Wednesday, August 10, 2005

The Afghan Legion

Bobby of Bobby's World has an interesting post about a paper that he presented at a recent conference at Fort Leavenworth.

Leverage the Afghans: The Case for Building an Afghan Auxiliary Military Force for Expeditionary Operations

My agenda was pretty straightforward: my background (to establish my "credibility" on the topic), the historical experience of the British Gurkhas (who serve as my model), the composition and details of my proposed Afghan Auxiliary Military Force, why I think the US Army would support this idea, and why I think the Government of Afghanistan would support it as well.
My background comes as no surprise to friends who have been following me on this blog (or with whom I share regular email correspondence): I spent six months as an embedded advisor under Task Force Phoenix with a Quick Reaction force kandak (battalion) and tolei asleyah (weapons company) of the Afghan National Army (ANA). Following that assignment, the 10th Mountain Division returned to Fort Drum and I was sold to Combined Forces Command - Afghanistan (CFC-A) in Kabul, where I served as the Interagency Strategic Plans Officer and worked under some of the smartest men I have ever met. I don't pretend this qualifies me for "expertise," but at least I do have some practical experience.

The whole post is fairly long, and there is some death by powerpoint "Bobby style", but its worth your time.

This is an interesting idea that I don't think will ever fly. Politically, we just aren't ready for something like this, and plus, I think there is something un-American about essentially using mercenaries to do our dirty work.

But, that's just my opinion. I do agree that we would be better served by somehow integrating Islamic forces into our military operations. GEN (RET) Zinni has stated that we ought to be using officers that we were trained in US schools from countries like Jordan in our operations in Iraq and AFG. So Bobby's paper is a good jumping off point to explore these ideas.

Note: cross-posted on Intel-dump.


At August 16, 2005, Blogger Doug said...

. Wretchard at the Belmont Club has a post on mercenaries.
You might pick up some readers if you put in an appearance!

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