Taliban kill Afghan Local Police in attacks in west and north

The Taliban’s spring offensive now appears to be in full swing. Following yesterday’s suicide attack in Faryab that killed 12 people, including three US soldiers, the Taliban targeted members of the Afghan Local Police in the western province of Farah and the northeastern province of Badakhshan. Al Jazeera reports on the attack in Farah:

The attack late on Wednesday was carried out at an outpost of the government-backed Afghan Local Police force in the Khaki Safed district of the western province.

Shamsul Rahman Zahid, the provincial police chief, said that two members of the ALP were captured by the gunmen, who were armed with assault rifles.

Qari Yousef Ahmadi, a Taliban spokesman claimed responsibility for the attack.

A district administrator said the attackers first strangled a guard posted outside before proceeding to open fire on those inside the compound itself. The attackers made off with the ALP weapons following the attack, said Abdul Khaliq Noorzai.

The ALP commander at the checkpoint was reported to have been a former Taliban member who had joined the government-backed security force.

The BBC reports on the attack in Badakhshan, which killed an ALP commander and his bodyguard:

A prominent anti-Taliban commander in the Afghan province of Badakhshan has been killed in a suspected Taliban suicide attack, police say.

They say that Nazik Mir was killed in Kisham district. At least 16 civilians were injured.

Mr Mir was one of the biggest enemies of the Taliban in Badakhshan, stopping them from operating in the area.

The Afghan Local Police clearly are a prime target of the Taliban.

On March 30, a member of the Afghan Local Police who is reportedly a Taliban infiltrator killed nine of his colleagues as they slept. He poisoned them first, then gunned them down and stole their weapons. And on March 26, a member of the ALP gunned down an ISAF soldier at a checkpoint in the east.

CJ Radin reported last night about the effectiveness and the strengths and weaknesses of the Afghan Local Police and Village Stability Operations. Bill Ardolino followed up the report with a video on Village Stability Operations in Zhari district in Kandahar.

Bill Roggio is a Senior Fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and the Editor of FDD's Long War Journal.

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  • gerald says:

    Perhaps the Taliban are reading this Blog! Frightening thought!!

  • mike merlo says:

    re: B Roggio
    Have you or anyone else have thoughts or prediction’s as to how this years Spring Offensive may or might turn out?

  • For one thing, just about every talking head in Washington keeps repeating that American forces’ withdrawal is contingent on standing up an army and a police force. Yet the people we train show little enthusiasm for their work and don’t have a good track record for taking the fight to the Taliban. Afghans have historically proven to be great fighters; yet WE just can’t seem to get our Afghans to fight. While much recruiting has been done among Tajik and other minorities to stand up to the Pashtun dominated Taliban, I seriously doubt it will work. That is because Afghans always come together against foreigners before going at each other. I’ve seen this “up close and personal” in Afghanistan many times. If we can’t leave before standing up an army and police force, we’ll never get out of there.
    At the same time, I am certain that Taliban leadership is telling would be volunteers to join the US backed Afghan National Army. The Taliban, as an organization, is run on a shoe string budget. Why should they pay to clothe, feed, house and train soldiers when the US will do it for them while revealing a great deal of intelligence to Taliban spies. That is exactly what Afghan commanders did in 1988, when I was there. Afghan commanders were refusing to take on any more recruits if they had no experience. Even if they were trained by the DRA Army, they were encouraged to stay put in the Army for intelligence and sabotage. Every Mujahed I met near Kabul, had been trained by the communists. Every time I see news clips of soldiers in the “Afghan Army”, I can see in their eyes, faces and body language that they don’t want to be there. Afghan faces look very different when they are on their own, on the other side of the fight. I am convinced that American leadership has developed some kind of blindness to this simple reality. Already, there have been multiple instances of supposedly friendly Afghans turning their guns on Americans. It’s only going to get worse and I see it as an indication of some kind of general revolt brewing among people we are supposed to be helping. Already, there have been riots among Tajiks in Kabul. These people should have a big stake in the US staying on. But even they are sick of us. These signs are consistently being ignored and spun down in significance by our diplomats and generals and have been for some time.


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