Global Politics

Trouble at Pakistan-Afghanistan border

QL tells us that the U.S. officials he's talked to don't have a lot to say about the incident: things are complicated because there's the international ISAFF force led by NATO, so it comprises 26 member nations. At the same time, the American military is present and doesn't always operate in sync with ISAFF. That might be changing now. (So what is the movement to change that dynamic on the ground now?) Well the new general in charge of all American forces in Afghanistan stressed that he needs more troops and more economic and political aid here. He also wants the Afghan Army to stand more. (What happened in this incident over the weekend?) There was a joint U.S.-Afghan patrol in one area of the country and they hit a roadside bomb and then attacked by insurgents. They fought them off and even detained half a dozen of them. But then one of the Afghan soldiers opened fire on the U.S. soldiers and killed one U.S. soldier. People are saying this has never happened before. The brigade commander thinks the troops will stay on mission despite this incident. That said, I've heard other assessments about the Taliban and people say the Taliban has not turned against the population here and is not targeting civilians. When civilians are killed in crossfire, the Americans get blamed. So this shows an extra savvy on the part of the Afghans.

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(This story is based on a radio interview. Listen to the full interview.)

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