This week the Tennessean ran a front page story picked up
from USA Today reporter Tom Vanden Brook. Tom and I bunked together at FOB
The story is a bit scattershot, trying to address numerous problems facing Afghanistan in too short a space, but one important take-away from this is the ineffectiveness of the Afghan police force that the U.S. and NATO are training and paying for.
"Police make about $3 a day...so many take bribes and steal from those they're supposed to protect," writes Vanden Brook.
Hash smoking is also rampant among the police force as well
as the Afghan National Army. While I was in
These guys are also in charge of checkpoints and roadblocks, though sometimes they just stay in their guardhouses, drink tea and smoke, while vehicles pass by without being searched.
I'm not really sure how we could expect much more from these
forces, given how often they are killed and maimed, to say nothing of the
danger their families are in. Also,
Frankly, it's hard for me to place blame anywhere here. The
It is, in the words of Samantha Power, a problem from hell.