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Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy

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Order Code RL30588 Afghanistan: Post-War Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Updated July 11August 8, 2008 Kenneth Katzman Specialist in Middle Eastern Affairs Foreign Affairs, Defense, and Trade Division Afghanistan: Post-War Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Summary U.S. and outside assessments of the effort to stabilize Afghanistan are mixed; the Administration notes progress on reconstruction, governance and security in many areas of Afghanistan, but says the mission is still “under-resourced” to address escalating insurgent activity in some sectors. Recent outside studies contain relatively pessimistic assessments, emphasizing, particularly the east and the consistently restive south. Recent outside studies emphasize a growing sense of insecurity in areas areas previously considered secure, increased numbers of suicide attacks, increasing aggregate poppy cultivation, and growing divisions within the NATO alliance about total troop contributions and the relative share of combat primarily in the south. Both Both the official U.S. as well as outside assessments are increasingly pointing to Pakistan, and particularly the new Pakistani government, as failing to prevent Taliban and and other militant infiltration from Pakistan. With available U.S. forces short, the Administration is anticipating adding U.S. troops to the still combat-intense south, and eventually assuming U.S. command of the southern sector. The Administration Afghanistan theater, reorganizing the command structure for U.S. and partner forces, and expanding the Afghan National Army. The Administration also has increased direct U.S. action against Taliban concentrations inside Pakistan. Politically, the Afghan central government is relatively stable, but it is perceived as weak and rife with corruption. The post-Taliban transition was completed with the the convening of a parliament in December 2005; a following September 2005 parliamentary elections. A new constitution was adopted in January 2004, successful and presidential elections were held on October 9, 2004, and parliamentary elections took place on September 18, 2005. The parliament has become an arena for factions that have fought each other for nearly three decades to peacefully peacefully resolve differences, as well as a center of political pressure on President Hamid Hamid Karzai. Major regional strongmen have been marginalized. Afghan citizens are are enjoying personal freedoms forbidden by the Taliban, and women are participating participating in economic and political life. Presidential elections are to be held in the fall of 2009, with parliamentary and provincial elections to follow one year later. To help stabilize Afghanistan, theThe United States and partner countries are deployingnow deploy a 53,000 troop NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) that now that commands peacekeeping throughout Afghanistan, including the restive south. Of those, about 23,000 of the 34,000 U.S. forces in Afghanistan are part of ISAF; the remainder are conducting anti-terrorism missions under Operation Enduring Freedom. U.S. and partner forces also run regional enclaves to secure reconstruction (Provincial Reconstruction Teams, PRTs), and are building an Afghan National Army and National Police. The United States has given Afghanistan over $25 billion (appropriated, including FY2008 to date) since the fall of the Taliban, of which about $17 billion was to equip and train the security forces. About $2 billion in reconstruction aid was requested for FY2009, including in a FY2009 supplemental request. Breakdowns are shown in the tables at the end. This paper will be updated as warranted by major developments. See also CRS Report RS21922, Afghanistan: Government Formation and Performance, by Kenneth Katzman; and CRS Report RL32686, Afghanistan: Narcotics and U.S. Policy, by Christopher M. Blanchard. Contents Background to Recent Developments . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 The Mujahedin Government and Rise of the Taliban . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4 Taliban Rule . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4 The “Northern Alliance” Congeals . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 Bush Administration Policy Pre-September 11, 2001 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 September 11 Attacks and Operation Enduring Freedom . . . . . . . . . . . 6 Post-War Stabilization and Reconstruction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7 Political Transition . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8 Bonn Agreement . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8 Permanent Constitution . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8 National Elections . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9 Next2009 Elections and Candidates . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 Governance Issues . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 U.N. Involvement . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11 Expanding Central Government Writ and Curbing “Warlords” . . . . . 12 Provincial Governorships . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13 Human Rights and Democracy . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15 Combating Narcotics Trafficking . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18 Post-War Security Operations and Force Capacity Building . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20 The Combat Environment and Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) . . . . . 20 The Taliban “Resurgence,” Causes, and Early Responses . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21 Whereabouts of Bin Laden21 Taliban Command, Al Qaeda, and Related Insurgent Groups . . . . . . . . . 23 Policy Reviews and Further U.S. Troop Buildup . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24 “Americanizing” the Southern Front?Committing Additional Resources and “Americanizing” the Command Structure . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25 Feelers to the Taliban . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26 The NATO - Led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) . . . . . . . 29 New NATO Force Pledges in 2008 and Since . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30 National “Caveats” on Combat Operations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32 Provincial Reconstruction Teams . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32 Afghan Security Forces . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33 Afghan National Army . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34 Afghan National Police/Justice Sector . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 37 Tribal Militias . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 38 U.S. Security Forces Funding/”CERP” . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 38 Regional Context . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 40 Pakistan/Pakistan-Afghanistan Border . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 40 Increased Direct U.S. Action . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 42 Iran . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4243 India . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 44 Russia, Central Asian States, and China . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4445 Russia . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4445 Central Asian States . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 45 China . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 46 Saudi Arabia . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 46 U.S. and International Aid to Afghanistan and Development Issues . . . . . . . . . . 47 National Solidarity Program . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 50 U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 50 Post-Taliban U.S. Aid Totals . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5051 Afghanistan Freedom Support Act of 2002 and Amendments . . . . . . 51 Afghan Freedom Support Act Re-Authorization . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 52 International Reconstruction Pledges/Aid/Lending . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 52 Residual Issues From Past Conflicts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 53 Stinger Retrieval . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 53 Mine Eradication . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 54 Appendix A. U.S. and International Sanctions Lifted . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 68 List of Figures Figure 1. Map of Afghanistan . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 70 List of Tables Table 1. Afghanistan Social and Economic Statistics . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 Table 2. Afghan and Regional Facilities Used for Operations in Afghanistan . . 28 Table 3. Recent and Pending Foreign Equipment for ANA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 36 Table 4. Major Security-Related Indicators . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 39 Table 5. U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan, FY1978-FY1998 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 55 Table 6. U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan, FY1999-FY2002 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 56 Table 7. U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan, FY2003 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 57 Table 8. U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan, FY2004 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 58 Table 9. U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan, FY2005 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 59 Table 10. U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan, FY2006 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 60 Table 11. U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan, FY2007 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 61 Table 12. U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan, FY2008 Request/Action . . . . . . . . . . 62 Table 13. U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan, FY2009 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 63 Table 14. USAID Obligations FY2002-FY2007FY2008 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 64 Table 15. NATO/ISAF Contributing Nations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 65 Table 16. Provincial Reconstruction Teams . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 66 Table 17. Major Factions/Leaders in Afghanistan . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 67 Afghanistan: Post-War Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Background to Recent Developments Prior to the founding of a monarchy in 1747 by Ahmad Shah Durrani, Afghanistan was territory inhabited by tribes and tribal confederations linked to neighboring nations, not a distinct entity. King Amanullah Khan (1919-1929) launched attacks on British forces in Afghanistan shortly after taking power and won complete independence from Britain as recognized in the Treaty of Rawalpindi (August 8, 1919). He was considered a secular modernizer presiding over a government in which all ethnic minorities participated. He was succeeded by King Mohammad Nadir Shah (1929-1933), and then by King Mohammad Zahir Shah. Zahir Shah’s reign (1933-1973) is remembered fondly by many older Afghans for promulgating a constitution in 1964 that established a national legislature and promoting freedoms for women, including freeing them from covering their face and hair. However, possibly believing that he could limit Soviet support for communist factions in Afghanistan, Zahir Shah also entered into a significant political and arms purchase relationship with the Soviet Union. Afghanistan’s slide into instability began in the 1970s when the diametrically opposed Communist Party and Islamic movements grew in strength. While receiving medical treatment in Italy, Zahir Shah was overthrown by his cousin, Mohammad Daoud, a military leader who established a dictatorship with strong state involvement in the economy. Communists overthrew Daoud in 1978, led by Nur Mohammad Taraki, who was displaced a year later by Hafizullah Amin, leader of a rival faction. They tried to impose radical socialist change on a traditional society, in part by redistributing land and bringing more women into government, sparking rebellion by Islamic parties opposed to such moves. The Soviet Union sent troops into Afghanistan on December 27, 1979, to prevent a seizure of power by the Islamic militias, known as the mujahedin (Islamic fighters). Upon their invasion, the Soviets replaced Hafizullah Amin with an ally, Babrak Karmal. Soviet occupation forces were never able to pacify the outlying areas of the country. The mujahedin benefited from U.S. weapons and assistance, provided through the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) in cooperation with Pakistan’s InterService Intelligence directorate (ISI). That weaponry included portable shoulderfired shoulder-fired anti-aircraft systems called “Stingers,” which proved highly effective against Soviet Soviet aircraft. The mujahedin also hid and stored weaponry in a large network of natural natural and manmade tunnels and caves throughout Afghanistan. The Soviet Union’s losses losses mounted, and Soviet domestic opinion turned anti-war. In 1986, after the reformist reformist Mikhail Gorbachev became leader, the Soviets replaced Karmal with the director of Afghan intelligence, Najibullah Ahmedzai (known by his first name). CRS-2 On April 14, 1988, Gorbachev agreed to a U.N.-brokered accord (the Geneva Accords) requiring it to withdraw. The withdrawal was completed by February 15, 1989, leaving in place the weak Najibullah government. The United States closed its its embassy in Kabul in January 1989, as the Soviet Union was completing its pullout. A warming of relations moved the United States and Soviet Union to try for a a political settlement to the Afghan conflict, a trend accelerated by the 1991 collapse of the Soviet Union, which reduced Moscow’s capacity for supporting communist regimes in the Third World. On September 13, 1991, Moscow and Washington agreed to a joint cutoff of military aid to the Afghan combatants. The State Department has said that a total of about $3 billion in economic and covert military assistance was provided by the U.S. to the Afghan mujahedin from 1980 until the end of the Soviet occupation in 1989. Press reports say the covert aid program grew from about $20 million per year in FY1980 to about $300 million per year during FY1986-FY1990. The Soviet pullout decreased the perceived strategic value of Afghanistan, causing a reduction in subsequent covert funding.1 With Soviet backing withdrawn, on March 18, 1992, Najibullah publicly agreed to step down once an interim government was formed. That announcement set off a a wave of rebellions primarily by Uzbek and Tajik militia commanders in northern Afghanistan, who joined prominent mujahedin commander Ahmad Shah Masud of the Islamic Society, a largely Tajik party headed by Burhannudin Rabbani. Masud had earned a reputation as a brilliant strategist by preventing the Soviets from occupying his power base in the Panjshir Valley of northeastern Afghanistan. Najibullah fell, and the mujahedin regime began April 18, 1992.2 1 For FY1991, Congress reportedly cut covert aid appropriations to the mujahedin from $300 million the previous year to $250 million, with half the aid withheld until the second half of the fiscal year. See “Country Fact Sheet: Afghanistan,” in U.S. Department of State Dispatch, vol. 5, no. 23 (June 6, 1994), p. 377. 2 After failing to flee, Najibullah, his brother, and aides remained at a U.N. facility in Kabul until the Taliban movement seized control in 1996 and hanged them. CRS-3 Table 1. Afghanistan Social and Economic Statistics Population: Ethnic Groups: 31 million Pashtun 42%; Tajik 27%; Uzbek 9%; Hazara 9%; Aimak 4%; Turkmen 3%; Baluch 2%; other 4% Religions: Sunni Muslim (Hanafi school) 80%; Shiite Muslim (Hazaras, Qizilbash, and Isma’ilis) 19%; other 1% Size of Religious Christians - estimated 500 - 8,000 persons; Sikh and Hindu - 3,000 Minorities persons; Bahai’s - 400 (declared blasphemous in May 2007); Jews - 1 person; Buddhist - unknown, but small numbers, mostly foreigners. No Christian or Jewish schools. One church, open only to expatriates. Literacy Rate: 28% of population over 15 years of age GDP: $21.5 billion (purchasing power parity). Double the 2002 figure. GDP Per Capita: $300/yr; but $800 purchasing power parity GDP Real Growth: 12% (2007) Unemployment Rate: 40% Children in 5.7 million, of which 35% are girls. Up from 900,000 in school during School/Schools Built Taliban era. 300,000 children in south cannot attend school due to violence. 8,000 schools built; 140,000 teachers hired since Taliban era. Afghans With Access 85% with basic health services access - compared to 8% during Taliban to Health Coverage era, although access is more limited in restive areas. Infant mortality has dropped 18% since Taliban to 135 per 1,000 live births. 680 clinics built with U.S. funds since Taliban. Roads Built About 5,000 miles post-Taliban, including ring road around the country. Now possible to drive from Kabul to western border in one day. Access to Electricity 15% - 20% of the population. Revenues: Expenditures External Debt: Anticipated $1 billion in 2008; $715 million in 2007; $550 million 2006 $1.2 billion in 2007 (est.); 900 million in 2006 $8 billion bilateral, plus $500 million multilateral. U.S. forgave $108 million in debt to U.S. in 2006 Foreign Exchange: $2.5 billion. Foreign Investment $500 billion est. for 2007; about $1 billion for 2006 Major Exports: fruits, raisins, nuts, carpets, semi-precious gems, hides, opium Oil Production: negligible Oil Proven Reserves: 3.6 billion barrels of oil, 36.5 trillion cubic feet of gas, according to Afghan government on March 15, 2006 Major Imports: food, petroleum, capital goods, textiles Import Partners: Pakistan 38.6%; U.S. 9.5%; Germany 5.5%; India 5.2%; Turkey 4.1%; Turkmenistan 4.1% Source: CIA World Factbook, January 2008, Embassy of Afghanistan in Washington, DC; President Bush speech on February 15, 2007; International Religious Freedom Report, September 14, 2007; Afghan National Development Strategy. CRS-4 The Mujahedin Government and Rise of the Taliban The fall of Najibullah exposed the differences among the mujahedin parties. The The leader of one of the smaller parties (Afghan National Liberation Front), Islamic scholar Sibghatullah Mojadeddi, was president during April - May 1992. Under an agreement among the major parties, Rabbani became President in June 1992 with agreement that he would serve until December 1994. He refused to step down at that time, saying that political authority would disintegrate without a clear successor. Kabul was subsequently shelled by other mujahedin factions, particularly that of nominal “Prime Minister” Gulbuddin Hikmatyar, a Pashtun, who accused Rabbani of monopolizing power. Hikmatyar’s radical Islamist Hizb-e-Islami (Islamic Party) had received a large proportion of the U.S. aid during the anti-Soviet war. Four years of civil war (1992-1996) created popular support for the Taliban as a movement that could deliver Afghanistan from the factional infighting. In 1993-1994, Afghan Islamic clerics and students, mostly of rural, Pashtun origin, many of them former mujahedin who had become disillusioned with continued conflict among mujahedin parties and had moved into Pakistan to study in Islamic seminaries (“madrassas”), formed the Taliban movement. They practiced an orthodox Sunni Islam called “Wahhabism,” akin to that practiced in Saudi Arabia. They viewed the Rabbani government as corrupt, anti-Pashtun, and responsible for civil war. With the help of defections, the Taliban seized control of the southeastern city of Qandahar in November 1994; by February 1995, it had reached the gates of Kabul, after which an 18-month stalemate around the capital ensued. In September 1995, the Taliban captured Herat province, bordering Iran, and imprisoned its governor, Ismail Khan, ally of Rabbani and Masud, who later escaped and took refuge in Iran. In September 1996, Taliban victories near Kabul led to the withdrawal withdrawal of Rabbani and Masud to the Panjshir Valley north of Kabul with most of their heavy weapons; the Taliban took control of Kabul on September 27, 1996. Taliban gunmen subsequently entered a U.N. facility in Kabul to seize Najibullah, his brother, and aides, and then hanged them. Taliban Rule The Taliban regime was led by Mullah Muhammad Umar, who lost an eye in the anti-Soviet war while fighting under the banner of the Hizb-e-Islam (Islamic Party of Yunis Khalis. Umar held the title of Head of State and “Commander of the Faithful,” but he mostly remained in the Taliban power base in Qandahar, rarely appearing in public. Umar forged a close bond with bin Laden and refused U.S. demands to extradite him. Born in Uruzgan province, Umar is about 65 years old. The Taliban progressively lost international and domestic support as it imposed strict adherence to Islamic customs in areas it controlled and employed harsh punishments, including executions. The Taliban authorized its “Ministry for the Promotion of Virtue and the Suppression of Vice” to use physical punishments to enforce strict Islamic practices, including bans on television, Western music, and dancing. It prohibited women from attending school or working outside the home, except in health care, and it publicly executed some women for adultery. In what CRS-5 many consider its most extreme action, in March 2001 the Taliban blew up two large Buddha statues carved into hills above Bamiyan city as representations of idolatry. CRS-5 (Additional damage to the remaining structure was inflicted in May 2008 from an accidental detonation of explosives near the site.) The Clinton Administration held talks with the Taliban before and after it took power, but relations quickly deteriorated. The United States withheld recognition of Taliban as the legitimate government of Afghanistan, formally recognizing no faction as the government. Because of the lack of broad international recognition, the United Nations seated representatives of the ousted Rabbani government, not the Taliban. The State Department ordered the Afghan embassy in Washington, DC, closed in August 1997. U.N. Security Council Resolution 1193 (August 28, 1998) and 1214 (December 8, 1998) urged the Taliban to end discrimination against women. Several U.S.-based women’s rights groups urged the Clinton Administration not to recognize the Taliban government, and in May 1999, the Senate passed a resolution (S.Res. 68) calling on the President not to recognize any Afghan government that discriminates against women. The Taliban’s hosting of Al Qaeda’s leadership gradually became the Clinton Administration’s overriding agenda item with Afghanistan. In April 1998, then U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Bill Richardson visited Afghanistan and asked the Taliban to hand over bin Laden, but was rebuffed. After the August 7, 1998, Al Qaeda bombings of U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania, the Clinton Administration progressively pressured the Taliban, imposing U.S. sanctions and achieving adoption of some U.N. sanctions as well. On August 20, 1998, the United States fired cruise missiles at alleged Al Qaeda training camps in eastern Afghanistan, but bin Laden was not hit. Some observers assert that the Administration missed several other opportunities to strike him. Clinton Administration officials say that they did not try to oust the Taliban from power with U.S. military force because domestic U.S. support for those steps was then lacking and the Taliban’s opponents were too weak and did not necessarily hold U.S. values. The “Northern Alliance” Congeals. The Taliban’s policies caused different different Afghan factions to ally with the ousted President Rabbani and Masud and their ally in the Herat area, Ismail Khan — the Tajik core of the anti-Taliban opposition — into a broader “Northern Alliance.” In the Alliance were Uzbek, Hazara Shiite, and even some Pashtun Islamist factions discussed in the table at the end of this paper (Table 17). ! Uzbeks/General Dostam. One major Alliance faction was the Uzbek militia (the Junbush-Melli, or National Islamic Movement of Afghanistan) of General Abdul Rashid Dostam, who is frequently referred . Frequently referred to by some Afghans as one of the “warlords” who gained power power during the anti-Soviet war, although Dostam had earlier first contributed to efforts to oust Rabbani during his 1992-96 presidency, but then joined him to try to oust the Taliban from power. ! Hazara Shiites. Members of Hazara tribes, mostly Shiite Muslims, are prominent in Bamiyan Province (central Afghanistan) and are always wary of repression by Pashtuns and other larger ethnic factions. During the various Afghan wars, the main Hazara Shiite CRS-6 grouping was Hizb-e-Wahdat (Unity Party, an alliance of eight smaller groups). ! Pashtun Islamists/Sayyaf. Abd-I-Rab Rasul Sayyaf, who is now a a parliament committee chairman, headed a Pashtun-dominated mujahedin faction called the Islamic Union for the Liberation of Afghanistan. Even though his ideology is similar to that of the Taliban, Sayyaf joined the Northern Alliance. Bush Administration Policy Pre-September 11, 2001 Prior to the September 11 attacks, Bush Administration policy toward the Taliban resembled Clinton Administration policy — applying economic and political pressure while retaining dialogue with the Taliban, and refraining from providing military assistance to the Northern Alliance. The September 11 Commission report said that, in the months prior to the September 11 attacks, Administration officials leaned toward such a step and that some officials wanted to assist anti-Taliban Pashtun forces. Other covert options were under consideration as well.3 In a departure departure from Clinton Administration policy, the Bush Administration stepped up engagement engagement with Pakistan to try to end its support for the Taliban. In accordance with U.N. Security Council Resolution 1333, in February 2001 the State Department ordered ordered the Taliban representative office in New York closed, although the Taliban representative continued to operate informally. In March 2001, Administration officials received a Taliban envoy to discuss bilateral issues. Fighting with some Iranian, Russian, and Indian financial and military support, the Northern Alliance continued to lose ground to the Taliban after it lost Kabul in 1996. By the time of the September 11 attacks, the Taliban controlled at least 75% of the country, including almost all provincial capitals. The Alliance suffered a major major setback on September 9, 2001, two days before the September 11 attacks, when when Ahmad Shah Masud was assassinated by alleged Al Qaeda suicide bombers posing posing as journalists. He was succeeded by his intelligence chief, Muhammad Fahim, a veteran figure but who lacked Masud’s undisputed authority. September 11 Attacks and Operation Enduring Freedom. After the September 11 attacks, the Bush Administration decided to militarily overthrow the Taliban when it refused to extradite bin Laden, judging that a friendly regime in Kabul was needed to enable U.S forces to search for Al Qaeda activists there. United Nations Security Council Resolution 1368 of September 12, 2001 said that the Security Council “expresses its readiness to take all necessary steps to respond” (implying force) to the September 11 attacks. In Congress, S.J.Res. 23 (passed 98-0 in the Senate and with no objections in the House, P.L. 107-40) authorized:4 3 Drogin, Bob. “U.S. Had Plan for Covert Afghan Options Before 9/11.” Los Angeles Times, May 18, 2002. 4 Another law (P.L. 107-148) established a “Radio Free Afghanistan” under RFE/RL, providing $17 million in funding for it for FY2002. CRS-7 all necessary and appropriate force against those nations, organizations, or persons he determines planned, authorized, committed, or aided the terrorist attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001 or harbored such organizations or persons. Major combat in Afghanistan (Operation Enduring Freedom, OEF) began on October 7, 2001. The combatIt consisted primarily of U.S. air-strikes on Taliban and Al Qaeda forces, facilitated by the cooperation between small numbers (about 1,000) of U.S. special operations forces and the Northern Alliance and Pashtun anti-Taliban forces. Some U.S. ground units (about 1,300 Marines) moved into Afghanistan to pressure pressure the Taliban around Qandahar at the height of the fighting (OctoberDecember 2001), October-December 2001), but there were few pitched battles between U.S. and Taliban soldiers; most of the ground combat was between Taliban and its Afghan opponents. Some critics believe that U.S. dependence on local Afghan militia forces in the war strengthened the militias in the post-war period. The Taliban regime unraveled rapidly after it lost Mazar-e-Sharif on November 9, 2001. Northern Alliance forces — the commanders of which had initially promised promised U.S. officials they would not enter Kabul — entered the capital on November 12, 2001, to popular jubilation. The Taliban subsequently lost the south and east to pro-UproU.S. Pashtun leaders, such as Hamid Karzai. The end of the Taliban regime is generally dated as December 9, 2001, when the Taliban surrendered Qandahar and Mullah Omar fled the city, leaving it under tribal law administered by Pashtun Pashtun leaders such as the Noorzai clan. Subsequently, U.S. and Afghan forces conducted conducted “Operation Anaconda” in the Shah-i-Kot Valley south of Gardez (Paktia Province) during March 2-19, 2002, against 800 Al Qaeda and Taliban fighters. In March 2003, about 1,000 U.S. troops raided suspected Taliban or Al Qaeda fighters in villages around Qandahar. On May 1, 2003, then Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld announced announced an end to “major combat operations.” Post-War Stabilization and Reconstruction5 The war paved the way for the success of a decade-long U.N. effort to form a broad-based Afghan government; the United Nations was viewed as a credible mediator by all sides largely because of its role in ending the Soviet occupation. During the 1990s, proposals from a succession of U.N. mediators incorporated many of former King Zahir Shah’s proposals for a government to be selected by a traditional assembly, or loya jirga. However, U.N.-mediated cease-fires between warring factions always broke down. Non-U.N. initiatives made little progress, particularly the “Six Plus Two” multilateral contact group, which began meeting in 1997 (the United States, Russia, and the six states bordering Afghanistan: Iran, China, Pakistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, and Tajikistan). Other failed efforts included a “Geneva group” (Italy, Germany, Iran, and the United States) formed in 5 More information on some of the issues in this section can be found in CRS Report RS21922, Afghanistan: Government Formation and Performance, by Kenneth Katzman. Some of the information in this section is derived from author participation on a congressional delegation to Afghanistan in March 2008. CRS-8 2000; an Organization of Islamic Conference (OIC) contact group; and Afghan exile efforts, including one from the Karzai clan (including Hamid Karzai) and one centered on Zahir Shah. Political Transition Immediately after the September 11 attacks, former U.N. mediator Lakhdar Brahimi was brought back (he had resigned in frustration in October 1999). U.N. Security Council Resolution 1378 was adopted on November 14, 2001, calling for a “central” role for the United Nations in establishing a transitional administration and inviting member states to send peacekeeping forces to promote stability and aid delivery. After the fall of Kabul in November 2001, the United Nations invited major major Afghan factions, most prominently the Northern Alliance and that of the former King — but not the Taliban — to a conference in Bonn, Germany. Bonn Agreement. On December 5, 2001, the factions signed the “Bonn Agreement.”6 It was endorsed by U.N. Security Council Resolution 1385 (December 6, 2001). The agreement, reportedly forged with substantial Iranian diplomatic help because of Iran’s support for the Northern Alliance faction: ! ! ! ! formed the interim administration headed by Hamid Karzai. authorized an international peace keeping force to maintain security in Kabul, and Northern Alliance forces were directed to withdraw from the capital. Security Council Resolution 1386 (December 20, 2001) gave formal Security Council authorization for the international peacekeeping force. referred to the need to cooperate with the international community on counter narcotics, crime, and terrorism. applied the constitution of 1964 until a permanent constitution could could be drafted.7 Permanent Constitution. A June 2002 “emergency” loya jirga put a representative imprimatur on the transition; it was attended by 1,550 delegates (including about 200 women) from Afghanistan’s 364 districts. Subsequently, a 35member constitutional commission drafted the permanent constitution, and unveiled in November 2003. It was debated by 502 delegates, selected in U.N.- run caucuses, at a “constitutional loya jirga (CLJ)” during December 13, 2003-January 4, 2004. The CLJ, chaired by Mojadeddi (mentioned above), ended with approval of the constitution with only minor changes. Most significantly, members of the Northern Alliance faction failed to set up a prime minister-ship, but they did achieve limits to presidential powers by having major authorities assigned to an elected parliament, such as the power to veto senior official nominees and to impeach a president. The constitution made former King Zahir Shah honorary “Father of the Nation” - a title 6 7 Text of Bonn agreement at [http://www.ag-afghanistan.de/files/petersberg.htm]. The last loya jirga that was widely recognized as legitimate was held in 1964 to ratify a constitution. Najibullah convened a loya jirga in 1987 to approve pro-Moscow policies; that that gathering was widely viewed by Afghans as illegitimate. CRS-9 that is not heritable. Zahir Shah died on July 23, 2007.8 The constitution also set out timetables for presidential, provincial, and district elections (by June 2004) and stipulated that, if possible, they should be held simultaneously. Hamid Karzai Hamid Karzai, about 56, was selected to lead Afghanistan because he was a credible Pashtun leader who seeks factional compromise rather than intimidation through armed force. On the other hand, some observers believe him too willing to compromise with rather than confront regional and other faction leaders, and to tolerate corruption. Others say he seeks to maintain However, some observers consider his compromise a sign of weakness, and criticize what they allege is his toleration o f corruption. Others say he seeks to maintain Pashtun predominance in his government. From Karz village in Qandahar Province, Hamid Karzai has led the powerful Popolzai tribe of Durrani Pashtuns since 1999, when his father was assassinated, allegedly by Taliban agents, in Quetta, Pakistan. Karzai attended university in India. He was deputy foreign minister in Rabbani’s government during 1992-1995, but he left the government and supported the Taliban as a Pashtun alternative to Rabbani. He broke with the Taliban as its excesses unfolded and forged alliances with other anti-Taliban factions, including the Northern Alliance. Karzai entered Afghanistan after the September 11 attacks to organize Pashtun resistance to the Taliban, supported by U.S. special forces. He became central to U.S. efforts after Pashtun commander Abdul Haq entered Afghanistan in October 2001 without U.S. support and was captured and hung by the Taliban. Karzai was slightly injured by an errant U.S. bomb during the major combat of Operation Enduring Freedom. Some of his several brothers have lived in the United States, including Qayyum Karzai, who won a parliament seat in the September 2005 election. Another brother, Ahmad Wali Karzai, is deputy chair of the provincial council of Qandahar. With heavy protection, he has survived several assassination attempts since taking office, including rocket fire or gunfire at or near his appearances. National Elections. Ultimately, it proved impractical to hold all elections simultaneously. The first election was for president and it was held on October 9, 2004, missing a June deadline. Turnout was about 80%. On November 3, 2004, Karzai was declared winner (55.4% of the vote) over his seventeen challengers on the first round, avoiding a runoff. Parliamentary and provincial council elections were intended for April-May 2005 but were delayed until September 18, 2005. Because of the difficulty in confirming voter registration rolls and determining district boundaries, elections for the 376364 district councils, each of which will have small and likely contentious boundaries, have not been held. For the parliamentary election, voting was conducted for individuals running in each province, not as party slates. (There are now 90 registered political parties in Afghanistan, but parties remain unpopular because of their linkages to outside countries during the anti-Soviet war.) When parliament first convened on December 18, 2005, the Northern Alliance bloc, joined by others, selected a senior Northern Alliance figure, who was Karzai’s main competitor in the presidential election, 8 Text of constitution: [http://arabic.cnn.com/afghanistan/ConstitutionAfghanistan.pdf]. CRS-10 Yunus Qanooni, for speaker of the lower house. In April 2007, Qanooni and Northern Alliance political leader Rabbani organized this opposition bloc, along with ex-Communists and some royal family members, into a party called the “National Front” that wants increased parliamentary powers and direct elections for the provincial governors. The 102-seat upper house, selected by the provincial councils and Karzai, consists mainly of older, well known figures, as well as 17 females (half of Karzai’s 34 appointments, as provided for in the constitution). The leader of that body is Sibghatullah Mojadeddi, the pro-Karzai elder statesman. Next2009 Elections and Candidates. The next presidential elections are expected to be held in the fall of 2009. The Wolesi Jirga voted on February 13, 2008 to hold parliamentary and provincial elections in 2010, separate from the 2009 presidential elections, although , possibly in concert with provincial elections. Parliamentary elections are likely to be held one year later, in 2010. However, discussions on combining all the elections are continuing, given the high cost ($100 million per election). The indecision on this question is holding up U.N. and other efforts to help Afghanistan plan the elections and register voters. An election law was submitted for parliamentary approval in November 2007 and is being considered there. and register voters. Karzai has said, in a Washington Post interview of January 27, 2008, and again in another interview on April 6, 2008, that he would run for re-election. Qanooni might run again but some say that the senior Northern Alliance leader Burhannuddin Rabbani, who is about 75 years old, might run instead. Some Afghans say independent parliamentarian Ramazan Bashardost, a Hazara, might run, as might former Interior Minister Ali Jalali, a Pashtun. There has been speculation that the Afghan-born U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Zalmay Khalilzad, who has served as Ambassador to Afghanistan and has been extensively involved in Afghan issues in his U.S. career, might run. Khalilzad has dampened but not outright denied the speculationor Rabbani, both Tajiks, might run, as might Dostam and Hazara leader Mohammad Mohaqqeq, both of whom ran last time. Other contenders include Ramazan Bashardost, another Hazara, and recently fired Attorney General Abd al Jabbar Sabit (Pashtun); and former Interior Minister Ali Jalali, a Pashtun, who resigned in 2005 in opposition to Karzai compromises with faction leaders. Possible other Pashtun contenders include monarchist figures Pir Gaylani and Hedayat Arsala Amin. Rumors have abated that U.S. Ambassador to U.N., Afghan-born Zalmay Khalilzad, might himself run. Each election to cost $100 million. Governance Issues With a permanent national government fully assembled, Karzai and the parliament — relations between which are often contentious — are attempting to improve and expand governance throughout the country. In testimony to the Senate Armed Services Committee on February 28, 2008, Director of National Intelligence Mike McConnell said that the Karzai government controls only 30% of the country, while the Taliban controls 10%, and tribes and local groups control the remainder; U.S. and NATO officials in Kabul told CRS in March 2008 they disagree with that assessment as too pessimistic. At the same time, there is a broader debate among Afghans over whether to continue to strengthen central government — the approach favored by Karzai and the United States and most of its partners — or to promote local solutions to security and governance, an approach that some international partners, such as Britain, want to explore. Some have gone so far as to assert that Karzai, to build political support, is deliberately tolerating officials in his government who are allegedly involved in the narcotics trade (for example, former Coordinator for Counter-Narcotics and Justice Reform Thomas Schweich, in a July 27, 2008, New York Times article). On the other hand, Karzai reportedly might remove Interior Minister Ahmad Zarrar for failing to act on information about the planned July 7, 2008 suicide attack on the Indian Embassy in Kabul, in which 60 were killed. Another move that disappointed some outside observers was Karzai’s firing of Attorney General Abd al Jabbar Sabit on July 16, 2008 after he declared his intention to run against Karzai in 2009 CRS-11 presidential elections. Sabit had been appointed in 2007 to crack down on governmental corruption, and some say he was performing that task effectively. The parliament has asserted itself on several occasions, for example in the process of confirming a post-election cabinet and in forcing Karzai to oust several major conservatives from the Supreme Court in favor of those with more experience in modern jurisprudence. In mid-2007, parliament enacted a law granting amnesty to commanders who fought in the various Afghan wars since the Soviet invasion — some of whom are now members of parliament — in an attempt to put past schisms to rest in building a new Afghanistan. The law was rewritten to give victims the CRS-11 ability to bring accusations of past abuses forward; its status is unclear because Karzai did not veto it but he did not sign it either. In a sign of tension between Karzai and his opposition in parliament, in May 2007, the National Front bloc engineered a vote of no confidence against Foreign Minister Rangeen Spanta and Minister for Refugee Affairs Akbar Akbar for failing to prevent Iran from expelling 50,000 Afghan refugees over a one-month period. Karzai accepted in principle the dismissal of Akbar but deferred Spanta’s dismissal because refugee affairs are not his ministry’s prime jurisdiction. The Afghan Supreme Court has sided with Karzai, causing some National Front bloc members to threaten to resign from the parliament, an action they believe would shake confident in Karzai’s leadership. and Spanta remains in his position, to date, but the dispute is unresolved. The Front conducted position, causing continued unrest among the National Front bloc members. The Front also conducted a walkout of parliament on November 26, 2007, to protest what it said was Karzai’s inattention to parliament’s views on whether or not panic by security forces caused additional deaths following the November 6, 2007, suicide bombing in Baghlan Province that killed 6 parliamentarians and about 70 other persons. On the other hand, on some less contentious issues, the executive and the legislature appear to be working well. Since the end of 2007, the Wolesi Jirga has passed and forwarded to the Meshrano Jirga several laws, including a labor law, a mines law, a law on economic cooperatives, and a convention on tobacco control. The In early 2008, the Wolesi Jirga also has recently confirmed Karzai nominees for a new Minster of Refugee Affairs, head of the Central Bank, and the final justice to fill out the the Supreme Court. (For further information, see CRS Report RS21922, Afghanistan: Government Formation and Performance.) U.N. Involvement. The international community is extensively involved in Afghan stabilization, not only in the security field but in diplomacy and reconstruction assistance. Some of the debate over the growing role of U.S. partners there was represented in a proposal to create a new position of “super envoy” that would represent the United Nations, the European Union, and NATO in Afghanistan. This would subsume the role of the head of the U.N. Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA). In January 2008, with U.S. support, U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki Moon tentatively appointed British diplomat Paddy Ashdown to this “super envoy” position, but President Karzai rejected the appointment reportedly over concerns about the scope of authority of such an envoy, in particular its potential to dilute the U.S. role in Afghanistan. For political purposes, Karzai might have also sought to show independence from the international community. Ashdown withdrew his name on January 28, 2008. CRS-12 U.N. Security Council Resolution 1806 of March 20, 2008, extends UNAMA’s mandate for another year and expands it to include some of the “super-envoy” concept. UNAMA is co-chair of the joint Afghan-international community coordination body called the Joint Coordination and Monitoring Board (JCMB), and Resolution 1806 directs UNAMA, in that capacity, to coordinate the work of international donors and strengthen cooperation between the international peacekeeping force (ISAF, see below) and the Afghan government. UNAMA is helping implement the five-year development strategy outlined in a “London Compact,” (now called the Afghanistan Compact) adopted at the January 31- CRS-12 February31February 1, 2006, London conference on Afghanistan. The priorities developed in that document also comport with Afghanistan’s own “National Strategy for Development,” presented on June 12, 2008 in Paris, as discussed further below under “assistance.” The head of UNAMA as of March 2008, and with the expanded powers, is Norwegian diplomat Kai Eide. In Washington, D.C. in April 2008, Eide said that additional capacity-building resources are needed, and that some efforts by international donors are redundant or tied to purchases by Western countries. Expanding Central Government Writ and Curbing “Warlords”. U.S. policy asserts that stability and countering corruption and narcotics trafficking will result from expanding the capacity, proficiency, transparency, and writ of the Afghan central government. U.S. commanders and officials assert that Taliban militants are able to infiltrate “un-governed space,” contributing to the persistence and in some areas the expansion of the Taliban insurgency. A February 2008 U.N. report on the narcotics situation, discussed below, says that where governance is improving and growing, such as in northern and eastern Afghanistan, a reduction of opium cultivation has been observed. U.S. officials continue to try to bolster Karzai through repeated statements of support and top level exchanges, including several visits there by Vice President Cheney, by President Bush (March 1, 2006), and First Lady Laura Bush. President Karzai has visited the United States repeatedly, and has met with President Bush on the sidelines of several international meetings, including the April 2008 NATO summit in Bucharest, Romania. A key part of the U.S. strategy to strengthen the central government is to support support Karzai’s efforts to curb key regional strongmen and local militias – who some refer to as “warlords.” Karzai has cited these actors as a major threat to Afghan stability stability because of their arbitrary administration of justice and generation of popular resentment through their demands for bribes and other favors. Some argue that Afghans have always sought substantial regional autonomy, but others say that easily purchased arms and manpower, funded by narcotics trafficking, sustains local militias, as well as the Taliban insurgency. Karzai has, to some extent, marginalized most of the largest regional leaders. ! Ismail Khan was removed as Herat governor in September 2004 and later appointed Minister of Water and Energy. On the other hand, Khan was tapped by Karzai to help calm Herat after Sunni-Shiite clashes there in February 2006, clashes that some believe were stoked by Khan to demonstrate his continued influence in Herat. CRS-13 ! In April 2005, Dostam was appointed Karzai’s top military advisor, and in April 2005 he “resigned” as head of his Junbush Melli faction. However, in May 2007 his followers in the north conducted large demonstrations in attempting to force out the anti-Dostam governor of Jowzjan Province. In February 2008, Afghan police surrounded Dostam’s home in Kabul, but did not arrest him, in connection with the alleged beating of a political opponent by CRS-13 Dostam supporters. Some outside observers have cited Karzai’s refusal to order an arrest as a sign of weakness of his leadership. ! Another key figure, former Defense Minister Fahim (Northern Alliance) was appointed by Karzai to the upper house of parliament, although he remained in that body only a few months. The appointment was intended to give him a stake in the political process and reduce his potential to activate Northern Alliance militia loyalists. Fahim continues to turn heavy weapons over to U.N. and Afghan forces (including four Scud missiles), although the U.N. Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) says that large quantities of weapons remain in the Panjshir Valley. ! In July 2004, Karzai moved charismatic Northern Alliance figure Atta Mohammad Noor from control of a militia in the Mazar-eSharif area to governor of Balkh province, although he reportedly remains resistant to central government control. Still, his province is now “cultivation free” of opium, according to the U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) reports since August 2007. Two other large militia leaders, Hazrat Ali (Jalalabad area) and Khan Mohammad (Qandahar area) were placed in civilian police chief posts in 2005; Hazrat Ali was subsequently elected to parliament. Provincial Governorships. Karzai has tried to use his power to appoint provincial governors to extend government authority, although some have questioned his past appointments, while noting that he has a limited talent pool of corruption free free officials to choose from. The key Afghan initiative to improve local governance was was the establishment in August 2007 of the “Independent Directorate of Local Governance” (IDLG) headed by Jelani Popal and reporting to the presidential office. This represents an attempt to institute a systematic process for selecting capable capable governors by taking the screening function away from the Interior Ministry. The The directorate is also selecting police chiefs and other local office holders, and in many many cases has already begun removing allegedly corrupt local officials. Six governors governors have thus far been removed or are slated for replacement. In March 2008, Karzai Karzai replaced the weak and ineffective Helmand governor Asadullah Wafa with Gulab Gulab Mangal. Mangal is considered a competent administrator, but he is from Laghman Laghman province, not Helmand, somewhat to the consternation of Helmand residents. Forming the directorate represents an attempt by Karzai to build on his efforts since 2005 to appointed some relatively younger technocrats in key governorships: these include Qandahar governor Asadullah Khalid, Paktika governor Muhammad Akram Khapalwak, Khost governor Arsala Jamal, who U.S. commanders say has played a major role in governance progress there, and Paktia governor Abdul Hakim CRS-14 Taniwal. (Taniwal was killed in a suicide bombing on September 10, 2006.) Another Another key appointee has been Kabul province governor Hajji Din Mohammad, son of the slain “Jalalabad Shura” leader Hajji Abd al-Qadir. Other pro-Karzai governors, such as Nangahar’s Ghul Agha Shirzai, are considered corrupt and politically motivated rather than technically competent, CRS-14 although Shirzai is credited with helping weaken the Taliban in Nangahar. In July 2007, Karzai removed the governor of Kapisa province for saying that Karzai’s government was weak and thereby failing to curb the Taliban insurgency. DDR and DIAG Programs. A cornerstone of the effort to strengthen the central government was a program, run by UNAMA, to dismantle identified and illegal militias. The program, which formally concluded on June 30, 2006, was the “DDR” program: Disarmament, Demobilization, and Reintegration. The program was run in partnership with Japan, Britain, and Canada, with participation of the United States. The program got off to a slow start because the Afghan Defense Ministry did not reduce the percentage of Tajiks in senior positions by a July 1, 2003, target date, dampening Pashtun recruitment. In September 2003, Karzai replaced 22 senior Tajiks in the Defense Ministry officials with Pashtuns, Uzbeks, and Hazaras, enabling DDR to proceed. The DDR program had initially been expected to demobilize 100,000 fighters, although that figure was later reduced. Figures for accomplishment of the DDR and DIAG programs are contained in the security indicators table later in this paper. Of those demobilized, 55,800 former fighters have exercised reintegration options provided by the program: starting small businesses, farming, and other options. U.N. officials say at least 25% of these have thus far found long-term, sustainable jobs. Some studies criticized the DDR program for failing to prevent a certain amount of rearmament of militiamen or stockpiling of weapons and for the rehiring of some militiamen in programs run by the United States and its partners.9 Part of the DDR program was the collection and cantonment of militia weapons. However, some accounts say that only poor quality weapons were collected. UNAMA officials say that vast quantities of weapons are still kept by the Northern Alliance faction in the Panjshir Valley, although the faction is giving up some weapons to UNAMA slowly, in small weekly shipments. Figures for collected weapons are contained in the table. The total cost of the program was $141 million, funded by Japan and other donors, including the United States. Since June 11, 2005, the disarmament effort has emphasized another program called “DIAG,” Disbandment of Illegal Armed Groups. It is run by the Afghan Disarmament and Reintegration Commission, headed by Vice President Khalili. Under the DIAG, no payments are available to fighters, and the program depends on persuasion rather than use of force against the illegal groups. DIAG has not been as well funded as was DDR: it has received $11 million in operating funds. As an incentive for compliance, Japan and other donors made available $35 million for 9 For an analysis of the DDR program, see Christian Dennys. Disarmament, Demobilization and Rearmament?, June 6, 2005, [http://www.jca.apc.org/~jann/Documents/Disarmament %20demobilization%20 rearmament.pdf]. CRS-15 development projects where illegal groups have disbanded. These incentives were intended to accomplish the disarmament, by December 2007, of a pool of as many as 150,000 members of 1,800 different “illegal armed groups”: militiamen that were not part of recognized local forces (Afghan Military Forces, AMF) and were never on the rolls of the Defense Ministry. These goals have not been met in part because armed groups in the south fear the continued Taliban combat activity and refuse to 9 For an analysis of the DDR program, see Christian Dennys. Disarmament, Demobilization and Rearmament?, June 6, 2005, [http://www.jca.apc.org/~jann/Documents/Disarmament %20demobilization%20 rearmament.pdf]. CRS-15 disarm voluntarily, but UNAMA reports that some progress has been achieved, as shown in the security indicators table. U.S. Embassy Operations/Budgetary Support to Afghan Government. A key component of U.S. efforts to strengthen the Afghan government has been maintaining a large diplomatic presence. Zalmay Khalilzad, an an American of Afghan origin, was ambassador during December 2003-August 2005; he reportedly had significant influence on Afghan government decisions.10 The current ambassador is William Wood, who previously was U.S. Ambassador to Colombia and who has focused on the counter-narcotics issue. As part of a 2003 U.S. push to build government capacity, the Bush Administration formed a 15-person Afghan Reconstruction Group (ARG), placed within the U.S. Embassy in Kabul, to serve as advisors to the Afghan government. The group is now mostly focused on helping Afghanistan attract private investment and develop private industries. The U.S. embassy, housed in a newly constructed building, has progressively expanded its personnel and facilities. The tables at the end of this paper discuss U.S. funding for Embassy operations, USAID operations, and Karzai protection. Although the Afghan government has increased its revenue and is covering a growing proportion of its budget, USAID provides funding to help the Afghan government meet gaps in its budget – both directly and through a U.N.-run multidonor Afghan Reconstruction Trust Fund, ARTF account. Those aid figures, for FY2002-FY2007, are in Table 14 at the end of the paper. Human Rights and Democracy. The Administration and Afghan government claim progress in building a democratic Afghanistan that adheres to international standards of human rights practices and presumably is able to earn the support of the Afghan people. The State Department report on human rights practices practices for 2007 (released March 11, 2008)11 said that Afghanistan’s human rights record record remained “poor,” but attributed this primarily to weak governance, corruption, drug drug trafficking, and the legacy of decades of conflict. Virtually all observers agree that that Afghans are freer than they were under the Taliban. The press is relatively free and Afghan political groupings and parties are able to meet and organize freely, but there are also abuses based on ethnicity or political factionalism and arbitrary implementation of justice by local leaders. In debate over a new press law, both houses of parliament have approved a joint version, but Karzai has vetoed it on the grounds that it gives the government too much control over 10 Waldman, Amy. “In Afghanistan, U.S. Envoy Sits in Seat of Power.” New York Times, April 17, 2004. Afghanistan’s ambassador in Washington is Seyed Jalal Tawwab, formerly a Karzai aide. 11 For text, see [http://www.state.gov/g/drl/rls/hrrpt/2007/100611.htm]. CRS-16 private media. Even in the absence of the law, media policy remains highly conservative; in April 2008 the Ministry of Information and Culture banned five Indian-produced soap operas on the grounds that they are too risque. That came amid a move by conservative parliamentarians to pass legislation to ban loud music, men and women mingling in public, video games, and other behavior common in the 10 Waldman, Amy. “In Afghanistan, U.S. Envoy Sits in Seat of Power.” New York Times, April 17, 2004. Afghanistan’s ambassador in Washington is Seyed Jalal Tawwab, formerly a Karzai aide. 11 For text, see [http://www.state.gov/g/drl/rls/hrrpt/2007/100611.htm]. CRS-16 West. Since the Taliban era, more than 40 private radio stations, seven television networks, and 350 independent newspapers have opened. The death penalty has been reinstituted, reversing a 2004 moratorium declared by Karzai. Fifteen convicts were executed at once on October 7, 2007. In January 2008, Afghanistan’s “Islamic council,” composed of senior clerics, backed public executions for convicted murderers and urged Karzai to end the activities of foreign organizations that are converting Afghans to Christianity. The State Department International Religious Freedom report for 2007 (released September 14, 2007) said that “there was an increase in the number of reports of problems involving religious freedom compared to previous years.” There continues to be discrimination against the Shiite (Hazara) minority and some other minorities such as Sikhs and Hindus. In May 2007, a directorate under the Supreme Court declared the Baha’i faith to be a form of blasphemy. Others have noted that the government has reimposed some Islamic restrictions that characterized Taliban rule, including the code of criminal punishments stipulated in Islamic law. Other accounts accounts say that alcohol is increasingly difficult to obtain in restaurants and stores. Some Some government policies reflect the conservative nature of Afghan society; recent indications of that sentiment were the demonstrations in March 2008 in several Afghan cities against Denmark and the Netherlands for Danish cartoons and a Dutch film apparently criticizing aspects of Islam and its key symbols. On January 25, 2008, in a case that has implications for both religious and journalistic freedom, a young reporter, Sayed Pervez Kambaksh, was sentenced to death for distributing a website report to student peers questioning some precepts of Islam. Karzai has said he will allow the appeal process to play out — and the Supreme Court is likely to overturn that sentence — before considering a pardon for Kambaksh. A previous religious freedom case earned congressional attention in March 2006. An Afghan man, Abd al-Rahman, who had converted to Christianity 16 16 years ago while working for a Christian aid group in Pakistan, was imprisoned and faced a potential death penalty trial for apostasy — his refusal to convert back to Islam. Facing international pressure, Karzai prevailed on Kabul court authorities to release him on March 29, 2006. His release came the same day the House passed H.Res. 736 calling on the Afghan government to protect Afghan converts from prosecution. Afghanistan was again placed in Tier 2 in the State Department report on human trafficking issued in June 2008 (Trafficking in Persons Report for 2008). The government is assessed as not complying with minimum standards for eliminating trafficking, but making significant efforts to do so. The says that women (reportedly from China and Central Asia) are being trafficked into Afghanistan for sexual exploitation. Other reports say some are brought to work in night clubs purportedly frequented by members of many international NGOs. CRS-17 An Afghan Independent Human Rights Commission (AIHRC) was formed in 2002 to monitor government performance and has been credited in State Department reports with successful interventions to curb abuses. Headed by former Women’s Affairs minister Sima Samar, it also conducts surveys of how Afghans view governance and reconstruction efforts. The House-passed Afghan Freedom Support CRS-17 Act (AFSA) re-authorization bill (H.R. 2446) would authorize $10 million per year for this Commission until FY2010. Funding Issues. USAID has spent significant funds on democracy and rule of law programs (support for elections, civil society programs, political party strengthening, media freedom, and local governance) for Afghanistan. Funding for FY2002-FY2007 is shown in Table 14. An additional $100 million was requested in further FY2008 supplemental funding, to help prepare for presidential and parliamentary elections scheduled for 2009, and $248 million for these functions is requested for FY2009. H.R. 2642 (P.L. 110-252) appears to provide the funds.USAID expects to spend about $130 million on democracy in FY2008 based on regular and supplemental (P.L. 110-252) appropriations, in part to help prepare for 2009 elections. Another $248 million for these functions is requested for FY2009. Advancement of Women. According to State Department human rights report, the Afghan government is promoting the advancement of women, but numerous abuses, such as denial of educational and employment opportunities, continue primarily because of Afghanistan’s conservative traditions. A major development in post-Taliban Afghanistan was the formation of a Ministry of Women’s Affairs dedicated to improving women’s rights, although numerous accounts say the ministry’s influence is limited and it is now headed by a male, (the deputy minister is female). Among other activities, it promotes the involvement of women in business ventures. Three female ministers were in the 2004-2006 cabinet: former presidential candidate Masooda Jalal (Ministry of Women’s Affairs), Sediqa Balkhi (Minister for for Martyrs and the Disabled), and Amina Afzali (Minister of Youth). However, Karzai Karzai nominated only one (Minister of Women’s Affairs Soraya Sobhrang) in the cabinet cabinet that followed the parliamentary elections, and she was voted down by opposition opposition from Islamist conservatives in parliament, leaving no women in the cabinet. (The deputy minister is a female.) In March 2005, Karzai appointed a former Minister of Women’s Affairs, Habiba Sohrabi, as governor of Bamiyan province, inhabited mostly by Hazaras. (She hosted visiting First Lady Laura Bush during her visit to Bamiyan in June 2008.) As noted, the constitution reserves for women at least 25% of the seats in the upper house of parliament, and several prominent women have won seats in the new parliament, including some who would have won even if there were no set-asides. However, some NGOs and other groups believe that the women elected by the quota system are not viewed as equally legitimate parliamentarians. More generally, women are performing some jobs, such as construction work, that were rarely held by women even before the Taliban came to power in 1996, including in the new police force. Press reports say Afghan women are increasingly learning how to drive. Under the new government, the wearing of the full body covering called the burqa is no longer obligatory, and fewer women are wearing it than was the case a few years ago. On the other hand, women’s advancement has made women a target of Taliban attacks. Attacks on girls’ schools and athletic facilities have increased in the most restive areas. CRS-18 U.S. officials have had some influence in persuading the government to codify women’s rights. After the Karzai government took office, the United States and the new Afghan government set up a U.S.-Afghan Women’s Council to coordinate the allocation of resources to Afghan women. According to the State Department, the CRS-18 United States has implemented over 175 projects directly in support of Afghan women, including women’s empowerment, maternal and child health and nutrition, funding the Ministry of Women’s Affairs, micro-finance projects, and like programs. Funding Issues. The Afghanistan Freedom Support Act of 2002 (AFSA, P.L. 107-327) authorized $15 million per year (FY2003-FY2006) for the Ministry of Women’s Affairs. The House-passed AFSA reauthorization (H.R. 2446) would authorize $5 million per year for this Ministry. Appropriations for programs for women and girls, when specified, are contained in the tables at the end of this paper. Combating Narcotics Trafficking.12 Narcotics trafficking is regarded by some as one of the most significant problems facing Afghanistan, generating what U.S. commanders estimate to be about 25% - 40% of the Taliban’s funds. Afghanistan is the source of about 93% of the world’s illicit opium supply, and according to UNODC, “... leaving aside 19th Century China, no country in the world has ever produced narcotics on such a deadly scale.” Narcotics now accounts for about $4 billion in value, about 53% of the value ofhalf as large as is the legal economy. The U.N. Office Office of Drugs and Crime (UNODC) reported in February 2008 that opium cultivation for 2008 will likely be similar to the 2007 record harvest, which was an increased of 34% over the previous year. The State Department’s International Narcotics Control Strategy Report, (INCSR) released February 29, 2008, said area under cultivation had increased by 17% in 2007 over 2006 levels. 34% over the previous year. On June 11, 2008, the U.N. Security Council adopted Resolution 1817, called for greater international cooperation to stop the movement of chemical precursors used to process opium into Afghanistan. On the other hand, there are some signs of progress. The February 2008 UNODC report said that the number of “poppy free” provinces is 12, an increase from 6 in 2006, and that cultivation is decreasing in another ten provinces, mostly in the north, where governance is improving. The report said cultivation also decreased decreased sharply in Nangarhar Province (Jalalabad), a key province near the Pakistan border. The State Department Assistant Secretary responsible for counternarcotics, David Johnson, said in late June 2008 that opium production in 2008 would level off compared with 2007. Pakistan border. Afghan leaders estimate that 20 provinces might soon be declared cultivation free, including Nangarhar and Badakshan. Others attribute the apparent drop in cultivation to the large world increase in prices for legal crops. Much of the cultivation growth in recent years has come from Helmand Province (which now produces about 50% of Afghanistan’s total poppy crop) and other southern provinces where the Taliban insurgency is still consistently active, and the February 2008 UNDOC reports said cultivation is increasing in 7 provinces, mostly in the west and south. On June 12, 2008, Afghan officials announced seizing 260 tons of hashish in Qandahar Province, perhaps the world’s largest drug bust, and which NATO officials said would hurt Taliban operations. In response to congressional calls for an increased U.S. focus on the drug problem, in March 2007 the Administration created a post of coordinator for counter- world’s largest drug bust. In March 2007 the Administration created a post of Coordinator for CounterNarcotics and Justice Reform in Afghanistan, naming Thomas Schweich of the Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement (INL) to that post. The U.S. strategy still follows Schweich’s August 9, 2007, announced counter-narcotics program that seeks to better integrate counter-narcotics and counter-insurgency, as 12 For a detailed discussion and U.S. funding on the issue, see CRS Report RL32686, Afghanistan: Narcotics and U.S. Policy, by Christopher M. Blanchard. CRS-19 narcotics and justice reform in Afghanistan, naming Thomas Schweich of the Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement (INL) to that post (he departed that post in June 2008). On August 9, 2007, he announced a major new counter-narcotics program and strategy that seeks to better integrate counter-narcotics and counterinsurgency, as well as enhance and encourage alternative livelihoods.13 Part of the widely acknowledged lack of progress has been attributed to disagreements on a counter-narcotics strategy. The Afghan government wants to focus on funding alternative well as enhance and encourage alternative livelihoods.13 He departed that post in June 2008 and, as noted above, has written opinion pieces critical of overall U.S. and Afghan counter-narcotics strategy in Afghanistan and accusing Karzai of tolerating or and protecting officials that are part of the narcotics trade in part to incur their political support. The Afghan government wants to focus on funding alternative livelihoods that will dissuade Afghans from growing poppy crop, and on building building governance in areas where poppy is grown. The Afghan side maintains that narcotics narcotics flourish in areas where there is no security, and not the other way around. U.S. officials emphasize eradication. In concert with interdiction and building up alternative livelihoods, U.S.-trained Afghanistan counter-narcotics police eradicate poppy fields by cutting down the crop manually on the ground. However, there appears to be a debate between some in the U.S. government, including Ambassador to Afghanistan William Wood, and the Afghan government over whether to conduct spraying of fields, particularly by air. President Karzai strongly opposes aerial spraying of poppy fields, arguing that doing so would cause a backlash among Afghan farmers that could produce more support for the Taliban. NATO commanders, who have taken over security responsibilities throughout Afghanistan, are now focusing on interdicting traffickers and raiding drug labs. Yet, U.S. troops deploying to Helmand in 2008 have not specifically acted against poppy fields, deliberately to avoid angering the local population on which the success of U.S. operations depend. Congress appears to be siding with Karzai; the FY2008 Consolidated Appropriation (P.L. 110-161) prohibits U.S. counter-narcotics funding from being used for aerial spraying on Afghanistan poppy fields. The U.S. military, in support of the effort, is flying Afghan and U.S. counternarcotics agents (Drug Enforcement Agency, DEA) on missions and identifying targets; it also evacuates casualties from counter-drug operations. The Department of Defense is also playing the major role in training and equipping specialized Afghan counter-narcotics police, in developing an Afghan intelligence fusion cell, and training Afghan border police, as well as assisting an Afghan helicopter squadron to move Afghan counter-narcotics forces around the country. The Bush Administration has taken some legal steps against suspected Afghan drug traffickers;14 in April 2005, a DEA operation successfully caught the alleged leading Afghan narcotics trafficker, Haji Bashir Noorzai, arresting him after a flight to New York. The United States is funding a new Counternarcotics Justice Center (estimated cost, $8 million) in Kabul to prosecute and incarcerate suspected traffickers.15 The Bush Administration has repeatedly named Afghanistan (and again in the February 2008 State Department INCSR report discussed above) as a major illicit drug producer and drug transit country, but has not included Afghanistan on a smaller list of countries that have “failed demonstrably to make substantial efforts” to adhere 13 Text of the strategy, see [http://www.state.gov/p/inl/rls/rpt/90561.htm#section1] 14 Cameron-Moore, Simon. “U.S. to Seek Indictment of Afghan Drug Barons.” Reuters, November 2, 2004. 15 Risen, James. “Poppy Fields Are Now a Front Line in Afghanistan War.” New York Times, May 16, 2007. CRS-20 drug producer and drug transit country, but has not included Afghanistan on a smaller list of countries that have “failed demonstrably to make substantial efforts” to adhere to international counter-narcotics agreements and take certain counter-narcotics measures set forth in U.S. law.16 The Administration has exercised waiver provisions (the last was published in the Federal Register in May 2006) to a required certification of full Afghan cooperation that was needed to provide more than $225 million in recent U.S. economic assistance appropriations for Afghanistan. A similar certification requirement (to provide amounts over $300 million) is contained in the House version of the FY2008 appropriation (P.L. 110-161). Other provisions on counter-narcotics, such as recommending a pilot crop substitution program and cutting U.S. aid to any Afghan province whose officials are determined complicit in drug trafficking, are contained in the AFSA reauthorization bill (H.R. 2446). Narcotics trafficking control was perhaps the one issue on which the Taliban, when it was in power, satisfied much of the international community; the Taliban enforced a July 2000 ban on poppy cultivation, which purportedly dramatically decreased cultivation.17 The Northern Alliance did not issue a similar ban in areas it controlled. Post-War Security Operations and Force Capacity Building The top security priority of the Administration has been to prevent Al Qaeda and the Taliban from challenging the Afghan government. The pillars of the U.S. security security effort are (1) continuing combat operations by U.S. forces and a NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF); (2) U.S. and NATO operation of “provincial reconstruction teams” (PRTs); and (3) the equipping and training of an Afghan National Army (ANA) and Afghan National Police (ANP) force. The Combat Environment and Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) U.S. and partner country troop levels have increased significantly since 2006 to combat a Taliban resurgence. NATO/ISAF has led peacekeeping operations nationwide since October 5, 2006, and most U.S. troops in Afghanistan (numbers are in the security indicators table below) are under NATO command. The NATO/ISAF force is headed by U.S. Gen. David McKiernan, who on June 3, 2008 took over from from U.S. Gen. Dan McNeill. (McNeill had taken over in February 2007 from U.K. General David Richards.) The remainder are under direct U.S. command as part of the ongoing anti-terrorism mission Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF). Most U.S. forces in Afghanistan, who are primarily in eastern Afghanistan, report, as of May 2008, to Maj. Gen. Jeffrey Schloesser as head of Combined Joint Task Force 101 16 This is equivalent to the listing by the United States, as Afghanistan has been listed every year since 1987, as a state that is uncooperative with U.S. efforts to eliminate drug trafficking or has failed to take sufficient steps on its own to curb trafficking. 17 Crossette, Barbara. “Taliban Seem to Be Making Good on Opium Ban, U.N. Says.” New York Times, February 7, 2001. CRS-21 (CJTF-101), named after the 101st Airborne Division, headquartered at Bagram Air Base north of Kabul. For now, Gen. Schloesser commands OEF as well as ISAF Regional Regional Command-East of the NATO/ISAF mission, although this command structure may be altered in August 2008 as discussed below. Incremental costs of U.S. operations in Afghanistan appear to be running about 2.5 - 3 billion dollars per month. The 16 17 Afghanistan had been so designated every year during 1987 - 2002. Crossette, Barbara. “Taliban Seem to Be Making Good on Opium Ban, U.N. Says.” New York Times, February 7, 2001. CRS-21 month. The FY2008 Defense Authorization Act (P.L. 110-181, Section 1229) requires a quarterly DOD report on the security situation in Afghanistan, along the lines of the similar “Measuring Stability and Security” report required for Iraq; the first was submitted in June 2008. For further information, see CRS Report RL33110, The Cost of Iraq, Afghanistan, and Other Global War on Terror Operations Since 9/11, by Amy Belasco. Prior to the transfer to NATO Belasco. OEF Partners. Prior to NATO assumption of command, 19 coalition countries — primarily Britain, France, Canada, and Italy — were contributing approximately 4,000 combat troops to OEF, but most of these have now been “re-badgedrebadged” to the expanded NATOledNATO-led ISAF mission. However, aA few foreign contingents , composed mainly of special operations forces, including a small unit from the UAE, remain part of OEF. Until December 2007, 200 South Korean forces at Bagram Air Base (mainly combat engineers) were part of OEF; they left in December 2007 in fulfillment of a JulyAugustJuly-August 2007, agreement under which Taliban militants released 21 kidnapped South Korean church group visitors in Ghazni province.18 As of April 2008, South Korea is in the process of re-engaging in Afghanistan by planning to take over the Parwan Province PRT based at Bagram Air Base and possibly train Afghan security forces at facilities in Kabul as well. Japan provided naval refueling capabilities in the Arabian sea, but the mission ended in October 2007 following a parliamentary change of majority there in July 2007. The mission was revived in January 2008 when the new government forced through parliament a bill to allow the mission to resume. On June 1, 2008, a senior Japanese official said Japan might expand the mission of its Self Defense Forces to include some reconstruction activities in Afghanistan, but Japan decided against that mission in July 2008. As part of OEF, the United States leads a multi-national naval anti-terrorist, anti-smuggling, anti-proliferation interdiction mission in the Persian Gulf/Arabian Sea, headquartered in Bahrain. That mission was expanded after the fall of Saddam Hussein to include protecting Iraqi oil platforms in the Gulf. The Taliban “Resurgence,” Causes, and Early Responses. In the four In the four years after the fall of the Taliban, U.S. forces and Afghan troops fought relatively low levels of Taliban insurgent violence. The United States and Afghanistan conducted “Operation Mountain Viper” (August 2003); “Operation Avalanche” (December 2003); “Operation Mountain Storm” (March-July 2004) against Taliban remnants in and around Uruzgan province, home province of Mullah Umar; “Operation Lightning Freedom” (December 2004-February 2005); and “Operation Pil (Elephant)” in Kunar Province in the east (October 2005). The Taliban “Resurgence” and Early Responses. By 2005, U.S. By 2005, U.S. and partner commanders had believed that the combat, coupled with overall political and economic reconstruction, had almostvirtually ended the insurgency. Therefore, the increase 18 Two were killed during their captivity. The Taliban kidnappers did not get the demanded release of 23 Taliban prisoners held by the Afghan government. CRS-22 any insurgency. An increase in violence beginning in mid-2006 therefore took some U.S. commanders by surprise. , and Taliban insurgents, have increasingly adapting suicide and roadside bombing characteristic of the Iraq insurgency, have been able to step up attacks. The main theater of combat is southern Afghanistan: particularly, Uruzgan, Helmand, and Qandahar provinces, areas that NATO/ISAF 18 Two were killed during their captivity. The Taliban kidnappers did not get the demanded release of 23 Taliban prisoners held by the Afghan government. CRS-22 provinces – areas that NATO/ISAF assumed primary responsibility for on July 31, 2006. The violence has triggered debate about whether the resurgence was driven by popular frustration with the widely perceived corruption within the Karzai government and the slow pace of economic reconstruction. Some believe that Afghans in the restive areas wereare intimidated by the Taliban into providing food and shelter, while others believe that some villages welcome any form of justice, even if administered by the Taliban. Taliban attacks on schools, teachers, and other civilian infrastructure have reportedly caused popular anger against the movement, but others say they appreciate the Taliban’s reputation for avoiding corruption. Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Michael Mullen testified on December 11, 2007, that the Taliban support had tripled to about 20% over the past two years, and the June 2008 DoD report referenced earlier says the Taliban is now a “resilient insurgency” likely to “increase the scope and pace” of attacks through 2008. Increasingly in mid-2008, Afghan and U.S. officials and commanders are blaming Pakistan for failing to curb the movement of militants based there into Afghanistan. Other developments in 2007 that the United States found worrisome were the Taliban’s first use of a surface-to-air missile (SAM-7, shoulder held) against a U.S. C-130 transport aircraft, although it did not hit the aircraft. At the onset of the upsurge in Taliban violence in 2006, NATO countered with repeated offensives, including aircraft. Repeated NATO offensives in 2006 were only temporary successes, including such major operations as Operation Mountain Lion, Operation Mountain Thrust, and Operation Medusa (August-September 2006). The latter was considered a success in ousting latter ousted Taliban fighters from the Panjwai district near Qandahar. Operation Medusa also, and demonstrated that NATO would conduct intensive combat in Afghanistan. In the aftermath of Medusa, British forces — who believe in working more with tribal leaders as part of negotiated local solutions — entered into an agreement with tribal elders in the Musa Qala district of Helmand Province, under which they would secure the main town of the district without an active NATO presence. That strategy failed when the Taliban captured Musa Qala town in February 2007. A NATO offensive in December 2007, approved by President Karzai, retook Musa Qala, although there continue to be recriminations between the Britain, on the one side, and the United States and Karzai, on the other, over the wisdom of the original British deal on Musa Qala. Some Taliban activity continues on the outskirts of the district. These offensives were temporarily successful, but NATO determined that a more integrated , although a key Taliban commander in the area was killed by a British air strike in late July 2008. Another surrendered to Pakistani authorities at the same time. Frustrated with continued violence, in 2007, NATO settled on a more integrated strategy involving pre-emptive combat and improved governance was needed. During 2007, U.S. and NATO forces, bolstered by the infusion of 3,200 U.S. troops and 3,800 NATO/partner forces, pre-empted an anticipated Taliban “spring offensive.” In March 2007, NATO and Afghan troops conducted “Operation Achilles” to expel militants from the Sangin district of northern Helmand Province, in part to pacify the area around the key Kajaki dam. The Taliban “spring offensive” largely did not materialize, and U.S. and NATO commanders say their efforts deprived the Taliban of the ability to control substantial swaths of territory. The NATO operations, and a related offensive in late April 2007 (Operation Silicon), had a major success on May 12, 2007, when the purportedly ruthless leader of the Taliban CRS-23 insurgency in the south, Mullah Dadullah, was killed by U.S. and NATO forces in Helmand Province. His CRS-23 brother, Mansoor, replaced him as leader of that faction but Mansoor was arrested crossing into Pakistan in February 2008. Arrests and deaths such as these contributed to U.S. command optimism that it would eventually defeat the Taliban outright.19 A U.S. airstrike in December 2006 killed another prominent commander, Mullah Akhtar Usmani. A key commander in Kunar province, Mullah Ismail, was arrested while crossing over into Pakistan in mid-April 2008. The Taliban has several official spokespersons, including Qari Yusuf Ahmadi, and it operates a clandestine radio station, “Voice of Shariat,” and publishes videos. Whereabouts of Bin Laden and Related Insurgent Groups. Compounding the difficulty of stabilizing Afghanistan, U.S. forces face a convergence of insurgent threats – the Taliban, Al Qaeda, other insurgent groups, and increasingly Pakistani militants such as Beitullah Mehsud. U.S. commanders say that Al Qaeda militants are increasingly facilitating, although not necessarily participating in, militant incursions in Afghanistan. The two most notable Al Qaeda leaders at large, and believed in Pakistan, are Osama bin Laden himself and his close ally, Ayman al-Zawahiri. They reportedly escaped the U.S.-Afghan offensive against the Al Qaeda stronghold of Tora Bora in eastern Afghanistan in December 2001.20 A purported U.S.-led strike reportedly missed Zawahiri by a few hours in the village of Damadola, Pakistan, in January 2006, suggesting that the United States and Pakistan have some intelligence on his movements.21 A strike in late January 2008, in an area near Damadola, killed Abu Laith al-Libi, a reported senior Al Qaeda figure who purportedly masterminded, among other operations, the bombing at Bagram Air Base in February 2007 when Vice President Cheney was visiting. During a visit to the United States in August 2007, Karzai told journalists that U.S. and Afghan officials are no closer than previously to determining bin Laden’s location. Taliban Command, Al Qaeda, and Related Insurgent Groups. Compounding the difficulty of stabilizing Afghanistan is the convergence of insurgent threats – not only the ousted Taliban still centered around Mullah Umar. Mullah Umar and many of his top advisers remain at large, believed in Pakistan in and around the city of Quetta, according to Afghan officials (“Quetta Shura”). One of his top deputies still at large is Mullah Bradar.. Umar continues to run a so-called “shadow government” from his safehaven, and the Taliban has several official spokespersons, including Qari Yusuf Ahmadi and Zabiullah Mujahid, and it operates a clandestine radio station, “Voice of Shariat,” and publishes videos. The Taliban is allied with Al Qaeda, other Afghan insurgent groups, and, increasingly, Pakistani militants such as Beitullah Mehsud. U.S. commanders say that, with increased freedom of action in Pakistan, Al Qaeda militants are increasingly facilitating, through financing and recruiting, militant incursions in Afghanistan. As of mid-2008, according to U.S. commanders, an increasing number of foreign fighters are being captured or killed in battles in Afghanistan. The two most notable Al Qaeda leaders at large, and believed in Pakistan, are Osama bin Laden himself and his close ally, Ayman al-Zawahiri. They reportedly escaped the U.S.-Afghan offensive against the Al Qaeda stronghold of Tora Bora in eastern Afghanistan in December 2001.20 A purported U.S.-led strike reportedly missed Zawahiri by a few hours in the village of Damadola, Pakistan, in January 2006, suggesting that the United States and Pakistan have some intelligence on his movements.21 There were unconfirmed press reports in early August 2008 that he might have been wounded in an airstrike that was confirmed to have killed Al Qaeda chemical weapons expert Abu Khabab al-Masri. A strike in late January 2008, in an area near Damadola, killed Abu Laith al-Libi, a reported senior Al Qaeda figure who purportedly masterminded, among other operations, the bombing at Bagram Air Base in February 2007 when Vice President Cheney was visiting. Another “high value target” identified by U.S. commanders is the Hikmatyar faction (Hizb-e-Islami Gulbuddin, HIG) allied with Al Qaeda and Taliban insurgents. His fighters are operating in Kunar and Nuristan provinces, northeast of Kabul. On February 19, 2003, the U.S. government formally designated Hikmatyar as a “Specially Designated Global Terrorist,” under the authority of Executive Order 13224, subjecting it to financial and other U.S. sanctions. It is not formally designated as a “Foreign Terrorist Organization.” On July 19, 2007, Hikmatyar injected some optimism into the U.S. mission in Afghanistan by issuing a statement declaring a willingness to discuss a cease-fire with the Karzai government, although no firm reconciliation talks have been held between HIG and the Karzai government and he has in 2008 issued hardline statements suggesting he is continuing his fight. 19 Mansoor Dadullah was one of five Taliban leaders released in March 2007 in exchange for the freedom of kidnapped Italian journalist Daniele Mastrogiacomo, but there were reports in January 2008 that Mullah Umar Mullah Umar had dismissed Mansoor because of reported talks with British military officers about his possible defection. 20 For more information on the search for the Al Qaeda leadership, see CRS Report RL33038, Al Qaeda: Profile and Threat Assessment, by Kenneth Katzman. 21 Gall, Carlotta and Ismail Khan. “U.S. Drone Attack Missed Zawahiri by Hours.” New York Times, November 10, 2006. CRS-24 February 19, 2003, the U.S. government formally designated Hikmatyar as a “Specially Designated Global Terrorist,” under the authority of Executive Order 13224, subjecting it to financial and other U.S. sanctions. (It is not formally designated as a “Foreign Terrorist Organization.”) On July 19, 2007, Hikmatyar expressed a willingness to discuss a cease-fire with the Karzai government, although no firm reconciliation talks were held and he has in 2008 issued hardline statements suggesting he is continuing his fight. Yet another militant faction is led by Jalaludin Haqqani and his eldest son, Siraj. Haqqani is believed closer to Al Qaeda than to the ousted Taliban leadership in part Yet another militant faction is led by Jalaludin Haqqani and his son, Siraj, operating around Khost. Haqqani is believed to have contact with Al Qaeda leaders in part because one of his wives is purportedly Arab. This group is active around Khost Khost Province. Policy Reviews and Further U.S. Troop Buildup. Despite the repeated offensives, a In mid 2008, a perception of growing Taliban strength has takentook hold supported by, among other indicators: (1) 2007 recording the most casualties, of the war so far; (2) numbers of suicide bombings at a post-TalibanpostTaliban high, including one near Qandahar on February 17, 2008 that killed 67 civilians and 13 Afghan police - the most lethal attack since 2002; (3) expanding Taliban operations in provinces where it had not previously been active, including Lowgar and Wardak, (close to Kabul),, as well as formerly stable Herat, where there are few Pashtuns sympathetic to the Taliban; (4) high profile attacks in Kabul against targets that are either well defended or in highly populated centers, such as the January 14, 2008, attack on the Serena Hotel in Kabul (see below); the January 26, 2008, kidnaping of an American aid worker in Qandahar; and the July 7, 2008 suicide bombing at the gates of the Indian Embassy in Kabul, killing 41, the most lethal such attack in Afghanistan to date; (5) the April 27, 2008 assassination attempt on Karzai during a military parade celebrating the ouster of the Soviet Union; (6) the June 12, 2008 prison break in Qandahar (several hundred Taliban captives were freed, as part of an emptying of the 1,200 inmates there); (7) the July 8, 2008 suicide bombing at the gates of the Indian Embassy in Kabul, killing 41, the most lethal such attack in Afghanistan to date; and (8) a reported 40% rise in attacks (over 2007 figures) in the U.S.-led eastern sector 1,200 inmates there); (7) the reported 40% rise in attacks (over 2007 figures) in the U.S.-led eastern sector; and (8) the July 13, 2008 on a U.S. outpost in Nuristan Province that killed nine U.S. soldiers. The attack on Sariposa prison in Qandahar particularly shook confidence in U.S. and NATO policy because, subsequently, some of the freed militants fanned out north of Qandahar and took over up to nine villages in nearby Arghandhab district, prompting a NATO-Afghan counterattack. The counter-offensive was declared successful by June 21, although some say that there might not have been 500 militants that gathered there as asserted by local residents. Even though the events did not apparently pose a threat to government control of Qandahar city, the cycle caused substantial consternation among Afghans in the province. The upsurge in attacks in the eastern sector have also caused consternation at has caused particular consternation at DoD because, throughout 2007, U.S. commanders were heralding substantial progress in reducing Taliban attacks in that sector. The progress was attributed to the fact that U.S. troops are able to achieve significant coverage of the area. Amid the – those of which are under NATO/ISAF and those under OEF are mostly in the eastern sector – were able to achieve significant coverage of the area to be able to hold territory and accomplish construction and governance expansion. Amid the June and July 2008 setbacks, U.S. commanders still maintain that the overall effort is succeeding because 70% of the violence in Afghanistan occurs in 10% of Afghanistan’s 364 districts, an area including about 6% of the Afghan population. U.S. commanders say much of the increase in violence has been caused CRS-25 by a higher tempo of U.S./ISAF anti-Taliban operations rather than any increase in Taliban recruitment or capabilities. In May 2008, some NATO commanders went so far as to say that the Taliban is on the brink of defeat – nearly decapitated, having lost 7,000 fighters over the past two years, and low on ammunition. In June 2008 outgoing Gen. McNeill and the new NATO commander Gen. McKiernan attributed much of the increase in violence in the east to Pakistan’s failure to prevent the movement of militants across the border. CRS-25 “Americanizing” the Southern Front? Taliban recruitment or capabilities. Committing Additional Resources and “Americanizing” the Command Structure. To address the widespread perception of deterioration of the U.S. effort, a reported National Security Council review (reported by the Washington Post on November 25, 2007) concluded that the United States needed to focus more attention and resources on the Afghan situation than it had previously. Joint Chiefs Chairman Mullen largely confirmed the perception that the Afghan battlefield was “under-resourced” in his December 11, 2007 testimony in which he stated that, in Iraq, “the United States does what it must, while in Afghanistan, the United States does what it can.” Other policy reviews have been conducted by the State Department; it evaluated its use of “soft power” to complement the U.S. military operations in Afghanistan. does what it can.” Similar findings are were emphasized in recent outside assessments of Afghanistan policy, including a report in November 2007 by the Senlis Council;22 a January 2008 study by the Atlantic Council (“Saving Afghanistan: An Appeal and Plan for Urgent Action”) and a January 30, 2008 study by the Center for the Study of the Presidency (“Afghanistan Study Group Report”), as well as in recent congressional hearings. TheSince early 2008, the Administration has decided on new steps to keep the pressure on the Taliban, as well as to ease strains with key NATO partners. Some policy decisions indicate that the United States is likely to assume greater responsibility for the combat-intense south. On On January 14, 2008, Secretary of Defense Gates approved the deployment of an additional 3,200 Marines to southern Afghanistan (for seven months, later extended through November 2008), of which about 7001,000 are training the Afghan security forces. The Marines have begun to clear forces. Upon deploying, the Marines cleared Taliban militants from Helmand Helmand Province; including an operation in April 2008 that expelled Taliban militants from the Garmsar district of Helmand. Still, U.S. and NATO commanders in Afghanistan have decided that they needed about three more say they still need brigades (about 10,000, of which about one brigade would be devoted to training the Afghan security forces) to be able to stabilize the still restive southern sector, particularly all of southern Helmand Province. With NATO countries unlikely to fill that entire need, onas well as to reverse the deterioration of the eastern sector. On April 4, 2008, at the NATO summit in Romania, President Bush pledged to further increase U.S. forces in Afghanistan in 2009, regardless of the change in U.S. Administration at that time. The 2009 addition could be as much as 7,000 U.S. forces beyond the 3,200 additional Marines already deployed. However,, and it is now clear that most of the needed 10,000 forces will be U.S. troops. However, the timing of the U.S. additions might depend on events in Iraq; Joint Chiefs Chairman Mullen said on July 2, 2008 that there were not now additional U.S. forces available for Afghanistan until forces were freed up from duty in Iraq. In another move, on May 22, 2008, the Defense Department confirmed that the United States is likely to take over the command of Regional Command-South in November 2010, after rotations by the Netherlands (2008-2009) and Britain (2009-2010). In July 2008, the Defense Department deployed an additional aircraft carrier to the Afghanistan theater to provide additional air strike capability. The issue of NATO/ISAF and the positions of contributing countries Britain and other partner countries might also contribute some of these extra forces. In perhaps an even more significant move, Defense officials confirmed on August 7, 2008 that Secretary of Defense Gates would approve a plan to place almost all U.S. troops, including those performing OEF anti-insurgent missions, under Gen. McKiernan’s NATO/ISAF command, in order to create unity of command, and to improve flexibility of deployment of U.S. forces throughout the battlefield. The command restructuring implies that NATO/ISAF will be led by an American commander for the foreseeable future, but U.S. officials say that the OEF and 22 Text of the report is at [http://www.senliscouncil.net/modules/publications/Afghanistan_ on_the_brink/documents/Afghanistan_on_the_brink] CRS-26 NATO/ISAF missions will not formally merge, meaning that there will still be separate U.S. operations against high value targets and other militant concentrations. A separate part of the plans, discussed further below, is to fund a major expansion of the Afghan National Army. In addition, on May 22, 2008, the Defense Department confirmed that the United States is likely to take over the command of Regional Command-South in November 2010, after rotations by the Netherlands (2008-2009) and Britain (2009-2010). In July 2008, the Defense Department deployed an additional aircraft carrier to the Afghanistan theater to provide additional air strike capability, and there are reported plans to add AWACs surveillance aircraft to the Afghan theater. The issue of NATO/ISAF and the positions of contributing countries is discussed further below. U.S. and NATO commanders are also increasingly sensitive to losing “hearts and minds” because of civilian casualties resulting from U.S. and NATO operations, 22 Text of the report is at [http://www.senliscouncil.net/modules/publications/Afghanistan_ on_the_brink/documents/Afghanistan_on_the_brink] CRS-26 particularly air strikes. In a joint meeting on May 21, 2007, President Bush and NATO Secretary General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer said that U.S. and NATO operations were seeking to avoid civilian casualties but that such results were sometimes inevitable in the course of fighting the Taliban. President Bush and President Karzai said they discussed the issue during their Camp David meetings in August 2007. NATO is reportedly examining using smaller air force munitions to limit collateral damage from air strikes, or increased use of ground operations. Feelers to the Taliban. President Karzai believes that an alternative means of combating Taliban militants is to offer talks with Taliban fighters who want to consider ending their fight. Noted above is the “Program for Strengthening Peace and and Reconciliation” (referred to in Afghanistan by its Pashto acronym “PTS”) headed by Meshrano Jirga speaker Sibghatullah Mojadeddi and overseen by Karzai’s National National Security Council. The program is credited with persuading 5,000 Taliban figures and commanders to renounce violence and joint the political process. Several Taliban figures, including its foreign minister Wakil Mutawwakil, ran in the parliamentary parliamentary elections. The Taliban official who was governor of Bamiyan Province when the Buddha statues there were blown up, Mohammad Islam Mohammedi — and who was later elected to the post-Taliban parliament from Samangan Province — was assassinated in Kabul in January 2007. In September 2007, Karzai offered to meet with Mullah Umar himself, appearing thereby to backtrack on earlier statements that about 100-150 of the top Taliban leadership would not be eligible for amnesty. The Taliban rejected the offer, saying they would not consider reconciling until (1) all foreign troops leave Afghanistan; (2) a new “Islamic” constitution is adopted; and (3) Islamic law is imposed. In December 2007, other press reports appeared that European or other intermediaries had been holding secret talks with Taliban figures. Even though it is Karzai’s position that talks with the Taliban could be helpful, two European diplomats working for the United Nations and European Union were expelled by the Afghan government in December 2007, possibly because they allegedly provided the Taliban intermediaries with small gifts as gestures of goodwill. As referenced above, there have been reports that, before his capture, Mansoor Dadullah was in talks with British forces about ending his battles. In April 2008, representatives of the minority-dominated National Front bloc (see above) said they have had some peace talks with Taliban representatives Islamic law is imposed. U.S. Military Presence/SOFA/Use of Facilities. U.S. forces operate in Afghanistan under a “status of forces agreement” (SOFA) between the United States and the interim government of Afghanistan in November 2002; the agreement gives the United States legal jurisdiction over U.S. personnel serving in Afghanistan. Even if the Taliban insurgency ends, Afghan leaders say they want the United States to maintain a long-term presence in Afghanistan. On May 8, 2005, Karzai summoned about 1,000 delegates to a consultative jirga in Kabul on whether to host permanent U.S. bases. They supported an indefinite presence of international forces to maintain security but urged Karzai to delay a decision. On May 23, 2005, Karzai and President CRS-27 President Bush issued a “joint declaration”23 providing for U.S. forces to have access to Afghan military facilities, in order to prosecute “the war against international terror and the struggle against violent extremism.” The joint statement did not give Karzai Karzai enhanced control over facilities used by U.S. forces, over U.S. operations, or over over prisoners taken during operations. Some of the bases, both in and near Afghanistan, that support combat in Afghanistan, include those in the table. In order to avoid the impression that foreign forces are “occupying” Afghanistan, NATO said on August 15, 2006, that it would negotiate an agreement with Afghanistan to formalize the NATO presence in Afghanistan and stipulate 15 initiatives to secure Afghanistan and rebuild its security forces. 23 See [http://www.mfa.gov.af/Documents/ImportantDoc/US-Afghanistan%20Strategic%20 Partnership%20Declaration.pdf]. CRS-28 Table 2. Afghan and Regional Facilities Used for Operations in Afghanistan Facility Use Bagram Air Base 50 miles north of Kabul, the operational hub of U.S. forces in Afghanistan, and base for CJTF-82. At least 500 U.S. military personnel are based there, assisted by about 175 South Korean troops. Handles many of the 150 U.S. aircraft (including helicopters) in country. Hospital under construction, one of the first permanent structures there. FY2005 supplemental (P.L. 109-13) provided about $52 million for for various projects to upgrade facilities at Bagram, including a control tower and an an operations center, and the FY2006 supplemental appropriation (P.L. 109-234) provides $20 million for military construction there. NATO also using the base and sharing operational costs. Qandahar Air Field Just outside Qandahar. Turned over from U.S. to NATO/ISAF control in late 2006 in conjunction with NATO assumption of peacekeeping responsibilities. Shindand Air Base In Farah province, about 20 miles from Iran border. Used by U.S. forces and combat aircraft since October 2004, after the dismissal of Herat governor Ismail Khan, whose militia forces controlled the facility. Peter Ganci Base: Manas, Kyrgyzstan Used by 1,200 U.S. military personnel as well as refueling and cargo aircraft. Leadership of Kyrgyzstan changed in April 2005 in an uprising against President Askar Akayev, but senior U.S. officials reportedly received assurances about continued U.S. use of the base from his successor, Kurmanbek Bakiyev. Bakiyev demanded a large increase in the $2 million per year U.S. contribution for use of the base; dispute eased in July 2006 with U.S. agreement to give Kyrgyzstan $150 million in assistance and base use payments. Incirlik Air Base, Turkey About 2,100 U.S. military personnel there; U.S. aircraft supply U.S. forces in Iraq and Afghanistan. U.S. use repeatedly extended for one year intervals by Turkey. Al Dhafra, UAE Air base used by about 1,800 U.S. military personnel, to supply U.S. forces and related transport into Iraq and Afghanistan. Al Udeid Air Base, Qatar Largest air facility used by U.S. in region. About 5,000 U.S. personnel in Qatar. Houses central air operations coordination center for U.S. missions in Iraq and Afghanistan; also houses CENTCOM forward headquarters. Naval Support Facility, Bahrain U.S. naval command headquarters for OEF anti-smuggling, anti-terrorism, and anti-proliferation antiproliferation naval search missions, and Iraq-related naval operations (oil platform platform protection) in the Persian Gulf and Arabian Sea. About 5,100 U.S. military military personnel there. KarsiKhanabad Air Base, Uzbekistan Not used by U.S. since September 2005 following U.S.-Uzbek dispute over May 2005 Uzbek crackdown on unrest in Andijon. Once housed about 1,750 U.S. military personnel (900 Air Force, 400 Army, and 450 civilian) in supply missions to Afghanistan. Uzbekistan allowed German use of the base temporarily in March 2008, indicating possible healing of the rift. Could also represent Uzbek counter to to Russian offer to U.S. coalition to allow use of its territory to transport equipment into Afghanistan. CRS-29 The NATO - Led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF)24 As discussed, theThe NATO-led “International Security Assistance Force” (ISAF) consisting of all 26 NATO members states plus partner countries, now commands peacekeeping peacekeeping operations throughout Afghanistan. ISAF was created by the Bonn Agreement and U.N. Security Council Resolution 1386 (December 20, 2001),25 initially limited to Kabul. In October 2003, NATO endorsed expanding its presence to several other cities, contingent on formal U.N. approval. That NATO decision came several weeks after Germany agreed to contribute an additional 450 military personnel to expand ISAF into the city of Konduz. The U.N. Security Council adopted Resolution 1510 (October 14, 2003) formally authorizing ISAF to deploy outside Kabul. NATO’s takeover of command of ISAF in August 2003 paved the way for the expansion, and NATO/ISAF’s responsibilities broadened significantly in 2004 with NATO/ISAF’s assumption of security responsibility for northern and western Afghanistan (Stage 1, Regional Command North, in 2004 and Stage 2, Regional Command West, in 2005, respectively). The mission was most recently renewed by U.N. Security Council Resolution 1776 (September 19, 2007), which also noted U.N. support for the Operation Enduring Freedom mission. (Several tables at the end of this paper list contributing countries, forces contributed, areas of operations, and Provincial Reconstruction Teams they control.) The transition process continued on July 31, 2006, with the formal handover of the the security mission in southern Afghanistan to NATO/ISAF control. As part of this “Stage 3,” a British/Canadian/Dutch-led “Regional Command South” (RC-S) was formed. Britain is the lead force in Helmand; Canada is lead in Qandahar, and the Netherlands is lead in Uruzgan; the three rotate the command of RC-S. “Stage 4,” the the assumption of NATO/ISAF command of peacekeeping in fourteen provinces of eastern Afghanistan (and thus all of Afghanistan), was completed on October 5, 2006. As part of the completion of the NATO/ISAF takeover of command, the United States put over half the U.S. troops operating in Afghanistan under NATO/ISAF’s “Regional Command East” (RC-E), although still reporting to a U.S. command in country. The April 2008 NATO summit in Bucharest, Romania resulted in some new pledges for NATO and other partner forces to add troops to Afghanistan to meet the agreed requirement of 10,000 total extra forces deemed needed to stabilize the restive south. As of now, . As of now, the partner forces that are bearing the brunt of combat in southern Afghanistan are Britain, Canada, the Netherlands, Denmark, and Australia. The need to line up new pledges became acute in February 2008, when Canada said it would extend its 2,500 troop deployment until 2009, but not beyond that, unless other partners contribute 1,000 forces to assist with combat in the Canadian sector (Qandahar province). 24 As noted above, six countries (in addition to the United States) are providing forces to OEF, and twelve countries are providing forces to both OEF and ISAF. 25 Its mandate was extended until October 13, 2006, by U.N. Security Council Resolution 1623 (September 13, 2005); and until October 13, 2007, by Resolution 1707 (September 12, 2006). CRS-30 New NATO Force Pledges in 2008 and Since. At and in conjunction with with the NATO summit in Bucharest in early April 2008, twelve countries did indicate indicate new pledges, although some are of reconstruction aid rather than troops, and others others were restatements of previous pledges. The following were the major pledges: ! France announced a deployment of up to 1,000 forces — a battalion of about 700 plus 200 special forces that formerly were part of OEF. The French forces will be deployedare deploying mostly in the U.S.-led eastern sector, freeing up U.S. forces to go to the south, although some French forces are going to the southern sector to help train Afghan security forces there. ! Poland recommitted to its February 2008 announcement that it would add 400 troops to the 1,200 in Afghanistan, but that they would continue to fight alongside U.S. forces as part of RC-E, operating mainly in Ghazni province. ! Norway plans to add 200 troops but in the largely passive north, where Norway is deployed. ! Denmark will add about 600 forces to the mission in the south. ! Georgia pledged 500 additional forces for Afghanistan. ! Croatia pledged 200 - 300, which would double its existing force. ! The Czech Republic pledged 120 new forces. ! Greece and Romania promised to send an unspecified number of additional trainers for the Afghan security forces. ! New Zealand pledged to increase its contingent at the PRT it runs in Bamiyan province. ! Azerbaijan pledged an additional 45, more than its existing force there. ! In February 2008, Australia ruled out sending more forces to supplement its contingent, which operates in combat intense Uruzgan province, but said it would augment civilian assistance such as training Afghan police and judges and build new roads, hospitals, and schools. ! In May 2008, Italy announced that it was now willing to deploy some of its forces to the combat-intense south. ! In June 2008, Britain announced it would add 230 troops to its already significant 7,800 troop commitment to Afghanistan. Although the forces will serve in Britain’s sector of the south (very high combat Helmand Province), they would mainly conduct CRS-31 training for the Afghan security forces. CRS-31 British leaders are also contemplated a significant increase in forces in Afghanistan in 2009 as they draw down from duties in southern Iraq (4,100 British forces remain there). ! Germany, as recently as June 21, 2008, has turned U.S. requests to send forces to the combat-heavy south, but it pledged in early 2008 to add 500 forces to its sector in the north, mostly to take over a Norway-led rapid reaction force there. On June 21, 2008, it was reported that Germany would announce an increase in its authorized troop ceiling for Afghanistan to 4,500, from 3,500, although still in the northern sector. (Despite opposition in Germany to the entire Afghanistan mission, Germany’s parliament voted by a 453-79 vote margin on October 12, 2007, to maintain German troop levels in Afghanistan.) Among unfulfilled pledges are 3,200 trainers that are needed for Afghan security security forces. About 7001,000 of the 3,200 Marines that deployed to Afghanistan in March March 2008 are trainers to address that shortage. Another key point of contention has been NATO’s chronic equipment shortages — particularly helicopters, both for transport and attack — for the Afghanistan mission. Secretary Gates has been pressing for NATO countries to contribute an additional 16 helicopters in southern Afghanistan to relieve a U.S. helicopter battalion that Gates said in testimony would not have its deployment there extended again beyond mid-2008. One idea considered at the NATO meeting in Scotland on December 13, 2007, was for U.S. or other donors to pay for the upgrading of helicopters that partner countries might possess but have inadequate resources to adapt to Afghanistan’s harsh flying conditions. Some NATO countries reportedly are considering jointly modernizing about 20 Russian-made transport helicopters that could be used by all participating nations in Afghanistan. In 2007, to try to compensate for the shortage, NATO chartered about 20 commercial helicopters for extra routine supply flights to the south, freeing up Chinooks and Black Hawks for other missions. Some of the extra Polish troops being deployed in 2008 will operate and maintain eight helicopters. The shortages persist even though several partner nations brought in additional equipment in 2006 in conjunction with the NATO assumption of command of all peacekeeping. At that time, Apache attack helicopters and F-16 aircraft were brought in by some contributors. Italy sent “Predator” unmanned aerial vehicles, helicopters, and six AMX fighter-bomber aircraft.26 Germany notes that it provides six Tornado combat aircraft to assist with strikes in combat situations in the south. NATO/ISAF also coordinates with Afghan security forces and with OEF forces as well, and it assists the Afghan Ministry of Civil Aviation and Tourism in the operation of Kabul International Airport (where Dutch combat aircraft also are located). In October 2008, Hungary will add 60 troops and take over security at the airport. 26 Kington, Tom. Italy Could Send UAVs, Helos to Afghanistan. Defense News, June 19, 2006. CRS-32 In an effort to repair divisions within the Afghanistan coalition, in his December 11, 2007, testimony, Secretary Gates previewed his presentation, at a NATO meeting in Scotland on December 13, 2007, of a “strategic concept paper” that would help coordinate and guide NATO and other partner contributions and missions over the 26 Kington, Tom. Italy Could Send UAVs, Helos to Afghanistan. Defense News, June 19, 2006. CRS-32 coming three to five years. This is an effort to structure each country’s contribution as appropriate to the politics and resources of that contributor. The concept paper, now titled the “Strategic Vision,” was endorsed by the NATO summit in Bucharest, Romania in early April 2008. National “Caveats” on Combat Operations. Some progress has been made in persuading other NATO countries to adopt flexible rules of engagement that that allow all contributing forces to perform combat missions, although perhaps not as as aggressively as do U.S. forces. All have agreed that their forces would come to each each others’ defense in times of emergency anywhere in Afghanistan. At the NATO summit in April 2008, NATO countries pledged to continue to work remove the other so-called “national caveats” on their troops’ operations that U.S. commanders say limit operational flexibility. Some nations refuse to conduct night-time combat. Others have refused to carry Afghan personnel on their helicopters. Others do not fight after snowfall. These caveats were troubling to those NATO countries with forces in heavy combat zones, such as Canada, which feel they are bearing the brunt of the fighting. There has been some criticism of the Dutch approach in Uruzgan, which focuses heavily on building relationships with tribal leaders and identifying reconstruction priorities, and not on actively combating Taliban formations. The Netherlands says this approach is key to a long-term pacification of the south. (See CRS Report RL33627, NATO in Afghanistan: A Test of the Transatlantic Alliance, by Paul Gallis.) Provincial Reconstruction Teams U.S. and partner officials have generally praised the effectiveness of “provincial reconstruction teams” (PRTs) — enclaves of U.S. or partner forces and civilian officials that provide safe havens for international aid workers to help with reconstruction and to extend the writ of the Kabul government — in accelerating reconstruction and assisting stabilization efforts. The PRTs, a December 2002 U.S. initiative, perform activities ranging from resolving local disputes to coordinating local reconstruction projects, although the U.S.-run PRTs, and most of the PRTs in southern Afghanistan, focus mostly on counter-insurgency. Some aid agencies say they have felt more secure since the PRT program began, fostering reconstruction activity in areas of PRT operations.27 Secretary Gates and U.S. commanders have attributed recent successes in stabilizing some areas, such as Ghazni and Khost, to the PRTs’ ability to intensify reconstruction by coordinating many different security and civilian activities. In Ghazni, almost all the schools are now open, whereas one year ago many were closed because of Taliban intimidation. In Khost, according to Secretary Gates on December 11, 2007, PRT activities focused on road building and construction of district centers that tie the population to the government have led to a a dramatic improvement in security over the past year. Bombings there fell from one per week in 2006 to one per month now.in 2007. 27 Kraul, Chris. “U.S. Aid Effort Wins Over Skeptics in Afghanistan.” Los Angeles Times, April 11, 2003. CRS-33 On the other hand, some relief groups do not want to associate with military forces because doing so might taint their perceived neutrality. Others argue that the 27 Kraul, Chris. “U.S. Aid Effort Wins Over Skeptics in Afghanistan.” Los Angeles Times, April 11, 2003. CRS-33 PRTs are delaying the time when the Afghan government has the skills and resources to secure and develop Afghanistan on its own. There are 2526 PRTs in operation. Virtually all the PRTs, including those run by the United States, are now under the ISAF mission, but with varying lead nations. The list of PRTs, including lead country, is shown in Table 16. Each PRT operated by the United States is composed of U.S. forces (50-100 U.S. military personnel); Defense Department civil affairs officers; representatives of USAID, State Department, and other agencies; and Afghan government (Interior Ministry) personnel. Most PRTs, including those run by partner forces, have personnel to train Afghan security forces. Many U.S. PRTs in restive regions are “co-located” with “forward operating bases” of 300-400 U.S. combat troops. U.S. funds support PRT reconstruction projects, as shown in the tables at the report’s end. According to U.S. officials in March 2008, 54 PRT development projects have been completed and 199 (valued at $20 million) are ongoing. USAID funds used for PRT programs are in the table on USAID spending at the end of this paper. In August 2005, in preparation for the establishment of Regional Command South, Canada took over the key U.S.-led PRT in Qandahar. In May 2006, Britain took over the PRT at Lashkar Gah, capital of Helmand Province. The Netherlands took over the PRT at Tarin Kowt, capital of Uruzgan Province. Germany (with Turkey and France) took over the PRTs and the leadership role in the north from Britain and the Netherlands when those countries deployed to the south. Representing evolution of the PRT concept, Turkey opened a PRT, in Wardak Province, on November 25, 2006, to focus on providing health care, education, police training, and agricultural alternatives in that region. As ofIn March 2008, the Czech Republic has established a new PRT in Lowgar Province. As noted above, South Korea is expected to soon take over the U.S.-run PRT at Bagram Air Base. There also has been a move to turn over the lead in the U.S.-run PRTs to civilians rather than than military personnel, presumably State Department or USAID officials. That process process began in early 2006 with the establishment of a civilian-led U.S.-run PRT in the the Panjshir Valley. Afghan Security Forces U.S. officials see successful and capable Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF) as the means by which the United States and NATO would eventually wind down their involvement in Afghanistan. However, a June 2008 GAO study, referenced below, as well as a June 2008 DoD report on the ANSF28ANSF,28 suggests that such capability is likely a long waystill at least a few years off. U.S. forces (“Combined Security Transition Transition Command- Afghanistan,” CSTC-A, headed as of July 2007 by Gen. Robert Cone), along with partner countries and contractors, are training the new Afghan National Army (ANA) and Afghan National Police (ANP). 28 Required by FY2008 National Defense Authorization Act, Section 1231. (PL. 110-181) CRS-34 Afghan National Army. U.S. and allied officers say that the ANA, now about about 58,000 trained and assigned,29 is becoming a major force in stabilizing the country country and a national symbol. According to the DoD report of June 2008 referenced earlier, the ANA has taken the lead in 30 significant combat and clearing operations to date, and has demonstrated “increasing competence, effectiveness, and professionalism.” The The ANA is now leading 75% of the combat operations in the eastern sector. The commando forces of the ANA, trained by U.S. Special Operations Forces, are considered well-trained and are taking the lead in some counter-insurgency operations in the U.S.-led eastern sector operations against high value targets, particularly against HIG elements in Nuristan province. Karzai has pledged in April 2008 to take over security of the Kabul regional command from Italy as of July 2008. However, then NATO/ISAF commander General McNeill said in April 2008 that it would not be until 2011 that ANA (and ANP) forces would be capable enough – and have sufficient air transport and air support – to allow for a drawdown of international forces. Further negative assessments came in a GAO study released June 2008 that, of 105 ANA units, only two are assessed by DoD as being fully capable of conducting their primary missions.30 Still, ANA battalions, or “Kandaks,” have improved over time and beenThe August 2008 U.S. plan to increase its focus on the Afghan theater includes substantial expansion of the ANA. The reported plan will include expanding its size to 120,000 within five years, and for U.S. funding, possibly defrayed by partner contributions, of about $20 billion in that time frame. ANA battalions, or “Kandaks,” are the main unit of the Afghan force. They are stiffened by the presence of U.S. and partner embeds, called “Operational Mentor and Liaison Teams” (OMLTs). Each OMLT has about 12-19 personnel, and U.S. commanders say that the ANA will continue to need embeds for the short term, because embeds give the units confidence they will be resupplied, reinforced, and evacuated in the event of wounding. Coalition officers also are conducting heavy weapons training for a heavy brigade as part of the “Kabul Corps,” based in Pol-eCharki, east of Kabul. Among the partner countries contributing OMLTs (all or in part) are Canada, Croatia, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Britain, and the United States. As noted above, about 7001,000 of the extra 3,200 Marines being sent to Afghanistan in early 2008 will be are devoted to training the ANA and ANP. The Indian press reported on April 24, 2007, that a separate team from the Indian Army would help train the ANA.31 The United States has built four AMA bases (Herat, Gardez, Qandahar, and Mazar-e-Sharif). The ANA now has at least some presence in most of Afghanistan’s 34 provinces, working with the PRTs and assisted by embedded U.S. trainers (about 10-20 per battalion). The ANA deployed to Herat in March 2004 to help quell factional unrest there and to Meymaneh in April 2004 in response to Dostam’s militia movement into that city. It deployed outside Afghanistan to assist relief efforts for victims of the October 2005 Pakistan earthquake. It is increasingly able to conduct its own battalion-strength operations, according to U.S. officers. In June 2007, the ANA and ANP led “Operation Maiwand” in Ghazni province, intended to open schools and deliver humanitarian aid to people throughout the province. 29 Numbers actually on duty at any given time may be less than the assigned number due to abseenteeism, temporary desertions, or related factors. 30 Government Accountability Office. Further Congressional Action May Be Needed to Ensure Completion of a Detailed Plan to Develop and Sustain Capable Afghan National Security Forces. GAO-08-661. June 2008. 31 Indian television news channel NDTV. April 24, 2007. CRS-35 victims of the October 2005 Pakistan earthquake. It is increasingly able to conduct its own battalion-strength operations, according to U.S. officers. In June 2007, the ANA and ANP led “Operation Maiwand” in Ghazni province, intended to open schools and deliver humanitarian aid to people throughout the province. On the other hand, as noted by the GAO study in June 2008, U.S. officers report continuing personnel (desertion, absentee) problems, ill discipline, and drug abuse, although some concerns have been addressed. Some accounts say that a typical ANA unit is only at about 50% of its authorized strength at any given time. At the time the United States first began establishing the ANA, Northern Alliance figures reportedly weighted recruitment for the national army toward its Tajik ethnic base. Many Pashtuns, in reaction, refused recruitment or left the ANA program. U.S. officials in in Afghanistan say this problem has been at least partly alleviated with better pay and more close involvement by U.S. forces, and that the force is ethnically integrated in each unit. The naming of a Pashtun, Abdul Rahim Wardak, as Defense Minister in December 2004 also reduced desertions among Pashtuns (he remains in that position). The chief of staff is Gen. Bismillah Khan, a Tajik who was a Northern Alliance commander. U.S. officers in Afghanistan add that some recruits take long trips to their home towns to remit funds to their families, and often then return to the ANA after a long absence. Others, according to U.S. observers, often refuse to serve far from their home towns. The FY2005 foreign aid appropriation (P.L. 108-447) requires that ANA recruits be vetted for terrorism, human rights violations, and drug trafficking. Equipment, maintenance, and logistical difficulties continue to plague the ANA. The June 2008 GAO study said that there are significant shortages in about 40% of equipment items, although CSTC-A envisions that all ANA brigades will be equipped to 85% of requirements by the end of 2008. Few soldiers have helmets, many have no armored vehicles or armor. The tables below discusses major equipment donations, as well as the new U.S. equipment being delivered in mid2008. The Afghan Air Force, a carryover from the Afghan Air Force that existed prior to the Soviet invasion, is expanding gradually after its equipment was virtually eliminated in the 2001-2002 U.S. combat against the Taliban regime. It now has about 400 pilots, as well as 22 helicopters and cargo aircraft. Its goal is to have 61 aircraft by 2011. By May 2008, it is expected to receive an additional 25 surplus helicopters from the Czech Republic and the UAE, bought and refurbished with the help of U.S. funds. Afghan pilots are based at Bagram air base. Afghanistan is seeking the return of 26 aircraft, including some MiG-2s that were flown to safety in Pakistan and Uzbekistan during the past conflicts in Afghanistan. U.S. plans do not include supply of fixed-wing combat aircraft such as F-16s, which Afghanistan wants, according to U.S. military officials. CRS-36 Table 3. Recent and Pending Foreign Equipment for ANA Country Equipment Overview Since 2002, 46 donor nations have contributed equipment worth $822 million (a/o July 2008). Another 187 donations are pending, worth almost $200 million. Major items include Leopard 1 tanks, MI-17 and MI-35 helicopters, M2 machine guns, and 81 mm mortars. United States Major $2 billion value in arms delivered between May 2006-end of 2007. Includes several hundred Humvees, 800 other various armored vehicles. Also includes light weapons. Authorized total total drawdown ceiling (un-reimbursed by appropriations) is $550 million; H.R. 2446 - AFSA reauthorization — would increase increase ceiling to $300 million/year. Afghanistan is eligible to receive receive grant U.S. Excess Defense Articles (EDA) under Section 516 of the Foreign Assistance Act. Hungary 20,500 assault rifles Egypt 17,000 small arms Russia 4 helicopters and other equipment, part of over $100 million military aid to Afghanistan thus far Turkey 24 — 155 mm Howitzers Bulgaria 50 mortars, 500 binoculars Czech Republic 12 helicopters and 20,000 machine guns Estonia 4,000 machine guns plus ammunition Greece 300 machine guns Latvia 337 rocket-propelled grenades, 8 mortars, 13,000 arms Lithuania 3.7 million ammunition rounds Montenegro 1,600 machine guns Poland 110 armored personnel carriers, 4 million ammo rounds Switzerland 3 fire trucks Turkey 2,200 rounds of 155 mm ammo Croatia 1,000 machine guns plus ammo UAE 10 Mi-17 helicopters (to be delivered) CRS-37 Afghan National Police/Justice Sector. U.S. and Afghan officials believe believe that building up a credible and capable national police force is at least as important important to combating the Taliban insurgency as building the ANA. There is a widespread widespread consensus that this effort lags that of the ANA by about 18 months, although U.S. commanders say that it is increasingly successful in repelling Taliban assaults on villages and that the ANP (now numbering about 80,000 assigned) is experiencing experiencing fewer casualties from attacks. However, according to the June 2008 GAO study referenced above, none of the ANP units is rated as fully capable. To try to advance the effort, the U.S. military is conducting reforms to take ANP out of the bureaucracy and onto the streets and it is trying to bring ANP pay on par with the ANA. It has also launched a program called “focused district development” to concentrate resources on developing individual police forces in districts, which is the basic geographic area of ANP activity. (There are about ten “districts” in each of of Afghanistan’s 34 provinces.) In this program, a district force is taken out and retrained, its duties temporarily performed by more highly trained police, and then reinserted after the training is complete. As of July 2008, about twenty districts have undergone this process, which is expected to take five years to complete for the remainder of the country. The U.S. police training effort was first led by State Department/INL, but the Defense Department took over the lead in police training in April 2005. Much of the training is still conducted through contracts with DynCorp. There are currently seven police training centers around Afghanistan. In addition to the U.S. effort, which includes 600 civilian U.S. police trainers (mostly still Dyncorp contractors) in addition to the U.S. military personnel (see table on security indicators), Germany (technically the lead government in Afghan police training) is providing 41 trainers. The European Union has sent an additional 120 police trainers as part of a 190member “EUPOL” training effort, and 60 other experts to help train the ANP. The EU said in March 2008 the size of the EUPOL training team should be doubled to about 400. To address equipment shortages, in 2007 CSTC-A is providing about 8,000 new vehicles and thousands of new weapons of all types. A report by the Inspectors General of the State and Defense Department, circulated to Congress in December 2006, found that most ANP units have less than 50% of their authorized equipment,32 among its significant criticisms. Justice Sector. Many experts believe that comprehensive police and justice sector reform is vital to Afghan governance. Police training now includes instruction instruction in human rights principles and democratic policing concepts, and the State Department human rights report on Afghanistan, referenced above, says the government and outside observers are increasingly monitoring the police force to prevent abuses. However, some governments criticized Karzai for setting back police police reform in June 2006 when he approved a new list of senior police commanders that 32 Inspectors General, U.S. Department of State and of Defense. Interagency Assessment of of Afghanistan Police Training and Readiness. November 2006. Department of State report No. ISP-IQ0-07-07. CRS-38 that included 11 (out of 86 total) who had failed merit exams. His approval of the 11 were reportedly to satisfy faction leaders and went against the recommendations of a police reform committee. The ANP work in the communities they come from, often often embroiling them in local factional or ethnic disputes. The State Department (INL) has placed 30 U.S. advisors in the Interior Ministry to help it develop the national police force and counter-narcotics capabilities. U.S. trainers are also building Border Police and Highway Patrol forces. U.S. justice sector programs generally focus on building capacity of the judicial system, including police training and court construction; many of these programs are conducted in partnership with Italy, which is the “lead” coalition country on judicial reform. The United States has trained over 750 judges, lawyers, and prosecutors, according to President Bush on February 15, 2007, and built 40 judicial facilities. USAID also trains court administrators for the Ministry of Justice, the office of the Attorney General, and the Supreme Court. On February 15, 2007, President Bush also praised Karzai’s formation of a Criminal Justice Task Force that is trying to crack down on official corruption, and the United States, Britain, and Norway are providing mentors to the Afghan judicial officials involved in that effort. Tribal Militias. Since June 2006, Karzai has authorized arming some local tribal militias (arbokai) in eastern Afghanistan, building on established tribal structures, to help in local policing. Karzai argues that these militias provide security and are loyal to the nation and central government and that arming them is not inconsistent with the disarmament programs discussed below. Britain favors expanding the arbokai program to the south, but U.S. military commanders say that this program would likely not work in the south because of differing tribal structures there. U.S. Security Forces Funding/”CERP”. U.S. funds appropriated for Peacekeeping Operations (PKO funds) are used to cover ANA salaries. Recent appropriations for the ANA and ANP are contained in the tables at the end of this paper. In addition to the train and equip funds provided by DoD, the U.S. military in in Afghanistan has additional funds to spend on reconstruction projects that build goodwill and presumably reduce the threat to use forces. These are Commanders Emergency Response Program funds, or CERP. The U.S. military spent about $206 million in CERP in FY2007 and expect to spend, subject to FY2008 supplemental appropriations, about $410 million in CERP in FY2008. During 2002-2006, over 40 non-U.S. donors provided about $425 million to train and equip the ANA. As noted in the table, the security forces funding has shifted to DOD funds instead of assistance funds controlled by the State Department. CRS-39 Table 4. Major Security-Related Indicators Force Total Foreign Forces in Afghanistan U.S. Casualties in Afghanistan Current Level About 66,000, of which: 53,000 are NATO/ISAF. (12,000 ISAF in 2005; and 6,000 in 2003.) U.S. forces: 34,000 total, of which 23,500 in NATO/ISAF and 11,000 U.S. (plus 2,000 partner forces) in OEF. (U.S. total was: 25,000 in 2005; 16,000 in 2003; 5,000 in 2002). U.S. will rise further in 2009, according to President Bush on April 5, 2008, likely by about 7 further in 2009 by as much as 10,000. U.S. forces deployed at 88 bases in Afghanistan, and include 1 air wing (40 aircraft) and 1 combat aviation brigade (100 aircraft). 473 U.S. Casualties in Afghanistan 496 killed, of which 332352 by hostile action. Additional 65 U.S. deaths in other OEF theaters, including the Phillipines and parts of Africa (OEFTransOEF-Trans Sahara). About 350 partner forces killed. 100+ U.S. killed in 2007, highest yet. 150 U.S. killed from October 2001 - January 2003. NATO Sectors 19 killed in July 2008. NATO Sectors (Regional Commands-South, east, north, west, and central/Kabul) RC-S - 23,000 (Canada, UK, Netherlands rotate lead); RC-E - 16,400 (Regional Commands-South, east,16,400 (U.S. lead); RC-N - 4,300; RC-W - 2,500 (Italy lead) RC-Kabul north, west, and central/Kabul) RC-Kabul - 5,900 (France lead but Afghanistan planning to take lead by July 2008). Afghan National Army (ANA) 58,000 on duty. 63,000 including civilian support. There are 49 combat combat battalions. 80,000 troops is goal by 2009. Afghanistan proposes raising by 2009 had been goal, but U.S. now endorsing raising ceiling to 120,000. About 2,000 trained per month. 4,000 are commando forces, trained by U.S. Special Forces, active in north-east against HIG. Forces. ANA private paid about $150 per month; generals receive about $750 per month. ANA now being outfitted with U.S. M16 rifles and 4,000 uparmoredup-armored Humvees. Afghan National Police (ANP) 80,000 assigned, close to authorized strength: 82,000. 18,000 are are border police; 3,800 are counter-narcotics police; 5,300 civil order police. Salaries raised to $100 per month in mid-2007mid2007 from $70 to counter corruption. U.S. and Partner Trainers About 4Legally Armed Fighters disarmed by DDR About 9,000 total: 5,000 U.S. military trainers as Embedded Training Troops and Police Mentoring Teams. Also, 600 civilian U.S. police trainers. Of these, about 900 U.S. military trainers are for ANP. The remaining 3,100 are for ANA training. ANP training assisted by EUPOL (European Union Police Mentoring Teams. 3,000 civilian trainers. 900 of the U.S. military trainers are for ANP. 800 coalition trainers, including EUPOL for ANP (European Union contingent of 190 trainers, organized as OMLTs; see text), and 41 German German trainers of senior ANP. Legally Armed Fighters disarmed by DDR 63,380; all of the pool identified for the program Number of Taliban fighters 5,000 - 20,000 (U.S. military estimate June 2008). Plus about 1,000 Haqqani faction and 1,000 HIG. 7,000 killed 2007-8. Armed Groups disbanded by DIAG 161 illegal groups (five or more fighters) disbanded. Goal is to disband disband 1,800 groups, of which several hundred groups are “significant.” 5,700 weapons confiscated, 1.050 arrested. Weapons Collected by DDR 57,630 medium and light; 12,250 heavy. Taliban Reconciled by PTSD (reconciliation) commission About 5,000 since May 2005 inception Attacks per day (average) Number of Suicide Bombings Afghan Casualties 1,000 per month in 2007; 800 in 2006; 400 in 2005. Attacks up 40% in eastern sector (Jan- May 2008) compared to 2007 Number of Suicide Bombings 21 in 2005; 123 in 2006; 160 in 2007. Afghan Casualties About 6,000 in 2007 (including Taliban; all types of violence) CRS-40 Regional Context Although most of Afghanistan’s neighbors believe that the fall of the Taliban has stabilized the region, some experts believe that some neighboring governments are attempting to manipulate Afghanistan’s factions to their advantage, even though six of Afghanistan’s neighbors signed a non-interference pledge (Kabul Declaration) on December 23, 2002. In November 2005, Afghanistan joined the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC), and Afghanistan has observer status in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, which is discussed below. Pakistan/Pakistan-Afghanistan Border33 As Pakistan’s government has changed composition over the past year, U.S. commanders – in pointed criticism since May 2008 – seehave seen Pakistan as increasingly increasingly unhelpful to U.S. efforts to stabilize Afghanistan. Some expert see experts see Pakistani and Afghan Taliban militants increasingly merging and pooling their efforts against against governments in both countries. The current situation contrasts with that during 2001-2006, when the Bush Administration praised President Pervez Musharraf for Pakistani accomplishments against Al Qaeda, including the arrest of over 700 Al Qaeda figures, some of them senior, since the September 11 attacks.34 After the attacks, Pakistan provided the United States with access to Pakistani airspace, some ports, and some airfields for OEF. Others say Musharraf acted against Al Qaeda only because of its threat to him; for example, he stepped up Pakistani military activities in the tribal areas of Pakistan only after the December 2003 assassination attempts against him by that organization. On the Taliban, Pakistan has consistently faced Afghan criticism. Afghan leaders resent Pakistan as the most public defender of the Taliban movement when it was in power and they suspect it wants to have the option to restore a Taliban-like regime. (Pakistan was one of only three countries to formally recognize it as the legitimate government: Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates are the others.) Pakistan viewed the Taliban as providing Pakistan strategic depth against rival India, and it remains wary that any Afghan government might fall under the influence of India, which Pakistan says is using its diplomatic facilities in Afghanistan to train and recruit anti-Pakistan insurgents, and is using its reconstruction funds to build influence there. Pakistan ended its public support for the Taliban after the September 11, 2001, attacks. Efforts by Afghanistan and Pakistan to build post-Taliban relations never fully recovered from March 2006, when Afghan leaders stepped up accusations that Pakistan was allowing Taliban remnants, including Mullah Umar, to operating there. In a press interview on February 2, 2007, Musharraf tacitly; Al Qaeda is reportedly actively facilitating the Afghanistan insurgency; and U.S. officials, in July 2008, confronted Pakistani officials with evidence that Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence agency (ISI) is actively helping Afghanistan militants, particularly the Haqqani faction.34 Afghan officials have said they have specific evidence that ISI agents were involved in the July 7, 2008 suicide bombing of India’s embassy in Kabul. The current situation contrasts with that during 2001-2006, when the Bush Administration praised President Pervez Musharraf for Pakistani accomplishments against Al Qaeda, including the arrest of over 700 Al Qaeda figures, some of them senior, since the September 11 attacks.35 After the attacks, Pakistan provided the United States with access to Pakistani airspace, some ports, and some airfields for OEF. Others say Musharraf acted against Al Qaeda only because of its threat to him; for example, he stepped up Pakistani military activities in the tribal areas of Pakistan only after the December 2003 assassination attempts against him by that organization. Afghan leaders resent Pakistan as the most public defender of the Taliban movement when it was in power and they suspect it wants to have the option to restore a Taliban-like regime. (Pakistan was one of only three countries to formally recognize it as the legitimate government: Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates are the others.) Pakistan viewed the Taliban as providing Pakistan strategic 33 For extensive analysis of U.S. policy toward Pakistan, and U.S. assistance to Pakistan in conjunction with its activities against Al Qaeda and the Taliban, see CRS Report RL33498, Pakistan-U.S. Relations, by K. Alan Kronstadt. 34 Mazzetti, Mark and Eric Schmitt. “CIA Outlines Pakistan Links With Militants.” New York Times, July 30, 2008. 35 Among those captured by Pakistan are top bin Laden aide Abu Zubaydah (captured April 2002); alleged September 11 plotter Ramzi bin Al Shibh (September 11, 2002); top Al Qaeda planner Khalid Shaikh Mohammed (March 2003); and a top planner, Abu Faraj alLibbi (May 2005). CRS-41 acknowledged that some senior Taliban leaders might be able to operate from Pakistan but strongly denied that any Pakistani intelligence agencies were deliberately assisting the Taliban. Karzai visited Pakistan on December 27, 2007, to discuss the Taliban safehaven issue and other bilateral issues, and reports said his meeting with Musharraf was highly productive, resulting in re-dedication to joint action against militants. While in Pakistan, Karzai met with Pakistani opposition leader Benazir Bhutto just hours before she was assassinated on December 27depth against rival India, and it remains wary that any Afghan government might fall under the influence of India, which Pakistan says is using its diplomatic facilities in Afghanistan to train and recruit anti-Pakistan insurgents, and is using its reconstruction funds to build influence there. Pakistan ended its public support for the Taliban after the September 11, 2001, attacks, but Pakistan-Afghanistan relations began deteriorating after the March 2006 Afghan accusation that Pakistan was allowing Taliban remnants, including Mullah Umar, to operating there. In a press interview on February 2, 2007, Musharraf tacitly acknowledged that some senior Taliban leaders might be able to operate from Pakistan but strongly denied that any Pakistani intelligence agencies were deliberately assisting the Taliban. The latest phase of U.S. attempts to broker cooperation between Pakistan and Afghanistan began on September 28, 2006, when President Bush hosted a joint dinner for Karzai and Musharraf. It resulted in the two leaders’ agreeing to gather tribal elders on both sides of their border in a series of “peace jirgas” to persuade them not to host Taliban militants. (The first of them, in which 700 Pakistani and Afghan tribal elders participated, was held in Kabul August 9-10, 2007.3536 Another is is planned, but no date has been announced.) In January 2007, Karzai strongly criticized criticized a Pakistani plan to mine and fence their common border in an effort to prevent prevent infiltration of militants to Afghanistan. Karzai said the move would separate tribes tribes and families that straddle the border. Pakistan subsequently dropped the idea of of mining the border, but is building some fencing. AThe U.S. shift toward the more critical Afghan position increased following a New York Times report of (February 19, 2007, that Al Qaeda leaders, possibly including Osama bin Laden and Ayman al-Zawahiri, ) that Al Qaeda had re-established some small Al Qaeda terrorist training camps in Pakistan, near the Afghan border. This possibly was an outgrowth of a September 5, 2006, agreement between Pakistan and tribal elders in this region to exchange an end to Pakistani military incursions into the tribal areas for a promise by the tribal elders to expel militants from the border area. In July 2007, U.S. counter-terrorism officials publicly deemed the agreement a failure. Despite the widespread assessment that the deals had failed, in April 2008, the new government, dominated by Musharraf’s opponents who prevailed in February 2008 parliamentary elections, began negotiating a similar “understanding” with members of the Mehsud tribe, among which is militant leader Baitullah Mehsud,. He is believed responsible for for harboring Afghan Taliban and for growing militant acts inside Pakistan itself, possibly including the Bhutto killing. Outgoing Gen. McNeill and othersU.S. commanders in Afghanistan have blamed the negotiations for an increase in militant infiltration across the border that has undermined some of the progress in pacifying the Regional Command East sector. Others blame Mehsud for increasingly sending his own fighters into Afghanistan to fight the Karzai government. Since fighters into Afghanistan, and still others, such as a Rand Corporation study released in June 2008, believe that some Pakistani forces may even be complicit in assisting the militants. In addition, since February 2008, Pakistan has stopped attending meetings of the “coordinating commission” under which NATO, Afghan, and Pakistani forces meet regularly on both sides of the border. In April 2008, in an extension of the commission’s work, the three agreed to set up six “border coordination centers” – which will include networks of radar nodes to give liaison officers a common view of the border area. These centers build on an agreement in May 2007 to share 35 36 Straziuso, Jason. Musharraf Pulls Out of Peace Council. Associated Press, August 8, 2007. CRS-42 of the border area. These centers build on an agreement in May 2007 to share intelligence on extremists’ movements. One has been actually established to date. Increased Direct U.S. Action. Since September 2007, U.S. military forces have increased direct U.S. firepower against militants in Pakistan.36 Afghan President Karzai has threatened to send Afghan troops against militants in Pakistan, but he is not believed to have the capability to implement such a threat. Pakistani political leaders across the spectrum publicly oppose any presence of U.S. combat forces in Pakistan. In January 2008, Secretary of Defense Gates said that Pakistan had not yet asked for such U.S. help and that any U.S. troops potentially deployed to Pakistan would most likely be assigned solely to train Pakistani border forces, such as the Frontier Corps. Former NATO commander Gen. McNeill, in June 2008, publicly criticized any U.S. reliance on the Frontier Corps as an unreliable forces. Press reports add that visits to Pakistan by top U.S. intelligence officials in January 2008 resulted in agreement for more U.S. Predator unmanned aerial vehicle flights over the border regions; the Abu Laith al-Libi strike discussed earlier is believed a product of that enhanced U.S. activity over Pakistan. In addition, U.S. forces in Afghanistan have acknowledged on a few occasion since early 2007 – most recently in June 2008 – that they have shelled or conducted air strikes on purported Taliban positions inside the Pakistani side of the border, and have done some “hot pursuit” a few kilometers over the border into Pakistan. One air strike in early June 2008 reportedly killed by accident a number of Pakistani border forces, incurring intense Pakistani criticism. U.S. commanders said in June 2008 that NATO and U.S. forces had beefed up their numbers on the border to deal with the spike in attacks caused by Pakistan’s established to date. Increased Direct U.S. Action. With the Pakistani government less cooperative than the United States would hope, U.S. officials are increasingly evaluating new options to try to combat militant concentrations in Pakistan without directly violating Pakistan’s limitations on the U.S. ability to operate in Pakistan. Pakistani political leaders across the spectrum publicly oppose any presence of U.S. combat forces in Pakistan, and a reported Defense Department plan to send small numbers of U.S. troops into the border areas is said to be “on hold” because of potential backlash from Pakistan. Since September 2007, U.S. military forces have increased direct U.S. firepower against militants in Pakistan.37 Karzai has threatened to send Afghan troops against militants in Pakistan, but he is not believed to have the capability to implement such a threat. In January 2008, Secretary of Defense Gates said that any U.S. troops potentially deployed to Pakistan would most likely be assigned solely to train Pakistani border forces, such as the Frontier Corps. Former NATO commander Gen. McNeill, in June 2008, publicly criticized any U.S. reliance on the Frontier Corps as an unreliable forces. Press reports add that visits to Pakistan by top U.S. intelligence officials in January 2008 resulted in agreement for more U.S. Predator unmanned aerial vehicle flights over the border regions. In addition, U.S. forces in Afghanistan have acknowledged on a few occasion since early 2007 – most recently in June 2008 – that they have shelled or conducted air strikes on purported Taliban positions inside the Pakistani side of the border, and have done some “hot pursuit” a few kilometers over the border into Pakistan. One air strike in early June 2008 reportedly killed by accident a number of Pakistani border forces, incurring intense Pakistani criticism. U.S. commanders said in June 2008 that NATO and U.S. forces had beefed up their numbers on the border to deal with the spike in attacks caused by Pakistan’s relaxation of efforts to prevent militant infiltration. Suggesting that it can act against the Taliban when it intends to, on August 15, 2006, Pakistan announced the arrest of 29 Taliban fighters in a hospital in the Pakistani city of Quetta. On March 1, 2007, Pakistani officials confirmed they had arrested in Quetta Mullah Ubaydallah Akhund, a top aide to Mullah Umar and who had served as defense minister in the Taliban regime. He was later reported released. Pakistan wants the government of Afghanistan to pledge to abide by the “Durand Line,” a border agreement reached between Britain (signed by Sir Henry Mortimer Durand) and then Afghan leader Amir Abdul Rahman Khan in 1893, separating Afghanistan from what was then British-controlled India (later Pakistan after the 1947 partition). It is recognized by the United Nations, but Afghanistan continues to indicate that the border was drawn unfairly to separate Pashtun tribes and should be re-negotiated. As of October 2002, about 1.75 million Afghan refugees refugees have returned from Pakistan since the Taliban fell, but as many as 3 million might might 37 Tyson, Ann Scott. “Pakistan Strife Threatens Anti-Insurgent Plan.” Washington Post, November 9, 2007. CRS-43 still remain in Pakistan, and Pakistan says it plans to expel them back into Afghanistan in the near future. Iran Iran perceives its key national interests in Afghanistan as exerting its traditional influence over western Afghanistan, which Iran borders and was once part of the 36 Tyson, Ann Scott. “Pakistan Strife Threatens Anti-Insurgent Plan.” Washington Post, November 9, 2007. CRS-43 Persian empire, and to protect Afghanistan’s Shiite minority. Iran’s assistance to Afghanistan has totaled about $205 million since the fall of the Taliban, mainly to build roads and schools and provide electricity and shops to Afghan cities and villages near the Iranian border. After the fall of the Taliban in late 2001, President Bush warned Iran against meddling in Afghanistan. Partly in response to the U.S. criticism, in February 2002 Iran expelled Karzai-opponent Gulbuddin Hikmatyar, but it did not arrest him. Iran did not oppose Karzai’s firing of Iran ally Ismail Khan as Herat governor in September 2004, although Iran has opposed the subsequent U.S. use of the Shindand air base.3738 Iran is said to be helping Afghan law enforcement with anti-narcotics along their border. Karzai, who has visited Iran on several occasions says that Iran is an important neighbor of Afghanistan. During his visit to Washington, DC, in August 2007, some differences between Afghanistan and the United States became apparent; Karzai publicly called Iran part of a “solution” for Afghanistan, while President Bush called Iran a “de-stabilizing force” there. Still, Karzai received Ahmadinejad in Kabul in mid-August 2007. The U.S.-Afghan differences over Iran’s role represent a departure from the past five years, when Iran’s influence with political leaders in Afghanistan appeared to wane, and U.S. criticism of Iran’s role in Afghanistan was muted. The State Department report on international terrorism, released April 30, 2008, said Iran continued during 2007 to ship arms to Taliban fighters in Afghanistan, including mortars, 107mm rockets, and possibly man-portable air defense systems (MANPADS). On April 17, 2007, U.S. military personnel in Afghanistan captured a shipment of Iranian weapons that purportedly was bound for Taliban fighters. On June 6, 2007, NATO officers said they caught Iran “red-handed” shipping heavy arms, C4 explosives, and advanced roadside bombs (“explosively-forced projectiles, EFPs, such as those found in Iraq) to Taliban fighters in Afghanistan. Another such shipment was intercepted in western Afghanistan on September 6, 2007. Gen. McNeill said the convoy was sent with the knowledge of “at least the Iranian military.” Because such shipments would appear to conflict with Iran’s support for Karzai and for non-Pashtun factions in Afghanistan, U.S. military officers did not attribute the shipments to a deliberate Iranian government decision to arm the Taliban. However, some U.S. officials say the shipments are large enough that the Iranian government would have to have known about them. In attempting to explain the shipments, some experts believe Iran’s policy might be shifting somewhat to gain leverage against the United States in Afghanistan (and on other issues) by causing U.S. combat deaths. 38 Rashid, Ahmed. “Afghan Neighbors Show Signs of Aiding in Nation’s Stability.” Wall Street Journal, October 18, 2004. CRS-44 There is little dispute that Iran’s relations with Afghanistan are much improved from the time of the Taliban, which Iran saw as a threat to its interests in Afghanistan, especially after Taliban forces captured Herat (the western province that that borders Iran) in September 1995. Iran subsequently drew even closer to the Northern Northern Alliance than previously, providing its groups with fuel, funds, and ammunition.38 39 In September 1998, Iranian and Taliban forces nearly came into direct 37 Rashid, Ahmed. “Afghan Neighbors Show Signs of Aiding in Nation’s Stability.” Wall Street Journal, October 18, 2004. 38 Steele, Jonathon, “America Includes Iran in Talks on Ending War in Afghanistan.” (continued...) CRS-44 conflict when Iran discovered that nine of its diplomats were killed in the course of the Taliban’s offensive in northern Afghanistan. Iran massed forces at the border and threatened threatened military action, but the crisis cooled without a major clash, possibly out of fear that Pakistan would intervene on behalf of the Taliban. Iran offered search and rescue assistance in Afghanistan during the U.S.-led war to topple the Taliban, and it also allowed U.S. humanitarian aid to the Afghan people to transit Iran. About 300,000 Afghan refugees have returned from Iran since the Taliban fell, but about 1.2 million million remain, mostly integrated into Iranian society, and a crisis erupted in May 2007 when Iran expelled about 50,000 into Afghanistan. India The interests and activities of India in Afghanistan are almost the exact reverse of those of Pakistan. India’s goal is to deny Pakistan “strategic depth” in Afghanistan, and India supported the Northern Alliance against the Taliban in the mid-1990s. A possible reflection of these ties is that Tajikistan allows India to use one of its air bases; Tajikistan supports the mostly Tajik Northern Alliance. India saw the Taliban’s hosting of Al Qaeda as a major threat to India itself because of Al Qaeda’s association with radical Islamic organizations in Pakistan dedicated to ending Indian control of parts of Jammu and Kashmir. Some of these groups have committed major acts of terrorism in India. For its part, Pakistan accuses India of using its nine consulates in Afghanistan to spread Indian influence. The growing Indian financial and political influence might have been a cause of the July 2, 2008 attack on India’s embassy, presumably by pro-Pakistan elements that want to limit India’s influence. The attack has triggered more debate in India about whether it should deploy more security forces in Afghanistan to protect its construction workers, diplomats, and installations. India has funded Afghanistan projects worth about $750 million. India, along with the Asian Development Bank, is financing the $300 million project, mentioned above, to bring electricity from Central Asia to Afghanistan. It has also renovated the the well known Habibia High School in Kabul and committed to a $25 million renovation of Darulaman Palace as the permanent house for Afghanistan’s parliament. Numerous other India-financed reconstruction projects are under way throughout Afghanistan, including a road to the Iranian border in remote Nimruz province. 39 Steele, Jonathon, “America Includes Iran in Talks on Ending War in Afghanistan.” Washington Times, December 15, 1997. CRS-45 Russia, Central Asian States, and China Some neighboring and nearby states take an active interest not only in Afghan stability, but in the U.S. military posture that supports OEF. Russia. Russia provides some humanitarian aid to Afghanistan, although it keeps a low profile in Afghanistan because it still feels humiliated by its withdrawal from Afghanistan in 1989 and senses Afghan resentment of the Soviet occupation. 38 (...continued) Washington Times, December 15, 1997. CRS-45 In an effort to try to cooperate more with NATO at least in Afghanistan, in conjunction with the April 2008 NATO summit, Russia agreed to allow NATO to ship non-lethal supplies to coalition forces in Afghanistan by land over Russian territory. During the 1990s, Russia supported the Northern Alliance against the Taliban with some military equipment and technical assistance in order to blunt Islamic militancy emanating from Afghanistan.3940 Although Russia supported the U.S. effort against the Taliban and Al Qaeda in Afghanistan out of fear of Islamic (mainly Chechen) radicals, Russia continues to seek to reduce the U.S. military presence in Central Asia. Russian fears of Islamic activism emanating from Afghanistan may have ebbed since 2002 when Russia killed a Chechen of Arab origin known as “Hattab” (full name is Ibn al-Khattab), who led a militant pro-Al Qaeda Chechen faction. The Taliban government was the only one in the world to recognize Chechnya’s independence, and some Chechen fighters fighting alongside Taliban/Al Qaeda forces have been captured or killed. Central Asian States. During Taliban rule, Russian and Central Asian leaders grew increasingly alarmed that radical Islamic movements were receiving safe haven in Afghanistan. Uzbekistan, in particular, has long asserted that the group Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU), allegedly responsible for four simultaneous February 1999 bombings in Tashkent that nearly killed President Islam Karimov, is linked to Al Qaeda.4041 One of its leaders, Juma Namangani, reportedly was killed while commanding Taliban/Al Qaeda forces in Konduz in November 2001. Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan do not directly border Afghanistan, but IMU guerrillas transited Kyrgyzstan during incursions into Uzbekistan in the late 1990s. During Taliban rule, Uzbekistan supported Uzbek leader Abdul Rashid Dostam, who was part of that Alliance. It allowed use of Karshi-Khanabad air base by OEF forces from October 2001 until a rift emerged in May 2005 over Uzbekistan’s crackdown against riots in Andijon, and U.S.-Uzbek relations remained largely frozen. Uzbekistan’s March 2008 agreement with Germany for it to use KarshiKhanabad air base temporarily, for the first time since the rift in U.S.-Uzbek relations developed in 2005, suggests that U.S.-Uzbek cooperation on Afghanistan and other issues might be rebuilt. As a follow-up to this, Uzbekistan at the April 2008 NATO summit in Bucharest, proposed to revive the “6 + 2” process of neighbors of 40 Risen, James. “Russians Are Back in Afghanistan, Aiding Rebels.” New York Times, July 27, 1998. 41 The IMU was named a foreign terrorist organization by the State Department in September 2000. CRS-46 Afghanistan to help its stability, but Karzai reportedly opposes this idea as unwanted Central Asian interference in its affairs. In 1996, several of the Central Asian states banded together with Russia and China into a regional grouping called the Shanghai Cooperation Organization to discuss the Taliban threat. It includes China, Russia, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Kazakhstan, and Kyrgyzstan. Reflecting Russian and Chinese efforts to limit U.S. influence in the region, the group has issued statements, most recently in August 39 Risen, James. “Russians Are Back in Afghanistan, Aiding Rebels.” New York Times, July 27, 1998. 40 The IMU was named a foreign terrorist organization by the State Department in September 2000. CRS-46 2007, that security should be handled by the countries in the Central Asia region. Despite the Shanghai Cooperation Organization statements, Tajikistan, Kazakhstan, and Kyrgyzstan are all, for now, holding to their pledges of facility support to OEF. (Tajikistan allows access primarily to French combat aircraft, and Kazakhstan allows use of facilities in case of emergency.) Of the Central Asian states that border Afghanistan, only Turkmenistan chose to seek close relations with the Taliban leadership when it was in power, possibly viewing engagement as a more effective means of preventing spillover of radical Islamic activity from Afghanistan. It saw Taliban control as facilitating construction of a natural gas pipeline from Turkmenistan through Afghanistan (see above). The September 11 events stoked Turkmenistan’s fears of the Taliban and its Al Qaeda guests and the country publicly supported the U.S.-led war. No U.S. forces have been been based in Turkmenistan. China.4142 A major organizer of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, China has a small border with a sliver of Afghanistan known as the “Wakhan corridor” (see map). China had become increasingly concerned about the potential for Al Qaeda to to promote Islamic fundamentalism among Muslims in China. In December 2000, sensing China’s increasing concern about Taliban policies, a Chinese official delegation met with Mullah Umar. China did not enthusiastically support U.S. military action against the Taliban, possibly because China was wary of a U.S. military buildup nearby. In addition, China has been allied to Pakistan in part to pressure India, a rival of China. Still, Chinese delegations are visiting Afghanistan to assess the potential for investments in such sectors as mining and energy,4243 and a deal was signed in November 2007 as discussed above (China Metallurgical Group). Saudi Arabia During the Soviet occupation, Saudi Arabia channeled hundreds of millions of dollars to the Afghan resistance, primarily the Hikmatyar and Sayyaf factions. Saudi Arabia, a majority of whose citizens practice the strict Wahhabi brand of Islam also practiced by the Taliban, was one of three countries to formally recognize the Taliban government. The Taliban initially served Saudi Arabia as a potential counter to Iran, but Iranian-Saudi relations improved after 1997 and balancing Iranian power ebbed as a factor in Saudi policy toward Afghanistan. Drawing on its reputed intelligence ties to Afghanistan during that era, Saudi Arabia worked with Taliban leaders to 42 For more information, see CRS Report RL33001. U.S.-China Counterterrorism Cooperation: Issues For U.S. Policy, by Shirley Kan. 43 CRS Conversations with Chinese officials in Beijing. August 2007. CRS-47 persuade them to suppress anti-Saudi activities by Al Qaeda. Some press reports indicate that, in late 1998, Saudi and Taliban leaders discussed, but did not agree on, a plan for a panel of Saudi and Afghan Islamic scholars to decide bin Laden’s fate. According to U.S. officials, Saudi Arabia cooperated extensively, if not publicly, with OEF. It broke diplomatic relations with the Taliban in late September 41 For more information, see CRS Report RL33001. Cooperation: Issues For U.S. Policy, by Shirley Kan. 42 U.S.-China Counterterrorism CRS Conversations with Chinese officials in Beijing. August 2007. CRS-47 2001 and quietly permitted the United States to use a Saudi base for command of U.S. air operations over Afghanistan, but it did not permit U.S. airstrikes from it U.S. and International Aid to Afghanistan and Development Issues Many experts believe that financial assistance and accelerating reconstruction would do more to improve the security situation than intensified anti-Taliban combat. Afghanistan’s economy and society are still fragile after decades of warfare that left about 2 million dead, 700,000 widows and orphans, and about 1 million Afghan children who were born and raised in refugee camps outside Afghanistan. More than 3.5 million Afghan refugees have since returned, although a comparable number remain outside Afghanistan. The U.N. High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) supervises Afghan repatriation and Afghan refugee camps in Pakistan. Still heavily dependent on donors, Karzai has sought to reassure the international donor community by establishing a transparent budget and planning process. Some in Congress want to increase independent oversight of U.S. aid to Afghanistan; the conference report on the FY2008 defense authorization bill (P.L. 110-181) established a “special inspector general” for Afghanistan reconstruction, (SIGAR) modeled on a similar outside auditor for Iraq (“Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction,” SIGIR). The law also authorized $20 million for that purpose, and some funds were provided in P.L. 110-252, as shown in the tables. On May 30, 2008, Maj. Gen. Arnold Fields (Marine, ret.) was named to the position. U.S. and Afghan officials see the growth in narcotics trafficking as a product of an Afghan economy ravaged by war and lack of investment. Efforts to build the legitimate economy are showing some results, by accounts of senior U.S. officials, including expansion of roads and education and health facilities constructed. USAID spending to promote economic growth is shown in Table 14, and U.S. and international assistance to Afghanistan are discussed in the last sections of this paper. Some international investors are implementing projects, and there is substantial new construction, such as the Serena luxury hotel that opened in November 2005 (long considered a priority Taliban target and was attacked by militants on January 14, 2008, killing six) and a $25 million new Coca Cola bottling factory that opened in Kabul on September 11, 2006. Several Afghan companies are growing as well, including Roshan and Afghan Wireless (cell phone service), and Tolo Television. A A Gold’s Gym has opened in Kabul as well. The 52-year-old national airline, Ariana, is said to be in significant financial trouble due to corruption that has affected its its safety ratings and left it unable to service a heavy debt load, but there are new privately run airlines, such as Pamir Air, Safi Air, and Kam Air. Some Afghan leaders complain that not enough has been done to revive such potentially lucrative industries as minerals mining, such as of copper and lapis lazuli (a stone used in CRS-48 jewelry). However, in November 2007, the Afghan government signed a deal with China Metallurgical Group for the company to invest $2.8 billion to develop Afghanistan’s Aynak copper field in Lowgar Province; the agreement will include construction of a coal-fired electric power plant and a freight railway. CRS-48 The United States is trying to build on Afghanistan’s post-war economic rebound. In September 2004, the United States and Afghanistan signed a bilateral trade and investment framework agreement (TIFA). These agreements are generally seen as a prelude to a broader but more complex bilateral free trade agreement, but negotiations on an FTA have not begun to date. On December 13, 2004, the 148 countries of the World Trade Organization voted to start membership talks with Afghanistan. Another initiative supported by the United States is the establishment of joint Afghan-Pakistani “Reconstruction Opportunity Zones” (ROZ’s) which would be modeled after “Qualified Industrial Zones” run by Israel and Jordan in which goods produced in the zones receive duty free treatment for import into the United States. For FY2008, $5 million in supplemental funding was requested to support the the zones, but P.L. 110-252 did not specifically mention the zones. A Senate bill, S. 2776Bills in the 100th Congress, S. 2776 and H.R. 6387, would authorize the President to proclaim duty-freedutyfree treatment for imports from ROZ’s to be designated by the President. Afghanistan’s prospects also appeared to brighten by the announcement in March 2006 of an estimated 3.6 billion barrels of oil and 36.5 trillion cubic feet of gas reserves. Experts believe these amounts, if proved, could make Afghanistan relatively self-sufficient in energy and possibly able to provided some exports to its neighbors. Afghan officials are said to be optimistic for increased trade with Central Asia now that a new bridge has opened (October 2007) over the Panj River, connecting Afghanistan and Tajikistan. The bridge was built with U.S. assistance. The bridge will further assist what press reports say is robust reconstruction and economic development in the relatively peaceful and ethnically homogenous province of Panjshir, the political base of the Northern Alliance. Another major energy project remains under consideration. During 1996-1998, the Clinton Administration supported proposed natural gas and oil pipelines through western Afghanistan as an incentive for the warring factions to cooperate. A consortium led by Los Angeles-based Unocal Corporation proposed a $2.5 billion Central Asia Gas Pipeline (CentGas), which is now estimated to cost $3.7 billion to construct, that would originate in southern Turkmenistan and pass through Afghanistan to Pakistan, with possible extensions into India.4344 The deterioration in U.S.-Taliban relations after 1998 largely ended hopes for the pipeline projects while the Taliban was in power. 44 Other participants in the Unocal consortium include Delta of Saudi Arabia, Hyundai of South Korea, Crescent Steel of Pakistan, Itochu Corporation and INPEX of Japan, and the government of Turkmenistan. Some accounts say Russia’s Gazprom would probably receive a stake in the project. Nezavisimaya Gazeta (Moscow), October 30, 1997, p. 3. CRS-49 Prospects for the project have improved in the post-Taliban period. In a summit meeting in late May 2002 between the leaders of Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, and Pakistan, the three countries agreed to revive the gas pipeline project. Sponsors of the the project held an inaugural meeting on July 9, 2002 in Turkmenistan, signing a series series of preliminary agreements. Turkmenistan’s new leadership (President Gurbanguly Gurbanguly Berdimukhamedov, succeeding the late Saparmurad Niyazov) favors the 43 Other participants in the Unocal consortium include Delta of Saudi Arabia, Hyundai of South Korea, Crescent Steel of Pakistan, Itochu Corporation and INPEX of Japan, and the government of Turkmenistan. Some accounts say Russia’s Gazprom would probably receive a stake in the project. Nezavisimaya Gazeta (Moscow), October 30, 1997, p. 3. CRS-49 project as well. Some U.S. officials view this project as a superior alternative to a proposed gas pipeline from Iran to India, transiting Pakistan. Some of the more stable provinces, such as Bamiyan, are complaining that international aid is flowing mostly to the restive provinces in an effort to quiet them, and ignoring the needs of poor Afghans in peaceful areas. Later in this paper are tables showing U.S. appropriations of assistance to Afghanistan, including some detail on funds earmarked for categories of civilian reconstruction, and Table 14 lists USAID spending on all of these sectors for FY2002-FY2007. ! Roads. Road building is considered a U.S. priority and has been USAID’s largest project category there, taking up about 25% of USAID spending since the fall of the Taliban. An FY2008 supplemental funding requests asks for $50 million more for roads, particularly to rehabilitate a road that would connect northern Afghanistan with Kabul, running through Bamiyan Province. Roads are considered key to enabling Afghan farmers to bring legitimate produce to market in a timely fashion and former commander of U.S. forces in Afghanistan Gen. Eikenberry said “where the roads end, the Taliban begin.” Among major projects completed: the Kabul-Qandahar roadway project; the Qandahar-Herat roadway, funded by the United States, Japan, and Saudi Arabia, completed by 2006; a road from Qandahar to Tarin Kowt, built by U.S. military personnel, inaugurated in 2005; and a road linking the Panjshir Valley to Kabul. U.S. funds are also building roads connecting remote areas to regional district centers in several provinces in the eastern sector. ! Education. Despite the success in enrolling Afghan children in school since the Taliban era (see statistics above), setbacks have occurred because of Taliban attacks on schools, causing some to close. ! Health. The health care sector, as noted by Afghan observers, has made considerable gains in reducing infant mortality and improving Afghans’ access to health professionals. In addition to U.S. assistance to develop the health sector’s capacity, Egypt operates a 65-person field hospital at Bagram Air Base that instructs Afghan physicians. Jordan operates a similar facility in Mazar-e-Sharif. ! Agriculture. USAID has spent about 5% of its Afghanistan funds on agriculture, and this has helped Afghanistan double its agricultural output over the past five years. Afghan officials say agricultural assistance and development should be a top U.S. priority CRS-50 as part of a strategy of encouraging legitimate alternatives to poppy cultivation. (Another 10% of USAID funds is spent on “alternative livelihoods” to poppy growing, mostly in aid to farmers.) CRS-50 ! Electricity. About 10% of USAID spending in Afghanistan is on power projects. The Afghanistan Compact states that the goal is for electricity to reach 65% of households in urban areas and 25% in rural areas by 2010. There have been severe power shortages in Kabul, partly because the city population has swelled to nearly 4 million, up from half a million when the Taliban was in power, but power to the capital is more plentiful as of March 2008. An FY2008 supplemental request asks for $115 million more for this sector, particularly to ensure that a 100 Megawatt diesel generator becomes operational for Kabul. The Afghan government, with help from international donors, plans to import electricity from Central Asian and other neighbors beginning in 2009. Another major pending project is the Kajaki Dam, located in unstable Helmand Province. USAID has allocated about $500 million to refurbish the remaining two electricity-generating turbines (one is operating) of the dam (total project estimate, when completed) which, when functional, will provide electricity for 1.7 million Afghans and about 4,000 jobs in the reconstruction. However, progress depends on securing access access to the dam; surrounding roads and areas are controlled by or accessible to Taliban insurgents. National Solidarity Program. The United States and the Afghan government government are also trying to promote local decisionmaking on reconstruction. The “National Solidarity Program,” largely funded by U.S. and other international donors seeks to create and empower local governing councils to prioritize local reconstruction reconstruction projects. The assistance, channeled through donors, provides block grants of about $60,000 per project to the councils to implement agreed projects, most of which are water projects. Elections to these local councils have been held in several provinces, and almost 40% of those elected have been women.4445 The U.S. aid to the program is part of the Afghanistan Reconstruction Trust Fund (ARTF) account. (Of the supplemental FY2008 ESF funds requested, $40 million is to launch the next phase of the National Solidarity Program, and $25 million is for the FY2008 ESF funds requested, USAID expects to spend $45 million on the ARTF, of which $25 million was to be for the budgetary support portion of the ARTF account, and the remainder might be available for the National Solidarity Program.) U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan During the 1990s, the United States became the largest single provider of assistance to the Afghan people. During Taliban rule, no U.S. aid went directly to that government; monies were provided through relief organizations. Between 1985 and 1994, the United States had a cross-border aid program for Afghanistan, implemented by USAID personnel based in Pakistan. Citing the difficulty of 45 Khalilzad, Zalmay (Then U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan). “Democracy Bubbles Up.” Wall Street Journal, March 25, 2004. CRS-51 administering this program, there was no USAID mission for Afghanistan from the end of FY1994 until the reopening of the U.S. Embassy in Afghanistan in late 2001. Post-Taliban U.S. Aid Totals. Since FY2002 and including funds already appropriated for FY2008, the United States has provided over $25 billion in 44 Khalilzad, Zalmay (Then U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan). “Democracy Bubbles Up.” Wall Street Journal, March 25, 2004. CRS-51 reconstruction assistance, including military “train and equip” for the ANA and ANP and counter-narcotics-related assistance. These amounts do not include costs for U.S. combat operations, which are discussed in CRS Report RL33110, The Cost of Iraq, Afghanistan, and Other Global War on Terror Operations Since 9/11, by Amy Belasco. The tables below depict the aid.4546 Afghanistan Freedom Support Act of 2002 and Amendments. A key post-Taliban aid authorization bill, S. 2712, the Afghanistan Freedom Support Act (AFSA) of 2002 (P.L. 107-327, December 4, 2002), as amended, authorized about $3.7 billion in U.S. civilian aid for FY2003-FY2006. For the most part, the humanitarian, counter-narcotics, and governance assistance targets authorized by the act were met or exceeded by appropriations. However, no Enterprise Funds have been appropriated, and ISAF expansion was funded by the contributing partner forces. The act authorized the following: ! ! ! ! ! ! ! $60 million in total counter-narcotics assistance ($15 million per year for FY2003-FY2006); $30 million in assistance for political development, including national, regional, and local elections ($10 million per year for FY2003-FY2005); $80 million total to benefit women and for Afghan human rights oversight ($15 million per year for FY2003-FY2006 for the Afghan Ministry of Women’s Affairs, and $5 million per year for FY2003FY2006 to the Human Rights Commission of Afghanistan); $1.7 billion in humanitarian and development aid ($425 million per year for FY2003-FY2006); $300 million for an Enterprise Fund; $550 million in draw-downs of defense articles and services for Afghanistan and regional militaries. (The original law provided for $300 million in drawdowns. That was increased to $450 million by P.L. 108-106, an FY2004 supplemental appropriations); and $1 billion ($500 million per year for FY2003-FY2004) to expand ISAF if such an expansion takes place. A subsequent law (P.L. 108-458, December 17, 2004), implementing the recommendations of the 9/11 Commission, contained a subtitle called “The Afghanistan Freedom Support Act Amendments of 2004.” The subtitle mandates the appointment of a U.S. coordinator of policy on Afghanistan and requires additional Administration reports to Congress, including (1) on long-term U.S. strategy and progress of reconstruction, an amendment to the report required in the original law; (2) on how U.S. assistance is being used; (3) on U.S. efforts to persuade other countries to participate in Afghan peacekeeping; and (4) a joint State and Defense Department report on U.S. counter-narcotics efforts in Afghanistan. The law also 45 46 In some cases, aid figures are subject to variation depending on how that aid is measured. The figures cited might not exactly match figures in appropriated legislation; in some, funds were added to specified accounts from monies in the September 11-related Emergency Response Fund. CRS-52 (2) on how U.S. assistance is being used; (3) on U.S. efforts to persuade other countries to participate in Afghan peacekeeping; and (4) a joint State and Defense Department report on U.S. counter-narcotics efforts in Afghanistan. The law also contains several “sense of Congress” provisions recommending more rapid DDR activities; expansion of ISAF; and counter-narcotics initiatives. Afghan Freedom Support Act Re-Authorization. In the 110th Congress, H.R. 2446, passed by the House on June 6, 2007 (406-10), would reauthorize AFSA through FY2010. Some observers say the Senate might take it up early in 2008. The following are the major provisions of the bill: ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! A total of about $1.7 billion in U.S. economic aid and $320 in military aid (including draw-downs of equipment) per fiscal year would be authorized. a pilot program of crop substitution to encourage legitimate alternatives to poppy cultivation is authorized. Afghan officials support this provision as furthering their goal of combatting narcotics by promoting alternative livelihoods. enhanced anti-corruption and legal reform programs would be provided. a mandated cutoff of U.S. aid to any Afghan province in which the Administration reports that the leadership of the province is complicit in narcotics trafficking. This provision has drawn some criticism from observers who say that the most needy in Afghanistan might be deprived of aid based on allegations that are difficult to judge precisely. $45 million per year for the Ministry of Women’s Affairs, the Afghan Independent Human Rights Commission, and programs for women and girls is authorized. $75 million per year is authorized specifically for enhanced power generation, a key need in Afghanistan. a coordinator for U.S. assistance to Afghanistan is mandated. military drawdowns for the ANA and ANP valued at $300 million per year (un-reimbursed) are authorized (versus the aggregate $550 million allowed currently). authorizes appointment of a special U.S. envoy to promote greater Afghanistan-Pakistan cooperation. reauthorizes “Radio Free Afghanistan.” establishes a U.S. policy to encourage Pakistan to permit shipments by India of equipment and material to Afghanistan. International Reconstruction Pledges/Aid/Lending. Afghan leaders said said in 2002 that Afghanistan needs $27.5 billion for reconstruction for 2002-2010. Including U.S. pledges, about $30 billion has been pledged at donors conferences in 2002 (Tokyo), Berlin (April 2004), Kabul (April 2005), the London conference (February 2006), and since then. Of that, about half are non-U.S. contributions. However, not all non-U.S. amounts pledged have been received, although implementation appears to have improved over the past few years (amounts received had been running below half of what was pledged). The Afghanistan Compact also leaned toward the view of Afghan leaders that a higher proportion of the aid be CRS-53 channeled through the Afghan government rather than directly by the donor community. Only about $3.8 billion of funds disbursed have been channeled through CRS-53 the Afghan government, according to the Finance Minister in April 2007. The Afghan government is promising greater financial transparency and international (United Nations) oversight to ensure that international contributions are used wisely and effectively. On June 12, 2008, Afghanistan formally presented its Afghan National Development Strategy in Paris, asking for $50.1 billion during 2009-2014 from international donors. Of that, $14 billion was requested to improve infrastructure, including airports and to construct a railway. Another $14 billion would be to build the ANSF, and about $4.5 billion would be for agriculture and rural development. However, citing in part a relative lack of transparency in Afghan governance, donors pledged about $21 billion, but that included $10.2 billion already committed by the United States. Of the other major pledges, the Asian Development bank pledged $1.3 billion, the World Bank pledged $1.1 billion, Britain pledged $1.2 billion; France France pledged $165 million over two years; Japan pledged $550 million; Germany offered offered $600 million over two years, and the European Union pledged $770 million. Among multilateral lending institutions, in May 2002, the World Bank reopened its office in Afghanistan after 20 years. On March 12, 2003, it announced a $108 million loan to Afghanistan, the first since 1979. In August 2003, the World Bank agreed to lend Afghanistan an additional $30 million to rehabilitate the telecommunications system, and $30 million for road and drainage rehabilitation in Kabul. The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has also been playing a major role in Afghanistan, loaning (or granting) Afghanistan more than $450 million since December 2002. One of its projects in Afghanistan was funding the paving of a road from Qandahar to the border with Pakistan, and as noted above, it is contributing to a project to bring electricity from Central Asia to Afghanistan. Residual Issues From Past Conflicts A few issues remain unresolved from Afghanistan’s many years of conflict, such as Stinger retrieval and mine eradication. Stinger Retrieval. Beginning in late 1985 following internal debate, the Reagan Administration provided about 2,000 man-portable “Stinger” anti-aircraft missiles to the mujahedin for use against Soviet aircraft. Prior to the U.S.-led war against the Taliban and Al Qaeda, common estimates suggested that 200-300 Stingers remained at large, although more recent estimates put the number below 100.4647 The Stinger issue resurfaced in conjunction with 2001 U.S. war effort, when U.S. pilots reported that the Taliban fired some Stingers at U.S. aircraft during the war. No hits were reported. Any Stingers that survived the anti-Taliban war are likely likely controlled by Afghans now allied to the United States and presumably pose less of a threat. However, there are concerns that remaining Stingers could be sold to to terrorists for use against civilian aircraft. In February 2002, the Afghan 46 government 47 Saleem, Farrukh. “Where Are the Missing Stinger Missiles? Pakistan,” Friday Times. August 17-23, 2001. CRS-54 government found and returned to the United States “dozens” of Stingers.4748 In late January 2005, Afghan intelligence began a push to buy remaining Stingers back, at a reported cost of $150,000 each.4849 In 1992, after the fall of the Russian-backed government of Najibullah, the United States reportedly spent about $10 million to buy the Stingers back, at a premium, from individual mujahedin commanders. The New York Times reported on on July 24, 1993, that the buy back effort failed because the United States was competing with other buyers, including Iran and North Korea, and that the CIA would spend about $55 million in FY1994 in a renewed Stinger buy-back effort. On March 7, 1994, the Washington Post reported that the CIA had recovered only a fraction (maybe 50 or 100) of the at-large Stingers. The danger of these weapons has become apparent on several occasions. Iran bought 16 of the missiles in 1987 and fired one against U.S. helicopters; some reportedly were transferred to Lebanese Hizballah. India claimed that it was a Stinger, supplied to Islamic rebels in Kashmir probably by sympathizers in Afghanistan, that shot down an Indian helicopter over Kashmir in May 1999.4950 It was a Soviet-made SA-7 “Strella” man-portable launchers that were fired, allegedly by Al Qaeda, against a U.S. military aircraft in Saudi Arabia in June 2002 and against an Israeli passenger aircraft in Kenya on November 30, 2002. Both missed their targets. SA-7s were discovered in Afghanistan by U.S. forces in December 2002. Mine Eradication. Land mines laid during the Soviet occupation constitute one of the principal dangers to the Afghan people. The United Nations estimates that 5 -7 million mines remain scattered throughout the country, although some estimates are lower. U.N. teams have destroyed one million mines and are now focusing on de-mining demining priority-use, residential and commercial property, including lands around Kabul. As shown in the U.S. aid table for FY1999-FY2002 (Table 6), the U.S. demining program was providing about $3 million per year for Afghanistan, and the amount increased to about $7 million in the post-Taliban period. Most of the funds have gone to HALO Trust, a British organization, and the U.N. Mine Action Program for Afghanistan. The Afghanistan Compact adopted in London in February 2006 states that by 2010, the goal should be to reduce the land area of Afghanistan contaminated by mines by 70%. 4748 Fullerton, John. “Afghan Authorities Hand in Stinger Missiles to U.S.” Reuters, February February 4, 2002. 4849 “Afghanistan Report,” Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty. February 4, 2005. 4950 “U.S.-Made Stinger Missiles — Mobile and Lethal.” Reuters, May 28, 1999. CRS-55 Table 5. U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan, FY1978-FY1998 ($ in millions) Fiscal Year 1978 1979 1980 1981 1982 1983 1984 1985 1986 1987 1988 1989 1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 Devel. Assist. 4.989 3.074 — — — — — 3.369 — 17.8 22.5 22.5 35.0 30.0 25.0 10.0 3.4 1.8 — — — Econ. Other Supp. P.L. 480 (Incl. Regional (ESF) (Title I and II) Military Refugee Aid) — 5.742 0.269 0.789 — 7.195 — 0.347 (Soviet invasion - December 1979) — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — — 8.9 — — 12.1 2.6 — — 22.5 29.9 — — 22.5 32.6 — — 35.0 18.1 — — 30.0 20.1 — — 25.0 31.4 — — 10.0 18.0 — 30.2 2.0 9.0 — 27.9 — 12.4 — 31.6 — 16.1 — 26.4 — 18.0 — 31.9a — 3.6 — 49.14b Total 11.789 10.616 — — — — — 3.369 8.9 32.5 74.9 77.6 88.1 80.1 81.4 68.2 42.3 45.8 42.5 49.9 52.74 Source: Department of State. a. Includes $3 million for demining and $1.2 million for counternarcotics. b. Includes $3.3 million in projects targeted for Afghan women and girls, $7 million in earthquake relief aid, 100,000 tons of 416B wheat worth about $15 million, $2 million for demining, and $1.54 for counternarcotics. CRS-56 Table 6. U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan, FY1999-FY2002 ($ in millions) FY2002 (Final) FY1999 FY2000 FY2001 U.S. Department of Agriculture (DOA) and USAID Food For Peace (FFP), via World Food Program(WFP) State/Bureau of Population, Refugees and Migration (PRM) via UNHCR and ICRC State Department/ Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance (OFDA) State Department/HDP (Humanitarian Demining Program) Aid to Afghan Refugees in Pakistan (through various NGOs) FY2000 FY2001 42.0 worth of wheat (100,000 metric tons under “416(b)” program.) 16.95 for Afghan refugees in Pakistan and Iran, and to assist their repatriation 7.0 to various NGOs to aid Afghans inside Afghanistan “416(b)” program.) 68.875 for 165,000 metric tons. (60,000 tons for May 2000 drought relief) 131.0 (300,000 metric tons under P.L.480, Title II, and 416(b)) 198.12 (for food commodities) State/Bureau of Population, Refugees and Migration (PRM) via UNHCR and ICRC 16.95 for Afghan refugees in Pakistan and Iran, and to assist their repatriation 7.0 to various NGOs to aid Afghans inside Afghanistan 14.03 for the same purposes 22.03 for similar purposes 136.54 (to U.N. agencies) 6.68 for drought relief and health, water, and sanitation programs 3.0 18.934 for similar programs 113.36 (to various U.N. agencies and NGOs) 2.8 7.0 to Halo Trust/other demining State Department/ Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance (OFDA) State Department/HDP (Humanitarian Demining Program) Aid to Afghan Refugees in Pakistan (through various NGOs) 2.615 5.44 (2.789 for health, training -2.615 5.44 (2.789 for health, training Afghan females in Pakistan) 6.169, of which $3.82 went to similar purposes Counter-Narcotics USAID/ Office of Transition Initiatives Dept. of Defense 5.31 for similar purposes 1.50 0.45 (Afghan women in Pakistan) Foreign Military Financing Anti-Terrorism Economic Support Funds (E.S.F) Peacekeeping Totals FY2002 (Final) FY1999 76.6 113.2 182.6 63.0 24.35 for broadcasting/ media 50.9 ( 2.4 million rations) 57.0 (for Afghan national army) 36.4 105.2 24.0 815.9 CRS-57 Table 7. U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan, FY2003 ($ in millions, same acronyms as Table 6) FY2003 Foreign Aid Appropriations (P.L. 108-7) Development/Health 90 P.L. 480 Title II (Food Aid) 47 Peacekeeping 10 Disaster Relief 94 ESF 50 Non-Proliferation, De-mining, Anti-Terrorism (NADR) 5 Refugee Relief 55 Afghan National Army (ANA) train and equip (FMF) 21 Total from this law: 372 FY2003 Supplemental (P.L. 108-11) Road Construction (ESF, Kabul-Qandahar road) 100 Provincial Reconstruction Teams (ESF) 10 Afghan government support (ESF) 57 ANA train and equip (FMF) Anti-terrorism/de-mining (NADR, some for Karzai protection) 170 28 Total from this law: 365 Total for FY2003 737 CRS-58 Table 8. U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan, FY2004 ($ in millions, same acronyms as previous tables) FY2004 Supplemental (P.L. 108-106) Disarmament and Demobilization (DDR program) (ESF) 30 Afghan government (ESF) $10 million for customs collection 70 Elections/democracy and governance (ESF) 69 Roads (ESF) 181 Schools/Education (ESF) 95 Health Services/Clinics (ESF) 49 Provincial Reconstruction Teams (PRTs) 58 Private Sector/Power sector rehabilitation 95 Water Projects 23 Counter-narcotics/police training/judiciary training (INCLE) Defense Dept. counter-narcotics support operations Afghan National Army (FMF) 170 73 287 Anti-Terrorism/Afghan Leadership Protection (NADR) 35 U.S. Embassy expansion and security/AID operations 92 Total from this law: (of which $60 million is to benefit Afghan women and girls) 1,327 FY2004 Regular Appropriations (P.L. 108-199) Development/Health 171 Disaster Relief 35 Refugee Relief 72 Afghan women (ESF) 5 Judicial reform commission (ESF) 2 Reforestation (ESF) 2 Aid to communities and victims of U.S. military operations (ESF) 2 Other reconstruction (ESF). (Total FY2004 funds spent by USAID for PRT-related reconstruction = $56.4 million) 64 ANA train and equip (FMF) 50 Total from this law: 403 Other: P.L. 480 Title II Food Aid .085 Total for FY2004 1,727 CRS-59 Table 9. U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan, FY2005 ($ in millions) FY2005 Regular Appropriations (P.L. 108-447) Assistance to Afghan governing institutions (ESF) 225 Train and Equip ANA (FMF) 400 Assistance to benefit women and girls Agriculture, private sector investment, environment, primary education, reproductive health, and democracy-building 50 300 Reforestation 2 Child and maternal health 6 Afghan Independent Human Rights Commission 2 Total from this law 985 Second FY2005 Supplemental (P.L. 109-13) Other ESF: Health programs, PRT programs, agriculture, alternative livelihoods, government capacity building, training for parliamentarians, rule of law programs (ESF). (Total FY2005 FY2005 funds spent by USAID for PRT-led reconstruction = $87.89 million.) Aid to displaced persons (ESF) Families of civilian victims of U.S. combat ops (ESF) Women-led NGOs (ESF) DOD funds to train and equip Afghan security forces. Of the funds, $34 million may go to Afghan security elements for that purpose. Also, $290 million of the funds is to reimburse the U.S. Army for funds already obligated for this purpose. 1,073.5 5 2.5 5 1,285 DOD counter-narcotics support operations 242 Counter-narcotics (INCLE) 220 Training of Afghan police (INCLE) 400 Karzi protection (NADR funds) 17.1 DEA operations in Afghanistan 7.7 Operations of U.S. Embassy Kabul 60 Total from this law 3,317 Other: P.L. 480 Title II Food Aid 56.95 Total 4,359 CRS-60 Table 10. U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan, FY2006 ($ in millions) FY2006 Regular Foreign Aid Appropriations (P.L. 109-102) ESF (ESF over $225 million subject to certification that Afghanistan is cooperating with U.S. counter-narcotics) 430 (Mostly for reconstruction, governance, and democracy-building; Includes $20 million for PRTs) Peacekeeping (ANA salaries) Counter-narcotics (INCLE) 18 235 (Includes $60 million to train ANP) Karzai protection (NADR funds) 18 Child Survival and Health (CSH) 43 Reforestation 3 Afghan Independent Human Rights Commission 2 Aid to civilian victims of U.S. combat operations 2 Programs to benefit women and girls 50 Development Assistance 130.4 Total from this law: 931.4 FY2006 Supplemental Appropriation (P.L. 109-234) Security Forces Fund ESF 1,908 43 (Includes $11 million for debt relief costs, $5 million for agriculture development, and $27 million for Northeast Transmission electricity project) Embassy operations 50.1 DOD Counter-narcotics operations 103 Migration and Refugee aid 3.4 DEA counter-narcotics operations 9.2 Total from this law Other: P.L. 480 Title II Food Aid Total for FY2006 2,116.7 60 3,108.1 CRS-61 Table 11. U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan, FY2007 ($ in millions) Regular Appropriation (In accordance with Continuing Appropriation P.L. 110-5) ESF 479 (USAID plans $42 million for PRTs) Counter-narc (INCLE) 209.7 Child Survival and Health (CSH) 100.77 Development Assistance (DA) 166.8 IMET 1.138 NADR 21.65 Total This Law 979 DOD Appropriation (P.L. 109-289) Security Forces train and equip 1,500 DOD Counternarcotics support 100 Total Appropriated for FY2007 to date 2,539.77 FY2007 Supplemental (H.R. 2206/P.L. 110-28) ESF P.L. 480 Title II Food Aid U.S. Embassy security Security Forces train and equip INCLE $653 million request/$737 in final law (of which in law: 174 for PRTs; 314 for roads; 40 for power; 155 for rural development; 19 for agriculture (latter two are alternative livelihoods to poppy cultivation); 25 for governance; and 10 for the “civilian assistance program” 30 million also provides $16 million in Migration and Refugee aid for displaced persons near Kabul, and $16 million International Disaster and Famine Assistance 47.2 million requested/79 in final version 5.900 billion requested/5.9064 in final version (includes 3.2 billion for equipment and transportation; 624 million for ANP training; 415 for ANA training; 106 for commanders emergency response, CERP; plus other funds ) no request/47 million in agreement; plus 60 million in DOD aid to counter-narcotics forces in Afghanistan and Pakistan, plus 12 million DEA FY2007 supp. 6.870 billion in final version FY2007 Total 10.388 billion (all programs) CRS-62 Table 12. U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan, FY2008 Request/Action Regular FY2008 Appropriation (H.R. 2764, P.L. 110-161) ESF INCLE IMET Child Survival and Health (CSH) NADR (Karzai protection) Radio Free Afghanistan Afghan Security Forces Funding $543 million total. Of this: $126 million for emergency request (see below); $75 million to benefit women and girls; $20 million for agriculture. $300 million limit subject to counter-narcotics cooperation certification. Regular ESF request was for $693 million INCLE IMET Child Survival and Health (CSH) NADR (Karzai protection) Radio Free Afghanistan Afghan Security Forces Funding 274.8 m., forbids use for aerial spraying 1.7 m. $65.9 m. (incl. $5.9 million for child and maternal clinics) 21.65 3.98 1,350 (For emergency request below) Total appropriated in P.L. 110161 2,261 Revised FY2008 Supplemental Request (Global War on Terrorism), P.L. 110-252 ESF USAID operations Security Forces equip and train U.S. Embassy construction, maintenance NADR Total FY2008 appropriated Other funding 834 m. request (additional 495 beyond 339 original original supplemental request) (Of the additional $495, $325 is for provincial governance, National Solidarity program, election support; $170 is for economic growth, including $115 for power. Another $50 for roads, and another $5 is for Reconstruction Opportunity Zones). Fully funded in H.R. 2642 16 2,700 ($1.71 billion for ANA/$980 million for ANP) (1,400 provided in H.R. 2642, completes funding the full request) 160 (76.7 provided in H.R. 2642) 5 4.59 billion 2 million for Special Inspector General for Afghan Reconstruction CRS-63 Table 13. U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan, FY2009 ($ in millions) Regular Request ESF 707 (includes 120 for alternative livelihoods, 248 for democracy and governance, 226 for econ. growth, 74 for PRT programs) Child Survival and Health 52 (Plus 57 more of ESF for health and education) International Counter-Narcotics and Law Enforcement (INCLE) 250 International Military Education and Training (IMET) 1.4 Other non-military accounts Embassy security and maintenance Afghan National Security Forces Funding (DOD funds) Total Regular Request 44 (incl. 12 m. in non-emergency food aid) 41.3 appropriated in H.R. 2642 2,000 (provided in H.R. 2642, FY2009 bridge) $3.054 billion Supplemental Request/H.R. 2642 (P.L. 110-252) FY2009 Supplemental ESF INCLE Total Supplemental Request Other funds 749.9 (455 provided in H.R. 2642) 175 (funded by H.R. 2642) 924.9 (730 funded) $5 million for Special Inspector General for Afghan Reconstruction CRS-64 Table 14. USAID Obligations FY2002-FY2007FY2008 ($ millions) Sector FY 2002 FY 2003 FY 2004 FY 2005 Agriculture 27 56 50 77 27 61 29867 31 335 Alternative Livelihoods 3 1 5 185 121 246 561229 121 665 Roads 51 142 354 276 250 418 1491365 398 1836 Power 3 77 286 66 136 568195 203 830 Water 2 1 27 21 1 2 1 541 52 Econ. Growth 21 12 84 91 46 68 32169 61 383 Education 19 21 104 86 51 62 34363 53 397 Health 8 56 83 111 52 72 381113 66 489 Afghan Reconstruction Trust Fund 38 40 67 87 45 41 31746 45 368 Support to Afghan Afghan Gov’t 3 36 31 15 5 9015 17 117 Democracy 22 34 132 88 17 81 374134 17 444 Rule of Law 4 8 21 15 6 13 6710 4 68 11 56 85 20 210 382126 30 328 5 6 17 16 4 14 6335 15 98 Internally Displaced Persons 108 23 10 - 141 Food Aid 159 51 49 - 376 10 10 1436 5830 PRT Programs Program Suppt 57 FY FY2007 FY FY20022006 (reg. + FY2007 supp)2008 FY2008 supp) (reg + supp) - 57 60 Civilian Assistance Totals - 141 10 10 471 462 1171 1510 779 1478 386 10 1108 6979 CRS-65 Table 15. NATO/ISAF Contributing Nations (As of June 310, 2008, press reports [http://www.nato.int/isaf/docu/epub/pdf/isaf _placemat.pdf]) NATO Countries Non-NATO Partner Nations Belgium 375 Albania 140 Bulgaria 420 Austria 2 Canada 2500 Australia 1100 Czech Republic 370 Azerbaijan Denmark 690 Croatia 210 Estonia 120 Finland 65 France 1670 Georgia 1 Germany 3370 Ireland 7 Greece 150 Jordan 90 Hungary 205 Macedonia 140 Iceland 10 New Zealand 160 Italy Latvia Lithuania 2350 Sweden 250 200 Ukraine 3 9 Netherlands 1770 Norway 580 Poland 1140 Portugal 165 Romania 570 Slovakia 70 Slovenia 70 Spain 800 Turkey 760 United States 2 75 Luxemburg United Kingdom Singapore 45 8530 23550 Total ISAF force (approx.) 52,700 CRS-66 Table 16. Provincial Reconstruction Teams (RC=Regional Command) Location (City) Province/Command U.S.-Lead (all under ISAF banner) Gardez Paktia Province (RC-East, E) Ghazni Ghazni (RC-E). with Poland. Bagram A.B. Parwan (RC-C, Central) Jalalabad Nangarhar (RC-E) Khost Khost (RC-E) Qalat Zabol (RC-South, S). with Romania. Asadabad Kunar (RC-E) Sharana Paktika (RC-E). with Poland. Mehtarlam Jabal o-Saraj Laghman (RC-E) Panjshir Province (RC-E), State Department lead Qala Gush Nuristan (RC-E) Farah Farah (RC-W) Partner Lead (all under ISAF banner) PRT Location Province Lead Force/Other forces Qandahar Qandahar (RC-S) Canada Lashkar Gah Helmand (RC-S) Britain. with Denmark and Estonia Tarin Kowt Uruzgan (RC-S) Netherlands. withWith Australia and 40 Singaporean military medics and others Herat Herat (RC-W) Italy Qalah-ye Now Badghis (RC-W) Spain Mazar-e-Sharif Balkh (RC-N) Sweden Konduz Konduz (RC-N) Germany Faizabad Badakhshan (RC-N) Germany. with Denmark, Czech Rep. Meymaneh Faryab (RC-N) Norway. with Sweden. Chaghcharan Ghowr (RC-W) Lithuania. with Denmark, U.S., Iceland Pol-e-Khomri Baghlan (RC-N) Hungary Bamiyan Bamiyan (RC-E) New Zealand (not NATO/ISAF). 10 Singaporean engineers Maidan Shahr Wardak (RC-C) Turkey Pul-i-Alam Lowgar (RC-E) Czech Republic Herat CRS-67 Table 17. Major Factions/Leaders in Afghanistan Party/ Leader Leader Ideology/ Ethnicity Regional Base Taliban Mullah (Islamic cleric) Muhammad Umar (still at large possibly in Afghanistan)/Jalaludin and Siraj Haqqani. ultraorthodox Islamic, Pashtun Insurgent groups, mostly in the south and east, and in Pakistan Islamic Society (leader of “Northern Alliance”) Burhannudin Rabbani/ Yunus Qanooni (speaker of lower house)/Muhammad Fahim/Dr. Abdullah Abdullah (Foreign Minister 2001-2006). Ismail Khan, a so-called “warlord,” heads faction of the grouping grouping in Herat area. Khan, now Minister of Energy and Water, visited United States in March 2008 to sign USAID grant for energy projects moderate Islamic, mostly Tajik Much of northern and western Afghanistan, including Kabul National Islamic Movement of Afghanistan Abdul Rashid Dostam. Best known for March 1992 secular, break with Najibullah that precipitated his overthrow. Uzbek Subsequently fought Rabbani government (19921995), but later joined Northern Alliance. Commanded about 25,000 troops, armor, combat aircraft, and some Scud missiles, but was unable to hold off Taliban forces that captured his region by August 1998. During OEF, impressed U.S. commanders with horse-mounted assaults on Taliban positions at Shulgara Dam, south of Mazar-e-Sharif, leading to the fall of that city and the Taliban’s subsequent collapse. Karzai rival in October 2004 presidential election, now his top “security adviser.” Mazar-eSharif, Shebergan, and environs Hizb-eWahdat Karim Khalili is Vice President, but Mohammad Shiite, Mohaqiq is Karzai rival in presidential election and Hazara parliament. Generally pro-Iranian. Was part of tribes Rabbani 1992-1996 government, and fought unsuccessfully with Taliban over Bamiyan city. Bamiyan province Pashtun Leaders Various regional governors; central government led led Moderate by Hamid Karzai. Moderate Islamic, Pashtun Dominant in southern, eastern Afghanistan Hizb-eIslam Gulbuddin (HIG) Mujahedin party leader Gulbuddin Hikmatyar. Lost orthodox Islamic, power base around Jalalabad to the Taliban in Pashtun 1994, and fled to Iran before being expelled in 2002. Still allied with Taliban and Al Qaeda in operations east of Kabul, but may be open to ending militant activity. Leader of a rival Hizb-e-Islam faction, Yunus Khalis, the mentor of Mullah Umar, died July 2006. Small groups around Jalalabad, Nuristan and in southeast Islamic Union orthodox Abd-I-Rab Rasul Sayyaf. Islamic conservative, leads a pro-Karzai faction in parliament. Lived Islamic, many years in and politically close to Saudi Arabia, Pashtun which shares his “Wahhabi” ideology. During antiSoviet war, Sayyaf’s faction, with Hikmatyar, was a principal recipient of U.S. weaponry. Criticized the U.S.-led war against Saddam Hussein after Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait. Paghman (west of Kabul) CRS-68 Appendix A. U.S. and International Sanctions Lifted Virtually all U.S. and international sanctions on Afghanistan, some imposed during the Soviet occupation era and others on the Taliban regime, have now been lifted. ! On January 10, 2003, President Bush signed a proclamation making Afghanistan a beneficiary of the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP), eliminating U.S. tariffs on 5,700 Afghan products. Afghanistan was denied GSP on May 2, 1980, under Executive Order 12204 (45 F.R. 20740). This was done under the authority of Section 504 of the Trade Act of 1974 [19 U.S.C. § 2464]. ! On April 24, 1981, controls on U.S. exports to Afghanistan of agricultural products and phosphates were terminated. Such controls were imposed on June 3, 1980, as part of the sanctions against the Soviet Union for the invasion of Afghanistan, under the authority of Sections 5 and 6 of the Export Administration Act of 1979 [P.L. 9672; 50 U.S.C. app. 2404, app. 2405]. ! In mid-1992, the George H.W. Bush Administration determined that Afghanistan no longer had a “Soviet-controlled government.” This opened Afghanistan to the use of U.S. funds made available for the U.S. share of U.N. organizations that provide assistance to Afghanistan. ! On March 31, 1993, after the fall of Najibullah in 1992, President Clinton, on national interest grounds, waived restrictions provided for in Section 481 (h) of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 mandating sanctions on Afghanistan including bilateral aid cuts and suspensions, including denial of Ex-Im Bank credits; the casting of negative U.S. votes for multilateral development bank loans; and a non-allocation of a U.S. sugar quota. Discretionary sanctions included denial of GSP; additional duties on country exports to the United States; and curtailment of air transportation with the United States. Waivers were also granted in 1994 and, after the fall of the Taliban, by President Bush. ! On May 3, 2002, President Bush restored normal trade treatment to the products of Afghanistan, reversing the February 18, 1986 proclamation by President Reagan (Presidential Proclamation 5437) that suspended most-favored nation (MFN) tariff status for Afghanistan (51 F.R. 4287). The Foreign Assistance Appropriations for FY1986 [Section 552, P.L. 99-190] had authorized the President to deny any U.S. credits or most-favored-nation (MFN) tariff status for Afghanistan. ! On July 2, 2002, the State Department amended U.S. regulations (22 C.F.R. Part 126) to allow arms sales to the new Afghan government, reversing the June 14, 1996 addition of Afghanistan to the list of countries prohibited from receiving exports or licenses for exports CRS-69 of U.S. defense articles and services. Arms sales to Afghanistan had also been prohibited during 1997-2002 because Afghanistan had been designated under the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996 (P.L. 104-132) as a state that is not cooperating with U.S. anti-terrorism efforts. ! On July 2, 2002, President Bush formally revoked the July 4, 1999, declaration by President Clinton of a national emergency with respect to Taliban because of its hosting of bin Laden. The Clinton determination and related Executive Order 13129 had blocked Taliban assets and property in the United States, banned U.S. trade with Taliban-controlled areas of Afghanistan, and applied these sanctions to Ariana Afghan Airlines, triggering a blocking of Ariana assets (about $500,000) in the United States and a ban on U.S. citizens’ flying on the airline. (The ban on trade with Talibancontrolled territory had essentially ended on January 29, 2002 when the State Department determination that the Taliban controls no territory within Afghanistan.) ! U.N. sanctions on the Taliban imposed by Resolution 1267 (October 15, 1999), Resolution 1333 (December 19, 2000),and Resolution 1363 (July 30, 2001) have now been narrowed to penalize only Al Qaeda (by Resolution 1390, January 17, 2002). Resolution 1267 banned flights outside Afghanistan by its national airline (Ariana), and directed U.N. member states to freeze Taliban assets. Resolution Resolution 1333 prohibited the provision of arms or military advice to the Taliban (directed against Pakistan); directing a reduction of Taliban Taliban diplomatic representation abroad; and banning foreign travel by by senior Taliban officials. Resolution 1363 provided for monitors in in Pakistan to ensure that no weapons or military advice was provided provided to the Taliban. ! P.L. 108-458 (December 17, 2004, referencing the 9/11 Commission recommendations) repeals bans on aid to Afghanistan outright, completing a pre-Taliban effort by President George H.W. Bush to restore aid and credits to Afghanistan. On October 7, 1992, he had issued Presidential Determination 93-3 that Afghanistan is no longer a Marxist-Leninist country, but the determination was not implemented before he left office. Had it been implemented, the prohibition on Afghanistan’s receiving Export-Import Bank guarantees, insurance, or credits for purchases under Section 8 of the 1986 Export-Import Bank Act, would have been lifted. In addition, Afghanistan would have been able to receive U.S. assistance because the requirement would have been waived that Afghanistan apologize for the 1979 killing in Kabul of U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan Adolph “Spike” Dubs. (Dubs was kidnapped in Kabul in 1979 and killed when Afghan police stormed the hideout where he was held.) CRS-70 Figure 1. Map of Afghanistan