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Thread: German literature on COIN in Afghanistan

  1. #21
    Council Member carl's Avatar
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    Do the German forces have a say in how, when and why spec ops capture/kill missions are run in their area?
    "We fight, get beat, rise, and fight again." Gen. Nathanael Greene

  2. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by carl View Post
    Do the German forces have a say in how, when and why spec ops capture/kill missions are run in their area?
    I very much doubt it, JSOC operates outside of ISAF command doesn't it? This is a massive issue, as was seen in a documentary which aired on channel 4 on monday, these operations can have a massive impact on the general management of COIN, you can only bend something so much before it breaks, by which I mean the good will of the people. The fact that public opinion is swiftly turning against the foreign forces is fuelled by the operations

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    I remember some articles in Spiegel and other German media.
    As far as I can recall, RC North put some names on TF's 373 hitlist.
    Operations should be coordinated with the the RC and the battlespace
    owner. Whatever coordination means under these circumstances.

    If I understand the position of our government and the BMVg
    correctly, German forces have no part in targeted killings and do not
    cooperate with any operations that have anything to do with targeted
    killings. This is -of course- pure hypocrisy. But German ROE do not even
    allow to shoot people setting up an IED.

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    Quote Originally Posted by uwew View Post
    I remember some articles in Spiegel and other German media.
    As far as I can recall, RC North put some names on TF's 373 hitlist.
    Operations should be coordinated with the the RC and the battlespace
    owner. Whatever coordination means under these circumstances.

    If I understand the position of our government and the BMVg
    correctly, German forces have no part in targeted killings and do not
    cooperate with any operations that have anything to do with targeted
    killings. This is -of course- pure hypocrisy. But German ROE do not even
    allow to shoot people setting up an IED
    .
    This beyond ridiculous. This is effectively tying thier hands and dooming them. Regarding targeted killings, this is war by proxy, ROE preventing them from engaging in such actions but allowing someone else to do the dirty work. This seems to be backfiring for the Germans as (Afghan) public opinion is rapidly turning against them.

  5. #25
    Council Member Fuchs's Avatar
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    Half as bad. Target the IED instead...

  6. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by TDB View Post
    This beyond ridiculous. This is effectively tying thier hands and dooming them.

    The German media and most of our politicians seem to think that the deployment to Afghanistan is something similar to a police mission. As far as I can see the ROEs are modeled after the 'Use of deadly force' regulations of German police. But we are not the only ones. I have seen Camp Armadillo recently. Looks like the Danes have rules nearly as stupid as ours.

    Quote Originally Posted by TDB View Post
    Regarding targeted killings, this is war by proxy, ROE preventing them from engaging in such actions but allowing someone else to do the dirty work. This seems to be backfiring for the Germans as (Afghan) public opinion is rapidly turning against them.
    The turning of the public opinion seems to have other reasons as well. Just recently a local ANP commander accused German soldiers of shooting and killing a woman. This was proven to be false. But what could the ANP guy gain from his accusations?
    Has he been cut out of the corruption loop and wanted revenge? Or did he think he could get a cut of the compensation money that might get paid to the victim's family?
    And he is only one example. Why is the local, non pashtu elite turning against us?

  7. #27
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    I've been outside the wire with the Bundeswehr recently. When in contact with the enemy their goal is to break contact, not to close with and neutralize. They don't have the mission to do otherwise. They are first rate soldiers. I have seen the competence and professionalism of their SchutzKompanie and FeldJaeger PSD elements firsthand. They are well equipped with ammunition and weapon systems. Their platoon leaders are professionals.

    Clearing and holding are critical success factors in COIN. The Bundeswehr does not have enough firepower or troops to hold. The mission here in Kunduz is essentially police training and a CIMIC mission. Partnering with and standing up the national government is also a critical success factor. Enough has been written elsewhere demonstrating the futility of this effort.

    The local, non Pashtu elite are not so much turning against us, as they are realizing that the interests of ISAF do not coincide with theirs in the long term. The Tajik, Hazara and Uzbek elite in RC-North are positioning themselves for when ISAF leaves. ISAF just doesn't have enough "juice" on the street to be a factor in long term survival considerations by local and provincial power holders.

    Lots more I could say on some of the other issues raised but OPSEC considerations prevent it.


    Quote Originally Posted by uwew View Post
    The German media and most of our politicians seem to think that the deployment to Afghanistan is something similar to a police mission. As far as I can see the ROEs are modeled after the 'Use of deadly force' regulations of German police. But we are not the only ones. I have seen Camp Armadillo recently. Looks like the Danes have rules nearly as stupid as ours.



    The turning of the public opinion seems to have other reasons as well. Just recently a local ANP commander accused German soldiers of shooting and killing a woman. This was proven to be false. But what could the ANP guy gain from his accusations?
    Has he been cut out of the corruption loop and wanted revenge? Or did he think he could get a cut of the compensation money that might get paid to the victim's family?
    And he is only one example. Why is the local, non pashtu elite turning against us?
    Last edited by Alsultani; 06-18-2011 at 11:20 AM.

  8. #28
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    Thanks for your reply. Most of the press coverage about Afghanistan here in Germany is really bad, so posts like yours help to put things into perspective.

    Quote Originally Posted by Alsultani View Post
    Clearing and holding are critical success factors in COIN. The Bundeswehr does not have enough firepower or troops to hold. The mission here in Kunduz is essentially police training and a CIMIC mission. Partnering with and standing up the national government is also a critical success factor. Enough has been written elsewhere demonstrating the futility of this effort.
    Some recent reports and Gen. Fritz's statements (also quoted in the Spiegel piece you linked) had me believe that our operations have become more aggressive.
    The reports stated that Bundeswehr troops were clearing territory together with the 10th MD and ANA and holding the cleared areas together with "local police forces" (not ANP).
    They were even building some COPs around Baghlan and partnering with former Taliban to man them. Were these operations the exception rather than the norm or has there been a
    recent change in attitude back to the old "force protection is our top priority" mode or our early years in Afghanistan.

    Quote Originally Posted by Alsultani View Post
    Lots more I could say on some of the other issues raised but OPSEC considerations prevent it.
    Maybe you could take some notes and publish them at a later date?

    Good luck to you and our people out there.

  9. #29
    Council Member Fuchs's Avatar
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    Afaik the "hold" part has to be delegated to indigenous forces except for temporary measures one a handful of focus places.

    A small part of the few thousand troops are at any one time outside the base camp, and many of this small part have different missions than "to hold" terrain.

    There's simply not the manpower for "hold", and it wouldn't even be there if all troops had to leave the base camp and bivouac in tents next to villages that shall be "held".


    "hold" is effectively a political mission, and it's the regime that's failing badly.

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    Default ISAF Lessons Learned: A German Perspective

    An article written by a German Lieut. General Rainer Glatz, entitled 'ISAF Lessons Learned: A German Perspective' appeared in CCO's periodical PRISM in March 2011 and is on:http://www.ndu.edu/press/ISAF-lesson...rspective.html

    Abstract:
    Germany has followed the comprehensive approach for the NATO International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) area of operations in Afghanistan, providing counterinsurgency support primarily for security, economic aid, and social development. The author, commander of the Bundeswehr Operations Command in Potsdam, Germany, provides a German perspective of lessons learned from the ISAF mission. To be effective, counterinsurgency requires comprehensive measures and adherence to fundamental guidelines advancing legitimacy and unity of effort, taking into account political factors, establishing rule of law, and isolating insurgents. NATO must strengthen its intelligence capacity, promote unity of effort, and prepare for a long-term commitment.
    Found yesterday when in RUSI, hopefully helps and only skimmed to date.

    Skimming through older issues of PRISM I found 'Afghanistan: The German Factor' by a US diplomat:http://www.ndu.edu/press/afghanistan...an-factor.html
    Last edited by davidbfpo; 06-30-2011 at 09:22 AM.
    davidbfpo

  11. #31
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    Sad news is i've had to scrap this chapter in my dissertation! Just using the articles from what i've go so far in other chapters.

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