View Full Version : Provincial Reconstruction in Afghanistan

10-05-2008, 03:10 PM
Provincial Reconstruction in Afghanistan (http://smallwarsjournal.com/blog/2008/10/provincial-reconstruction-in-a/)
An Examination of the Problems of Integrating the Military, Political and Development Dimensions with Reference to the US Experience in Vietnam
By Colonel Ian Westerman, Small Wars Journal Exclusive

Provincial Reconstruction in Afghanistan (Full PDF Article) (http://smallwarsjournal.com/mag/docs-temp/104-westerman.pdf)

The conflict in Afghanistan has been running now for more than six years but, after some early successes, the situation appears to have developed into a classic insurgency with the prospect of it becoming a long-term commitment for the coalition forces. Since taking the lead of the UN established International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in 2003, NATO has pinned a lot of its hopes on the ability of its multi-agency Provincial Reconstruction Teams (PRTs) to deliver stabilization to the country. The PRTs try to bring together the three strands of security, governance, and development through the contribution made by the military, political and economic elements of the teams. This paper considers how NATO is tackling the particular difficulties of managing the PRTs, and how it is attempting to harmonise the potentially disparate aims of their three separate dimensions.

In examining the problems faced by ISAF the dissertation looks back to the US experience in Vietnam where a similar situation existed in the late 1960s with their pacification programme. Robert Komerís mandate from President Johnson was to determine where the problems lay, and to come up with proposals for solving them. Komerís eventual recommendation was for a single civil-military command structure, which he later went on to help implement by establishing the Civil Operations Revolutionary Development Support programme, or CORDS, in Vietnam. The dissertation takes a close look at how Komer went about this, and consideration is made of whether there are any lessons from Komerís work with CORDS that could be usefully employed by ISAF today.

In the conclusion some of the current problems that the coalition faces in Afghanistan are identified, and the specific areas where the lessons from CORDS might be helpful are discussed. Recognition is made of the additional problems that ISAF faces over those the US had to manage in Vietnam, and considers whether a military alliance such as NATO is actually capable of establishing the robust, unified command structure necessary to succeed in Afghanistan. It also poses the wider question of the suitability of broad-based coalitions for waging counterinsurgency campaigns at all.

10-05-2008, 07:05 PM
Under the headline 'Grim reality of life beyond Helmand' the (UK) Sunday Times has this report, subtitled 'British officials are pleased with their reconstruction. Our correspondent finds little for them to crow about':


It should be read alongside a longer article on the military campaign, under the headline 'Relentless Taliban just keep coming' and subtitled:
As their gruelling tour of duty in Afghanistan ends, men of 2 Para tell of relentless battles with an enemy that simply doesnít know when he is outgunned


Includes remarks made by the Brigadier in charge of the UK brigade in Helmand, who are about to leave.

Note one platoon in 2 Para of thirty men had six fatal casualties in their tour; a one in five ratio does not bode well - in Afghanistan and here IMHO.

Yes, maybe should be posted in other threads, standby.


11-12-2008, 08:39 PM
Since you know, Spain takes charge of Badghis's PRT, in the West of Afghanistan.

It does slightly more than one month, the Center of Intelligence of the Spanish Armed Forces published a report where he was becoming aware of MANPAD's traffic on the part of Iranian agents of intelligence.

CIFAS = Center of Intelligence of the Spanish Armed Forces

Report (http://www.inteligenciayseguridad.com/cms/index.php?option=com_content&task=blogcategory&id=39&Itemid=72)

Report published in the Cadena SER