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War is Boring: In Afghanistan, U.S. Experiments Again with Local Militias

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

U.S. and NATO forces in Afghanistan have established an experimental security force drawn from local Afghan fighters, in a bid to better provide the street-level security that has proved instrumental to defeating entrenched insurgencies. Despite tens of thousands of incoming American reinforcements, most Afghan districts still do not have a permanent troop presence to defend against Taliban incursions. The new Afghan Public Protection Force "enables respected young men of local communities to become public protectors," said U.S. Army training officer Capt. Marco Lyons.

But the force, currently operating only in Wardak province, just south of the capital of Kabul, risks repeating the mistakes of an earlier experiment in drawing Afghan militias into the U.S.-NATO war effort. ...

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