for a while. Just remember to take all the good equipment.

unclesmrgol on February 25, 2013 at 2:07 PM

Based on my contacts in the business, everyone is getting played.

Perhaps they will, like the Kilkenny cats perform the friendly office on each other until all are gone.

Denver Bob on February 26, 2013 at 11:02 AM