Summary: Trump has began his term by boosting the war in Afghanistan, just as Obama did. But this time we have 16 years of experience and good data. resize=300,225&ssl=1" alt="Afghanistan war" width="300" height="225" data-recalc-dims="1" / From 1979 to 1989, the CIA’s Operation Cyclone helped overthrow the secular government of Afghanistan and in 1996 brought the Taliban to power.
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Months of research across the country shows that the Taliban now control or threaten much more territory than when foreign combat troops left in 2014. “The BBC study shows the Taliban are now in full control of 14 districts (that’s 4% of the country) and have an active and open physical presence in a further 263 (66%), significantly higher than previous estimates of Taliban strength.
About 15 million people – half the population – are living in areas that are either controlled by the Taliban or where the Taliban are openly present and regularly mount attacks. “The extent to which the Taliban have pushed beyond their traditional southern stronghold into eastern, western and northern parts of the country is clearly visible from the BBC study. Meanwhile, there is no prospect of an end to the conflict and a new generation of Afghans live in the shadow of violence.
…Coalition forces have been pushed onto the defensive.” Now President Trump has deployed an additional 3,000 US troops to the country, bringing the total to 14,000. This new build-up is accompanied by a new wave of propaganda. Look at them and decided for yourself we are on the path to victory — or marking time at great cost, until we withdraw and the Taliban retakes control. See the Q1 Quarterly Report by the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR). This is an increase of one person killed in action, and 51 personnel wounded in action since last quarter, and double the personnel killed in action compared to the same periods in 20. casualties during the Afghan war to 2,269 service members and civilians killed and 20,289 wounded, as of January 22, 2018. “The United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) did not release a civilian-casualty report this quarter. GIROA = Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan.
The chapter on Security gives the most important data. USFOR-A also reported that two contractors were wounded in action since last quarter. As reported in UNAMA’s civilian-casualty report from last quarter, it documented 8,019 civilian casualties from 1 January 2017, through 30 September 2017, a 6% decrease from the same period in 2016. reconstruction funding for Afghanistan since FY 2002. Here is the picture from SIGAR’s October 30 report. See the BBC’s numbers further below, which paint a darker picture.