The US military’s repeated attempts to spin the Taliban’s victory in Jawzjan as its own only serves to demonstrate just how eager it is to manufacture successes in Afghanistan when they are few and far between.
Some 41 percent of the Afghan population resides in a contested district and more than nine percent reside in a Taliban controlled district, according to a new study by FDD’s Long War Journal.
At a Pentagon press conference, General Nicholson again gave a Pollyannish assessment of the state of Afghanistan. He claimed the peace process is working and the Taliban’s offensive is failing, and took credit for a Taliban victory over the Islamic State.
In addition to Ajristan and Khwaja Umar, the districts of Nawur, Jaghatu, and Deh Yak have fallen to the Taliban. Meanwhile, Resolute Support has intentionally misled the the public about the status of seven of Ghazni’s districts. Resolute Support claimed these districts were under government control; in reality the Taliban physically controlled the terrain while the Afghan government operated the government remotely from Ghazni City.
Resolute Support continues to invent new terminology to obfuscate the extent of Taliban control in Afghanistan.
The government of Afghanistan announced yesterday that it has entered into a unilateral ceasefire with the Taliban. Gen. John Nicholson, who oversees the US-led war effort, claimed it was a “bold initiative for peace.” But the thinking behind the ceasefire is confused.
The Taliban continue to maintain its grip on half of Afghanistan despite US military’s reinvigorated effort to force the group from its strongholds.
The Afghanistan watchdog was finally able to release the military’s own district-level assessment, allowing for a direct comparison with our data. The Taliban currently controls 37 districts, contests 200, and claims to control two more.