Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Kenneth Katzman Specialist in Middle Eastern Affairs December 29, 2010 Congressional Research Service 7-5700 RL30588 CRS Report for Congress Prepared for Members and Committees of Congress Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Summary Following two high-level policy reviews on Afghanistan in 2009, and another completed in December 2010, the Obama Administration asserts that it is pursuing a well resourced and integrated military-civilian strategy intended to pave the way for a gradual transition to Afghan security leadership to begin in July 2011 and be completed by the end of 2014. The pace of that transition is to be determined by conditions on the ground. The policy is intended to ensure that Afghanistan will not again become a base for terrorist attacks against the United States. At the same time, there appears to be a debate within the Administration and between the United States and Pakistan over whether the war effort should be widened somewhat to include stepped up attacks on Afghan militants inside Pakistan. That debate raises the question of the degree to which Pakistan envisions Afghanistan as part of its strategy to avoid encirclement by or pressure from Pakistan’s historic rival, India. At the same time, Afghanistan is achieving ever higher degrees of economic and political integration with its neighbors in Central Asia and the Middle East. The December 2010 review took into account the effect of the addition of U.S. combat troops to Afghanistan in 2009 and 2010, intended to create security conditions to expand Afghan governance and economic development. A total of 51,000 additional U.S. forces were authorized by the two reviews, which has brought U.S. troop levels to about 98,000 as of September 4, 2010, with partner forces holding at about 41,000. Until October 2010, there had not been clear indications that U.S. strategy has shown success, to date. As reflected in the overview of the Administration review, released December 16, 2010, the top U.S./NATO commander in Afghanistan, General David Petraeus, and his associates believe that insurgent momentum has been blunted, although gains remain “fragile and reversible.” One positive sign is that insurgent commanders are exploring possible surrender terms under which they might reintegrate into society. Still, U.N. assessments and some outside experts remain pessimistic, asserting that the insurgents have expanded their presence in northern Afghanistan, and that the Afghan government is too lacking in capacity or effectiveness to be able to solidify coalition security gains. Many assess that President Hamid Karzai’s refusal to forcefully confront governmental corruption has caused a loss of Afghan support for his government, while others note that strong economic growth and economic development are additional causes for optimism. In order to try to achieve a strategic breakthrough that might force key insurgent leaders to negotiate a early political settlement, General Petraeus is attempting to accelerate local security solutions and experiments similar to those he pursued earlier in Iraq, and to step up the use of air strikes and special forces operations against Taliban commanders. In order to take advantage of an apparent new willingness by some insurgent commanders to negotiate, Karzai has named a broad-based 70-member High Peace Council to oversee negotiations. However, there are major concerns among Afghanistan’s minorities and among its women that reconciliation could lead to compromises that erode the freedoms Afghans have enjoyed since 2001. Through the end of FY2010, the United States has provided over $54.5 billion in assistance to Afghanistan since the fall of the Taliban, of which about $30 billion has been to equip and train Afghan forces. (See CRS Report RS21922, Afghanistan: Politics, Elections, and Government Performance, by Kenneth Katzman.) Congressional Research Service Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Contents Background ................................................................................................................................1 From Early History to the 19th Century..................................................................................1 Early 20th Century and Cold War Era.....................................................................................1 Geneva Accords (1988) and Soviet Withdrawal.....................................................................3 The Mujahedin Government and Rise of the Taliban .............................................................5 Taliban Rule (September 1996-November 2001) ...................................................................5 The “Northern Alliance” Congeals ..................................................................................6 Policy Pre-September 11, 2001..............................................................................................7 September 11 Attacks and Operation Enduring Freedom .................................................8 Post-Taliban Nation-Building Efforts ..........................................................................................9 Post-Taliban Political Transition.......................................................................................... 10 Bonn Agreement ........................................................................................................... 10 Permanent Constitution ................................................................................................. 11 First Post-Taliban Elections in 2004 .............................................................................. 11 Formation of an Elected National Assembly (Parliament) .............................................. 11 2009 Presidential and Provincial Elections .................................................................... 12 September 18, 2010, Parliamentary Elections ................................................................ 13 Other Major Governance Issues .......................................................................................... 13 Anti-Corruption Efforts................................................................................................. 14 Enhancing Local Governance........................................................................................ 14 Human Rights and Democracy ...................................................................................... 15 Narcotics Trafficking/Insurgent Financing..................................................................... 15 Civilian U.S. and International Policy Implementation ........................................................ 17 Security Policy and Force Capacity Building............................................................................. 20 Who are U.S. /NATO Forces Fighting? Taliban, Al Qaeda, and Related Insurgents and Their Strength .................................................................................................................. 20 Groups: The Taliban (“Quetta Shura Taliban”)............................................................... 21 Al Qaeda/Bin Laden Whereabouts ................................................................................ 22 Hikmatyar Faction ........................................................................................................ 23 Haqqani Faction............................................................................................................ 24 Pakistani Groups ........................................................................................................... 24 The U.S. Military Effort ...................................................................................................... 25 Perception of “Victory” in the First Five Post-Taliban Years .......................................... 25 Perception of Deterioration and Growing Force Levels in 2007 and 2008 ...................... 26 Obama Administration Strategy Reviews and Further Buildup............................................. 27 March 27, 2009, Policy Announcement and Troop Increase, First Command Change, and McChrystal Assessment ......................................................................... 27 Second High-Level Review and Further Force Increase................................................. 28 McChrystal Replaced by Petraeus ................................................................................. 28 Summary of Current U.S. Strategy as Implemented by General Petraeus ....................... 28 Implementation of Strategy, Early Results, and Doubts.................................................. 31 Security Innovations Under Way ......................................................................................... 33 “Reintegration” and “Reconciliation” With Insurgents................................................... 34 Local Security Experiments: Afghan Provincial Protection Program (APPP) and Local Defense Initiative ............................................................................................. 37 Reversal of Previous Efforts: DDR and DIAG programs ............................................... 38 Congressional Research Service Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Possible Future Limits on U.S. Operations/Status of Forces Agreement ............................... 39 Long-Term Security Commitment ................................................................................. 39 Alliance Issues: The NATO-Led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) and Operation Enduring Freedom ........................................................................................... 40 Recent Major Contingent Developments ....................................................................... 41 Provincial Reconstruction Teams (PRTs) ............................................................................. 43 Evolving Civil-Military Concepts at the PRTs ............................................................... 44 Afghan National Security Forces......................................................................................... 44 Afghan National Army.................................................................................................. 45 Afghan Air Force .......................................................................................................... 47 Afghan National Police (ANP) ...................................................................................... 47 Rule of Law/Criminal Justice Sector ............................................................................. 48 U.S. Security Forces Funding/”CERP”.......................................................................... 48 Policy Alternatives/Support for Reduced U.S. Military Involvement.................................... 50 “Counter-Terrorism” Strategy........................................................................................ 51 Legislative Initiatives: Drawdown Plans........................................................................ 51 Concede Parts of Afghanistan to the Taliban.................................................................. 52 Regional Dimension.................................................................................................................. 52 Pakistan/Pakistan-Afghanistan Border................................................................................. 54 Cooperation Against Al Qaeda ...................................................................................... 55 Increased Direct U.S. Action ......................................................................................... 55 Recent History of Pakistan-Afghanistan Relations......................................................... 55 Iran..................................................................................................................................... 56 India ................................................................................................................................... 59 Russia, Central Asian States, and China............................................................................... 59 Russia........................................................................................................................... 60 Central Asian States ...................................................................................................... 60 China ............................................................................................................................ 61 Persian Gulf States: Saudi Arabia and UAE......................................................................... 62 U.S. and International Aid to Afghanistan and Development Issues ........................................... 63 U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan............................................................................................ 63 Direct Aid and Budget Support to the Afghan Government............................................ 64 Aid Oversight ............................................................................................................... 64 Aid Authorization: Afghanistan Freedom Support Act ................................................... 64 International Reconstruction Pledges/National Development Strategy ........................... 66 Results of U.S. and International Aid in Key Sectors ........................................................... 67 Electricity Sector........................................................................................................... 68 Agriculture Sector ......................................................................................................... 69 Private Sector-Led Development ......................................................................................... 70 Trade Initiatives/Reconstruction Opportunity Zones ............................................................ 72 Residual Issues from Past Conflicts........................................................................................... 89 Stinger Retrieval ........................................................................................................... 89 Mine Eradication........................................................................................................... 89 Figures Figure A-1. Map of Afghanistan ................................................................................................ 93 Figure A-2. Map of Afghan Ethnicities ...................................................................................... 94 Congressional Research Service Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Tables Table 1. Afghanistan Social and Economic Statistics ...................................................................4 Table 2. U.N. Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) ..................................................... 19 Table 3. Background on NATO/ISAF Formation and U.N. Mandate .......................................... 41 Table 4. Operation Enduring Freedom Partner Forces................................................................ 43 Table 5. Major Security-Related Indicators................................................................................ 50 Table 6. Afghan and Regional Facilities Used for Operations in and Supply Lines to Afghanistan ...................................................................... 53 Table 7. Major Reporting Requirements .................................................................................... 66 Table 8. Major International (Non-U.S.) Pledges to Afghanistan Since January 2002................. 73 Table 9. U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan, FY1978-FY1998 ........................................................ 74 Table 10. U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan, FY1999-FY2002....................................................... 75 Table 11. U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan, FY2003..................................................................... 76 Table 12. U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan, FY2004 .................................................................... 77 Table 13. U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan, FY2005 .................................................................... 78 Table 14. U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan, FY2006 .................................................................... 79 Table 15. U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan, FY2007 .................................................................... 80 Table 16. U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan, FY2008 .................................................................... 81 Table 17. U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan, FY2009 .................................................................... 82 Table 18. FY2010 Assistance (Includes Supplemental) .............................................................. 83 Table 19. FY2011 Regular Request ........................................................................................... 84 Table 20. Total Obligations for Major Programs: FY2001-FY2009 ............................................ 85 Table 21. NATO/ISAF Contributing Nations ............................................................................. 86 Table 22. Provincial Reconstruction Teams ............................................................................... 87 Table 23. Major Factions/Leaders in Afghanistan ...................................................................... 88 Appendixes Appendix. U.S. and International Sanctions Lifted .................................................................... 91 Contacts Author Contact Information ...................................................................................................... 94 Congressional Research Service Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Background Afghanistan has a history of a high degree of decentralization, and resistance to foreign invasion and occupation. Some have termed it the “graveyard of empires.” From Early History to the 19th Century Alexander the Great conquered what is now Afghanistan in three years (330 B.C.E. to 327 B.C.E), although at significant cost and with significant difficulty, and requiring, among other steps, marriage to a resident of the conquered territory. From the third to the eighth century, A.D., Buddhism was the dominant religion in Afghanistan. At the end of the seventh century, Islam spread in Afghanistan when Arab invaders from the Umayyad Dynasty defeated the Persian empire of the Sassanians. In the 10th century, Muslim rulers called Samanids, from Bukhara (in what is now Uzbekistan), extended their influence into Afghanistan, and the complete conversion of Afghanistan to Islam occurred during the rule of the Gaznavids in the 11th century. They ruled over the first vast Islamic empire based in what is now Ghazni province of Afghanistan. In 1504, Babur, a descendent of the conquerors Tamarlane and Genghis Khan, took control of Kabul and then moved onto India, establishing the Mughal Empire. (Babur is buried in the Babur Gardens complex in Kabul, which has been refurbished with the help of the Agha Khan Foundation.) Throughout the 16th and 17th centuries, Afghanistan was fought over by the Mughal Empire and the Safavid Dynasty of Persia (now Iran), with the Safavids mostly controlling Herat and western Afghanistan, and the Mughals controlling Kabul and the east. A monarchy ruled by ethnic Pashtuns was founded in 1747 by Ahmad Shah Durrani, who was a senior officer in the army of Nadir Shah, ruler of Persia, when Nadir Shah was assassinated and Persian control over Afghanistan weakened. A strong ruler, Dost Muhammad Khan, emerged in Kabul in 1826 and created concerns among Britain that the Afghans were threatening Britain’s control of India; that fear led to a British decision in 1838 to intervene in Afghanistan, setting off the first Anglo-Afghan War (1838-1842). Nearly all of the 4,500-person British force was killed in that war, which ended with a final British stand at Gandamack. The second Anglo-Afghan War took place during 1878-1880. Early 20th Century and Cold War Era King Amanullah Khan (1919-1929) launched attacks on British forces in Afghanistan (Third Anglo-Afghan War) 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 dropping a requirement that they cover 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. The Soviets began to build large infrastructure projects in Afghanistan during Zahir Shah’s time, such as the north-south Salang Pass/Tunnel and Bagram airfield. He Congressional Research Service 1 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy also accepted agricultural and other development aid from the United States. In part, the countryside was secured during the King’s time by local tribal militias called arbokai. 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. Daoud was overthrown and killed1 in April 1978 by People’s Democratic Party of Afghanistan (PDPA, Communist party) military officers under the direction of two PDPA (Khalq faction) leaders, Hafizullah Amin and Nur Mohammad Taraki, in what is called the Saur (April) Revolution. Taraki became president, but he was displaced in September 1979 by Amin. Both leaders drew their strength from rural ethnic Pashtuns and tried to impose radical socialist change on a traditional society, in part by redistributing land and bringing more women into government. The attempt at rapid modernization sparked 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 Amin with another PDPA leader perceived as pliable, Babrak Karmal (Parcham faction of the PDPA), who was part of the 1978 PDPA takeover but was exiled by Taraki and Amin. Soviet occupation forces, which numbered about 120,000, 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 Inter-Service Intelligence directorate (ISI). The mujahedin were also relatively well organized and coordinated by seven major parties that in early 1989 formed a Peshawar-based “Afghan Interim Government” (AIG). The seven party leaders were Mohammad Nabi Mohammadi; Sibghatullah Mojaddedi; Gulbuddin Hikmatyar; Burhanuddin Rabbani; Yunus Khalis; Abd-i-Rab Rasul Sayyaf; and Pir Gaylani. Mohammadi and Khalis have died in recent years of natural causes, but the others are still active in Afghan politics and governance or, in the case of Hikmatyar, fighting the Afghan government. The mujahedin weaponry included U.S.-supplied portable shoulder-fired anti-aircraft systems called “Stingers,” which proved highly effective against Soviet aircraft. The United States decided in 1985 to provide these weapons to the mujahedin after substantial debate within the Reagan Administration and some in Congress over whether they could be used effectively and whether doing so would harm broader U.S.-Soviet relations. The mujahedin also hid and stored weaponry in a large network of natural and manmade tunnels and caves throughout Afghanistan. Partly because of the effectiveness of the Stinger in shooting down Soviet helicopters and fixed wing aircraft, the Soviet Union’s losses mounted—about 13,400 Soviet soldiers were killed in the war, according to Soviet figures—turning Soviet domestic opinion against the war. In 1986, after the reformist Mikhail Gorbachev became leader, the Soviets replaced Karmal with the director of Afghan intelligence, Najibullah Ahmedzai (known by his first name). Najibullah was a Ghilzai Pashtun, and was from the Parcham faction of the PDPA. Some Afghans say that some aspects of his governing style were admirable, particularly his appointment of a prime minister (Sultan Ali Keshtmand and others) to handle administrative duties and distribute power. 1 Daoud’s grave was discovered outside Kabul in early 2008. He was reburied in an official ceremony in Kabul in March 2009. Congressional Research Service 2 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Geneva Accords (1988) and Soviet Withdrawal 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. A warming of relations moved the United States and Soviet Union to try for 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-FY1990.2 The Soviet pullout decreased the perceived strategic value of Afghanistan, causing a reduction in subsequent covert funding. As indicated in Table 9, U.S. assistance to Afghanistan remained at relatively low levels from the time of the Soviet withdrawal, validating the views of many that the United States largely considered its role in Afghanistan “completed” when Soviets troops left, and there was little support for a major U.S. effort to rebuild the country. The United States closed its embassy in Kabul in January 1989, as the Soviet Union was completing its pullout, and it remained so until the fall of the Taliban in 2001. With Soviet backing withdrawn, Najibullah rallied the PDPA Army and the party-dominated paramilitary organization called the Sarandoy, and successfully beat back the first post-Soviet withdrawal mujahedin offensives. Although Najibullah defied expectations that his government would immediately collapse after a Soviet withdrawal, military defections continued and his position weakened in subsequent years. On March 18, 1992, Najibullah publicly agreed to step down once an interim government was formed. That announcement set off a wave of rebellions primarily by Uzbek and Tajik militia commanders in northern Afghanistan—particularly Abdul Rashid Dostam, 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, 1992.3 Each year, a public parade is held to mark that day. (Some major mujahedin figures did not attend the 2010 celebration because of a perception that they are under Afghan public and international criticism of their immunity from alleged human rights abuses during the anti-Soviet war.) 2 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. 3 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. Congressional Research Service 3 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Table 1. Afghanistan Social and Economic Statistics Population 28 million +. Kabul population is 3 million, up from 500,000 in Taliban era. Ethnicities/Religions Pashtun 42%; Tajik 27%; Uzbek 9%; Hazara 9%; Aimak 4%; Turkmen 3%; Baluch 2%. Size of Religious Minorities Religions: Sunni (Hanafi school) 80%; Shiite (Hazaras, Qizilbash, and Isma’ilis) 19%; other 1%Christians-estimated 500-8,000 persons; Sikh and Hindu-3,000 persons; Bahai’s-400 (declared blasphemous in May 2007); Jews-1 person; Buddhist- small numbers, mostly foreigners. No Christian or Jewish schools. One church. Literacy Rate 28% of population over 15 years of age. 43% of males; 12.6% of females. Total and Per Capita GDP/Growth Rates $23.3 billion purchasing power parity. 114th in the world. Per capita: $800 purchasing power parity. 219th in the world. Growth: 14%, about the same 12% in 2007. Unemployment Rate 40% Children in School/Schools Built 5.7 million, of which 35% are girls. Up from 900,000 in school during Taliban era. 8,000 schools built; 140,000 teachers hired since Taliban era. 17 universities, up from 2 in 2002. 75,000 Afghans in universities in Afghanistan; 5,000 when Taliban was in power. 35% of university students in Afghanistan are female. Afghans With Access to Health Coverage 65% with basic health services access-compared to 8% during Taliban era. Infant mortality down 18% since Taliban to 135 per 1,000 live births. 680 clinics built . Roads Built About 2,500 miles paved post-Taliban, including repaving of “Ring Road” (78% complete) that circles the country. Kabul-Qandahar drive reduced to 6 hours. Judges/Courts About 1,000 judges trained since fall of Taliban; some removed for corruption Banks Operating 17, including branches in some rural areas, but still about 90% of the population use hawalas, or informal money transfer services. Zero banks existed during Taliban era. Some limited credit card use. Some Afghan police now paid by cell phone (E-Paisa). Access to Electricity 15%-20% of the population. Gov’t Revenues (excl. donor funds) About $1.4 billion in 2010; nearly double the $720 million 2007. Total Afghan budget is about $3 billion, with shortfall covered by foreign donors, including through World Bank-run Afghanistan Reconstruction Trust Fund. Financial Reserves About $4.4 billion, up from $180 million in 2002. Includes amounts due Central Bank. External Debt $8 billion bilateral, plus $500 million multilateral. U.S. forgave $108 million in debt in 2004, and $1.6 billion forgiven by other creditors in March 2010. Foreign/Private Investment About $500 million to $1 billion per year. Four Afghan airlines: Ariana (national) plus three privately owned: Safi, Kam, and Pamir. Mining/Minerals Vast untapped minerals affirmed by U.S. experts (June 2010). Chinese firm mining copper in Lowgar Province; December 2010: contracts let to produce oil in Sar-I-Pol Province (north) and for private investers to mine gold in Baghlan Province. Agriculture/Major Legal Exports 80% of the population is involved in agriculture. Self-sufficiency in wheat production as of May 2009 (first time in 30 years). Products for export include fruits, raisins, melons, pomegranate juice (Anar), nuts, carpets, lapis lazuli gems, marble tile, timber products (Kunar, Nuristan provinces). July 2010 Afghanistan-Pakistan trade agreement may increase these exports. Some raisins being exported to Britain. Oil Proven Reserves 3.6 billion barrels of oil, 36.5 trillion cubic feet of gas. Current oil production negligible, but USAID funding project to revive oil and gas facilities in the north. Import Partners/Imports Pakistan 38.6%; U.S. 9.5%; Germany 5.5%; India 5.2%.. Main imports are food, petroleum, capital goods, textiles, autos Cellphones/Tourism About 12 million cellphones, up from several hundred used by Taliban government officials. Tourism: National park opened in Bamiyan June 2009. Increasing tourist visits. Sources: CIA, The World Factbook; various press and U.S. government official testimony. Congressional Research Service 4 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy The Mujahedin Government and Rise of the Taliban The fall of Najibullah exposed the differences among the mujahedin parties. 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, who never formally assumed a working prime ministerial role in Kabul because of suspicions of Rabbani, was purportedly backed by Pakistan. Hikmatyar’s radical faction of the Islamist Hizb-e-Islami (Islamic Party) had received a large proportion of the U.S. aid during the anti-Soviet war. (Yunus Khalis led a more moderate faction of Hizb-e-Islami during that war.) In 1993-1994, Afghan Islamic clerics and students, mostly of rural, Pashtun origin, formed the Taliban movement. Many were former mujahedin who had become disillusioned with conflict among mujahedin parties and had moved into Pakistan to study in Islamic seminaries (“madrassas”) mainly of the “Deobandi” school of Islam. 4Some say this Islam is similar to the “Wahhabism” that is practiced in Saudi Arabia. Taliban practices were also consonant with conservative Pashtun tribal traditions. The Taliban viewed the Rabbani government as corrupt and anti-Pashtun, and the four years of civil war (1992-1996) created popular support for the Taliban as able to deliver stability. With the help of defections, the Taliban peacefully took control of the southern city of Qandahar in November 1994. By February 1995, it was approaching Kabul, after which an 18-month stalemate 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, new Taliban victories near Kabul led to the 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 (September 1996-November 2001) The Taliban regime was led by Mullah Muhammad Umar, who lost an eye in the anti-Soviet war while fighting as part of the Hizb-e-Islami mujahedin party of Yunis Khalis. Umar held the title of Head of State and “Commander of the Faithful,” remaining in the Taliban power base in Qandahar and almost never appearing in public, although he did occasionally receive high-level foreign officials. Umar forged a political and personal bond with bin Laden and refused U.S. demands to extradite him. Like Umar, most of the senior figures in the Taliban regime were Ghilzai Pashtuns, which predominate in eastern Afghanistan. They are rivals of the Durrani Pashtuns, who are predominant in the south. 4 The Deobandi school began in 1867 in a seminary in Uttar Pradesh, in British-controlled India, that was set up to train Islamic clerics and to counter the British educational model. Congressional Research Service 5 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy 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 many consider its most extreme action, and which some say was urged by bin Laden, in March 2001 the Taliban blew up two large Buddha statues carved into hills above Bamiyan city, considering them idols. The Clinton Administration held talks with the Taliban before and after it took power, but was unable to moderate its policies. The United States withheld recognition of Taliban as the legitimate government of Afghanistan, formally recognizing no faction as the government. The United Nations continued to seat representatives of the 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. Women’s rights groups urged the Clinton Administration not to recognize the Taliban government. In May 1999, the Senate-passed S.Res. 68 called on the President not to recognize an Afghan government that oppresses 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 (along with Assistant Secretary of State Karl Indurfurth and NSC senior official Bruce Riedel) visited Afghanistan, but the Taliban refused to hand over bin Laden. They did not meet Mullah Umar. 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. 5 Some observers assert that the Administration missed several clearer opportunities to strike him, including a purported sighting of him by an unarmed Predator drone at the Tarnak Farm camp in Afghanistan in the fall of 2000.6 Clinton Administration officials said that domestic and international support for ousting the Taliban militarily was lacking. The “Northern Alliance” Congeals The Taliban’s policies caused 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 Table 3. Virtually all the figures mentioned remain key players in politics in Afghanistan, sometimes allied with and at other times feuding with President Hamid Karzai: • Uzbeks/General Dostam. One major faction was the Uzbek militia (the Junbush-Melli, or National Islamic Movement of Afghanistan) of General Abdul Rashid Dostam. Frequently referred to by some Afghans as one of the “warlords” who gained power during the anti-Soviet war, Dostam first joined those seeking 5 A pharmaceutical plant in Sudan (Al Shifa) believe to be producing chemical weapons for Al Qaeda also was struck that day, although U.S. reviews later corroborated Sudan’s assertions that the plant was strictly civilian in nature. 6 Congressional Research Service 6 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy to oust Rabbani during his 1992-1996 presidency, but later joined Rabbani’s Northern Alliance against the Taliban. (For more information on Dostam, see CRS Report RS21922, Afghanistan: Politics, Elections, and Government Performance, by Kenneth Katzman.) • Hazara Shiites. Members of Hazara tribes, mostly Shiite Muslims, are prominent in Bamiyan, Dai Kundi, and Ghazni provinces (central Afghanistan) and are always wary of repression by Pashtuns and other larger ethnic factions. The Hazaras have tended to serve in working class and domestic household jobs, although more recently they have been prominent in technology jobs in Kabul, raising their economic status. They are also increasingly cohesive politically, leading to gains in the September 2010 parliamentary elections. During the various Afghan wars, the main Hazara Shiite militia was Hizb-e-Wahdat (Unity Party, composed of eight different groups). Hizb-e-Wahdat suffered a major setback in 1995 when the Taliban captured and killed its leader Abdul Ali Mazari. One of Karzai’s vice president’s Karim Khalili, is a Hazara. Another prominent Hazara faction leader is Mohammad Mohaqeq. • Pashtun Islamists/Sayyaf. Abd-I-Rab Rasul Sayyaf, later a post-Taliban parliamentary committee chairman, headed a Pashtun-dominated hardline Islamist mujahedin faction called the Islamic Union for the Liberation of Afghanistan during the anti-Soviet war. Even though he is an Islamic conservative, Sayyaf viewed the Taliban as selling out Afghanistan to Al Qaeda and he joined the Northern Alliance to try to oust the Taliban. He is said to eye the speakership of the lower house of parliament. Policy Pre-September 11, 2001 Throughout 2001, but prior to the September 11 attacks, Bush Administration policy differed little from Clinton Administration policy—applying economic and political pressure while retaining dialogue with the Taliban, and refraining from militarily assisting 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 also wanted to assist ethnic Pashtuns who were opposed to the Taliban. Other covert options were reportedly under consideration as well.7 In a departure from Clinton Administration policy, the Bush Administration stepped up engagement with Pakistan to try to reduce its support for the Taliban. At that time, there were allegations that Pakistani advisers were helping the Taliban in their fight against the Northern Alliance. In accordance with U.N. Security Council Resolution 1333, in February 2001 the State Department ordered the Taliban representative office in New York closed, although Taliban representative Abdul Hakim Mujahid continued to operate informally. (Mujahid has reconciled with the current Afghan government, and serves on a Council to oversee broader reconciliation.) In March 2001, Administration officials received a Taliban envoy to discuss bilateral issues. Even though the Northern Alliance was supplied with Iranian, Russian, and Indian financial and military support—all of whom had different motives for that support—the Northern Alliance nonetheless continued to lose ground to the Taliban after it lost Kabul in 1996. By the time of the 7 Drogin, Bob. “U.S. Had Plan for Covert Afghan Options Before 9/11.” Los Angeles Times, May 18, 2002. Congressional Research Service 7 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy September 11 attacks, the Taliban controlled at least 75% of the country, including almost all provincial capitals. The Alliance suffered a major setback on September 9, 2001, two days before the September 11 attacks, when Ahmad Shah Masud was assassinated by Arab journalists who allegedly were Al Qaeda operatives. He was succeeded by his intelligence chief, Muhammad Fahim, 8 a veteran figure but one 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. This is widely interpreted as a U.N. authorization for military action in response to the attacks, but it did not explicitly authorize Operation Enduring Freedom to oust the Taliban. Nor did the Resolution specifically reference Chapter VII of the U.N. Charter, which allows for responses to threats to international peace and security. In Congress, S.J.Res. 23 (passed 98-0 in the Senate and with no objections in the House, P.L. 107-40), was somewhat more explicit than the U.N. Resolution, authorizing9 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. It 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 CIA operatives. The purpose of these operations was to help the Northern Alliance and Pashtun antiTaliban forces by providing information to direct U.S. air strikes against Taliban positions. In part, the U.S. forces and operatives worked with such Northern Alliance contacts as Fahim and Amrollah Saleh, who during November 2001–June 2010 served as Afghanistan’s intelligence director, to weaken Taliban defenses on the Shomali plain north of Kabul (and just south of Bagram Airfield, which marked the forward position of the Northern Alliance during Taliban rule). Some U.S. combat units (about 1,300 Marines) moved into Afghanistan to pressure the Taliban around Qandahar at the height of the fighting (October-December 2001), but there were few pitched battles between U.S. and Taliban soldiers. Some critics believe that U.S. dependence on local Afghan militia forces in the war subsequently set back post-war democracy building. The Taliban regime unraveled rapidly after it lost Mazar-e-Sharif on November 9, 2001, to forces led by Dostam. 10 Other, mainly Tajik, Northern Alliance forces—the commanders of which had 8 Some Afghan sources refer to him by the name “Fahim Khan,” or “Marshal Fahim.” Another law (P.L. 107-148) established a “Radio Free Afghanistan” under RFE/RL, providing $17 million in funding for it for FY2002. 10 In the process, Dostam captured Taliban fighters and imprisoned them in freight containers, causing many to suffocate. They were buried in a mass grave at Dasht-e-Laili. This issue is covered in CRS Report RS21922, (continued...) 9 Congressional Research Service 8 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy initially 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 U.S.supported Pashtun leaders, including Hamid Karzai. The end of the Taliban regime is generally dated as December 9, 2001, when the Taliban surrendered Qandahar and Mullah Umar fled the city, leaving it under tribal law administered by Pashtun leaders such as the Noorzai clan. Subsequently, U.S. and Afghan forces 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 (Operation Valiant Strike). On May 1, 2003, Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld announced an end to “major combat.” Post-Taliban Nation-Building Efforts11 With Afghanistan devastated after more than 20 years of warfare, the 2001 fall of the Taliban regime raised questions about the extent of a U.S. and international commitment to Afghanistan. Taking the view that leaving the Afghanistan-Pakistan theater after the 1989 Soviet pullout had led Afghanistan degenerate into chaos, the decision was made by the Bush Administration to try to rebuild try to build a relatively strong central government and to assist Afghanistan’s economy, in order to prevent a return of the Taliban, Al Qaeda, and other militants to Afghanistan. The effort, which many outside experts described as “nation-building,” was supported by major international institutions and U.S. partners in several post-Taliban international meetings. The task has proved slower and more difficult than anticipated, in part because of the devastation that years of war wrought on governing institutions, on the education system, and on the already limited infrastructure. Some observers believe the international community had unrealistic expectations of what could be achieved in a relatively short time frame—particularly in establishing competent, non-corrupt governance and a vibrant democracy. The Obama Administration’s two “Afghanistan strategy reviews” in 2009 the results of which were announced on March 27, 2009, and on December 1, 2009, narrowed official U.S. goals to preventing terrorism safe haven in Afghanistan and Pakistan. However, the elements of Obama Administration strategy in many ways enhance the nation-building strategy put in place by the Bush Administration. A strategy review, the summary of results of which were released December 16, 2010, did not alter U.S. goals or strategy set in the December 1, 2009, statement.12 Reforming Afghan governance has been a consistent theme, and was emphasized both at the two major international conferences on Afghanistan—the January 28, 2010, “London Conference” and the July 20, 2010, “Kabul Conference.”13 Although the issue of governance is inseparable from that of securing Afghanistan, the sections below briefly outline Afghan-generated and international (...continued) Afghanistan: Politics, Elections, and Government Performance, by Kenneth Katzman. 11 See also CRS Report RS21922, Afghanistan: Politics, Elections, and Government Performance, by Kenneth Katzman. 12 Text of the released summary is at 13 A draft of the final communiqué of the Kabul Conference is at as_afghanistan/print. Congressional Research Service 9 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy community-led efforts to build Afghanistan’s governing capacity. These governance issues are discussed in greater detail in CRS Report RS21922, Afghanistan: Politics, Elections, and Government Performance, by Kenneth Katzman. Post-Taliban Political Transition The 2001 ouster of the Taliban government paved the way for the success of a long-stalled U.N. effort to form a broad-based Afghan government and for the international community to help Afghanistan build legitimate governing institutions. In the formation of the first post-Taliban transition 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, a succession of U.N. mediators adopted 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 did not hold. 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 2000; an Organization of Islamic Conference (OIC) contact group; and prominent Afghan exile efforts, including discussion groups launched by Hamid Karzai and his clan, former mujahedin commander Abd al-Haq, and Zahir Shah (“Rome process”). Bonn Agreement 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 (November 14, 2001) called 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 Afghan factions, most prominently the Northern Alliance and that of the former King—but not the Taliban—to an international conference in Bonn, Germany. On December 5, 2001, the factions signed the “Bonn Agreement.”14 It was endorsed by U.N. Security Council Resolution 1385 (December 6, 2001). The agreement was reportedly forged with substantial Iranian diplomatic help because Iran had supported the military efforts of the Northern Alliance faction and had leverage to persuade temporary caretaker Rabbani and the Northern Alliance to cede the top leadership to Hamid Karzai as leader of an interim administration. Other provisions of the agreement: 14 • 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, and renewed yearly thereafter) gave formal Security Council authorization for the international peacekeeping force (International Security Assistance Force, ISAF); • referred to the need to cooperate with the international community on counter narcotics, crime, and terrorism; and Text of Bonn agreement at Congressional Research Service 10 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy • applied the constitution of 1964 until a permanent constitution could be drafted.15 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). Subsequently, a 35-member constitutional commission drafted the constitution, unveiling it 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 Sibghatullah Mojadeddi (mentioned above) ended with approval of the constitution with only minor changes. It set up a presidential system, with an elected president and a separately elected National Assembly (parliament). The Northern Alliance failed in its effort to set up a prime ministership (in which the elected parliament would select a prime minister and a cabinet) , but the faction did achieve some limitation to presidential powers by assigning major authorities to the parliament, such as the power to veto senior official nominees. The constitution made former King Zahir Shah honorary “Father of the Nation,” a title that is not heritable. Zahir Shah died on July 23, 2007.16 First Post-Taliban Elections in 2004 Security conditions precluded the holding of the first post-Taliban elections simultaneously. The first election, for president, was held on October 9, 2004, missing a June constitutional deadline. Turnout was about 80%. On November 3, 2004, Karzai was declared winner (55.4% of the vote) over his 17 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 364 district councils, each of which will likely have contentious boundaries because they will inevitably separate tribes and clans, have not been held to date. Formation of an Elected National Assembly (Parliament) The National Assembly (parliament), particularly the elected lower house, has emerged as a relatively vibrant body that creates accountability and has often asserted itself politically. The most notable example has been the 2009-2010 confirmation process for Karzai’s cabinet choices, in which many of Karzai’s nominees were voted down. The Assembly’s assertiveness—expected to continue when a newly elected parliament is seated on January 20, 2011—shows, in part, that the better educated “independents” are emerging as pivotal members of parliament. Substantial detail on the factions in the Afghan parliament is provided in CRS Report RS21922, Afghanistan: Politics, Elections, and Government Performance, by Kenneth Katzman. 15 The last pre-Karzai 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, but that gathering was widely viewed by Afghans as illegitimate. 16 Text of constitution: Congressional Research Service 11 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Hamid Karzai, President of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan Hamid Karzai, born December 24, 1957, was selected to lead Afghanistan at the Bonn Conference because he was a prominent Pashtun leader who had been involved in Taliban-era political talks among exiled Afghans and was viewed as a compromiser rather than a “strongman.” However, some observers consider his compromises as Afghanistan’s leader a sign of weakness, and criticize him for indulging members of his clan and other allies with appointments. Others view him as overly suspicious of the intentions of the United States and other outside powers, believing they are intent on replacing him or favoring certain groups of Afghans over others. He has consistently denied allegations by unnamed U.S. and other officials that he is taking mood altering medications—asserted to be a possible explanation for his occasional sharp criticisms of some aspects of U.S. Afghanistan policy. 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’s grandfather was head of the consultative National Council during King Zahir Shah’s reign. He attended university in India and supported the mujahdin party of Sibghatullah Mojadeddi (still a very close ally) during the ant-Soviet war. He was deputy foreign minister in the mujahidin government of Rabbani 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 major combat of Operation Enduring Freedom (late 2001). Karzai also relies heavily for advice from tribal and faction leaders from southern Afghanistan, including Sher Mohammad Akhunzadeh, the former governor of Helmand (until 2005), as well as from well-educated professionals such as his current Foreign Minister Zalmay Rasool, his brother-in-law and key Afghanistan National Security Council official Ibrahim Spinzada, and the former foreign minister, now National Security Adviser, Rangeen Spanta. With heavy protection, Karzai has survived several assassination attempts since taking office, including rocket fire or gunfire at or near his appearances. His wife, Dr. Zenat Karzai, is a gynecologist by profession. They have been married about 11 years and have a son, Mirwais, born in 2008. In December 2009, he spoke publicly about personal turmoil among relatives in Karz village that resulted in the death of an 18-year-old relative in October 2009. His half brother, Ahmad Wali Karzai, is the most powerful political figure in that province, He is key to Karzai’s maintenance of support and the cornerstone of his information network in Qandahar but Ahmad Wali has been widely accused of involvement in or tolerating narcotics trafficking. A New York Times article on October 28, 2009, said Ahmad Wali is also a paid informant for the CIA and some of his property has been used by U.S. Special Forces. Ahmad Wali was the apparent target of at least two bombings in Qandahar in 2009. Others of Karzai’s several brothers have lived in the United States, including Qayyum Karzai. Qayyum Karzai won a parliament seat in the September 2005 election but resigned his seat in October 2008 due to health reasons. Qayyum subsequently represented the government in inconclusive talks, held in several Persian Gulf states, to reconcile with Taliban figures close to Mullah Umar. Another brother, Mahmoud Karzai, is a businessman reportedly under U.S. Justice Department investigation of his business interests in Qandahar and Kabul, including auto dealerships, apartment houses, and a stake in Kabul Bank, which nearly collapsed in September 2010. Other Karzai relatives and associates have formed security companies and other contracting firms that have profited extensively from international reconstruction, transportation, and protection funds, including a $2.2 billion U.S. “Host Nation Trucking” contract. The United States banned contracts to one such firm, Watan Risk Management, as of January 6, 2011; the firm is co-owned by two Karzai cousins Ahmad and Rashid Popal. 2009 Presidential and Provincial Elections The 2009 presidential and provincial elections were expected to further Afghanistan’s democratic development. However, because of the widespread fraud identified by Afghanistan’s U.N.appointed “Elections Complaints Commission” (ECC) in the August 20, 2009, first round of the elections, the process did not produce that result. The election fraud difficulty may have contributed to the substantial parliamentary opposition to many of Karzai’s nominees for his postelection cabinet. In each of three rounds of cabinet nominations in 2009 and 2010, many, if not Congressional Research Service 12 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy most, of Karzai’s nominees were voted down by the National Assembly. The latest round of nominations occurred in late June 2010, after Karzai forced Interior Minister Mohammad Hanif Atmar to resign, ostensibly for failing to prevent insurgent attacks in Kabul itself. Atmar was close to and well respected by U.S. officials. Also resigning on June 6 was National Directorate of Security (NDS, Afghan intelligence) chief Amrollah Saleh, a Tajik and an ally of the United Front leaders. Both were believed to oppose Karzai’s efforts to reconcile with senior insurgent leaders. See also: CRS Report RS21922, Afghanistan: Politics, Elections, and Government Performance, by Kenneth Katzman. September 18, 2010, Parliamentary Elections A key test of Karzai’s repeated commitment to reforms were the September 18, 2010, National Assembly elections. That election was held amid significant violence but not sufficient to derail the voting. Final results were expected October 30, 2010 but widespread fraud complaints delayed finalization of the results until November 24, 2010. The election is covered in CRS Report RS21922, Afghanistan: Politics, Elections, and Government Performance, cited earlier. Some of the election results remain in dispute, and some worry that the disputes are widening ethnic differences because a substantial number of Pashtuns lost seats they expected to retain. Karzai’s allies apparently did not win enough seats (a majority) to ensure that Pashtun conservative Sayyaf, mentioned above, would replace Yunus Qanooni, an Abdullah supporter, as lower house speaker. The Assembly convenes on January 20, 2011. Perhaps in an effort to overturn some of the results and achieve a parliament more supportive, the Karzai government has asked Afghanistan’s Supreme Court to become involved in adjudicating the results, and the Court, on December 28, 2010, set up a special tribunal to review candidate complaints. It is not clear whether the tribunal will have the authority or will to try to change any results. Other Major Governance Issues Obama Administration policy, as articulated on March 27, 2009, and December 1, 2009, emphasizes expanding and improving Afghan governance as a long-term means of stabilizing Afghanistan. The latter Obama statement specified that there would be “no blank check” for the Afghan government if it does not reduce corruption and deliver services. This emphasis is expressed extensively in the State Department January 2010 document outlining its policy priorities, entitled Afghanistan and Pakistan Regional Stabilization Strategy.17 The December 16, 2010 summary of the Administration policy review on Afghanistan did not emphasize governance issues, but did specify that “[The United States is] also supporting Afghanistan’s efforts to better improve national and sub-national governance, and to build institutions with increased transparency and accountability to reduce corruption—key steps in sustaining the Afghan government. Several of the various aspects of U.S. efforts to build the capacity of the central and local government institutions are discussed in greater detail in CRS Report RS21922, Afghanistan: Politics, Elections, and Government Performance. U.S. policy has been to expand governance throughout the country, a policy that is receiving increased U.S. financial and advisory resources under the Obama Administration. A key to 17 Released by the Office of the Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan, January 2010. Congressional Research Service 13 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy governance strategy, particularly during 2002-2006, was to strengthen the central government by helping Karzai curb key regional strongmen and local militias—whom some refer to as “warlords.” These actors controlled much of Afghanistan after the Taliban regime disintegrated in late 2001, but there was a decision by the international community to build up an accountable central government rather than leave Afghanistan in the hands of local militias. These forces often arbitrarily administer justice and use their positions to enrich themselves and their supporters. Karzai has marginalized some of the largest regional leaders, but he is criticized by some human rights groups and international donors for continuing to tolerate or rely on others to keep order in some areas, particularly in non-Pashtun inhabited parts of Afghanistan (the north and west). Karzai’s view is that maintaining ties to ethnic and regional faction leaders has prevented the emergence of ethnic conflict that would detract from the overall effort against the Taliban. Several of these faction leaders are discussed in CRS Report RS21922, Afghanistan: Politics, Elections, and Government Performance, by Kenneth Katzman. Anti-Corruption Efforts An accelerating trend in U.S. policy—and emphasized in both major Obama Administration strategy reviews as well as by many in Congress—is to press Karzai to weed out official corruption. U.S. officials believe that rife corruption in the Afghan government is undermining U.S. domestic support for the U.S. mission in Afghanistan, and causing the Afghan population to sour on the Karzai government. U.S. anti-corruption and rule of law efforts are discussed extensively in the “Afghanistan and Pakistan Regional Stabilization Strategy” issued by the office of the late Ambassador Holbrooke in January 2010, referenced above. The Obama Administration reportedly has decided to mute its public criticism of Karzai on the grounds that public criticism causes Karzai to become suspicious of U.S. intent and to ally with undemocratic elements in Afghanistan. The corruption issue—its sources, U.S. and Afghan efforts to curb corruption, and progress—is discussed in CRS Report R41484, Afghanistan: U.S. Rule of Law and Justice Sector Assistance, by Liana Sun Wyler and Kenneth Katzman and in CRS Report RS21922, Afghanistan: Politics, Elections, and Government Performance, by Kenneth Katzman. Enhancing Local Governance In part because building the central government has gone slowly and because official corruption is widespread, there has been a U.S. shift, predating the Obama Administration, away from reliance toward promoting local governance. Some argue that, in addition to offering the advantage of bypassing an often corrupt central government, doing so is more compatible with Afghan traditions of local autonomy. As emphasized in the January 2010 SRAP strategy document cited earlier, there has been a major U.S. and Afghan push to build up local governing structures, reflecting a shift in emphasis from the 2001-2007 approach of focusing on building up central authority. However, building local governance has suffered from a deficit of trained and respected local government administrators ready or willing to serve, particularly where hostilities are ongoing. This deficiency has hindered U.S. counter-insurgency efforts in southern Afghanistan, as discussed further below, and accounts for many of the uncertainties clouding the prospects for transition to Afghan security leadership by the end of 2014. Congressional Research Service 14 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy U.S. policy has sought to use local governance promotion efforts to support U.S. security strategy for Afghanistan. Several districts have received special attention to become “models” of district security and governance are Nawa, in Helmand Province, and Baraki-Barak, in Lowgar Province, both cleared of Taliban militants in 2009. With substantial infusions of U.S. development funds that put sometime insurgents to work on projects (offering $5 per day to perform such tasks as cleaning irrigation canals), these districts are, by several accounts, far more stable and secure than they were in 2009. As part of “Operation Moshtarek” (Operation Together), launched February 13, 2010, to clear the city of Marjah of militants, a district governor (Hajji Zahir) and district administration were selected in advance. Zahir tried to build up his administration after the town was wrested from Taliban control, but governance there was slow to expand. Zahir was replaced in early July 2010. Still, the British civilian representative in Marjah said in October 2010 that central government ministry representation in Marjah is now in place and operating consistently. (Marjah is currently part of Nad Ali district, and is eventually to become its own district, according to Afghan observers.) 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. The State Department report on human rights practices for 2009 (released March 11, 2010)18 said that Afghanistan’s human rights record remained “poor,” noting in particular that the government or its agents commit arbitrary or unlawful killings. Still, virtually all observers agree that Afghans are freer than they were under the Taliban. The tables at the end of this report contain information on U.S. funding for democracy, governance, rule of law and human rights, and elections support since the fall of the Taliban. Numerous aspects of Afghan performance on human rights are covered in CRS Report RS21922, Afghanistan: Politics, Elections, and Government Performance. Narcotics Trafficking/Insurgent Financing19 Narcotics trafficking is regarded by some as a core impediment to the U.S. mission in Afghanistan by undermining rule of law and providing funds to the insurgency. However, it is also an area on which there has been progress in recent years. The trafficking is said to generate an estimated $70 million–$100 million per year for the Taliban. U.S. officials hope that recent progress will be sustained. A UNODC report of September 2010, continued a relatively positive trend in reporting on this issue, noting that all of the 20 provinces (out of 34 provinces in Afghanistan) in the “poppy free” category remain that way. Total production in 2010 is estimated at 3,600 metric tons, a 48% decrease from 2009, although this was due to a crop disease, for the most part. 20 Obama Administration policy is focusing on promoting legitimate agricultural alternatives to poppy growing and, in conjunction, the late Ambassador Holbrooke announced in July 2009 that 18 For text, see 19 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. 20 UNDOC. Opium Survey 2010. Afg_opium_survey_2010_exsum_web.pdf Congressional Research Service 15 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy the United States would end its prior focus on eradication of poppy fields. In this view, eradication was driving Afghans into the arms of the Taliban as protectors of their ability to earn a living, even if doing so is from narcotics cultivation. Encouraging alternative livelihoods has always been the preferred emphasis of the Afghan government. The de-emphasis on eradication also put aside the long-standing differences over whether to conduct spraying of fields, particularly by air. That concept was strenuously opposed by Karzai and not implemented. Congress sided with Karzai’s view; the FY2008 Consolidated Appropriation (P.L. 110-161) prohibited U.S. counter-narcotics funding from being used for aerial spraying on Afghanistan poppy fields without Afghan concurrence. That provision was reiterated in the FY2010 consolidated appropriation (P.L. 111-117). Other policies promote incentives; Helmand, for example, received about $10 million in Good Performance funding in 2009 for a 33% cut in poppy cultivation that year. How consistently to use U.S. and NATO forces to combat narcotics has been under almost constant debate. Some NATO contributors, such as Britain, have focused on interdicting traffickers and raiding drug labs. The U.S. military, in support of the effort after initial reluctance, is flying Afghan and U.S. counter-narcotics 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. To help break up narcotics trafficking networks, the DEA presence in Afghanistan is has expanded from 13 agents in 2008 to over 80 in 2010, with additional agents in Pakistan. The late Ambassador Holbrooke also placed additional focus on the other sources of Taliban funding, including continued donations from wealthy residents of the Persian Gulf. He has established a multinational task force to combat Taliban financing generally, not limited to narcotics, and U.S. officials are emphasizing with Persian Gulf counterparts the need for cooperation. Narcotics trafficking control was perhaps the one issue on which the Taliban regime satisfied much of the international community. The Taliban enforced a July 2000 ban on poppy cultivation.21 Narcotics-Related Aid Conditionality The Bush Administration repeatedly named Afghanistan as a major illicit drug producer and drug transit country, but did not include 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.22 The Bush Administration exercised waiver provisions to a required certification of full Afghan cooperation that was needed to provide more than congressionally stipulated amounts of U.S. economic assistance to Afghanistan. A similar certification requirement (to provide amounts over $300 million) was contained in the FY2008 appropriation (P.L. 110-161); in the FY2009 regular appropriation, P.L. 21 Crossette, Barbara. “Taliban Seem to Be Making Good on Opium Ban, U.N. Says.” New York Times, February 7, 2001. 22 Afghanistan had been so designated every year during 1987-2002. Congressional Research Service 16 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy 111-8 ($200 million ceiling); and the FY2010 appropriation, P.L. 111-117, ($200 million ceiling). The FY2009 supplemental (P.L. 111-32) withheld 10% of State Department narcotics funding (International Narcotics Control and Law Enforcement, INCLE) pending a report that Afghanistan is removing officials involved in narcotics trafficking or gross human rights violations. No funds for Afghanistan have been held up. Civilian U.S. and International Policy Implementation Building the capacity of the Afghan government, and helping it develop economically, is primarily, although not exclusively, the purview of U.S. and international civilian officials and institutions. In line with the prioritization of Afghanistan policy, in February 2009, the Administration appointed Ambassador Richard Holbrooke as “Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan” (SRAP), reporting to Secretary of State Clinton. Holbrooke died on December 13, 2010, but his team at the State Department, now led by his deputy, Frank Ruggiero in an acting capacity, remains intact. It consists mainly of members detailed from several different agencies; several have long-term experience on Afghanistan and Pakistan affairs. Karl Eikenberry, who served as commander of U.S. forces in Afghanistan during 2004-2005, is U.S. Ambassador. While the main focus of the civilian side of U.S. and international policy is on building governance and promoting economic development, President Obama has said he expects the civilian team to work closely with the U.S. and NATO military structure, and a U.S. civilianmilitary “joint campaign plan” was developed and released in mid-August 2009.23 On February 7, 2010, in an effort to improve civilian coordination between the United States, its foreign partners, and the Afghan government, a NATO “Senior Civilian Representative” in Afghanistan, UK Ambassador Mark Sedwill, took office. Ambassador Sedwill works not only with U.S. military officials but with representatives of the embassies of partner countries and with a special U.N. Assistance Mission–Afghanistan (UNAMA, see Table 2). At U.S. Embassy Kabul, there is a “deputy Ambassador”—senior official Francis Ricciardone. Another Ambassador rank official (William Todd) manages U.S. economic assistance issues. Another Ambassador-rank official, Joseph Mussomeli, handles Embassy management. Ambassador Timothy Carney oversaw U.S. policy for the 2009 elections. Another official of Ambassador rank, Hans Klemm, (as of June 2010) coordinates U.S. rule of law programs The U.S. Embassy has progressively expanded its personnel and facilities and will expand its facilities further to accommodate some of the additional civilian hires and Foreign Service officers who have been posted to Afghanistan as mentors and advisers to the Afghan government. U.S. officials say there are more than 1,100 U.S. civilian officials in Afghanistan, as of December 2010, up from only about 400 in early 2009. Most of the newly posted officials are being deployed outside Kabul. The tables at the end of this report include U.S. funding for State Department and USAID operations, including Embassy construction and running the “Embassy air wing,” a fleet of twin-engine turboprops that ferry U.S. officials and contractors around Afghanistan. In a significant development attempting to signal normalization of certain areas of Afghanistan, in early 2010 the United States formally inaugurated U.S. consulates in Herat and Mazar-e-Sharif. In November 2010, contracts were announced for expansion of the U.S. Embassy ($511 million) and to construct the two consulates ($20 million for each facility). 23 For a copy of the joint campaign plan, see Congressional Research Service 17 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy The Afghan Ambassador to the United States, Sayed Tayib Jawad, served as Ambassador from 2004 until his recall in August 2010. He was recalled because of complaints in Kabul about Western-style parties that were being held at the Afghan embassy in the United States. No replacement has been named, to date. There is some discussion on the Afghan side of appointing a special envoy, possibly Ashraf Ghani, to interact on a global basis with the Afghanistan donor community. Congressional Research Service 18 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Table 2. U.N. Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) The United Nations is extensively involved in Afghan governance and national building, primarily in factional conflict resolution and coordination of development assistance. The coordinator of U.N. efforts is the U.N. Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA), headed as of March 22, 2010, by Swedish diplomat Staffan de-Mistura, replacing Norwegian diplomat Kai Eide. Mistura formerly played a similar role in Iraq. U.N. Security Council Resolution 1806 of March 20, 2008, expanded UNAMA’s authority to coordinating the work of international donors and strengthening cooperation between the international peacekeeping force (ISAF, see below) and the Afghan government. In concert with the Obama Administration’s emphasis on Afghan policy, UNAMA is to open offices in as many of Afghanistan’s 34 provinces as financially and logistically permissible. (The mandate of UNAMA, reviewed at one-year intervals, ran until March 23, 2010, as provided for by Resolution 1869 of March 23, 2009, and was renewed for another year on March 22, 2010 (Resolution 1917)). Resolution 1917 largely restated UNAMA’s expanded mandate and coordinating role with other high-level representatives in Afghanistan, and election support role. In keeping with its expanding role, in 2008 U.S. Ambassador Peter Galbraith was appointed as Eide’s deputy, although he left Afghanistan in early September 2009 in a reported dispute with Eide over how vigorously to insist on investigating fraud in the August 20 Afghan election. Galbraith reportedly pressed Afghan and independent election bodies to be as vigorous as possible in the interests of rule of law and election legitimacy; Eide purportedly was willing to encourage an Afghan compromise to avoid a second round run-off. The split led U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki Moon to remove Galbraith from his post at UNAMA in late September 2009 on the grounds that the disharmony was compromising the UNAMA mission. Several Galbraith supporters subsequently resigned from UNAMA and Galbraith has appealed his firing amid reports he was proposing a plan to replace Karzai had an election runoff been postponed until 2010. The turmoil may have caused Eide to leave his post when his contract with the U.N. expired in March 2010. UNAMA is co-chair of the joint Afghan-international community coordination body called the Joint Coordination and Monitoring Board (JCMB), and is helping implement the five-year development strategy outlined in a “London Compact,” (now called the Afghanistan Compact) adopted at the January 31–February 1, 2006, London conference on Afghanistan. The priorities developed in that document comport with Afghanistan’s own “National Strategy for Development,” presented on June 12, 2008, in Paris. During his term, Eide urged the furnishing of additional capacitybuilding resources, and he complained that some efforts by international donors are redundant or tied to purchases by Western countries. In statements and press conferences, Eide continued to note security deterioration but also progress in governance and in reduction of drug cultivation, and he publicly supported negotiations with Taliban figures to end the war. His final speech before leaving criticized the U.S.-led coalition for focusing too much on military success and not enough on governance. UNAMA also often has been involved in local dispute resolution among factions, and it helps organize elections. Under a March 2010 compromise with Karzai, it nominates two international members of the five person Electoral Complaints Commission (ECC), one fewer than the three it selected under the prior election law. UNAMA was a co-convener of the January 28, 2010, and July 20, 2010, London and Kabul Conferences, respectively. The difficulties in coordinating U.N. with U.S. and NATO efforts were evident in a 2007 proposal to create a new position of “super envoy” that would represent the United Nations, the European Union, and NATO in Afghanistan. The concept advanced and in January 2008, with U.S. support, U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki Moon tentatively appointed British diplomat Paddy Ashdown as the “super envoy.” However, Karzai rejected the appointment reportedly over concerns about the scope of authority of such an envoy. Karzai might have also sought to show independence from the international community. Ashdown withdrew his name on January 28, 2008. However, the concept reportedly was floated again in late 2009, but was again suppressed by Karzai and others who say it contradicts U.S. and other efforts to promote Afghan leadership. The NATO senior civilian representative post, held by Amb. Mark Sedwill (UK), appears to represent a step in the direction of improved donor coordination in Afghanistan and streamlining of the foreign representative structure there. For more information on UNAMA, see CRS Report R40747, United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan: Background and Policy Issues, by Rhoda Margesson. Congressional Research Service 19 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Security Policy and Force Capacity Building24 The U.S. definition of “success” of the stabilization mission in Afghanistan, articulated since the ouster of the Taliban in late 2001, is to help build up an Afghan government and security force that can defend itself, expand governance, and develop economically. The Obama Administration’s policy reviews in 2009 formally narrowed U.S. goals to preventing Al Qaeda from reestablishing a base in Afghanistan. However, the policy and military tools employed by the Obama Administration in most ways continue and even expand a nation-building goal. The December 1, 2009, speech by President Obama stated U.S. goals as: (1) denying Al Qaeda a safe haven [in Afghanistan]; and (2) reversing the Taliban’s momentum and denying it the ability to overthrow the government. The statement generally backed the August 30, 2009, recommendations of then-top commander in Afghanistan General Stanley McChrystal’s to undertake a fully resourced counter-insurgency mission. The focus of the mission is on 121 districts (out of 364 total districts in Afghanistan) deemed restive and in which support for the Afghan government is lowest. Of those, 80 districts are of the most intense focus, according to Defense Department reports and officials. The Administration review, the summary of results of which were released December 16, 2010 (cited earlier) did not announce any major changes to U.S. goals or strategy. The Obama Administration has not significantly changed the basic pillars of U.S. and NATO security strategy that have been in place since 2001, although the blend of these components often shifts as outcomes and prospects of various initiatives are evaluated. The main elements include (1) combat operations and patrols by U.S. forces and a NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) to “provide space” for the expansion of Afghan governance, security leadership, and infrastructure and economic development; (2) U.S. and NATO operation of “provincial reconstruction teams”(PRTs) to serve as enclaves to facilitate the strategy; and (3) the equipping, training, and expansion of Afghanistan National Security Forces (ANSF). Some strategy elements that have emerged since 2008, and which are taking precedence as Western public support for the war effort erodes, include establishing local protection forces and backing efforts to reconcile with Taliban leaders who might want to end armed struggle. Another strategy element apparently under debate is whether to expand the conflict area to include additional U.S., allied, and Afghan ground action against militants over the border in Pakistan. Who are U.S. /NATO Forces Fighting? Taliban, Al Qaeda, and Related Insurgents and Their Strength As noted in General McChrystal’s August 2009 initial assessment and the Defense Department November 2010 report, security is being challenged by a confluence of related armed groups who are increasingly well equipped and sophisticated in their tactics and operations, particularly by using roadside bombs.25 There has not been agreement about the relative strength of insurgents in all of the areas where they operate, or their degree of cooperation with each other, although press reports in December 2010, quoting U.S. military officers in Afghanistan, say there has been increasing operational cooperation among the various Afghan insurgent groups. Afghan and U.S. 24 Some of the information in this section is taken from Department of Defense. “Report on Progress Toward Security and Stability in Afghanistan.” November 2010. 25 Congressional Research Service 20 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy assessments are that there are more than 20,000 total insurgents operating in Afghanistan, up from a few thousand in 2003. Prior to U.S.-led offensives launched since mid-2009, the Karzai government was estimated by to control about 30% of the country, while insurgents controlled 4% (13 out of 364 districts). Insurgents “influenced” or “operated in” another 30% (Afghan Interior Ministry estimates in August 2009). Tribes and local groups with varying degrees of loyalty to the central government control the remainder. Outside groups, such as aid groups that released their own findings in September 2010, sometimes report higher percentages of insurgent control or influence.26 U.S. military officers in Kabul told CRS in October 2009 that the Taliban had named “shadow governors” in 33 out of 34 of Afghanistan’s provinces, although many provinces in northern Afghanistan were assessed as having minimal Taliban presence. As far as tactics, U.S. commanders increasingly worry about growing insurgent use of improvised explosive devices (IEDs), including roadside bombs. IED’s are the leading cause of U.S. combat deaths, and IED attacks nearly doubled again in frequency in the first four months of 2010, according to a U.N. Secretary General report of June 16, 2010. In January 2010, President Karzai issued a decree banning importation of fertilizer chemicals (ammonium nitrate) commonly used for the roadside bombs, but there reportedly is informal circumvention of the ban for certain civilian uses, and the material reportedly still comes into Afghanistan from Pakistan . U.S. commanders have said they have verified insurgent use of surface-to-air missiles.27 There were about 310 U.S. soldiers killed in 2009, nearly double the previous year, and U.S. deaths in 2010 appear to have reached a new high for the Afghan conflict of about 500. There were about 210 soldiers from partner countries killed during 2010. According to a UNAMA report issued in December 2010, covering the fall of 2010, there was a 66% increase in security incidents as compared to the same period in 2009. However, over 80% of those deaths are purportedly caused by insurgent attacks. Groups: The Taliban (“Quetta Shura Taliban”) The core of the insurgency remains the Taliban movement centered around Mullah Umar, who led the Taliban regime during 1996-2001. Mullah Umar and many of his top advisers remain at large and are reportedly running their insurgency from their safe haven in Pakistan. They are believed to be primarily in and around the city of Quetta, according to Afghan officials, thus accounting for the term usually applied to Umar and his aides: “Quetta Shura Taliban” (QST). Some believe that Umar and his inner circle blame their past association with Al Qaeda for their loss of power and want to distance themselves from Al Qaeda. Other experts see continuing close association that is likely to continue were the Taliban movement to return to power. Some believe that the U.S. “surge” in Afghanistan may be causing Umar, or some around him, to mull the concept of a political settlement. Umar’s top deputy, Mullah Bradar, was arrested in a reported joint U.S.-Pakistani operation near the city of Karachi in February 2010—Karzai considered his capture set back Afghan government-Taliban reconciliation talks, which Bradar reportedly supports. It was also reported in March 2010 that Pakistan had briefly detained another 26 27 Maj. Gen. John Campbell, commander of RC-E, July 28, 2010, press briefing. Congressional Research Service 21 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy member of the Quetta Shura, Mullah Kabir, and arrested Agha Jhan Motasim, a son-in-law of Umar.28 In recent years, other top Taliban figures, including Mullah Dadullah, his son Mansoor, and Mullah Usmani have been killed or captured. Some observers say that informal settlement ideas floated between the Taliban and the Karzai government may envision Umar being granted exile in Saudi Arabia. To address losses, Umar reportedly replaced Bradar with a young leader, Mullah Abdul Qayyum Zakir, a U.S. detainee in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, until 2007.29 Some reports assert that other aides (most notably Mullah Ghul Agha Akhund) may not recognize Zakir and might themselves be seeking the number two spot in the organization. Two members of the Quetta Shura, Mullah Hassan Rahmani, former Taliban governor of Qandahar, and Mullah Afghan Tayib, another spokesman, are said to have come under some Pakistani pressure to refrain from militant activities. The Taliban has several official spokespersons still at large, including Qari Yusuf Ahmadi and Zabiullah Mujahid, and it operates a clandestine radio station, “Voice of Shariat” and publishes videos. Al Qaeda/Bin Laden Whereabouts The summary of the Administration policy review, released December 16, 2010, says that “there has been significant progress in disrupting and dismantling the Pakistan-based leadership and cadre of Al Qaeda over the past year.” U.S. commanders say that Al Qaeda militants are more facilitators of militant incursions into Afghanistan rather than active fighters in the Afghan insurgency. Director of Central Intelligence Leon Panetta said on June 27, 2010, that Al Qaeda fighters in Afghanistan itself might number 50-100.30 Small numbers of Al Qaeda members— including Arabs, Uzbeks, and Chechens—have been captured or killed in battles in Afghanistan itself, according to U.S. commanders. Some of these fighters apparently belong to Al Qaeda affiliates such as the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU). Some NATO/ISAF officials said in October 2010, however, that some Al Qaeda cells may be moving back into remote areas of Kunar and Nuristan provinces.31 Despite the reports of progress against Al Qaeda in Afghanistan and Pakistan, Al Qaeda’s top leadership has consistently eluded U.S. efforts. In December 2001, in the course of the postSeptember 11 major combat effort, U.S. Special Operations Forces and CIA operatives reportedly narrowed Osama bin Laden’s location to the Tora Bora mountains in Nangarhar Province (30 miles west of the Khyber Pass), but the Afghan militia fighters who were the bulk of the fighting force did not prevent his escape. Some U.S. military and intelligence officers (such as Gary Berntsen and Dalton Fury, who have written books on the battle) have questioned the U.S. decision to rely mainly on Afghan forces in this engagement. Bin Laden and his close ally Ayman al-Zawahiri have long been presumed to be on the Pakistani side of the border. CNN reported October 18, 2010, that assessments from the U.S.-led coalition now say the two are likely in a settled area near the border with Afghanistan, and not living in a very remote uninhabited area. A U.S. strike reportedly missed Zawahiri by a few hours in the 28 Filkins, Dexter and Pir Zubair Shah. “After Arrests, Taliban Promote a Fighter.” New York Times, March 25, 2010. Ibid. 30 Text of the Panetta interview with ABC News is at 31 Dreazen, Yochi. “Al Qaida Returning to Afghanistan for New Attacks.” October 18, 2010. 29 Congressional Research Service 22 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy village of Damadola, Pakistan, in January 2006, suggesting that there was intelligence on his movements. 32 On the ninth anniversary of the September 11 attacks, some U.S. observers said it was still significant to try to capture bin Laden if for no other reason than for symbolic value. Among other bin Laden aides, press reports in September 2010 said that Al Qaeda’s former spokesman, Kuwait-born Sulayman Abu Ghaith, may have been released from house arrest by Iran and allowed to proceed to Pakistan. Other reports in November 2010 said that another Al Qaeda senior operative, Sayf al Adl, who was believed to be in Iran during 2002-2010, may have left Iran and gone to Pakistan, and reportedly may have been elevated by bin Laden to top Al Qaeda operational commander. As a consequence of other U.S. efforts, a January 2008 strike near Damadola killed Abu Laith alLibi, 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. In August 2008, an airstrike was confirmed to have killed Al Qaeda chemical weapons expert Abu Khabab al-Masri, and two senior operatives allegedly involved in the 1998 embassy bombings in Africa reportedly were killed by an unmanned aerial vehicle (Predator) strike in January 2009. Such aerial-based strikes have become more frequent under President Obama, indicating that the Administration sees the tactic as effective in preventing attacks. Unmanned vehicle strikes are also increasingly used on the Afghanistan battlefield itself and against Al Qaeda affiliated militants in such countries as Yemen. Hikmatyar Faction Another “high value target” identified by U.S. commanders is the faction of former mujahedin party leader Gulbuddin Hikmatyar (Hizb-e-Islami Gulbuddin, HIG) allied with Al Qaeda and Taliban insurgents. As noted above, Hikmatyar was one of the main U.S.-backed mujahedin leaders during the Soviet occupation era. Hikmatyar’s faction received extensive U.S. support against the Soviet Union, but is now active against U.S. and Afghan forces in Kunar, Nuristan, Kapisa, and Nangarhar provinces, north and east 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 designated as a “Foreign Terrorist Organization” (FTO). Table 5 contains estimated numbers of HIG. While U.S. commanders continue to battle Hikmatyar’s militia, on March 22, 2010, both the Afghan government and Hikmatyar representatives confirmed they were in talks in Kabul, including meetings with Karzai. Hikmatyar has expressed a willingness to discuss a cease-fire with the Karzai government since 2007, and several Karzai’s key allies in the National Assembly are former members of Hikmatyar’s party. In January 2010, Hikmatyar outlined specific conditions for a possible reconciliation with Karzai, including elections under a neutral caretaker government following a U.S. withdrawal. These conditions are unlikely to be acceptable to Karzai or the international community, although many of them might be modified or dropped. Some close to Hikmatyar apparently attended the consultative peace loya jirga on June 2-4, 2010, which discussed the reconciliation issue, as analyzed further below. 32 Gall, Carlotta and Ismail Khan. “U.S. Drone Attack Missed Zawahiri by Hours.” New York Times, November 10, 2006. Congressional Research Service 23 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Haqqani Faction Another militant faction, cited repeatedly as a major threat, is the “Haqqani Network” led by Jalaludin Haqqani and his eldest son, Siraj (or Sirajjudin). Jalaludin Haqqani, who served as Minister of Tribal Affairs in the Taliban regime of 1996-2001, is believed closer to Al Qaeda than to the ousted Taliban leadership in part because one of his wives is purportedly Arab. The group is active around its key objective, Khost city, capital of Khost Province. The Haqqani network has claimed responsibility for attacks on India’s embassy in Kabul and other India-related targets. U.S. officials say they are continuing to pressure the Haqqani network with military action in Afghanistan and air strikes on the Pakistani side of the border. Haqqani property inside Pakistan has been repeatedly targeted since September 2008 by U.S. aerial drone strikes. Siraj’s brother, Mohammad, was reportedly killed by a U.S. unmanned vehicle strike in late February 2010, although Mohammad was not thought to be a key militant commander. Pakistan reportedly arrested a minor family member (Nasruddin Haqqani) in December 2010—a possible indication that Pakistan senses U.S. pressure for increased action against the network. However, some doubt has been cast that an arrest took place. The Haqqani network is said to be a major driver of the reported debate within the Obama Administration over whether to authorize additional Special Operations raids across the border into Pakistan, and presumably against the Haqqani network.33 Among other steps, in July 2010, it was reported that General Petraeus, as part of his adjustments to policy as top commander in Afghanistan, wants the Haqqani network to be named as an FTO under the Immigration and Naturalization Act. Secretary of State Clinton said on July 19, 2010, during a visit to Pakistan, that U.S. policy is moving in that direction. Such a move would be intended to signal to Pakistan that it should not see the Haqqani network, as a whole, as part of a reconciled political structure in Afghanistan that would protect Pakistan’s interests and work to limit the influence of India. This view was emphasized in a New York Times story of June 25, 2010.34 The Haqqani faction has been thought not amenable to a political settlement, but some reports in November 2010 have said that members of the faction may have participated in exploratory reconciliation meetings with government representatives. Table 5 contains estimated numbers of Haqqani fighters. Pakistani Groups The Taliban of Afghanistan are increasingly linked politically and operationally to Pakistani Taliban militants. The Pakistani groups might see a Taliban recapture of Afghanistan’s government as helpful to the prospects for these groups inside Pakistan or in their Kashmir struggle. A major Pakistani group, the Pakistani Taliban (Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan, TTP), is primarily seeking to challenge the government of Pakistan, but they facilitate the transiting into Afghanistan of Afghan Taliban and support the Afghan Taliban goals of recapturing Afghanistan. The TTP may also be seeking to target the United States, based on a failed bombing in New York in May 2010. The State Department designated the TTP as a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO) under the Immigration and Naturalization Act on September 2, 2010, allegedly for having close connections to Al Qaeda. 33 Mazzzetti, Mark and Dexter Filkins. “U.S. Commanders Push to Expand Raids in Pakistan.” New York Times, December 21, 2010. 34 Jane Perlez, Eric Schmitt, and Carlotta Gall, “Pakistan Is Said to Pursue Foothold in Afghanistan,” The New York Times, June 24, 2010. Congressional Research Service 24 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Another Pakistani group said to be increasingly active inside Afghanistan is Laskhar-e-Tayyiba (LET, or Army of the Righteous). LET is an Islamist militant group that has previously been focused on operations against Indian control of Kashmir. The U.S. Military Effort The vast majority of U.S. troops in Afghanistan are under NATO/ISAF command. The remainder are part of the post-September 11 anti-terrorism mission Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF). There are also Special Operations Forces in Afghanistan under a separate command. Serving under General Petraeus is Major General David Rodriguez, who heads a NATO-approved “Intermediate Joint Command” focused primarily on day-to-day operations and located in a facility adjoining Kabul International Airport. He has been in this position since mid-2009. The ISAF/U.S. Forces-Afghanistan commander reports not only to NATO but, through U.S. channels, to U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM). Whether under NATO or OEF, many U.S. forces in Afghanistan are in eastern Afghanistan and lead Regional Command East of the NATO/ISAF operation. These U.S. forces belong to Combined Joint Task Force 101 (as of June 2010), which is commanded by Major General John Campbell. As of November 2010, the most restive provinces in RC-E are Paktia, Paktika, Khost, Kunar, Nangarhar, and Nuristan. Helmand, Qandahar, Uruzgan, Zabol, Nimruz, and Dai Kundi provinces constitute “Regional Command South (RC-S),” a command formally transferred to NATO/ISAF responsibility on July 31, 2006. U.S. forces have not led RC-S; the command was rotated among Britain, the Netherlands, and Canada. However, with the Dutch pullout in July 2010 and the growing U.S. troop strength in RC-S prompted a May 23, 2010, NATO decision to bifurcate RC-S, with the United States leading a “southwest” subdivision focused on Helmand and Nimruz. This is an evolution of the growing U.S. involvement in RC-S since 2008. Perception of “Victory” in the First Five Post-Taliban Years During 2001-mid-2006, U.S. forces and Afghan troops fought relatively low levels of 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). By late 2005, U.S. and partner commanders appeared to believe that the combat, coupled with overall political and economic reconstruction, had virtually ended any insurgency. Anticipating further stabilization, NATO/ISAF assumed lead responsibility for security in all of Afghanistan during 2005-2006. Contrary to U.S. expectations, violence increased significantly in mid-2006, particularly in the east and the south, where ethnic Pashtuns predominate. Reasons for the deterioration include some of those discussed above in the sections on governance: Afghan government corruption; the absence of governance or security forces in many rural areas. Other factors included the safe haven enjoyed by militants in Pakistan; the reticence of some NATO contributors to actively combat insurgents; a popular backlash against civilian casualties caused by NATO and U.S. military operations; and the slow pace of economic development. Many Afghans are said to have Congressional Research Service 25 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy turned to the Taliban as a source of impartial and rapid justice, in contrast to the slow and corrupt processes instituted by the central government. Perception of Deterioration and Growing Force Levels in 2007 and 2008 Since 2006, and particularly during 2009 and 2010, the key theater of implementation of U.S. strategy has been eastern and southern Afghanistan, especially Helmand and Qandahar provinces. NATO counter-offensives during 2006-2008—such as Operation Mountain Lion, Operation Mountain Thrust, and Operation Medusa (August-September 2006, in Panjwai district of Qandahar Province)—cleared key districts but did not prevent subsequent reinfiltration. In late 2006, British forces—who believe in 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 themselves. That strategy failed when the Taliban took over Musa Qala town in February 2007. A NATO offensive in December 2007 retook it. As a further response, NATO and OEF forces tried to apply a more integrated strategy involving preemptive combat, increased development work, and a more streamlined command structure. Major combat operations in 2007 included U.S. and NATO attempted preemption of an anticipated Taliban “spring offensive” (“Operation Achilles,” March 2007) in the Sangin district of Helmand Province, around the Kajaki dam, and Operation Silicon (May 2007), also in Helmand. (In September 2010, Britain turned over security leadership in Sangin to U.S. forces in the near future; combat in the district has accounted for nearly half of Britain’s entire casualties in Afghanistan to date. U.S. strategy for the district is said to try to push out the boundaries of secure area of the district; British efforts focused on better securing the district major city.) Despite the additional resources put into Afghanistan, throughout 2008, growing concern took hold within the Bush Administration. Pessimism was reflected in such statements as one in September 2008 by Joint Chiefs of Staff chairman Admiral Mike Mullen that “I’m not sure we’re winning” in Afghanistan. Several major incidents supported that assessment, including (1) expanding Taliban operations in provinces where it had not previously been active, particularly Lowgar, Wardak, and Kapisa, close to Kabul; (2) high-profile attacks in Kabul against welldefended targets, such as the January 14, 2008, attack on the Serena Hotel in Kabul and the July 7, 2008, suicide bombing at the Indian Embassy in Kabul, killing more than 50; (3) the April 27, 2008, assassination attempt on Karzai during a military parade celebrating the ouster of the Soviet Union; and (4) a June 12, 2008, Sarposa prison break in Qandahar (several hundred Taliban captives were freed, as part of an emptying of the 1,200 inmates there). To try to arrest deterioration, the United States and its partners decided to increase force levels. The added forces partly fulfilled a mid-2008 request by General McKiernan for 30,000 additional U.S. troops (beyond the approximately 35,000 there at the time of the request). However, as the November 2008 U.S. presidential election approached, the decision whether to fulfill the entire request was deferred to the next Administration. U.S. troop levels started 2006 at 30,000; climbed slightly to 32,000 by December 2008; and reached 39,000 by April 2009. Partner forces were increased significantly as well, by about 6,000 during this time, to a total of 39,000 at the end of 2009 (rough parity between U.S. and non-U.S. forces). Many of the U.S. forces deployed in 2008 and 2009 were Marines that deployed to Helmand, large parts of which had fallen out of coalition/Afghan control. Congressional Research Service 26 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Obama Administration Strategy Reviews and Further Buildup In September 2008, the U.S. military and NATO each began strategy reviews. The primary U.S. review was headed by Lt. Gen. Douglas Lute, the Bush Administration’s senior adviser on Iraq and Afghanistan (still in the Obama Administration with responsibility for Afghanistan). Other U.S. reviews were conducted by the Department of Defense, by CENTCOM, and by the State Department. These reviews were briefed to the incoming Obama Administration. The Obama Administration, which maintained that Afghanistan needed to be given a higher priority than it was during the Bush Administration, integrated the reviews into an overarching 60-day interagency “strategy review.” It was chaired by South Asia expert Bruce Riedel and co-chaired by Ambassador Holbrooke and Under Secretary of Defense for Policy Michele Flournoy. March 27, 2009, Policy Announcement and Troop Increase, First Command Change, and McChrystal Assessment President Obama announced a “comprehensive” strategy on March 27, 2009.35 In conjunction, he announced the deployment of an additional 21,000 U.S. forces, of which about 4,000 would be trainers. Shortly after the announcement, the Administration decided that U.S. military leadership in Afghanistan was insufficiently innovative. On May 11, 2009, Secretary of Defense Gates and Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Michael Mullen announced that General McKiernan would be replaced by General Stanley McChrystal, considered an innovative commander as head of U.S. special operations from 2003 to 2008. He assumed command on June 15, 2009. General McChrystal, after assuming command, assessed the security situation and suggested a strategy in a report of August 30, 2009, and presented to NATO on August 31, 2009.36 The main elements are: 35 • That the goal of the U.S. military should be to protect the population—and to help the Afghan government take steps to earn the trust of the population—rather than to search out and combat Taliban concentrations. Indicators of success such as ease of road travel and normal life for families are more important than are counts of numbers of enemy fighters killed. • That there is potential for “mission failure” unless a fully resourced, comprehensive counter-insurgency strategy is pursued and reverses Taliban momentum within 12-18 months. • About 44,000 additional U.S. combat troops (including trainers) would be needed to have the greatest chance for his strategy’s success—beyond those approved by the Obama Administration strategy review in March 2009. “White Paper”: 36 Commander NATO International Security Assistance Force, Afghanistan, and U.S. Forces, Afghanistan. “Commander’s Initial Assessment.” August 30, 2009, available at documents/Assessment_Redacted_092109.pdf? Congressional Research Service 27 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Second High-Level Review and Further Force Increase The McChrystal assessment set off debate within the Administration. In September 2009, the Administration began a second high-level review of U.S. strategy, taking into account the McChrystal recommendations and the marred August 20, 2009, presidential election. Some senior U.S. officials, such as Secretary of Defense Gates, were concerned that adding many more U.S. forces could create among the Afghan people a sense of “occupation” that could prove counterproductive. Some Members of Congress, including Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Carl Levin, said that the U.S. focus should be on expanding Afghan security forces capabilities before sending additional U.S. forces. The high-level review included at least nine high-level meetings, chaired by President Obama, and reportedly concluded on November 19, 2009. The President announced his decisions in a speech at West Point military academy on December 1, 2009.37 The major features of the December 1 statement included the following: • That 30,000 additional U.S. forces (plus an unspecified number of additional “enablers”) would be sent to “reverse the Taliban’s momentum” and strengthen the capacity of Afghanistan’s security forces and government in order to pave the way for a transition, beginning in July 2011, to Afghan leadership of the stabilization effort. U.S. force levels did reach their current level of about 98,000 on/about September 4, 2010. • The July 2011 deadline is the policy element that has caused significant controversy, as discussed below. McChrystal Replaced by Petraeus On June 23, 2010, President Obama accepted the resignation of General McChrystal after summoning him to Washington, DC, to discuss the comments by him and his staff to a reporter for Rolling Stone (article cited earlier) that disparaged virtually all the civilian figures involved in Afghanistan policy. He named General Petraeus as General McChrystal’s successor, a move that appeared to reassure President Karzai. In a June 23, 2010, statement, President Obama attributed the change purely to the disrespect of civilian authority contained in the Rolling Stone comments, and stated that Afghanistan policy would not change. General Petraeus was confirmed by the Senate on June 30, 2010, and assumed command on July 4, 2010. Summary of Current U.S. Strategy as Implemented by General Petraeus The major outlines of Obama Administration strategy have taken shape as outlined below, and the Administration review the summary of which was released on December 16, 2010, cited earlier, reaffirmed that U.S. strategy is “working well.” The major tenets are: • Key Goals: (1) disrupt terrorist networks in Afghanistan and Pakistan to degrade their ability to launch international terrorist attacks; (2) promote a more capable, accountable, and effective government in Afghanistan; (3) develop self-reliant 37 President Obama speech, op. cit. Testimony of Secretary Gates, Secretary Clinton, and Admiral Mullen before the Senate Armed Services Committee and the House Foreign Affairs Committee. December 2, 2009. Congressional Research Service 28 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Afghan security forces; and (4) involve the international community to actively assist in addressing these objectives. These relatively targeted goals are in line with comments by President Obama that he wants to “finish the job” in Afghanistan during his presidency. • Strategy Definition: The overall counter-insurgency strategy is intended to “clear, hold, build, and transition”—to protect the population and allow time for Afghan governance and security forces to take leadership and for infrastructure and economic development to take root. • Limiting Civilian Casualties. Part of the strategy is to win support of Afghans by sharply limiting air strikes and some types of raids and combat that cause Afghan civilian casualties and resentment38 Some refer to the rules as the “Karzai 12,” referring to the number of points of these rules of engagement. The NATO International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) and the Karzai government want to prevent any recurrence of incident such as the one that occurred near Herat on August 22, 2008, in which a NATO bomb killed up to 90 civilians, as well as the incident in September 2009 in Konduz in which Germany’s contingent called in an airstrike on Taliban fighters who captured two fuel trucks; killing several civilians as well as Taliban fighters. Still, ISAF-caused civilian casualties continue, mainly due to misunderstandings at ISAF checkpoints, and in November 2010 President Karzai publicly called for a reduction of some of the night raids that are causing popular backlash. • July 2011 Deadline. The Obama Administration emphasis on transition to Afghan security leadership beginning in July 2011 has been interpreted by some Administration officials—and by some Afghan and regional leaders—as laying the groundwork for winding down U.S. involvement in coming years.39 The time frame stimulated considerable debate and may have been somewhat overtaken by NATO decisions in Lisbon in November, 2010, as discussed further below. • Resources and Troops: The Administration and foreign partners assert that resource “inputs” are, as of October 2010, aligned with mission requirements. • Pressing the Afghan Government: The Administration asserts that the Karzai government is being held to account for its performance, although, as noted, no specific penalties have been imposed on the Afghan government for shortfalls. • Civilian “Uplift”: A key strategy component is to develop Afghan institutions, particularly at the provincial and local levels. To be effective, the number of U.S. civilian advisors in Afghanistan reached about 1,000 in early 2010 and is over 1,100 as of the end of 2010. Of these at least 400 serve outside Kabul as part of initiatives such as the 32 “District Support Teams” and the “District Working Groups.” That is up from 67 outside Kabul in early 2009. 38 See CRS Report R41084, Afghanistan Casualties: Military Forces and Civilians, by Susan G. Chesser. Commander NATO International Security Assistance Force, Afghanistan, and U.S. Forces, Afghanistan. “Commander’s Initial Assessment.” August 30, 2009, available at documents/Assessment_Redacted_092109.pdf. White House. Remarks by the President In Address to the Nation on the Way Forward in Afghanistan and Pakistan. December 1, 2009; Chandrasekaran, Rajiv. “Differing Views of New Afghanistan Strategy.” Washington Post, December 26, 2009. 39 Congressional Research Service 29 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy • Civilian-Military Integration: There is a commitment to civilian-military integration, as outlined in a DOD-State Department joint campaign plan and the late Ambassador Holbrooke’s January 2010 strategy document, referenced earlier. High-level “Senior Civilian Representatives” have been appointed to help the military formulate strategy for the regional commands where they serve. This is part of a new “Interagency Provincial Affairs” initiative that is less militaryfocused. • Reintegration and Reconciliation: As discussed later, the Administration supports Afghan efforts to provide financial and social incentives to persuade insurgents to lay down their arms and accept the Afghan constitution. The United States was at first skeptical but is now increasingly supporting Karzai’s policy of negotiating with senior insurgent leaders. • Pakistan: Engagement with Pakistan and enlisting its increased cooperation is pivotal to U.S. policy. More information is in the section on Pakistan, below, and in CRS Report RL33498, Pakistan-U.S. Relations, by K. Alan Kronstadt. • International Dimension: New international diplomatic mechanisms have been formed to better coordinate all “stakeholders” in the Afghanistan issue (NATO, Afghanistan’s neighbors, other countries in Afghanistan’s region, the United Nations, and other donors). Meetings such as the January 28, 2010, meeting in London and the July 20, 2010, Kabul Conference are part of that effort. To date, at least 25 nations have appointed direct counterparts to the SRAP, including the UAE, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey, which meet periodically as part of a 44-nation (and growing) “International Contact Group” for Afghanistan. It has met nine times, most recently in Rome on October 18, 2010. (Iran attended it for the first time.) • Partner Contributions: Increased partner contributions of funding and troops were sought and offered. Currently, there is U.S. effort to encourage partner forces to remain in Afghanistan at least until a planned transition to Afghan leadership by 2014. • Metrics: The Administration will continue to measure progress along clear metrics. Many in Congress, pressing for clear metrics to assess progress, inserted into P.L. 111-32 (FY2009 supplemental appropriation) a requirement that the President submit to Congress, 90 days after enactment (by September 23, 2009), metrics by which to assess progress, and a report on that progress every 180 days thereafter. The Administration’s approximately 50 metrics were reported at the website of Foreign Policy40 and were submitted. However, the difficulty in formulating useful and clear metrics that would enable Members and officials to assess progress in the war effort was demonstrated by comments by Ambassador Holbrooke on August 12, 2009, saying that on defining success in Afghanistan and Pakistan: “We will know it when we see it.”41 In its September 22, 2009, report on the situation in Afghanistan (A/64/364-S/2009/475), the United Nations developed its own “benchmarks” for progress in Afghan governance and security. 40 Schmitt, Eric. “White House Is Struggling to Measure Success in Afghanistan.” New York Times, August 7, 2009. Comments by Ambassador Holbrooke at seminar hosted by the Center for American Progress. August 12, 2009. 41 Congressional Research Service 30 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy July 2011 “Drawdown” Giving Way to 2014 “Transition” The Obama Administration emphasis on transition to Afghan security leadership beginning in July 2011 has been perhaps the most widely discussed and debated aspect of policy. Debate over whether to announce such a timeframe is covered extensively in the book “Obama’s Wars,” by Bob Woodward. The 2011 “deadline” was interpreted by some Administration critics—and by some Afghan and regional leaders—as laying the groundwork for winding down U.S. involvement in coming years.42 The Administration has said it set the time frame to demonstrate to a war-weary public that U.S. military involvement in Afghanistan is not open-ended. Perhaps to address perceived criticism of such a deadline in the upper ranks of the U.S. military, in an August 31, 2010 statement, the President asserted that the pace and scope of any drawdown in 2011 would be subject to conditions on the ground. These comments appeared to modify the July 18, 2010, Vice President Biden amended earlier remarks by saying that only a few thousand U.S. forces might come out at that time as part of a process of transitioning some Afghan provinces to Afghan lead. The debate over the July 2011 drawdwon appears to have abated somewhat with an agreement between the United States and NATO partner forces to focus on a longer time frame for transition to Afghan leadership. With European publics tiring of involvement in Afghanistan, a July 2010 agreement reportedly was reached on a joint Afghan-NATO board to decide on locations that might be selected for transition to Afghan lead. These locations, reportedly whole provinces and districts to transition to Afghan leadership beginning in 2011—and running through the end of 2014—were ratified at the November 19-20, 2010, NATO summit in Lisbon. The 2014 date is one that Karzai articulated in 2009 as a time frame when Afghan forces would be able to secure Afghanistan on their own. According to some U.S. commanders, some provinces in the U.S.-led eastern sector, such as Panjshir or Bamiyan, could be turned over in 2011, with Nangarhar considered a candidate for turnover thereafter. President Obama and other senior U.S. officials say that 2014 is not a date certain for a complete international pullout, but rather for a transition to Afghan lead, with some international forces remaining after 2014 to train and mentor the Afghans. There are no firm estimates on how many U.S. forces might be withdrawn from Afghanistan in July 2011. However, observers appear to agree that the numbers will be relatively small, perhaps a few thousand, drawn from districts where U.S. forces have been “thinned out” as Afghan forces expand their responsibilities. Implementation of Strategy, Early Results, and Doubts As discussed, the December 16, 2010, summary of the Administration review says that U.S. strategy is showing results, particularly in the provinces of focus (Helmand, Qandahar) although such gains are “fragile and reversible.” The possible signs of momentum appear to reflect the beginnings of a possible turnaround from a September 30, 2010, White House assessments of the situation and press reports about less optimistic assessments of the U.S. intelligence community 42 Commander NATO International Security Assistance Force, Afghanistan, and U.S. Forces, Afghanistan. “Commander’s Initial Assessment.” August 30, 2009, available at documents/Assessment_Redacted_092109.pdf. White House. Remarks by the President In Address to the Nation on the Way Forward in Afghanistan and Pakistan. December 1, 2009; Chandrasekaran, Rajiv. “Differing Views of New Afghanistan Strategy.” Washington Post, December 26, 2009. Congressional Research Service 31 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy or the United Nations. Several U.S. commanders say they are receiving overtures from local insurgent leaders who have lost morale and seek to discuss possible terms for their surrender and reintegration. Other reports say that insurgent factions are running low on supplies and ammunition. The less optimistic views are based on observations that the insurgency continues to make gains in previously quiet provinces, including Baghlan, Konduz, and Faryab provinces. Still others say that Afghan governance is lagging to the point where the Afghans will not be able to hold U.S./NATO gains on their own and insurgents will be able to regroup as soon as international forces thin out. According to General Petraeus, operations in 2010 have ended Taliban control in large parts of Helmand and produced major progress in Qandahar province, as discussed below. The progress is creating a contiguous secure corridor for commerce between Helmand and Qandahar. Markets and other signs of normal life have proliferated in Helmand, according to several U.S. commanders in October 2010. In August 2010, he took NBC News correspondents to Wardak province as a showcase of stability in a province that, in 2008, was considered largely under Taliban influence. The first of the operations in 2009 that produced some of the relatively positive assessments was Operation Khanjar—intended to expel the Taliban and reestablish Afghan governance in parts of the province. The offensive reportedly ended Taliban control of several districts in Helmand, including Nawa, Now Zad, and Musa Qala. Some commanders attribute the signs of progress not only to the increase in numbers of U.S. forces, but to General Petraeus’ tactics, including nearly tripling Special Operations Force operations in Afghanistan and greatly increased UAV (unmanned aerial vehicle) strikes on concentrations across the border in Pakistan to try to drive insurgents to reconcile with the Karzai government and cease fighting. Some attribute progress to increased operations by U.S. Special Forces and CIA-trained Afghan special forces and militias, including Afghan “Counterterrorism Pursuit Teams.” In November 2010, General Petraeus reportedly approved the deployment of about 16 M1A1 tanks for use by the Marines in southern Afghanistan in order to put further pressure on militants. A report, cited earlier but denied by NATO officials, say the U.S. military might be seeking U.S. presidential authority to increase ground raids against militant safe havens in Pakistan. Such a move could be perceived as expanding the U.S.-led war effort and there are no firm indications that President Obama’s approval for such operations is imminent. Operation Moshtarek in Marjah/Nad Ali The reports of progress in Helmand represent a turnaround from earlier pessimism about the outcome of “Operation Moshtarek” (Operation Together). It consisted of about 15,000 U.S., foreign partner, and Afghan forces (about 8,000 of the total) that, beginning on February 13, 2010, sought to clear Taliban militants from Marjah city (85,000 population) in Helmand. An Afghan governing structure was identified in advance (so-called “government in a box”), the population had substantial warning, and there were meetings with regional elders just before the offensive began—all of which were an apparent effort to cause militants to flee and to limit civilian losses.43 The city, for the most part, was declared cleared of militants as of February 26, 2010, but some militants continue to fight in and on the outskirts of Marjah and to assassinate and intimidate Afghans cooperating with U.S. and Afghan forces. Some Afghan officials, such as ministry representatives, are now beginning to serve regularly in the city itself, although town governor Hajji Zahir was fired in July 2010. 43 Holbrooke interview on CNN, March 14, 2010, op. cit. Congressional Research Service 32 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy As part of the U.S. effort, U.S. forces, primarily Marines, disburse Commanders Emergency Response Program (CERP-funds controlled by U.S. officers) funds to clear rubble from schools, clean canals, repair markets, rebuild bridges, and compensate families who lost members due to the combat. Afghans who work on these projects in Marjah and in the previously cleared Nawa district are reportedly being paid about $5 per day as part of an effort to provide livelihoods to Afghans who might previously have supported the Taliban for purely financial reasons.44 Some fear that many of these workers might rejoin insurgent activities when U.S. funding for these “cash for work” programs declines. Qandahar Effort The Administration assessment of progress in December 2010 was based largely on views of success in Qandahar Province. In early 2010, U.S. commanders had emphasized that the Qandahar effort would focus less on combat and more on conducting consultations and shuras with tribal leaders and other notables to enlist their cooperation against Taliban infiltrators. U.S. commanders described the operation as more of a “process,” or a slow push into restive districts by setting up Afghan checkpoints to secure the city and districts around it (particularly Arghandab, Zhari, and Panjwai)—and not a classic military offensive. Qandahar’s population is far larger (about 2 million in the province), and Qandahar province and city have functioning governments, which Marjah did not. The city hosts numerous businesses and has always remained vibrant, despite some Taliban clandestine activity. A sense of doubt about the prospects for the operation built in April-August 2010 as Afghan tribal and other residential resistance—expressed at local shuras—to any combat to secure Qandahar. However, General Petraeus has increased operations by U.S. Special Operations Forces against key militants near the city that began in April 2010.45 Subsequently, as U.S. forces have expanded their presence in the province in partnership with Afghan forces since September 2010, Taliban control has ended in many neighborhoods and Afghan checkpoints have been established. Further shuras have been held to promote Afghan governance. As part of the effort to stabilize Qandahar U.S. officials are also reportedly trying to strengthen Governor Tooryalai Wesa and balance the flow of U.S. and international funds to the various tribes and clans in the province. An unstated objective is also to weaken the influence of Karzai’s brother, Ahmad Wali Karzai, chair of the provincial council, who is discussed above.46 Security Innovations Under Way Despite the assessments of progress, General Petraeus and others are said to believe that a clear end to the conflict on U.S./NATO/Afghan government terms requires new approaches that convince insurgent leaders that further conflict is futile. Discussed below are some additional or alternative approaches that are increasing feature of U.S. policy. 44 Nissenbaum, Dion. “Marine Forward Operating Base Marjah Takes Root.” McClatchy Newspapers, March 16, 2010. “U.S. Elite Units Step Up Effort in Afghan City.” New York Times, April 26, 2010. 46 Partlow, Joshua. “U.S. Seeks to Bolster Kandahar Governor, Upend Power Balance.” Washington Post, April 29, 2010. 45 Congressional Research Service 33 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy “Reintegration” and “Reconciliation” With Insurgents The issue of reintegration fighters and reconciling with insurgent leaders is an Afghan-led process but one in which the United States and the international community is increasingly involved. The issue has made some in the international community, and within Afghanistan, concerned for the potential to involve compromises with insurgents and perhaps some backsliding on human rights. Most insurgents are highly conservative Islamists who agreed with the limitations in women’s rights that characterized Taliban rule. Many leaders of ethnic minorities are also skeptical of the effort because they fear that it might further Pashtun political strength within Afghanistan, and enhance the influence of Pakistan in Afghan politics. General Petraeus has said that the way conflicts like the one in Afghanistan end is through a political settlement. The United States and the Karzai government agree that any settlement must involve fighters and insurgent leaders: (1) cease fighting, (2) accept the Afghan constitution, and (3) sever any ties to Al Qaeda or other terrorist groups. Reintegration/”Peace Jirga” A January 28, 2010, London conference of international donors backed devoting more emphasis to reintegration of fighters amenable to surrendering. Some of the incentives to surrendering insurgents that the international community deemed likely to fund are jobs, amnesty, and protection, and possibly making them part of the security architecture for their communities. These are elements included in a reintegration plan drafted by the Afghan government and presented to the peace loya jirga during June 2-4, 2010.47 In its final declaration, the peace jirga backed the plan, but also called for limits in NATO-led raids and further efforts to limit civilian casualties. It also called for the release of some detained insurgents where allegations against them are weak. The day after the jirga concluded, Karzai sought to implement that recommendation by calling for a review of the cases of all insurgent detentions. In late June 2010, President Karzai issued a decree to implement the plan, which involves outreach by Afghan local leaders to tribes and others who are in a position to convince insurgents to lay down their arms. The international community gave its support to the effort in the communiqué of the July 20, 2010, Kabul Conference. Britain, Japan, and several other countries have announced a total of about $160 million in donations to a new fund to support the reintegration process.48 The United States is to contribute an additional $100 million. Although it reached some substantive conclusions, the peace jirga itself received mixed reviews for its inclusiveness or lack thereof. Karzai tried to bring other minority communities along in backing the peace jirga and the reintegration process, and to do so he appointed former leader Rabbani to chair the jirga. However, “opposition leader” Dr. Abdullah Abdullah, Karzai’s rival in the 2009 presidential election, boycotted the jirga. However, despite the international funding for the effort, the Afghan-led reintegration process has moved forward only slowly. Only $200,000 of the donated funds have been spent, as of early September 2010, and only about 800 fighters have indicated willingness to reintegrate, according to a U.N. report of December 10, 2010. However, press reports in September 2010, citing briefings by General Petraeus for senior U.S. officials, say he anticipates many more surrenders 47 48 Afghanistan National Security Council. “Afghanistan Peace and Reintegration Program.” April 2010. See Congressional Research Service 34 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy of insurgent fighters as the success of U.S. and NATO strategy becomes clear. In addition, press reports say that some Taliban fighters sought information on the September 18, 2010, parliamentary election as a possible prelude to joining the political process. The Obama Administration and its partners have been separately expanding their own efforts to lure lower-level insurgents off the battlefield with job opportunities and infrastructure construction incentives. Another component of the program has been meetings with tribal elders to persuade Taliban and other insurgents in their areas to give up their fight. Some U.S. commanders are reporting some successes with this effort, using Commanders Emergency Response Program (CERP) funds. The National Defense Authorization Act for FY2010 (P.L. 11184) authorized the use of CERP funds to win local support, to “reintegrate” Taliban fighters who renounce violence. FY2011 budget language requested by the Administration would authorize U.S. funds to be contributed to the reintegration fund mentioned above. To help the process along from the international perspective, in November 2009, ISAF set up a “force reintegration cell,” headed by Britain’s Major General Richard Barrons, to develop additional programs and policies to accelerate the effort to cause insurgents to change sides. These strategies are similar to what was employed successfully in Anbar Province in Iraq in 2006 and 2007. Karzai has consistently advocated talks with Taliban militants who want to consider ending their fight. Noted above is the “Program for Strengthening Peace and Reconciliation” (referred to in Afghanistan by its Pashto acronym “PTS”) headed by Meshrano Jirga speaker Sibghatullah Mojadeddi and former Vice President Karim Khalili, and overseen by Karzai’s National Security Council. The program is credited with persuading 9,000 Taliban figures and commanders to renounce violence and join the political process. Reconciliation With Taliban/Insurgent Leaders A separate Karzai initiative—far more widely debated than reintegration—is to conduct negotiations with senior insurgent leaders. Many in the international community, and within the Obama Administration, had feared that reconciliation has the potential to result in insurgent leaders obtaining senior positions or control over some Afghan territory, and that these figures will retain ties to Al Qaeda and commit abuses similar to those under the Taliban regime. The July 20, 2010, Kabul Conference did not issue unqualified support for high-level reconciliation talks, instead endorsing establishment of an Afghan High Peace Council to build Afghan consensus on the issue. That Council was established on September 5, 2010, and its 70 members met for the first time under the leadership of Tajik leader Rabbani on October 10, 2010. Yet, the direct role of the Council in negotiations is unclear; rather, it might be asked to review and endorse any settlement that is reached. In an apparent shift, as stated by President Obama on December 16, 2010, in announcing the results of the U.S. policy review, the United States now fully backs the concept of reconciliation with insurgent leaders who meet the conditions stated above. Earlier, in March 2009, President Obama publicly ruled out negotiations with Mullah Umar and his top aides because of their alignment with Al Qaeda. Others still differ on the willingness of senior insurgents to bargain in earnest. CIA director Panetta, in a June 27, 2010, interview cited earlier, and reflecting the reported view of several U.S. intelligence agencies as of late 2010, said he saw no indications that insurgent leaders are contemplating settling with the government. Senior U.S. commanders have grown more optimistic about reconciliation as contacts between Taliban representatives and the Karzai government appear to have broadened. However, Congressional Research Service 35 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy observers say the discussions to date are about modalities and an agenda for further talks. Several sets of talks were reported in October 2010, and some press accounts said that NATO/ISAF forces were in fact facilitation the movement of insurgent representatives to these talks. Representatives of the Quetta Shura Taliban were purported to be involved, although this was placed in doubt in late November 2010 when it was revealed that one of the purported senior Taliban interlocutors was an imposter. Still, Mullah Bradar, who is close to Mullah Umar, was said by the Afghan side to have been engaged in talks with the Afghan government prior to his arrest by Pakistan in February 2010. Karzai reportedly believes that Pakistan arrested Bradar in order to be able to influence the course of any Afghan government-Taliban settlement. The Taliban as a movement was not invited to the June 2-4, 2010, consultative peace jirga, but some Taliban sympathizers reportedly were there. The Taliban continues to demand that (1) all foreign troops leave Afghanistan; (2) a new “Islamic” constitution be adopted; and (3) Islamic law is imposed. However, those are viewed as opening positions; the Afghan government, for its part, may have softened its position on disallowing any changes to the Afghan constitution as part of a settlement. In advance of the peace jirga, the Karzai government and representatives of Hikmatyar confirmed peace talks on March 21, 2010, in which Karzai, his brother, Ahmad Wali, and several Northern Alliance figures met with the Hikmatyar representatives. The representatives reportedly presented a 15-point peace plan to Karzai that does not necessarily demand his government step down immediately. Other accounts say that even the Haqqani faction, often viewed as least amenable to settlement, has been represented at some exploratory meetings with Karzai government representatives. Other talks have taken place over the past few years, although with less apparent momentum than is the case in 2010. Press reports said that Afghan officials (led by Karzai’s brother Qayyum) and Taliban members had met each other in Ramadan-related gatherings in Saudi Arabia in September 2008. Another round of talks was held in January 2009 in Saudi Arabia, and there were reports of ongoing contacts in Dubai, UAE. Some of these talks apparently involved Arsala Rahmani, a former Taliban official now in parliament, and the former Taliban Ambassador to Pakistan, Abdul Salam Zaeef, who purportedly is in touch with Umar’s inner circle. These same Taliban representatives may have been involved in talks in the mid-late 2010 as well. The consultative peace jirga, in its final declaration, supported Karzai’s call for the removal of the names of some Taliban figures from U.N. lists of terrorists, lists established pursuant to Resolution 1267 and Resolution 1333 (October 15, 1999, and December 19, 2000, both preSeptember 11 sanctions against the Taliban and Al Qaeda) and Resolution 1390 (January 16, 2002). Press reports before the July 20 Kabul Conference said the Afghan government has submitted a list of 50 Taliban figures it wants taken off this list as a confidence-building measure. The Conference called on Afghanistan to engage with the U.N. Security Council to provide evidence to justify such de-listings, and U.N., U.S., and other international officials said they would support considering de-listings on a case-by-case basis. On January 26, 2010, Russia, previously a hold-out against such a process, dropped opposition to removing five Taliban-era figures from these sanctions lists, including Taliban-era foreign minister Wakil Mutawwakil, who ran in 2005 parliamentary elections. Also removed was Abdul Hakim Monib, who has served Karzai as governor of Uruzgan, Abdul Hakim Mujahid, who was Taliban representative in the United States, and three others. Mujahid now is one of three deputy chairs of the High Peace Council. “Mullah Rocketi,” not on the sanctions list, is a former Taliban commander who ran for president in the August 2009 elections. Congressional Research Service 36 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Local Security Experiments: Afghan Provincial Protection Program (APPP) and Local Defense Initiative Until mid-2008, U.S. military commanders opposed assisting local militias anywhere in Afghanistan for fear of creating new rivals to the central government who would arbitrarily administer justice. The urgent security needs in Afghanistan caused reconsideration and Gen Petraeus is seeking to expand these type of local security experiments, based on his similar and successful experiences in Iraq. Press reports in July 2010 say he succeeded, after several of his first meetings with Karzai, in overcoming Karzai’s reticence to them. General Petraeus reportedly has guaranteed that any local security organs would be under the administration of the Ministry of Interior. The newest initiative is the Afghan “Local Police Initiative,” in which local security organs would be formed from local recruits who want to defend their communities. It was planned that up to 10,000 volunteers will serve in the initiative, but on October 19, 2010, the Defense Department said it would be expanded to at least 20,000, if possible. The ultimate target level might be 50,000, according to press reports. The Defense Department notified Congress in September 2010 that it will reprogram about $35 million in Afghan security forces funding to support the initiative. The Local Police Initiative follows on another program begun in 2008, termed the “Afghan Provincial Protection Program” (APPP, commonly called “AP3”) and is funded with DOD (CERP) funds. The APPP got under way in Wardak Province (Jalrez district) in early 2009 and 100 local security personnel “graduated” in May 2009. It has been expanded to 1,200 personnel, in a province with a population of about 500,000. (These personnel are expected to be integrated into the local police initiative.) U.S. commanders say that no U.S. weapons are supplied to the militias, but this is an Afghan-led program and the Afghan government is providing weapons (Kalashnikov rifles) to the local groups, possibly using U.S. funds. Participants in the program are given $200 per month. Before the program was placed on hold, it was to be expanded to Ghazni, Lowgar, and Kapisa provinces and eventually include as many as 8,000 Afghans. General Petraeus showcased Wardak in August 2010 as an example of the success of the APPP and similar efforts. As an indication of divisions among Afghan leaders about the concept, the upper house of the Afghan parliament (Meshrano Jirga) passed a resolution in November 2008 opposing the concept. The National Defense Authorization Act (P.L. 111-84) calls for a report within 120 days of enactment (October 28, 2009) on the results of the program. Another program, the Local Defense Initiative, began in February 2010 in Arghandab district of Qandahar Province. U.S. Special Forces organized about 25 villagers into a neighborhood watch group, which is armed. The program has been credited by U.S. commanders as bringing normal life back to the district. A different militia was allowed to operate in Konduz to help secure the northern approaches to that city. Problems arose when the militia began arbitrarily administering justice, fueling concerns of Karzai and Ambassador Eikenberry about these local security approaches. The local security experiments to date are not arbokai, which are private tribal militias. Still, some believe that the arbokai concept should be revived as a means of securing Afghanistan, as the arbokai did during the reign of Zahir Shah and in prior pre-Communist eras. Congressional Research Service 37 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Reversal of Previous Efforts: DDR and DIAG programs As noted, the local security programs appear to reverse the 2002-2007 efforts to disarm local sources of armed force. The main program, run by UNAMA, was called the “DDR” program— Disarmament, Demobilization, and Reintegration—and it formally concluded on June 30, 2006. 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 major donor for the program was Japan, which contributed about $140 million. Figures for collected weapons are contained in Table 5 and U.S. spending on the program are in the U.S. aid tables at the end of this report. The DDR program was initially expected to demobilize 100,000 fighters, although that figure was later reduced. (Figures for accomplishment of the DDR and DIAG programs are contained in Table 5.) 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 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.49 Part of the DDR program was the collection and cantonment of militia weapons, but generally only poor-quality weapons were collected. As one example, Fahim, still the main military leader of the Northern Alliance faction, 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. Despite the earlier demobilization, which affected many of the northern minorities, there are indications that some faction leaders may be seeking to revive disbanded militias. The minorities may fear increased Taliban influence as a result of the Karzai reconciliation efforts, and the minorities want to be sure they could combat any Taliban abuses that might result if the Taliban achieves a share of power. DIAG 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 have made available $35 million for development projects where illegal groups have disbanded. These incentives were intended to accomplish the disarmament 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 were not met by the December 2007 target date in part because armed groups in the south say they need to remain armed against the Taliban, but UNAMA reports that some progress continues to be achieved. 49 For an analysis of the DDR program, see Christian Dennys. Disarmament, Demobilization and Rearmament?, June 6, 2005, Congressional Research Service 38 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Several U.S.-backed local security programs implemented since 2008, discussed below, appear to reverse the intent and implementation of the DIAG process. Possible Future Limits on U.S. Operations/Status of Forces Agreement The issue of a larger Afghan government role in approving NATO-led operations has surfaced repeatedly. Such sentiments arose in 2008, when the Afghan cabinet reacted to some high-profile instances of accidental civilian deaths by demanding negotiation of a formal “Status of Forces Agreement” (SOFA). A SOFA would spell out the combat authorities of non-Afghan forces, and might limit the United States to airstrikes, detentions, and house raids.50 As noted earlier, differences between Karzai and the U.S. command in Afghanistan erupted again in November 2010 with Karzai calling for a decrease in the number of night raids and other operations that cause civilian unrest. A draft SOFA—or technical agreement clarifying U.S./coalition authorities in Afghanistan— reportedly has been under discussion between the United States and Afghanistan since 2007. U.S. forces currently operate in Afghanistan under a “diplomatic note” between the United States and the interim government of Afghanistan that was exchanged in November 2002; the agreement gives the United States legal jurisdiction over U.S. personnel serving in Afghanistan and states the Afghan government’s acknowledgment that U.S.-led military operations were “ongoing.” Long-Term Security Commitment As noted, some Afghan leaders perceived the Obama Administration’s 2011 deadline to “begin” a transition to Afghan security leadership as a sign the Administration might want to wind down U.S. involvement in Afghanistan. In part to reassure the Afghan government, President Obama, at a May 12, 2010, press conference with visiting President Karzai, stated that the United States and Afghanistan would renew a five-year-old strategic partnership. The target for renewing the partnership is early in 2011. However, some advocate forging a security agreement with Afghanistan similar to that agreed with Iraq—that one stipulated an end date for U.S. military involvement in Iraq. The strategic partnership was first established on May 23, 2005, when Karzai and President Bush issued a “joint declaration”51 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 enhanced control over facilities used by U.S. forces, over U.S. operations, or over prisoners taken during operations. Some of the bases, both in and near Afghanistan, that support combat in Afghanistan, include those in Table 6. Karzai’s signing of the partnership had been blessed by Afghan representatives on May 8, 2005, when he summoned about 1,000 delegates to a consultative jirga in Kabul on whether to host permanent U.S. bases. That jirga supported an indefinite presence of international forces to maintain security but urged Karzai to delay a decision. A FY2009 supplemental appropriation 50 51 Gall, Carlotta. Two Afghans Lose Posts Over Attack. New York Times, August 25, 2008. See Congressional Research Service 39 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy (P.L. 111-32) and the FY2010 and FY2011 National Defense Authorization Acts (P.L. 111-84 and H.R. 6523, respectively) prohibit the U.S. establishment of permanent bases in Afghanistan. Alliance Issues: The NATO-Led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) and Operation Enduring Freedom52 Almost all U.S. troops in Afghanistan remain under the umbrella of the NATO-led “International Security Assistance Force” (ISAF)—consisting of all 26 NATO members states plus partner countries—a total of 50 countries including the United States. President Obama’s December 1, 2009, policy speech on Afghanistan was explicit in seeking new partner troop commitments, and pledges met or exceeded what some U.S. officials expected. However, several key contingents have ended their combat missions (the Netherlands), will end those missions (Canada, by the summer of 2011), or are setting notional time frames for departure before the 2014 time frame agreed in the NATO summit in Lisbon (November 19-20, 2010) to complete the transition to Afghan leadership. Britain has steadily increased its troop commitment in Afghanistan—mainly in high combat Helmand Province—to about 9,500 (plus 500 special forces). In line with other contributors, British official comments have indicated that Britain might want to end its mission before 2014. Britain has lost over 300 soldiers in Afghanistan. Italy, Poland, and Germany have also indicated an intent to try to wind down their involvement in Afghanistan before the end of 2014. As noted above, some of the provinces considered good candidates to transition to Afghan leadership are in the German sector in the north. Partner forces that continue to bear the brunt of combat in Afghanistan include Britain, Canada, Poland, France, Denmark, Romania, and Australia. Virtually all the European governments are under pressure from their publics and parliaments to end or reduce the military involvement in Afghanistan. This pressure led Britain, France, and Germany to ask the United Nations to organize the international conference that took place in London on January 28, 2010. That conference, as these countries sought, endorsed the concept of transition to Afghan leadership on security and improvement of its governance, while also encouraging more regional assistance from India, China, and Russia. 52 Twelve other countries provide forces to both OEF and ISAF. Congressional Research Service 40 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Table 3. Background on NATO/ISAF Formation and U.N. Mandate The International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) was created by the Bonn Agreement and U.N. Security Council Resolution 1386 (December 20, 2001, a Chapter 7 resolution),53 initially limited to Kabul. In October 2003, after Germany agreed to contribute 450 military personnel to expand ISAF into the city of Konduz, ISAF contributors endorsed expanding its presence to several other cities, contingent on formal U.N. approval—which came on October 14, 2003 in U.N. Security Council Resolution 1510. In August 2003, NATO took over command of ISAF— previously the ISAF command rotated among donor forces including Turkey and Britain. 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 transition process continued on July 31, 2006, with the formal handover of the security mission in southern Afghanistan to NATO/ISAF control. As part of this “Stage 3,” a British/Canadian/Dutchled “Regional Command South” (RC-S) was formed. Britain is the lead force in Helmand; Canada is lead in Qandahar, and the Netherlands was lead in Uruzgan until its departure in July 2010; the three rotated the command of RC-S. “Stage 4,” the assumption of NATO/ISAF command of peacekeeping in 14 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, the United States put about half the U.S. troops then operating in Afghanistan under NATO/ISAF in “Regional Command East” (RC-E). The ISAF mission was renewed (until October 13, 2011) by U.N. Security Council Resolution 1943 (October 13, 2010), which reiterated previous resolutions’ support for the Operation Enduring Freedom mission. Tables at the end of this report list contributing forces, areas of operations, and their Provincial Reconstruction Teams. Recent Major Contingent Developments Following the Obama Administration’s March 27, 2009, policy announcement, some additional pledges came through at the April 3-4, 2009, NATO summit. Major new force pledges were issued after the December 1 policy statement, and in conjunction with the January 28, 2010, conference in London. However, some of these forces were intended to compensate for the pullouts by the Netherlands and Canada 2010 and 2011, respectively. The major recent pledges are the following: • April 2009: Deployment of 3,000 non-U.S. troops to secure the Afghan elections and 2,000 trainers for the Afghan security forces. Contributing forces for the election period include Spain (400), Germany (600), Poland (600), and Britain (about 900). Other pledges (from Bulgaria, Estonia, Italy, Greece, Portugal, Turkey, and Slovakia) were for trainers to fill out 61 existing Operational Mentor and Liaison Teams (OMLTs), each of which has about 30 trainers. • April 2009: NATO agreed to new training missions for the ANSF. A NATO Training Mission—Afghanistan (NTM-A) has been established. Also that month, $500 million in additional Afghan civilian aid was pledged by several donors. • November 10, 2009: Ahead of President Obama’s visit to Asia, Japan announced a pledge of $5 billion over the next five years for Afghanistan civilian development, although it suspended its naval refueling mission. • July 2009: South Korea announced it would increase its aid contribution to Afghanistan by about $20 million, in part to expand the hospital capabilities at 53 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). Congressional Research Service 41 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Bagram Air Base. In November 2009, it announced a return of about 150 engineers to Afghanistan for development missions, protected by 300 South Korean forces. The forces deployed to Parwan Province in July 2010. (Until December 2007, 200 South Korean forces at Bagram Air Base, mainly combat engineers, were part of Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF); they left in December 2007 in fulfillment of a decision by the South Korean government the previous year. However, many observers believe South Korea did not further extend its mission beyond that, possibly as part of an agreement in August 2007 under which Taliban militants released 21 kidnapped South Korean church group visitors.54) • December 2009-January 2010 (London conference): A total of about 9,000 forces were pledged (including retaining 2,000 sent for the August 2009 election who were due to rotate out). The pledges included Britain (500), Poland (600), Romania (600, plus about 30 trainers), Italy (1,000), Georgia (900+), Spain (500), Colombia (240, first time contributor of forces), Slovakia (60), Sweden (125), Portugal (120), and Germany (500 plus 350 on reserve, but still only in the north, not heavy combat zones). France pledged 80 trainers but no new combat forces. Several countries pledged police trainers. • Other Major Civilian Aid Pledges in Context of London Conference:55 France ($45 million); Saudi Arabia ($150 million over three years); Australia ($40 million); China ($75 million). Japan agreed to pay ANP salaries for another six months (until the end of 2010), a cost of about $125 million in a six month period, to come out of its $5 billion contribution mentioned above. Japan reiterated that commitment during Karzai’s June 17, 2010, visit to Tokyo. Other pledges were made for Taliban reintegration, as noted above. • In July 2010, Malaysia became a new contributor to the Afghanistan effort, furnishing 40 military medics. • Later in 2010, partner countries have pledged to help fill a gap of about 750 trainers for the Afghan National Security Forces. Equipment Issues Some of the pledges address NATO’s chronic equipment shortages—particularly helicopters, both for transport and attack—for the Afghanistan mission. 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 Polish troops deployed in 2008 operate and maintain eight helicopters. Germany provides six Tornado combat aircraft to assist with strikes in combat situations in the south. NATO/ISAF also assists the Afghan Ministry of Civil Aviation and Tourism in the operation of Kabul International Airport (where Dutch combat aircraft also are located). In 2009, Belgium sent two more F-16 fighters. 54 Two were killed during their captivity. The Taliban kidnappers did not get the demanded release of 23 Taliban prisoners held by the Afghan government. 55 For more information, see Congressional Research Service 42 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy National “Caveats” on Combat Operations One of the most thorny issues has been the U.S. effort to persuade other NATO countries to adopt flexible rules of engagement that allow all contributing forces to perform combat missions. NATO and other partner forces have not, as they pledged at the NATO summit in April 2008, removed the so-called “national caveats” on their troops’ operations that Lt. Gen. McChrystal says limits operational flexibility. For example, 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. Table 4. Operation Enduring Freedom Partner Forces Operation Enduring Freedom continues as a separate combat track, led by the United States but joined by a few partners. The caveat issue is less of a factor with OEF, since OEF is known as a combat-intensive mission conducted in large part by special forces contingents of contributing nations. The overwhelming majority of non-U.S. forces are under the NATO/ISAF mission. Prior to NATO assumption of command in October 2006, 19 coalition countries— primarily Britain, France, Canada, and Italy contributing approximately 4,000 combat troops to OEF-Afghanistan. Now, that figure is lower as most have been re-badged to ISAF. However, several foreign contingents, composed mainly of special operations forces, including a 200 person unit from the UAE, are still part of OEF-Afghanistan. This includes about 500 British special forces, some German special forces, and other special forces units. In early 2010, U.S. Special Forces operating in Afghanistan were brought under direct command of the top U.S. command in Afghanistan, now General Petraeus. Under OEF, Japan provided naval refueling capabilities in the Arabian sea, but the mission was suspended 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. It was renewed again, over substantial parliamentary opposition, in December 2008, but the opposition party won September 2009 elections in Japan and reportedly has decided on an alternative to continuing the refueling mission—by increasing its financial contributions to economic development in Afghanistan. That led to an October 2009 pledge by Japan—already the third largest individual country donor to Afghanistan, providing about $1.9 billion in civilian reconstruction aid since the fall of the Taliban—to provide another $5 billion over five years. It has been requested to be a major financial donor of an Afghan army expansion, and, in March 2009, it pledged to pay the costs of the Afghan National Police for six months. As part of OEF outside Afghanistan, the United States leads a multi-national naval anti-terrorist, anti-smuggling, antiproliferation 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. Provincial Reconstruction Teams (PRTs) 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, announced in December 2002, perform activities ranging from resolving local disputes to coordinating local reconstruction projects, although most U.S.-run PRTs and most PRTs in combat-heavy areas focus mostly on counter-insurgency. Many of the additional U.S. civilian officials deployed to Afghanistan during 2009 and 2010 are based at PRTs, which have facilities, vehicles, and security. There are 27 PRTs in operation; the list of PRTs, including lead country, is shown in Table 22. Virtually all the PRTs are now under the ISAF mission. Each PRT operated by the United States Congressional Research Service 43 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy has 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. USAID officers assigned to the PRTs administer PRT reconstruction projects, although USAID observers say there is little Afghan input, either into project decisionmaking or as contractors for facility and other construction. USAID spending on PRT projects is in the table on USAID spending in Afghanistan at the end of this report, and there is a database on development projects sponsored by each PRT available to CRS, information from which can be provided on request. In the south, most PRTs are heavily focused on security. In August 2005, in preparation for the establishment of Regional Command South (RC-S), 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. At the same time, the Netherlands took over the PRT at Tarin Kowt, capital of Uruzgan Province. However, the Tarin Kowt PRT has been led by Australia and the United States since the September 2010 Dutch departure. Some aid agencies say they have felt more secure since the PRT program began, fostering reconstruction, 56 and many of the new civilian advisers arriving in Afghanistan under the new Obama Administration strategy work out of the PRTs. On the other hand, some relief groups do not want to associate with military forces because doing so might taint their perceived neutrality. Others, such as Oxfam International, argue that the PRTs are delaying the time when the Afghan government has the skills and resources to secure and develop Afghanistan on its own. Evolving Civil-Military Concepts at the PRTs Representing evolution of the PRT concept, some donor countries—as well as the United States—are trying to enhance the civilian component of the PRTs and change their image from mainly military institutions. There has been long been consideration to turn over the lead in the U.S.-run PRTs to civilians rather than military personnel, presumably State Department or USAID officials. That was first attempted in 2006 with the establishment of a civilian-led PRT in the Panjshir Valley. As noted, in March 2009, the Netherlands converted its PRT to civilian lead, although that alteration has not continued with the assumption of U.S. and Australian PRT command as of July 2010. 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 of November 2009, the “civilianization” of the PRT concept has evolved further with the decision to refer to PRTs as Interagency Provincial Affairs (IPA) offices or branches. In this new concept—a local paralled to the Senior Civilian Representatives now assigned to each regional command—State Department officers enjoy enhanced decision-making status at each PRT. Afghan National Security Forces The U.S. “exit strategy” from Afghanistan relies heavily on increasing the capability of the Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF)—the Afghan National Army (ANA) and Afghan 56 Kraul, Chris. “U.S. Aid Effort Wins Over Skeptics in Afghanistan.” Los Angeles Times, April 11, 2003. Congressional Research Service 44 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy National Policy (ANP)—to the point where they can assume the security mission from the international coalition. Obama Administration strategy emphasizes expanding the ANSF and improving it through partnering and more intense mentoring and training—about 70% of Afghan units are now partnered with international forces. On January 21, 2010, the joint U.N.-Afghan “Joint Coordination and Monitoring Board” (JCMB) agreed that, by the end of 2011, the ANA would expand to 171,600 and the ANP to about 134,000. As of August 11, 2010, both forces reached their interim size of 134,000 and 109,000 respectively (two months earlier than planned). As of December 2010, the forces total about 145,000 ANA and 115,000 ANP. U.S. forces along with partner countries and contractors, train the ANSF. In February 2010, the U.S.-run “Combined Security Transition Command-Afghanistan” (CSTC-A) that ran the training was subordinated to the broader NATO Training Mission—Afghanistan (NTM-A). NTM-A is commanded by U.S. Major General William Caldwell. CSTC-A’s mission was reoriented to building the capacity of the Afghan Defense and Interior Ministries, and to provide resources to the ANSF. The total number of required trainers (U.S. and partner) for these institutions is 4,800. There has been an unfilled gap of trainers totaling about 750, although, as of late 2010, partner countries have pledged those amounts. A separate France-led 300-person European Gendarmerie Force (EGF) has been established to train Afghan forces out in the provinces. The European Union is providing a 190-member “EUPOL” training effort, and 60 other experts to help train the ANP. These efforts are subsumed under NTM-A. 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. 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 5), Afghan National Army The Afghan National Army has been built “from scratch” since 2002—it is not a direct continuation of the national army that existed from the 1880s until the Taliban era. That national army all but disintegrated during the 1992-1996 mujahedin civil war and the 1996-2001 Taliban period. However, some Afghan military officers who served prior to the Taliban have joined the new military. U.S. and allied officers say that the ANA is becoming a major force in stabilizing the country and a national symbol. It now has at least some presence in most of Afghanistan’s 34 provinces, working with the PRTs, and it deployed outside Afghanistan to assist relief efforts for victims of the October 2005 Pakistan earthquake. According to the Department of Defense, the ANA is able to lead a growing percentage of all combat operations, but there is substantial skepticism within the U.S. defense establishment that it can assume full security responsibility by 2014, which is the target time frame announced by Karzai. Among examples of the ANA taking overall responsibility, in August 2008, the ANA took over security of Kabul city from Italy, and it took formal control of Kabul Province in early 2009. The commando forces of the ANA, trained by U.S. Special Operations Forces, and numbering about 5,300, are considered well-trained and are taking the lead in some operations against high-value targets, particularly against HIG elements in Nuristan province. Congressional Research Service 45 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy However, some U.S. military assessments say the force remains poorly led. It still suffers from at least a 20% desertion rate. Many officers are illiterate or poorly motivated.57 Some accounts say that a typical ANA unit is only at about 50% of its authorized strength at any given time, and there are significant shortages in about 40% of equipment items. The high desertion rate complicates U.S.-led efforts to steadily grow the force. 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) required that ANA recruits be vetted for terrorism, human rights violations, and drug trafficking. ANA battalions, or “Kandaks,” are the main unit of the Afghan force. There are over 120 Kandaks. The Kandaks are stiffened by the presence of U.S. and partner embeds, called “Operational Mentor and Liaison Teams” (OMLTs). Each OMLT—of which there are about 61— 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. As noted, the Obama Administration strategy is to also partner the ANA with U.S. and other foreign units to enhance effectiveness. General Petraeus and others have attributed the previous lack of progress in the ANSF to the non-systematic use of the partnering concept. Among the other countries contributing training 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. The United States has built five ANA bases: Herat (Corps 207), Gardez (Corps 203), Qandahar (Corps 205), Mazar-e-Sharif (Corps 209), and Kabul (Division HQ, Corps 201, Air Corps). Coalition officers conduct heavy weapons training for a heavy brigade as part of the “Kabul Corps,” based in Pol-e-Charki, east of Kabul. Ethnic and Factional Considerations At the time the United States first began establishing the ANA, Northern Alliance figures who were then in key security positions weighted recruitment for the national army toward its Tajik ethnic base. Many Pashtuns, in reaction, refused recruitment or left the ANA program. The naming of a Pashtun, Abdul Rahim Wardak, as Defense Minister in December 2004 reduced desertions among Pashtuns (he remains in that position). U.S. officials in Afghanistan say this problem was further alleviated with better pay and more close involvement by U.S. forces, and that the force is ethnically integrated in each unit and representative. With about 41% Pashtuns, 34% Tajiks, 12% Hazaras, and 8% Uzbeks, the force is roughly in line with the broad demographics of the country, according to the April 2010 DOD report. However, U.S. commanders say that those Pashtuns who are in the force are disproportionately eastern Pashtuns (from the Ghilzai tribal confederations) rather than southern Pashtuns (mostly Durrani tribal confederations). The chief of staff was General Bismillah Khan, a Tajik who was a Northern Alliance commander, although as of June 2010 he is Interior Minister. 57 Report by Richard Engel. NBC Nightly News. December 29, 2009. Congressional Research Service 46 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Afghan Air Force Equipment, maintenance, and logistical difficulties continue to plague the Afghan National Army Air Corps (Afghan Air Force). The force is a carryover from the Afghan Air Force that existed prior to the Soviet invasion, and is expanding gradually after its equipment was virtually eliminated in the 2001-2002 U.S. combat against the Taliban regime. It now has about over 3,000 personnel, including 400 pilots, as well as a total of about 46 aircraft. Afghan pilots are based at Bagram air base. The Afghan goal is to have 61 aircraft by 2011, but it remains mostly a support force for ground operations rather than a combat-oriented Air Force. However, the Afghan Air Force has been able to make ANA units nearly self-sufficient in airlift. 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. In 2010, Russia and Germany supplied MI-8 helicopters to the Afghan Air Force. Afghan National Police (ANP) U.S. and Afghan officials believe that building up a credible and capable national police force is at least as important to combating the insurgency as building the ANA. The April 2010 and November 2010 DOD reports on Afghanistan stability reinforce a widespread consensus that the ANP substantially lags the ANA in its development. Outside assessments are widely disparaging, asserting that there is rampant corruption to the point where citizens mistrust and fear the ANP. Among other criticisms are a desertion rate far higher than that of the ANA; substantial illiteracy; involvement in local factional or ethnic disputes because the ANP works in the communities its personnel come from; and widespread use of drugs. It is this view that has led to consideration of stepped up efforts to promote local security solutions such as those discussed above. Some U.S. commanders are more positive, saying that it is increasingly successful in repelling Taliban assaults on villages and that is experiencing fewer casualties from attacks than it was previously. Afghan police in Kabul won praise from the U.S. commanders for putting down, largely on their own and without major civilian casualties, the insurgent attack on Kabul locations near the presidential palace on January 18, 2010, and a similar attack on February 26, 2010. Bismillah Khan, the new Interior Minister, was highly respected as ANA chief of staff and has taken new steps to try to improve the police force, including through unannounced visits to ANP bases and stations around the country. Still, some Pashtuns might resent him for his Tajik ethnicity. Other U.S. commanders credit a November 2009 raise in police salaries (nearly doubled to about $240 per month for service in high combat areas)—and the streamlining and improvement of the payments system for the ANP—with reducing the solicitation of bribes by the ANP. The raise also stimulated an eightfold increase in the number of Afghans seeking to be recruited. Others note the success, thus far, of efforts to pay police directly (and avoid skimming by commanders) through cellphone-based banking relationships (E-Paisa, run by Roshan cell network). Congressional Research Service 47 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Retraining and Other Initiatives Some U.S. officials believe that the United States and its partners still have not centered on a clearly effective police training strategy. The latest training reorganization implemented since 2007 is called “focused district development,” which attempts to retrain individual police forces in districts, which is the basic geographic area of ANP activity. (There are about 10 “districts” in each 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 (Afghan National Civil Order Police, or ANCOP, which number about 5,800 nationwide), and then reinserted after the training is complete. As of late 2010, police in at least 100 districts have undergone this process, although program success has been hampered by continuing governance and other problems in those districts. There has also been some criticism of the ANCOP performance in Marjah, even though the unit is supposed to be elite and well trained. The ANCOP officers are being used to staff the new checkpoints being set up to better secure Qandahar. Police training now includes 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. In March 2010, then-Interior Minister Atmar signed a “strategic guidance” document for the ANP, which prioritizes eliminating corruption within the ANP and winning public confidence. About 1,000 ANP are women, demonstrating some commitment to gender integration of the force. There have been few quick fixes for the chronic shortage of equipment in the ANP. Most police are under-equipped, lacking ammunition and vehicles. In some cases, equipment requisitioned by their commanders is being sold and the funds pocketed by the police officers. These activities contributed to the failure of a 2006 “auxiliary police” effort that attempted to rapidly field large numbers of new ANP officers. Rule of Law/Criminal Justice Sector Many experts believe that an effective justice sector is vital to Afghan governance. Some of the criticisms and allegations of corruption at all levels of the Afghan bureaucracy have been discussed throughout this report. U.S. justice sector programs generally focus on promoting rule of law and building capacity of the judicial system, including police training and court construction. The rule of law issue is covered in greater detail in CRS Report R41484, Afghanistan: U.S. Rule of Law and Justice Sector Assistance, by Liana Sun Wyler and Kenneth Katzman U.S. Security Forces Funding/”CERP” Because the Afghan government has so few resources, the Afghan security sector is funded almost entirely through international donations. In December 2009, Karzai asserted that the Afghan government could not likely fund its own security forces until 2024. More than half of all U.S. assistance to Afghanistan since 2002 has gone toward building the ANSF. U.S. funds are used to cover ANA salaries as well as to equip and train them. Recent appropriations for the ANA and ANP are contained in the tables at the end of this report, which also contain breakdowns for Commanders Emergency Response Program funds, or CERP, which is used for projects that build goodwill and presumably reduce the threat to use forces. The tables at the end also list Congressional Research Service 48 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy breakdowns for requested ANSF funding for FY2011 and supplemental FY2010 funding. As noted in the table, as of FY2005, the security forces funding has been DOD funds, not State Department funds. International Trust Fund for the ANSF In 2007, ISAF set up a trust fund for donor contributions to fund the transportation of equipment donated to and the training of the ANSF. U.S. funding for the ANSF is provided separately, not through this fund. The fund is estimated to require $2 billion per year. However, the fund totals only about $145 million coming from several donors, according to the DOD report of November 2010. However, the fund does not represent the extent of funding for the Afghan forces. Japan, as noted, separately pledged to pay the expenses of the Afghan police for six months (about $125 million). Law and Order Trust Fund There is also a separate “Law and Order” Trust Fund for Afghanistan, run by the U.N. Development Program. The fund is used to pay the salaries of the ANP and other police-related functions. Its budget for the two years September 2008—August 2010 is about $540 million, funded by donors such as Japan (as discussed above). From 2002-2010, donors contributed $1.56 billion to the Fund, of which the United States contributed about $500 million, according to the November 2010 DOD report (p. 19). Congressional Research Service 49 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Table 5. Major Security-Related Indicators Force Current Level Total Foreign Forces in Afghanistan About 140.000: About 98,000 U.S. and 41,000 non-U.S. partner forces. (U.S. total was: 25,000 in 2005; 16,000 in 2003; 5,000 in 2002. ISAF totals were: 12,000 in 2005; and 6,000 in 2003.) US. forces deployed at 88 bases in Afghanistan, and include 1 air wing (40 aircraft) and 1 combat aviation brigade (100 aircraft). 1,337 killed, of which 1,101 by hostile action. Additional 94 U.S. deaths in other OEF theaters, including the Philippines and parts of Africa. Over 315 U.S. killed in 2009highest yet. 150 U.S. killed from October 2001-January 2003. 45 killed in each of July and August 2009,and 50-55 in each of September and October 2009. At least 25 U.S. killed per month in 2010, with over 60 in each of June and July. Over 300 UK forces killed in Afghanistan to date. U.S. Casualties in Afghanistan NATO Sectors (Regional Commands-South, east, north, west, and central/Kabul) Afghan National Army (ANA) Afghan National Police (ANP) U.S. and Partner Trainers Legally Armed Fighters disarmed by DDR Number of Al Qaeda RC-S: 35,000 (U.K. lead). RC-Southwest: 27,000 (U.S. lead); RC-E: 32,000 (U.S. lead); RC-N: 11,000 (German lead); RC-W: 6,000 (Italy lead) RC-Kabul: 5,000 (Turkey, Afghan lead). 145,000, more than the interim goal for October 2010. End goal is 171,600 by late 2011. There are 120+ battalions ranging from 300-1,000 soldiers each. About 2,000 trained per month. 5,300 are commando forces, trained by U.S. Special Forces. ANA private paid about $200 per month; generals receive about $750 per month. ANA being outfitted with U.S. M16 rifles and 4,000 up-armored Humvees. 115,000+, exceeding the interim goal of 109,000 by October 2010. End goal is 134,000 by late 2011. Of the force, 14,000 are border police; 3,800+ counter-narcotics police; 5,300 civil order police.. 1,000+ are female, some serving in very conservative south. Most ANP salaries raised to $240 per month in November 2009, from $120, to counter corruption. Some police paid by E-Paisa system of Roshan cell phone network. About 4,000, with target of 4,800. 63,380; all of the pool identified for the program Number of Taliban fighters 50-100, according to CIA Director Panetta in June 2010. Also, small numbers of Lashkar-e-Tayyiba, Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan, Pakistan Taliban, others. Over 20,000 (U.S. military and Afghan estimates). Some estimates higher. Plus about 2,500 Haqqani faction and 1,000 Hikmatyar (HIG). Attacks per day (average) 1,500+ per month in 2010; compared to 800 per month in 2007; 400 in 2005. Afghan casualties For extended discussion, see CRS Report R41084, Afghanistan Casualties: Military Forces and Civilians, by Susan G. Chesser. Sources: CRS; testimony and public statements by DOD officials. Policy Alternatives/Support for Reduced U.S. Military Involvement Although the Administration review summarized on December 16, 2010, points to clear positive results, there is growing discussion of alternatives to address the apparent growth of support for efforts to wind down U.S. involvement in Afghanistan. Those who support policy alternatives generally believe that the current Afghanistan effort is unwinnable at acceptable cost, and that it is distracting from other priorities on foreign or domestic policy.58 Others believe that pursuing the 58 This argument is presented by State Dept. director of Policy Planning during the Bush Administration, now President (continued...) Congressional Research Service 50 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy suggested alternatives could lead to a collapse of the Afghan government, and would produce an unraveling of the economic, political, and social gains made through the international military involvement in Afghanistan since 2001. “Counter-Terrorism” Strategy During the late 2009 strategy review, some, purportedly including Vice President Joseph Biden, favored a more limited mission for Afghanistan designed solely to disrupt Al Qaeda in Afghanistan and Pakistan. This approach envisioned only a small increase in U.S. or other international forces present in Afghanistan. Advocates of this approach asserted that the government of Afghanistan is not a fully legitimate partner, primarily because of widespread governmental corruption. This strategy was not adopted, in favor of the U.S. “surge” that was authorized. However, as noted above, U.S. commanders say that some of the most effective U.S. operations consist of Special Operations forces tracking and killing selected key mid-level insurgent commanders, even though such operations were not intended to be the centerpiece of U.S. strategy that was decided in 2009. Some of these operations reportedly involve Afghan commandos trained by U.S. Special Forces and the CIA, bearing such names as the “Counterterrorism Pursuit Teams” and the “Paktika Defense Force.” Some believe that there could be a decision to pursue this counter-terrorism strategy more directly, and to include raids across the border into Pakistan, as 2011 progresses. Critics of the limited counter-terrorism strategy express the view that the Afghan government might collapse and Al Qaeda would have safe haven again in Afghanistan if there are insufficient numbers of U.S. forces there to protect the government. 59 Others believed it would be difficult for President Obama to choose a strategy that could jeopardize the stability of the Afghan government, after having defined Afghan security and stability as a key national interest. Still others say that it would be difficult to identify targets to strike with unmanned or manned aircraft unless there were sufficient forces on the ground to identify targets. Legislative Initiatives: Drawdown Plans In Congress, some have expressed support for efforts, or planning, to wind down the U.S. involvement in Afghanistan. H.Con.Res. 248, a resolution introduced by Representative Kucinich to require removal of U.S. forces from Afghanistan not later than December 31, 2010, was defeated in the House by a vote of 65 to 356 on March 10, 2010.) Other Members have introduced legislation to require the Administration to develop, by January 1, 2011, plans to wind down the U.S. military presence in Afghanistan. This provision was voted on in consideration of a FY2010 supplemental appropriation (H.R. 4899), where it failed in the Senate (May 27, 2010) by a vote of 18-80. On July 1, 2010, the House voted 162-260 to reject a plan in that bill to require the Administration to submit, by April 4, 2011, a plan and timetable to redeploy from Afghanistan. Earlier, in House consideration of a FY2010 National Defense Authorization Act (H.R. 2647), a similar provision failed on June 25, 2009, by a vote of 138-278. (...continued) of the Council on Foreign Relations Richard Haass in July 2010. 59 Ibid. Congressional Research Service 51 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Concede Parts of Afghanistan to the Taliban Some experts believe that the Afghanistan conflict is unwinnable and that a preferable strategy would be to work with Pakistan and other regional actors to reach a political settlement relatively favorable to the Taliban. These plans might involve allowing the Taliban to control large parts of the south and east, where the insurgency is most active, and to work with the Northern Alliance to keep other parts of Afghanistan relatively peaceful. Others believe these plans amount to little more than a managed U.S. defeat and that Al Qaeda and other militants would likely take root in Taliban-controlled areas. Regional Dimension Most of Afghanistan’s neighbors believed that the fall of the Taliban would stabilize the region, but Islamist militants have not only continued to challenge the Afghan government but have also battled the government of Pakistan and have conducted acts of terrorism in India and elsewhere in the region. The Obama Administration announcement of a beginning of a “transition” to Afghan leadership in July 2011 has led some regional powers to plan for what they believe might be a post-U.S. presence scramble for influence in Afghanistan—or at least for the ability to deny their rivals influence there. Iran, which shares with India a fear of any return of radical Taliban extremism in Afghanistan, has begun discussing the future of Afghanistan with other regional countries and, to a lesser extent ,with other international actors in Afghanistan. These maneuverings, to some extent, cast doubt on the commitment of Afghanistan’s six neighbors to a non-interference pledge (Kabul Declaration) on December 23, 2002. U.S. officials have sought to enlist both regional and greater international support for Afghanistan through a still expanding 44-nation “International Contact Group.” At the same time, Afghanistan has been re-integrating into regional security and economic organizations that reflect an effort to conduct relatively normal commerce and diplomatic relationships. 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. Several regional summit meeting series have been established involving Afghanistan, including summit meetings between Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Turkey; and between Iran, Afghanistan, and Pakistan. The fifth of the Turkey-led meetings occurred on December 24, 2010, and resulted in a decision for joint military exercises in March 2011 between Turkey, Afghanistan, and Pakistan, and support from Karzai for the Taliban to set up an office in Istanbul for the purpose of conducting reconciliation talks with his government. Russia has put together two “quadrilateral summits,” the latest of which was on August 18, 2010, among Pakistan, Russia, Afghanistan, and Tajikistan, and focused on counter-narcotics and antismuggling Other regional collaborations include the Regional Economic Cooperation Conference on Afghanistan, which was launched in 2005. Another is a UNAMA-led “Kabul Silk Road” initiative, to promote regional cooperation on Afghanistan. As shown in the table below, cooperation from several of the regional countries are crucial to U.S. and ISAF operations and resupply in Afghanistan. Congressional Research Service 52 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Table 6. Afghan and Regional Facilities Used for Operations in and Supply Lines to Afghanistan Facility Use Bagram Air Base 50 miles north of Kabul, the operational hub of U.S. forces in Afghanistan, and base for CJTF82. At least 2000 U.S. military personnel are based there. Handles many of the 150+ U.S. aircraft (including helicopters) in country. Hospital constructed, one of the first permanent structures there. FY2005 supplemental (P.L. 109-13) provided about $52 million for various projects to upgrade facilities at Bagram, including a control tower and an operations center, and the FY2006 supplemental appropriation (P.L. 109-234) provided $20 million for military construction there. NATO also using the base and sharing operational costs. Bagram can be accessed directly by U.S. military flights following April 2010 agreement by Kazakhstan to allow overflights of U.S. lethal equipment. Qandahar Air Field Just outside Qandahar, the hub of military operations in the south. Turned over from U.S. to NATO/ISAF control in late 2006 in conjunction with NATO assumption of peacekeeping responsibilities. Enhanced (along with other facilities in the south) at cost of $1.3 billion to accommodate influx of U.S combat forces in the south. 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, who controlled it. Peter Ganci Base: Manas, Kyrgyzstan Used by 1,200 U.S. military personnel as well as refueling and cargo aircraft for shipments into Afghanistan. Leadership of Kyrgyzstan changed in April 2005 in an uprising against President Askar Akayev and again in April 2010 against Kurmanbek Bakiyev. Previous Kyrgyz governments demanded the U.S. vacate the base but in both cases, (July 2006 and July 2009) agreement to use the base was extended in exchange for large increase in U.S. payments for its use (to $60 million per year in the latter case). Interim government formed in April 2010 first threatened then retracted eviction of U.S. from the base, but the issue remains subject to decisionmaking by a new government elected in Kyrgyzstan on October 11, 2010. Some questions have arisen in Congress over alleged corruption involving fuel suppliers of U.S. aircraft at the base. 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. Could see increasing use if Manas closes. 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. Could see increased use if Manas closes. Naval Support Facility, Bahrain U.S. naval command headquarters for OEF anti-smuggling, anti-terrorism, and anti-proliferation naval search missions, and Iraq-related naval operations (oil platform protection) in the Persian Gulf and Arabian Sea. About 5,100 U.S. military personnel there. Karsi-Khanabad 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) supplying Afghanistan. Uzbekistan allowed German use of the base temporarily in March 2008, indicating possible healing of the rift. U.S. relations with Uzbekistan improved in 2009, but U.S. officials said in 2010 that the use of the air base is still not under active discussion. Some shipments beginning in February 2009 through Navoi airfield in central Uzbekistan, and U.S. signed agreement with Uzbekistan on April 4, 2009, allowing nonlethal supplies for the Afghanistan war. Goods are shipped to Latvia and Georgia, some transits Russia by rail, then to Uzbekistan. Tajikistan Some use of air bases and other facilities by coalition partners, including France, and emergency use by U.S. India also uses bases under separate agreement. New supply lines to Afghanistan established in February 2009 (“northern route”) make some use of Tajikistan. Pakistan As discussed below, most U.S. supplies flow through Pakistan. Heavy equipment docks in Karachi and is escorted by security contractors to the Khyber Pass crossing. Congressional Research Service 53 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Pakistan/Pakistan-Afghanistan Border60 Pakistan’s apparent determination to retain influence over Afghanistan is heavily colored by fears of historic rival India. Pakistan viewed the Taliban regime as providing Pakistan strategic depth against rival India, and Pakistan apparently remains wary that the current Afghan government may come under the sway of India. Numerous militant groups, such as LET (Laskhar-e-Tayyiba, or Army of the Righteous) were formed in Pakistan to challenge India’s control of part of the disputed territories of Jammu and Kashmir. Some observers believe Pakistan wants to retain the ability to stoke these militants against India, even though these militants may be aiding Islamist groups challenging Pakistan’s stability. Pakistan says India is using its Embassy and four consulates in Afghanistan (Pakistan says India has nine such consulates) to train and recruit antiPakistan insurgents, and is using its reconstruction funds to build influence there. The Obama Administration strategy reviews in 2009 and 2010 all emphasized the linkage between militants present in Pakistan and the difficulty stabilizing Afghanistan. The December 2010 U.S. policy review says that greater cooperation with Pakistan is necessary to address militant safehavens there, but that denial of safehavens also requires effective development strategies inside Pakistan. Since the late 2009 review, in which the concept of a start of a U.S. drawdown beginning in July 2011 was stated, Pakistan appears to have tried to position a political deal between the Afghan government and the insurgency. It has done so by purportedly protecting certain Afghan militant factions, such as the Haqqani network, that might play a role in a postsettlement Afghanistan. As part of its efforts to engage Karzai on the shape of any conflict-ending settlement, during 2010 there has been a growing pattern of meetings between Karzai and Pakistan’s army chief of staff General Ashfaq Kiyani and with the head of Pakistan’s Inter Services Intelligence Directorate (ISI), General Ahmad Shuja Pasha. Through meetings such as these, Pakistan has sought to rebut allegations that its Inter Service Intelligence (ISI) directorate is supporting the Haqqani faction and others.61 It is not certain how Pakistan would react to any U.S. effort to stage ground raids into Pakistan against the Haqqani network or other militants, if there is a U.S. decision to emphasize such operations. Pakistan has also sought to control Afghanistan’s trade, particularly with India, leading to U.S. efforts to persuade Pakistan to forge a “transit trade” agreement with Afghanistan. That effort bore success with the signature of a trade agreement between the two on July 18, 2010, allowing for an easier flow of Afghan products, which are mostly agricultural products that depend on rapid transit. The two are estimated to do about $2 billion in trade per year. The agreement could also represent a success for the Canada-sponsored “Dubai Process” of talks between Afghanistan and Pakistan on modernizing border crossings, new roads, and a comprehensive border management strategy to meet IMF benchmarks. The trade agreement comes after earlier signs of growing cooperation, including Afghan agreement to send more Afghan graduate students to study in Pakistan, and a June 2010 Afghan agreement to send small numbers of ANA officers to undergo training in Pakistan. 62 60 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. 61 Mazzetti, Mark and Eric Schmitt. “CIA Outlines Pakistan Links With Militants.” New York Times, July 30, 2008. 62 Partlow, Joshua. “Afghans Build Up Ties With Pakistan.” Washington Post, July 21, 2010. Congressional Research Service 54 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Cooperation Against Al Qaeda During 2001-2006, the Bush Administration praised then President Pervez Musharraf for Pakistani accomplishments against Al Qaeda, including the arrest of over 700 Al Qaeda figures since the September 11 attacks.63 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 when it threatened him directly; for example, after the December 2003 assassination attempts against him. Musharraf resigned in August 2008, and the civilian government is led by the party of the late Pakistani secular leader Benazir Bhutto. Her widower, Asif Ali Zardari, is President. U.S. criticism of Pakistan’s approach increased following a New York Times report (February 19, 2007) that Al Qaeda had reestablished some small terrorist training camps in Pakistan, near the Afghan border. This possibly was an outgrowth of a September 5, 2006, compromise between Pakistan and tribal elders in this region. That, and subsequent compromises were criticized, including a 2008 “understanding” with members of the Mehsud tribe, among which is Tehrik-eTaliban (TTP, Pakistan Taliban) leader Baitullah Mehsud (killed in a U.S. strike in August 2009). As noted, the TTP was named a Foreign Terrorist Organization on September 2, and some of its leaders (Hakimullah Mehsud) were named as terrorism supporting entities that day. Increased Direct U.S. Action64 The Obama Administration has tried to combat Afghanistan-focused militants in Pakistan without directly violating Pakistan’s restrictions on the U.S. ability to operate “on the ground” in Pakistan. The Obama Administration has significantly increased the use of Predator and Reaper unmanned aircraft to strike militant targets in Pakistan as compared to the Bush Administration. Such a strike reportedly was responsible for the death of Beitullah Mehsud, and some militant websites say the strikes are taking a major toll on their operations and networks. The New York Times reported on February 23, 2009, that there are about 70 U.S. military advisers on the ground in Pakistan but they are there to help train Pakistani forces to battle Al Qaeda and Taliban militants. However, a U.S. raid over the border, which killed two Pakistani Frontier Corps soldiers in early October 2010, caused Pakistan to close off for several days the northern border crossing through with much of NATO/ISAF’s supplies flow. Recent History of Pakistan-Afghanistan Relations The fluctuating nature of Afghanistan-Pakistan relations is not a new feature, and is based on Pakistan’s past involvements in Afghanistan’s struggles. Afghans fondly remember Pakistan’s role as the hub for U.S. backing of the mujahedin that forced the Soviet withdrawal in 1988-89. However, some Afghan leaders resent Pakistan as the most public defender of the Taliban movement when it was in power (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). 63 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 al-Libbi (May 2005). 64 CRS Report RL34763, Islamist Militancy in the Pakistan-Afghanistan Border Region and U.S. Policy, by K. Alan Kronstadt and Kenneth Katzman. Congressional Research Service 55 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Since 2008, the end of the Musharraf era, there has been a dramatic improvement in AfghanistanPakistan relations. Karzai attended the September 9, 2008, inauguration of Zardari. A “peace jirga” process—a series of meetings of notables on each side of the border—was launched at a September 28, 2006, dinner hosted by President Bush for Karzai and Musharraf, and meetings of 700 Pakistani and Afghan tribal elders were held in August 2007 and again in October, 2008. The latter, led on the Afghan side by Dr. Abdullah, and resulted in a declaration to endorse efforts to try to engage militants in both Afghanistan and Pakistan to bring them into the political process. Zardari visited Kabul and met with Karzai on January 9, 2009, where the two signed a joint declaration against terrorism that affects both countries. (A September 2010 meeting between them appeared to be a rededication of this declaration.) Additional progress was made during the visit of Afghan and Pakistani ministers to Washington, DC, during February 23-27, 2009, to participate in the Obama Administration strategic review. As noted above, Karzai and Zardari visit Washington, DC, in May 2009 to continue the strategic dialogue. In April 2008, in an extension of the Tripartite Commission’s work, the three countries agreed to set up five “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 intelligence on extremists’ movements. Three have been established to date, including one near the Torkham Gate at the Khyber Pass, one at Nawa, and one at Liwara. In June 2008, Pakistan ended a six-month suspension in attendance at meetings of the Tripartite Commission under which NATO, Afghan, and Pakistani military leaders meet regularly on both sides of the border. Regarding the long-term relationship, 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). The border is recognized by the United Nations, but Afghanistan continues to indicate that the border was drawn unfairly to separate Pashtun tribes and should be renegotiated. As of October 2002, about 1.75 million Afghan refugees have returned from Pakistan since the Taliban fell, but as many as 3 million might still remain in Pakistan, and Pakistan says it plans to expel them back into Afghanistan in the near future. Iran The Obama Administration initially saw Iran as potentially helpful to its strategy for Afghanistan. Ambassador Holbrooke had advocated a “regional” component of the strategy, which focuses primarily on Pakistan but also envisioned cooperation with Iran on Afghanistan issues. However, as Iran-U.S. relations worsened in 2010 over Iran’s nuclear program, the Obama Administration became more critical of Iran’s activities in Afghanistan. Still, press reports in September 2010 indicated that the view within the Administration that Iran is key to helping stabilizing Afghanistan may be returning to the forefront. The Administration reported to be considering a U.S.-Iran dialogue in Kabul on Afghan issues.65 Iran’s attendance of the October 18, 2010, International Contact Group” meeting in Rome, including a briefing by General Petraeus, might be an indication of more engagement between Iran and the United States on the Afghanistan issue. 65 Ignatius, David. “A Chance to Engage Iran?” Washington Post, September 17, 2010. Congressional Research Service 56 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Early in the Administration, Secretary of State Clinton made a point of announcing that Iran would be invited to the U.N.-led meeting on Afghanistan at the Hague on March 31, 2009. At the meeting, Special Representative Holbrooke briefly met the Iranian leader of his delegation to the meeting, and handed him a letter on several outstanding human rights cases involving IranianAmericans. At the meeting, Iran pledged cooperation on combating Afghan narcotics and in helping economic development in Afghanistan—both policies Iran is already pursuing to a large degree. The United States and Iran took similar positions at a U.N. meeting in Geneva in February 2010 that discussed drug trafficking across the Afghan border. Iran did not attend the January 28, 2010, international meeting in London, but it did attend the July 28, 2010, international meeting in Kabul (both discussed above). Iranian Material Support to Militants in Afghanistan A U.S.-Iran dialogue on Afghanistan would presumably be intended to address the U.S. concerns about Iran’s support for groups that operate against U.S. forces. Iran may be arming groups in Afghanistan to try to pressure U.S. forces that use Afghanistan’s Shindand air base,66 which Iran fears the United States might use to attack or conduct surveillance against Iran. Or, Iran’s policy might be to gain broader leverage against the United States by demonstrating that Iran is in position to cause U.S. combat deaths in Afghanistan. Yet, the Iranian aid is not at a level that would make Iran a major player in the insurgency in Afghanistan. U.S. officials, including General Petraeus in his August 2010 press meetings, has called Iranian influence in Afghanistan, including its support for armed groups, “modest.” Others are puzzled by Iran’s support of Taliban fighters who are Pashtun, because Iran has traditionally supported Persian-speaking non-Pashtun factions in Afghanistan. The State Department report on international terrorism for 2009, released August 5, 2010, said the Qods Force of the Revolutionary Guard of Iran continues to provide training to the Taliban on small unit tactics, small arms, explosives, and indirect weapons fire, as well as ships arms to “selected Taliban members” in Afghanistan. Weapons provided, according to the State Department report, as well as an April 2010 Defense Department report on Iran’s military capabilities, include mortars, 107mm rockets, rocket-propelled grenades, and plastic explosives. Some reports, however, say Iran is actively paying Afghan militants to specifically target U.S. forces. On August 3, 2010, the Treasury Department, acting under Executive Order 13224, named two Qods Force officers as terrorism supporting entities (freezing assets in the United States, if any). They are: Hossein Musavi, Commander of the Qods Force Ansar Corps, which is the key Qods unit involved in Afghanistan, and Hasan Mortezavi, who is a Qods officer responsible for providing funds and materiel to the Taliban, according to the Treasury Department. 67 Bilateral Afghan-Iranian Relations Iran, like President Karzai, is concerned about how any reduction in U.S. involvement in Afghanistan might improve the prospects for a Taliban return to power. Iran’s interest in a broad relationship with Karzai has not, to date, been affected by Iran’s continued support for Taliban and other militants in Afghanistan. Aside from its always tense relations with the United States, 66 Rashid, Ahmed. “Afghan Neighbors Show Signs of Aiding in Nation’s Stability.” Wall Street Journal, October 18, 2004. 67 Treasury Department. Fact Sheet: U.S. Treasury Department Targets Iran’s Support for Terrorism. August 3, 2010. Congressional Research Service 57 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy 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 Persian empire, and to protect Afghanistan’s Shiite and other Persian-speaking minorities. Karzai has, at times, called Iran a “friend” of Afghanistan, and in March 2010 he met with Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on two occasions, possibly to signal to the United States that he might realign with regional actors if the United States continues to criticize his leadership. One of the meetings was just after the departure of visiting Defense Secretary Gates. Previously, Karzai received Ahmadinejad in Kabul in August 2007, and he visited Tehran at the end of May 2009 as part of the tripartite diplomatic process between Iran, Pakistan, and Afghanistan. During his visit to the United States in May 2009, Karzai said he had told both the United States and Iran that Afghanistan must not become an arena for the broader competition and disputes between the United States and Iran.68 Iran’s pledged assistance to Afghanistan has totaled about $1.164 billion since the fall of the Taliban, mainly to build roads, schools, and electricity lines in Herat Province, near the Iranian border. 69 Iranian funds have also been used to construct mosques in the province, as well as proIranian theological seminaries in Shiite districts of Kabul. Iran also offers scholarships to Afghans to study in Iranian universities, and there are consistent allegations that Iran has funded Afghan provincial council and parliamentary candidates who are perceived as pro-Tehran.70 A controversy arose in late October 2010 when Karzai acknowledged accepting about $2 million per year in cash payments from Iran, via his chief of Staff Mohammad Daudzai. On the other hand, in December 2010, Iran suddenly ceased shipping fuel into Afghanistan, causing some spot dislocations in Afghanistan. The move could have been related to reported shortages of gasoline inside Iran, which are a result of U.S. sanctions imposed on sales of gasoline to Iran in July 2010. Many Afghans look fondly on Iran for helping them try to oust the Taliban regime when it was in power. Iran saw the Taliban regime, which ruled during 1996-2001, as a threat to its interests in Afghanistan, especially after Taliban forces captured Herat in September 1995. Iran subsequently drew even closer to the ethnic minority-dominated Northern Alliance than previously, providing its groups with fuel, funds, and ammunition.71 In September 1998, Iranian and Taliban forces nearly came into direct 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 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. Iran helped construct Afghanistan’s first post-Taliban government, in cooperation with the United States—at the December 2001 “Bonn Conference.” In February 2002, Iran expelled Karzai-opponent Gulbuddin Hikmatyar, but it did not arrest him. At other times, Afghanistan and Iran have had disputes over Iran’s efforts to expel Afghan refugees. About 1.2 million remain, mostly integrated into Iranian society, and a crisis erupted in May 2007 when Iran expelled about 50,000 into Afghanistan. About 300,000 Afghan refugees have returned from Iran since the Taliban fell. 68 Comments by President Karzai at the Brookings Institution. May 5, 2009. Iranian economic and political influence efforts in Herat were discussed in a CRS visit to Herat in October 2009. 70 King, Laura. “In Western Afghan City, Iran Makes Itself Felt.” Los Angeles Times, November 14, 2010. 71 Steele, Jonathon, “America Includes Iran in Talks on Ending War in Afghanistan.” Washington Times, December 15, 1997. 69 Congressional Research Service 58 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy 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 to deny Pakistan the ability to block India from trade and other connections to Central Asia and beyond. Some believe India is increasingly concerned that any negotiated settlement of the Afghanistan conflict will give Pakistan preponderant influence in Afghanistan, and India, which supported the Northern Alliance against the Taliban in the mid-1990s, is said to be stepping up its contacts with those factions to discuss possible contingencies in the event of an Afghan settlement deal. Many of the families of Afghan leaders have lived in India at one time or another and, as noted above, Karzai studied there. 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, and there might be connections to the militants who carried out the terrorist attacks in Mumbai in November 2008. Pakistan accuses India of using its four consulates in Afghanistan (Pakistan says there are nine such consulates) to spread Indian influence in Afghanistan. However, many U.S. observers believe India’s role in Afghanistan is constructive, and some would support an Indian decision to deploy more security forces in Afghanistan to protect its construction workers, diplomats, and installations. India reportedly decided in August 2008 to improve security for its officials and workers in Afghanistan, but not to send actual troops there. Yet, Tajikistan, which also supported the mostly Tajik Northern Alliance against the Taliban when it was in power, allows India to use one of its air bases. India is the fifth-largest single country donor to Afghan reconstruction, funding projects worth over $1.2 billion. Indian officials assert that all their projects are focused on civilian, not military, development and are in line with the development priorities set by the Afghan government. India, along with the Asian Development Bank, financed a $300 million project, mentioned above, to bring electricity from Central Asia to Afghanistan. It has also renovated 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. India financed the construction of a road to the Iranian border in remote Nimruz province, and it is currently constructing the 42 megawatt hydroelectric Selwa Dam in Herat Province at a cost of about $80 million. This will increase electricity availability in the province. India is also helping the IDLG with its efforts to build local governance organizations, and it provides 1,000 scholarships per year for Afghans to undergo higher education in India. Some Afghans want to enlist even more Indian assistance in training Afghan bureaucrats in accounting, forensic accounting, oversight, and other disciplines that will promote transparency in Afghan governance. 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 U.S. operations in Afghanistan. The region to the north of Afghanistan is a growing factor in U.S. efforts to secure new supply lines to Afghanistan. Some of these alternative lines have begun to open, at least to non-lethal supplies. Congressional Research Service 59 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Russia Russia wants to reemerge as a great power and to contain U.S. power in Central Asia, including Afghanistan. Its hosting of the “quadrilateral summits”mentioned above, the first in July 2009 and the latest on August 18, 2010, could represent stepped up efforts by Russia to exert influence on the Afghanistan issue. Still, Russia supports U.S. efforts to combat militants in the region who have sometimes posed a threat to Russia itself. Previously, Russia had kept a low profile in the country because it still feels humiliated by its withdrawal in 1989 and senses some Afghan resentment of the Soviet occupation. In November 2010, in its most significant intervention in Afghanistan since its occupation, Russian officers reportedly joined U.S. and Afghan forces attempting to interdict narcotics trafficking in Afghanistan; the move reportedly prompted a complaint by President Karzai because he was not consulted about the inclusion of the Russians. In June 2010, Russia said more economic and social assistance is needed for Afghanistan. Russia reportedly is considering investing $1 billion in Afghanistan to develop its electricity capacity and build out other infrastructure. Since 2002, Russia has been providing some humanitarian aid to Afghanistan. Russian cooperation is crucial to the U.S. effort in Afghanistan. In February 2009, Russia resumed allowing the United States to ship non-lethal equipment into Afghanistan through Russia (following a suspension in 2008 caused by differences over the Russia-Georgia conflict). In July 2009, following President Obama’s visit to Russia, it announced it would allow the transit to Afghanistan of lethal supplies as well. Russia reportedly is being urged by NATO (as evidenced in a visit by NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen to Russia in December 2009) to provide helicopters and spare parts to the Afghan forces (which still make heavy use of Russianmade Hind helicopters) as well as fuel. 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.72 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 These states are becoming increasingly crucial to U.S. strategy in Afghanistan. As discussed in the chart, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Tajikistan and Kazakhstan are pivotal actors in U.S. efforts to secure supply routes into Afghanistan that avoid Pakistan. 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 72 Risen, James. “Russians Are Back in Afghanistan, Aiding Rebels.” New York Times, July 27, 1998. Congressional Research Service 60 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy linked to Al Qaeda.73 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 Karshi-Khanabad 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. Ambassador Holbrooke visited in February 2010, indicating further warming. Renewed U.S. discussions with Uzbekistan apparently bore some fruit with the Uzbek decision in February 2009 to allow the use of Navoi airfield for shipment of U.S./NATO goods into Afghanistan. Central Asian Activities During Taliban Rule 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 2007, that security should be handled by the countries in the Central Asia region. Despite the Shanghai Cooperation Organization statements, Tajikistan allows access primarily to French combat aircraft, and Kazakhstan allows use of facilities in case of emergency. In April 2010, it also agreed to allow U.S. overflights of lethal military equipment to Afghanistan, allowing the United States to use polar routes to fly materiel directly from the United States to Bagram Airfield. A meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization to discuss Afghanistan was held in Moscow on March 25, 2009, and was observed by a U.S. official, as well as by Iran. 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 below). 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 based in Turkmenistan. China74 China’s involvement in Afghanistan policy appears to be growing. China reportedly is considering contributing some People’s Liberation Army (PLA) forces, possibly in a non-combat role, to helping secure Afghanistan. A communiqué from the Obama visit to China in November 2009 implied a possible larger role for China to help stabilize Afghanistan. In late 2009, China 73 The IMU was named a foreign terrorist organization by the State Department in September 2000. For more information, see CRS Report RL33001, U.S.-China Counterterrorism Cooperation: Issues for U.S. Policy, by Shirley A. Kan. 74 Congressional Research Service 61 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy allocated an additional $75 billion in economic aid to Afghanistan, bringing its total to close to $1 billion since 2002. On March 20, 2010, ahead of a visit to China by Karzai, China called for more international support for Afghanistan. During the visit, China stressed that its investments in Afghanistan would continue. Chinese delegations continue to assess the potential for new investments in such sectors as mining and energy,75 and a $3.4 billion deal was signed in November 2007 for China Metallurgical Group to develop the Aynak copper mine south of Kabul, and build related infrastructure. The deal represents the largest investment in Afghanistan in history. However, U.S. Embassy officials told CRS in October 2009 that actual work at the mine has been stalled for some time. U.S. forces do not directly protect the project, but U.S. forces are operating in Lowgar province, where the project is located, and provide general stability there. China is also a major contender to develop the Hajji Gak iron ore mine near Kabul. A major organizer of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, China has a small border with a sliver of Afghanistan known as the “Wakhan corridor.” As noted in the U.N. report on Afghanistan of December 10, 2010, Afghanistan is increasingly involved in Shanghai Cooperation Organization affairs. China had become increasingly concerned about the potential for Al Qaeda 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. Persian Gulf States: Saudi Arabia and UAE The Gulf states are, according to Ambassador Holbrooke, a key part of the effort to stabilize Afghanistan. As noted, Ambassador Holbrooke has focused increasing U.S. attention—and has formed a multilateral task force—to try to curb continuing Gulf resident donations to the Taliban in Afghanistan. Holbrooke has said these donations might be a larger source of Taliban funding than is the narcotics trade. Saudi Arabia has a role to play in Afghanistan in part because, during the Soviet occupation, Saudi Arabia channeled hundreds of millions of dollars to the Afghan resistance, primarily Hikmatyar and Sayyaf. Drawing on its reputed intelligence ties to Afghanistan during that era, Saudi Arabia worked with Taliban leaders to 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. A majority of Saudi citizens practice the strict Wahhabi brand of Islam similar to that of the Taliban, and Saudi Arabia was one of three countries to formally recognize the Taliban government. The Taliban initially served Saudi Arabia as a potential counter to Iran, but IranianSaudi relations improved after 1997 and balancing Iranian power ebbed as a factor in Saudi policy toward Afghanistan. Saudi Arabia has played a role as a go-between for negotiations between the Karzai government and “moderate” Taliban figures. This role was recognized at the London conference on January 75 CRS conversations with Chinese officials in Beijing. August 2007. Congressional Research Service 62 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy 28, 2010, in which President Karzai stated in his opening speech that he sees a role for Saudi Arabia in helping stabilize Afghanistan. As noted, some reports say that a political settlement might involve Mullah Umar going into exile in Saudi Arabia. According to U.S. officials, Saudi Arabia cooperated extensively, if not publicly, with OEF. It broke diplomatic relations with the Taliban in late September 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. The United Arab Emirates, the third country that recognized the Taliban regime, is emerging as another major donor to Afghanistan. Its troop contribution was discussed under OEF, above. At a donors conference for Afghanistan in June 2008, UAE pledged an additional $250 million for Afghan development, double the $118 million pledged by Saudi Arabia. That brought the UAE contribution to Afghanistan to over $400 million since the fall of the Taliban. Projects funded include housing in Qandahar, roads in Kabul, a hospital in Zabol province, and a university in Khost. There are several daily flights between Kabul and Dubai emirate. U.S. and International Aid to Afghanistan and Development Issues Many experts have long believed that accelerating economic development would do more to improve the security situation—and to eliminate narcotics trafficking—than intensified antiTaliban combat. This belief appears to constitute a major element of Obama Administration strategy. 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. The literacy rate is very low and Afghanistan lacks a large pool of skilled labor. 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 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. For all of FY2002-FY2009, the United States has provided about $40 billion in assistance, including military “train and equip” for the ANA and ANP (which is about $21 billion of these funds). The Obama Administration request for FY2010 (regular and supplemental) and for FY2011 are in separate tables below. The figures in the tables do not include costs for U.S. combat operations. Including those costs, the United States spent about $105 billion for FY2010 and expects to spend about $120 billion for FY2011. For further information on combat costs, see Congressional Research Service 63 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy CRS Report RL33110, The Cost of Iraq, Afghanistan, and Other Global War on Terror Operations Since 9/11, by Amy Belasco. There is also a debate over how aid is distributed. Some of the more stable provinces, such as Bamiyan and Balkh, are complaining that U.S. and 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 report are tables showing U.S. appropriations of assistance to Afghanistan, and Table 20 lists U.S. spending on all sectors for FY2002-FY2009. Direct Aid and Budget Support to the Afghan Government Although the Afghan government has been increasing its revenue (about $1.4 billion for 2010) and is covering about one quarter of its overall budget, USAID provides funding to help the Afghan government meet gaps in its operating budget—both directly and through a U.N.-run multi-donor Afghan Reconstruction Trust Fund (ARTF) account, run by the World Bank. The Obama Administration has requested about $200 million in FY2011 funds to provide direct budget support to Afghan ministries that meet reform benchmarks. Those figures are provided in the U.S. aid tables at the end. Currently, only about 20% of all donated aid funds disbursed are channeled through the Afghan government. The United States views only four ministries as sufficiently transparent to handle donor funds. However, the Kabul Conference (July 20, 2010) communiqué endorsed a goal of increasing that to about 50%. Aid Oversight 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). Funds provided for the SIGAR are in the tables below. On May 30, 2008, Major General Arnold Fields (Marine, ret.) was named to the position. He has filed several reports on Afghan reconstruction, which include discussions of SIGAR staffing levels and activities, as well as several specific project audits. However, he acknowledged that criticisms in a July 2010 “peer review” of SIGAR operations by the Inspectors General of several U.S. agencies were valid, attributing many of the shortcomings to slow pace of fully funding his office.76 One recent SIGAR report noted deficiencies in the ability of the Afghan government’s Central Audits Office to monitor how funds are used. Some Members of Congress have criticized the SIGAR for ineffective oversight and have called for his replacement. Aid Authorization: Afghanistan Freedom Support Act 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. The law, whose authority has now expired, was intended to 76 Congressional Research Service 64 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy create a central source for allocating funds; that aid strategy was not implemented. However, some of the humanitarian, counter-narcotics, and governance assistance targets authorized by the act were met or exceeded by appropriations. No Enterprise Funds authorized by the act have been appropriated. 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 FY2003-FY2006 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 drawdowns of defense articles and services for Afghanistan and regional militaries. (The original law provided for $300 million in drawdowns. That was increased by subsequent appropriations laws.) A subsequent law (P.L. 108-458, December 17, 2004), implementing the recommendations of the 9/11 Commission, contained “The Afghanistan Freedom Support Act Amendments of 2004.” The subtitle mandated the appointment of a U.S. coordinator of policy on Afghanistan and requires additional Administration reports to Congress. Afghan Freedom Support Act Reauthorization In the 110th Congress, H.R. 2446, passed by the House on June 6, 2007 (406-10), would have reauthorized AFSA through FY2010. A version (S. 3531), with fewer provisions than the House bill, was not taken up by the full Senate. AFSA reauthorization was not reintroduced in the 111th Congress. H.R. 2446 would have authorized about $1.7 billion in U.S. economic aid and $320 in military aid (including drawdowns of equipment) per fiscal year. It also would have authorized a pilot program of crop substitution to encourage legitimate alternatives to poppy cultivation; and a cut off of U.S. aid to any Afghan province in which the Administration reports that the leadership of the province is complicit in narcotics trafficking. Congressional Research Service 65 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Table 7. Major Reporting Requirements Several provisions require Administration reports on numerous aspects of U.S. strategy, assistance, and related issues: • P.L. 108-458, The Afghanistan Freedom Support Act Amendments required, through the end of FY2010, an overarching annual report on U.S. strategy in Afghanistan. Other reporting requirements expired, including required reports: (1) on long-term U.S. strategy and progress of reconstruction; (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. • P.L. 110-181 (Section 1230), FY2008 Defense Authorization Act requires a quarterly DOD report on the security situation in Afghanistan; the first was submitted in June 2008. It is required by that law through FY2011. Section 1231 requires a report on the Afghan National Security Forces through the end of FY2010. • Section 1229 of the same law requires the quarterly report of the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR). • P.L. 111-8 (Omnibus Appropriation, explanatory statement) required a State Department report on the use of funds to address the needs of Afghan women and girls (submitted by September 30, 2009). • P.L. 111-32, FY2009 Supplemental Appropriation (Section 1116), required a White House report, by the time of the FY2011 budget submission, on whether Afghanistan and Pakistan are cooperating with U.S. policy sufficiently to warrant a continuation of Administration policy toward both countries, as well as efforts by these governments to curb corruption, their efforts to develop a counter-insurgency strategy, the level of political consensus in the two countries to confront security challenges, and U.S. government efforts to achieve these objectives. The report was released with a date of September 30, 2010. • The same law (Section 1117) required a report, by September 23, 2009, on metrics to be used to assess progress on Afghanistan and Pakistan strategy. A progress report measured against those metrics is to be submitted by March 30, 2010, and every six months thereafter, until the end of FY2011. • Section 1228 of the FY2010 National Defense Authorization Act (P.L. 111-84) required a report, within 120 days, on the Afghan Provincial Protection Program and other local security initiatives. Section 1235 authorized a DOD-funded study of U.S. force levels needed for eastern and southern Afghanistan, and Section 1226 required a Comptroller General report on the U.S. “campaign plan” for the Afghanistan (and Iraq) effort. • The FY2011 National Defense Authorization Act (H.R. 6523, cleared for the White House) provides for:: (Section 1231) a one year extension—through FY2012 - on the security situation in Afghanistan that was begun in P.L. 11-181: a two year extension (Section 1232) in the reporting requirement—through FY 2012 - on the Afghan National Security Forces; (Section 1535) a report within six months of enactment on U.S. economic strategy for Afghanistan and a plan, to be submitted concurrent with the FY2012 budget submission, to transition the duties of the Task Force for Business and Stability Operations in Afghanistan to the Department of State; and a report by State, DOD, and USAID on the use of contractors in Afghanistan. International Reconstruction Pledges/National Development Strategy International (non-U.S.) donors have pledged over $30 billion since the fall of the Taliban. When combined with U.S. aid, this by far exceeds the $27.5 billion for reconstruction identified as required for 2002-2010. The major donors, and their aggregate pledges to date, are listed in Table 8, below. These amounts were pledged, in part, at the following donor conferences: (Tokyo), Berlin (April 2004), Kabul (April 2005), the London conference (February 2006), and the June 12, 2008, conference in Paris, discussed below. The January 28, 2010, London conference resulted in further pledges, as noted above. The Afghanistan Compact leaned toward the view of Afghan leaders that a higher proportion of the aid be channeled through the Afghan government, a policy adopted by the United States. Congressional Research Service 66 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Among multilateral lending institutions, in May 2002, the World Bank reopened its office in Afghanistan after 20 years. Its projects have been concentrated in the telecommunications and road and sewage sectors. The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has also been playing a major role in Afghanistan. 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. On the eve of the London conference on January 28, 2010, the IMF and World Bank announced $1.6 billion in Afghanistan debt relief. National Solidarity Program The United States and the Afghan government are also trying to promote local decision making on development. The “National Solidarity Program” (NSD) largely funded by U.S. and other international donors—but implemented by Afghanistan’s Ministry of Rural Rehabilitation and Development—seeks to create and empower local governing councils to prioritize local reconstruction projects. It is widely hailed as a highly successful, Afghan-run program. 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. The U.S. aid to the program is part of the World Bank-run Afghanistan Reconstruction Trust Fund (ARTF) account. A FY2009 supplemental request asked about $85 million for the ARTF account, of which much of those funds would be used to fill a $140 million shortfall in the NSP program. P.L. 111-32, the FY2009 supplemental discussed above, earmarks $70 million to defray the shortfall. The FY2010 consolidated appropriation (P.L. 111-117) earmarked another $175 million in ESF for the program. The FY2010 National Defense Authorization Act (P.L. 111-84) authorizes the use of some CERP funds, controlled by the U.S. military, to supplement the funding for the NSP. However, this authorization, if implemented, is likely to incur opposition from some international NGOs who are opposed to combining military action with development work. Results of U.S. and International Aid in Key Sectors 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. The following are some key sectors and what has been accomplished with U.S. and international donor funds: • 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. 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 General Eikenberry (now Ambassador) said “where the roads end, the Taliban begin.” The major road, the Ring Road, is nearly all repaved. Among other major projects completed are a road from Qandahar to Tarin Kowt, (Uruzgan province) built by U.S. military personnel, inaugurated in 2005; and a road linking the Panjshir Valley to Kabul. In several provinces, U.S. funds (sometimes CERP funds) are being used to build roads that link up farming communities to the market for their products. Another key priority is building a Khost-Gardez road, under way currently. • Bridges. Afghan officials are said to be optimistic about increased trade with Central Asia now that a new bridge has opened (October 2007) over the Panj Congressional Research Service 67 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy River, connecting Afghanistan and Tajikistan. The bridge was built with $33 million in (FY2005) U.S. assistance. The bridge is helping 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. • 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 giving about 65% of the population at least some 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. • Railways. Afghanistan does not currently have any functioning railway. However, a railway from Mazar-i-Sharif to the border with Uzbekistan, is now under construction with $165 million from the Asian Development Bank. The rail will eventually link up with Herat and will integrate Afghanistan to the former Soviet railway system in Central Asia, increasing Afghanistan’s economic integration in the region. Electricity Sector At least 10% of USAID funds for Afghanistan have been spent on power projects, although that percentage is rising in 2010 and 2011. 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, a goal that has not been met. However, severe power shortages in Kabul, caused in part by the swelling of Kabul’s population to about 3 million, up from half a million when the Taliban was in power, are fewer now than two years ago. Power to the capital has grown due to the Afghan government’s agreements with several Central Asian neighbors to import electricity, as well as construction of new substations. Many shops in Kabul are now lit up at night, as observed by CRS in October 2009. Afghanistan has no hydrocarbons energy export industry and a small refining sector that provides some of Afghanistan’s needs for gasoline or other fuels. Russia, Kazakhstan, and Uzbekistan are its main fuel suppliers. A major USAID and DOD focus is on power projects in southern Afghanistan. The key longterm project is to expand the capacity of the Kajaki Dam, located in unstable Helmand Province. USAID has allocated about $500 million to restore and expand the capacity of the dam. As of October 2009, two turbines were operating—one was always working, and the second was repaired by USAID contractors. This has doubled electricity production in the south and caused small factories and other businesses to come to flourish. USAID plans to further expand capacity of the dam by installing a third turbine (which there is a berth for but which never had a turbine installed.) In an operation involving 4,000 NATO troops (Operation Ogap Tsuka), components of the third turbine were successfully delivered to the dam in September 2008. It was expected to be operational in mid-late 2009 but technical and security problems, such as inability to secure and build roads leading to the dam, have delayed the project and there is no public estimate as to when the third turbine will be completed. In the interim, the U.S. military and USAID have agreed on a plan to focus on smaller substations and generator projects that can bring more electricity to Qandahar and other places in the south quickly. For this and other power projects, the Administration is requesting legislative authority for an Congressional Research Service 68 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy “Infrastructure Fund” to be funded by DOD ($400 million - $600 million in FY2011) but controlled jointly by DOD and USAID. Solar Power There is also an apparent increasing emphasis on providing electricity to individual homes and villages through small solar power installations. A contractor to USAID, IRG, is providing small solar powered-electricity generators to homes in several districts of Afghanistan, alleviating the need to connect such homes to the national power grid. However, there are technical drawbacks, including weather-related inconsistency of power supply and the difficulty of powering appliances that require substantial power. The U.S. broadcasting service to Afghanistan, Radio Azadi, run by Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, has given out 20,000 solar-powered radios throughout Afghanistan, according to RFE/RL in December 2010. Agriculture Sector With about 80% of Afghans living in rural areas, the agriculture sector has always been key to Afghanistan’s economy and stability. Ambassador Holbrooke, including in his January 2010 strategy document, has outlined U.S. policy to boost Afghanistan’s agriculture sector not only to reduce drug production but also as an engine of economic growth. Prior to the turmoil that engulfed Afghanistan in the late 1970s, Afghanistan was a major exporter of agricultural products. USAID has spent about 15% of its Afghanistan funds on agriculture (and “alternative livelihoods” to poppy cultivation), and this has helped Afghanistan double its legitimate agricultural output over the past five years. One emerging “success story” is growing Afghan exports of high-quality pomegranate juice called Anar. Other countries are promoting not only pomegranates but also saffron rice and other crops that draw buyers outside Afghanistan. Another emerging success story is Afghanistan’s November 2010 start of exports of raisins to Britain.77 Wheat production was robust in 2009 because of healthy prices for that crop, and Afghanistan is again self-sufficient in wheat production. According to the SRAP January 2010 strategy document reference earlier, 89 U.S. agricultural experts (64 from U.S. Department of Agriculture and 25 from USAID) are in Afghanistan. Their efforts include providing new funds to buy seeds and agricultural equipment, and to encourage agri-business. U.S. strategy has addressed not only crop choice but also trying to construct the entirety of the infrastructure needed for a healthy legitimate agriculture sector, including road building, security of the routes to agriculture markets, refrigeration, storage, transit through Pakistan and other transportation of produce, building legitimate sources of financing, and other aspects of the industry. U.S. officials in Kabul say that Pakistan’s restrictions on trade between Afghanistan and India have, to date, prevented a rapid expansion of Afghan pomegranate exports to that market. Dubai is another customer for Afghan pomegranate exports. A key breakthrough on this issue was reached with the July 18, 2010, signing of a transit trade agreement between Afghanistan and Pakistan, reportedly brokered by the United States. It will allow for more rapid transit of Afghan and Pakistani trucks through each others’ territories, ending a requirement that goods be offloaded at border crossings. 77 Lemmon, Gayle Tzemach. “New Hope for Afghan Raisin Farmers.” New York Times, October 9, 2010. Congressional Research Service 69 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy To help Afghanistan develop the agriculture sector, the National Guard from several states (Texas, for example) is deploying “Agribusiness Development Teams” in several provinces to help Afghan farmers with water management, soil enhancement, crop cultivation, and improving the development and marketing of their goods. The timber industry in the northwest is said to be vibrant as well. Private Sector-Led Development Some sectors are being developed primarily with private investment funding. There has been substantial new construction, particularly in Kabul, such as the Serena luxury hotel (opened in November 2005); a $25 million Coca Cola bottling factory (opened in September 2006); and numerous apartment complexes, marriage halls, office buildings, and other structures. The bottling factory is located near the Bagrami office park (another private initiative), which includes several other factories. The Serena was built by the Agha Khan foundation, a major investor in Afghanistan; the Agha Khan is a leader of the Isma’ili community, which is prevalent in northern Afghanistan. The foundation has also funded the successful Roshan cellphone company. An arm of the Defense Department, called the Task Force for Business and Stability Operations, headed by deputy undersecretary Paul Brinkley, is attempting to facilitate the investment. Some say that private investment could be healthier if not for the influence exercised over it by various faction leaders and Karzai relatives. • Telecommunications and Transportation. Several Afghan telecommunications firms have been formed, including Afghan Wireless (another cell phone service, which competes with Roshan) and Tolo Television. The 52-year-old national airline, Ariana, is said to be in significant financial trouble due to corruption that has affected 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 (run by the Safi Group, which has built a modern mall in Kabul), and Kam Air. Major new buildings include several marriage halls in Kabul city, as observed by CRS in October 2009. • Mining and Gems. Afghanistan’s mining sector has been largely dormant since the Soviet invasion. 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 jewelry). The issue became more urgent in June 2010 when a Defense Department development team announced, based on surveys, that Afghanistan may have untapped minerals worth over $1 trillion.78 General Petraeus, in an interview with NBC News on August 15, 2010, said the amount could be in the “trillions.” Among the most valuable are significant reserves of such minerals as lithium in western Afghanistan; lithium is crucial to the new batteries being used to power electric automobiles. Still, in November 2007, the Afghan government signed a deal with China Metallurgical Group for the company to invest $3.4 billion to develop Afghanistan’s Aynak copper field in Lowgar Province. The agreement, viewed as generous to the point where it might not be commercially profitable for China Metallurgical Group, includes construction of two coal-fired electric power plant 78 Risen, James. “U.S. Identifies Mineral Riches in Afghanistan.” New York Times, June 14, 2010. Congressional Research Service 70 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy (one of which will supply more electricity to Kabul city); a freight railway (in conjunction with the Asian Development Bank project above); and a road from the project to Kabul. However, work on the mine reportedly has been slowed by the need to clear mines in the area. On December 14, 2010, with involvement of the DOD Task Force for Business and Stability Operations, 10 outside investors announced $50 million in investment in a gold mine in Baghlan Province. There is another gold mine operating in neighboring Takhar Province. Bids are being accepted for another large mining project, the Haji Gak iron ore mine (which may contain 60 billion tons of iron ore) near Kabul. China Metallurgy, as well as companies from India, are said to be finalists for the project. • Hydrocarbons and Pipelines. As noted, Afghanistan has had virtually no operational hydrocarbon energy sector. However, Afghanistan’s prospects in this sector 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 selfsufficient in energy and able to export energy to its neighbors. In a major development, on December 15, 2010, the Afghan government let a six-month contract to a local firm, Ghazanfar Neft Gas, to collect and market crude oil from the Angot field in northern Afghanistan (part of a field that may contain 80 million barrels of oil), initially producing at the low rate of 800 barrels per day. However, the sector is expected to expand to more fields in the Amu Darya basin (northern Afghanistan), and a tender will be offered to develop a larger oil field in Balkh Province, estimated to hold 1.8 billion barrels of oil. Separately, USAID is funding a test project to develop gas resources in northern Afghanistan. TAPI (Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India) Pipeline Project . 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 $7.5 billion Central Asia Gas Pipeline that would originate in southern Turkmenistan and pass through Afghanistan to Pakistan, with possible extensions into India.79 The deterioration in U.S.-Taliban relations after 1998 largely ended hopes for the pipeline projects, but prospects for the project 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 project. Sponsors held an inaugural meeting on July 9, 2002, in Turkmenistan, signing a series of preliminary agreements. Turkmenistan’s leadership (President Gurbanguly Berdimukhamedov, succeeding the late Saparmurad Niyazov) favors the project as well. Yet another agreement in principle to implement the project was signed among Karzai and other regional leaders on December 12, 2010, in the Turkmenistan capital Ashkabad. Although implementation may still be years away, some U.S. officials view this project as a superior alternative to a proposed 79 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. Congressional Research Service 71 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy gas pipeline from Iran to India, transiting Pakistan. However, no U.S. commitment to help finance the project has been announced. Trade Initiatives/Reconstruction Opportunity Zones The United States is trying to build on Afghanistan’s post-war economic rebound with trade initiatives. 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 and more complex bilateral free trade agreement, but negotiations on an FTA have not yet begun. 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 zones, but P.L. 110-252 did not specifically mention the zones. Bills in the 110th Congress, S. 2776 and H.R. 6387, would have authorized the President to proclaim duty-free treatment for imports from ROZ’s to be designated by the President. In the 111th Congress, a version of these bills was introduced (S. 496 and H.R. 1318). President Obama specifically endorsed passage of these bills in his March 2009 strategy announcement. H.R. 1318 was incorporated into H.R. 1886, a Pakistan aid appropriation that is a component of the new U.S. strategy for the region, and the bill was passed by the House on June 11, 2009, and then appended to H.R. 2410. However, another version of the Pakistan aid bill, S. 1707, did not authorize ROZ’s; it was passed and became law (P.L. 111-73). Congressional Research Service 72 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Table 8. Major International (Non-U.S.) Pledges to Afghanistan Since January 2002 (as of March 2010; $ in millions) Japan 6,900 Britain 2,897 World Bank 2,803 Asia Development Bank 2,200 European Commission (EC) 1,768 Netherlands 1,697 Canada 1,479 India 1,200 Iran 1,164 Germany 1,108 Norway 977 Denmark 683 Italy 637 Saudi Arabia 533 Spain 486 Australia 440 Total Non-U.S. Pledges (including donors not listed) 30,800 Sources: Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction. October 2008 report, p. 140; various press announcements. Figures include funds pledged at April 2009 NATO summit and Japan’s October 2009 pledge of $5 billion over the next five years. Note: This table lists donors pledging over $400 million total. Congressional Research Service 73 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Table 9. U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan, FY1978-FY1998 ($ in millions) Fiscal Year Devel. Assist. Econ. Supp. (ESF) P.L. 480 (Title I and II) Military Other (Incl. Regional Refugee Aid) Total 1978 4.989 — 5.742 0.269 0.789 11.789 1979 3.074 — 7.195 — 0.347 10.616 1980 — — — 1981 — — — — — — 1982 — — — — — — 1983 — — — — — — 1984 — — — — — — 1985 3.369 — — — — 3.369 1986 — — 8.9 — — 8.9 1987 17.8 12.1 2.6 — — 32.5 1988 22.5 22.5 29.9 — — 74.9 1989 22.5 22.5 32.6 — — 77.6 1990 35.0 35.0 18.1 — — 88.1 1991 30.0 30.0 20.1 — — 80.1 1992 25.0 25.0 31.4 — — 81.4 1993 10.0 10.0 18.0 — 30.2 68.2 1994 3.4 2.0 9.0 — 27.9 42.3 1995 1.8 — 12.4 — 31.6 45.8 1996 — — 16.1 — 26.4 42.5 49.9 52.74 (Soviet invasion-December 1979) 1997 — — 18.0 — 31.9a 1998 — — 3.6 — 49.14b 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 $1.54 for counternarcotics. Congressional Research Service 74 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Table 10. U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan, FY1999-FY2002 ($ in millions) FY1999 FY2000 FY2001 U.S. Department of Agriculture (DOA) and USAID Food For Peace (FFP), via World Food Program(WFP) 42.0 worth of wheat (100,000 metric tons under “416(b)” program.) 68.875 for 165,000 metric tons. (60,000 tons for May 2000 drought relief) 131.1 (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 14.03 for the same purposes 22.03 for similar purposes 136.54 (to U.N. agencies) 7.0 to various NGOs to aid Afghans inside Afghanistan 6.68 for drought relief and health, water, and sanitation programs 18.934 for similar programs 113.36 (to various U.N. agencies and NGOs) 2.615 3.0 2.8 7.0 to Halo Trust/other demining 5.44 (2.789 for health, training— Afghan females in Pakistan) 6.169, of which $3.82 went to similar purposes 5.31 for similar purposes State Department/ Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance (OFDA) State Department/HDP (Humanitarian Demining Program) Aid to Afghan Refugees in Pakistan (through various NGOs) Counter-Narcotics USAID/Office of Transition Initiatives FY2002 (Final) 1.50 63.0 0.45 (Afghan women in Pakistan) 24.35 for broadcasting/media Dept. of Defense 50.9 ( 2.4 million rations) Foreign Military Financing 57.0 (for Afghan national army) Anti-Terrorism 36.4 Economic Support Funds (E.S.F) 105.2 Peacekeeping Totals 24.0 76.6 113.2 182.6 815.9 Source: CRS. Congressional Research Service 75 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Table 11. U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan, FY2003 ($ in millions, same acronyms as Table 10) FY2003 Foreign Aid Appropriations (P.L. 108-7) Development/Health 90 P.L. 108-480 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 Source: CRS. Note: Earmarks for programs benefitting women and girls totaled: $65 million. Of that amount, $60 million was earmarked in the supplemental and $5 million in the regular appropriation. Congressional Research Service 76 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Table 12. U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan, FY2004 ($ in millions, same acronyms as previous tables) Afghan National Police (FMF) 160 Counter-Narcotics 125.52 Afghan National Army (FMF) 719.38 Presidential Protection (NADR) 52.14 DDR Program (disarming militias) 15.42 MANPAD destruction 1.5 Terrorist Interdiction Program 0.41 Border Control (WMD) 0.23 Good Governance Program Political Competition, Consensus Building (Elections) Rule of Law and Human Rights 113.57 24.41 29.4 Roads 348.68 Education/Schools 104.11 Health/Clinics 76.85 Power 85.13 PRTs 57.4 CERP (DOD funds to build good will) 39.71 Private Sector Development/Economic Growth 63.46 Water Projects 28.9 Agriculture 50.5 Refugee/IDPs 82.6 Food Assistance 88.25 De-Mining 12.61 State/USAID Program Support Total Aid for FY2004 203.02 2,483.2 Laws Derived: FY2004 supplemental (P.L. 108-106); FY2004 regular appropriation (P.L. 108199). Regular appropriation earmarked $5 million for programs benefitting women and girls. Congressional Research Service 77 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Table 13. U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan, FY2005 ($ in millions) Afghan National Police (State Dept. funds, FMF, and DOD funds, transition to DOD funds to Afghan security forces 624.46 Counter-Narcotics 775.31 Afghan National Army (State Dept. funds, FMF, and DOD funds) Presidential (Karzai) Protection (NADR funds) DDR 1,633.24 23.10 5.0 Detainee Operations 16.9 MANPAD Destruction 0.75 Small Arms Control 3.0 Terrorist Interdiction Program 0.1 Border Control (WMD) Good Governance 0.85 137.49 Political Competition/Consensus-Building/Election Support 15.75 Rule of Law and Human Rights 20.98 Roads 334.1 Afghan-Tajik (Nizhny Panj) Bridge 33.1 Education/Schools 89.63 Health/Clinics 107.4 Power 222.5 PRTs 97.0 CERP 136.0 Civil Aviation (Kabul International Airport) Private Sector Development/Economic Growth Water Projects Agriculture Refugee/IDP Assistance Food Assistance (P.L. 480, Title II) Demining State/USAID Program Support Total Aid for FY2005 25.0 77.43 43.2 74.49 54.6 108.6 23.7 142.84 4,826.52 Laws Derived: FY2005 Regular Appropriations (P.L. 108-447); Second FY2005 Supplemental (P.L. 109-13). The regular appropriation earmarked $50 million to be used for programs to benefit women and girls. Source: CRS. Note: In FY2005, funds to equip and train the Afghan national security forces was altered from State Department funds (Foreign Military Financing, FMF) to DOD funds. Congressional Research Service 78 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Table 14. U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan, FY2006 ($ in millions) Afghan National Police (DOD funds) 1,217.5 Counter-narcotics 419.26 Afghan National Army (DOD funds) 735.98 Presidential (Karzai) protection (NADR funds) 18.17 Detainee Operations 14.13 Small Arms Control 2.84 Terrorist Interdiction .10 Counter-terrorism Finance .28 Border Control (WMD) .40 Bilateral Debt Relief 11.0 Budgetary Support to the Government of Afghanistan 1.69 Good Governance 10.55 Afghanistan Reconstruction Trust Fund 47.5 Political Competition/Consensus Building/Elections 1.35 Civil Society 7.77 Rule of Law and Human Rights Roads 29.95 235.95 Education/Schools 49.48 Health/Clinics 51.46 Power 61.14 PRTs 20.0 CERP Funds (DOD) 215.0 Private Sector Development/Economic Growth 45.51 Water Projects .89 Agriculture 26.92 Food Assistance 109.6 De-mining 14.32 Refugee/IDP aid State/USAID program support Total 36.0 142.42 3,527.16 Laws Derived: FY2006 Regular Foreign Aid Appropriations (P.L. 109-102); FY06 supplemental (P.L. 109-234). The regular appropriation earmarked $50 million for programs to benefit women and girls. Source: CRS. Congressional Research Service 79 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Table 15. U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan, FY2007 ($ in millions) Afghan National Police (DOD funds) 2,523.30 Afghan National Army (DOD funds) 4,871.59 Counter-Narcotics 737.15 Presidential (Karzai) Protection (NADR) 19.9 Detainee Operations 12.7 Small Arms Control 1.75 Terrorist Interdiction Program 0.5 Counter-Terrorism Finance 0.4 Border Control (WMD) 0.5 Budget Support to Afghan Government Good Governance 31.24 107.25 Afghanistan Reconstruction Trust Fund (incl. National Solidarity Program) 63 Political Competition/Election support (ESF) 29.9 Civil Society (ESF) 8.1 Rule of Law/Human Rights (ESF) 65.05 Roads (ESF) 303.1 Education/Schools (ESF) 62.75 Health/Clinics 112.77 Power (ESF) 194.8 PRTs (ESF) 126.1 CERP (DOD funds) Private Sector Development/Economic Growth 206 70.56 Water Projects (ESF) 2.3 Agriculture (ESF) 67.03 Refugee/IDP Assistance 72.61 Food Assistance 150.9 Demining 27.82 State/USAID Program Support Total 88.7 9,984.98 Laws Derived: Regular Appropriation P.L. 110-5; DOD Appropriation P.L. 109-289; and FY2007 Supplemental Appropriation P.L. 110-28. The regular appropriation earmarked $50 million for programs to benefit women/ girls. Providing ESF in excess of $300 million subject to certification of Afghan cooperation on counter-narcotics. Sources: CRS; Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction, October 2008 report. Congressional Research Service 80 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Table 16. U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan, FY2008 (appropriated, $ in millions) Afghan National Army (DOD funds) 1,724.68 Afghan National Police (DOD funds) 1,017.38 Counter-Narcotics (INCLE and DOD funds) 619.47 NADR (Karzai protection) 6.29 Radio Free Afghanistan 3.98 Detainee operations 9.6 Small Arms Control 3.0 Terrorist Interdiction Program .99 Counter-Terrorism Finance .60 Border Control (WMD) .75 Commanders Emergency Response Program (CERP, DOD funds) 269.4 Direct Support to Afghan Government 49.61 Good Governance 245.08 Afghanistan Reconstruction Trust Fund (incl. National Solidarity program) 45.0 Election Support 90.0 Civil Society Building 4.01 Rule of Law and Human Rights 125.28 Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) 2.0 Roads 324.18 Education/Schools 99.09 Health/Clinics 114.04 Power (incl. Kajaki Dam rehabilitation work) 236.81 PRT programs 75.06 Economic Growth/Private Sector Development 63.06 Water Projects 16.4q Agriculture 34.44 Refugee/IDP Assistance 42.1 Food Aid 101.83 De-Mining 15.0 State/USAID Program Support Total 317.4 5,656.53 Appropriations Laws Derived: Regular FY2008 (P.L. 110-161); FY2008 Supplemental (P.L. 110-252). The regular appropriation earmarked $75 million for programs to benefit woman and girls. ESF over $300 million subject to narcotics cooperation certification. Sources: Special Inspector General Afghanistan Reconstruction, October 2008 report; CRS. Congressional Research Service 81 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Table 17. U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan, FY2009 ($ in millions) Regular Appropriation (P.L. 111-8) ANSF Funding CERP (DOD funds) Detainee ops (DOD) Counternarcotics (C-N) (DOD) 24 C-N (DEA) 19 Bridge Supplemental (P.L. 110-252) FY2009 Supplemental (P.L. 111-32) 2,000 3,607 Total 5,607 683 683 4 4 150 57 232 19 C-N—Alternative. Livelihoods (INCLE) 100 70 87 257 C-N—Eradication, Interdiction (INCLE) 178 14 17 209 IMET 1.4 ARTF (Incl. National Solidarity Program) 45 20 85 150 100 68 115 283 8 4 93 56 Governance building Civil Society promotion Election Support 1.4 Strategic Program Development Rule of Law Programs (USAID) 12 25 174 50 50 8 15 20 43 Rule of Law (INCLE) 34 55 80 169 Roads (ESF) 74 65 139 Power (ESF) 73 61 134 Agriculture (ESF and DA) 25 PRTs/Local Governance (ESF) 74 55 Education 88 6 94 Health 61 27 88 Econ Growth/”Cash for Work” 49 37 Water, Environment, Victims Comp. 31 3 Karzai Protection (NADR) 32 Food Aid (P.L. 480, Food for Peace) 14 Migration, Refugee Aid State Ops/Embassy Construction 85 110 159 288 220 34 12 44 50 306 44 58 7 57 308 131 450 889 18 2 165 185 State/USAID IG/SIGAR 3 11 7 20 Cultural Exchanges, International Orgs 6 10 1,463 3,640 USAID Programs and Ops Totals 16 5,248 10,352 Notes: P.L. 111-32 (FY2009 supplemental): provides requested funds, earmarks $70 million for National Solidarity Program; $150 million for women and girls (all of FY2009); ESF over $200 million subject to narcotics certification; 10% of supplemental INCLE subject to certification of Afghan government moves to curb human rights abuses, drug involvement. Congressional Research Service 82 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Table 18. FY2010 Assistance (Includes Supplemental) ($ in millions) Afghan Security Forces Funding (DOD funds) CERP (DOD funds) Counternarcotics (DOD) INCLE: all functions: interdiction, rule of law, alternative livelihoods IMET 9,162 (6,563 appropriated plus 2,600 supplemental request) 1,000 361 620 (420 regular approp. plus 200 supplemental request) 1.5 Global Health/Child Survival 92.3 Afghanistan Reconstruction Trust Fund (Incl. National Solidarity Program) (ESF) 200 Governance building (ESF) 191 Civil Society promotion (ESF) 10 Election Support (ESF) 90 Strategic Program Development (ESF) USAID Rule of Law Programs (ESF) 100 50 Roads (ESF) 230 Power (ESF) 230 Agriculture (ESF) 230 PRT programs/Local governance (ESF) 251 Education (ESF) 95 Health (ESF) 102 Econ Growth/”Cash for Work” (ESF) 274 Water, Environment, Victim Comp. (ESF) 15 Karzai Protection (NADR) 58 Food Aid (P.L. 480, Food for Peace) 16 Refugees and Migration 11 State Ops/Embassy Construction Cultural Exchanges SIGAR FY2010 supplemental ESF request (for ESF programs above) Total Appropriated (Incl. Supplemental) 697 (486 regular plus 211 supplemental) 6 37 (23 regular plus 14 supp request) 1,576 15,700 Laws derived: FY2010 foreign aid appropriation in Consolidated Appropriation (P.L. 111-117), which earmarks: $175 million (ESF and INCLE) for programs for women and girls, and $175 million (ESF) for the National Solidarity Program. The FY2010 Defense Appropriation (P.L. 111-118), which cut $900 million from the requested amount for the ANSF (regular defense appropriation). FY2010 supplemental funds appropriated by H.R. 4899 (P.L. 111-212) Source: CRS. Congressional Research Service 83 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Table 19. FY2011 Regular Request ($ in millions) Program/Area Afghan National Security Forces (DOD funds) CERP Economic Support Funds (ESF) Request 11,600 1,100 3,316.3 Global Health/ Child Survival 71.1 INCLE 450 Karzai Protection (NADR funds) 69.3 IMET 1.5 State Dept. Operations (not incl. security) 754 SIGAR 35.3 Total 17,398 In FY2011 legislation, on June 30, 2010, the State and Foreign Operations Subcommittee of House Appropriations Committee marked up an aid bill, deferring consideration of much of the Administration request for Afghanistan pending a Committee investigation of allegations of governmental corruption in Afghanistan and of possible diversion of U.S. aid funds by Afghan officials and other elites. The Administration has requested legislation to authorize an “Afghanistan Infrastructure Fund,” to contain mostly DOD funds, beginning with $400 million in FY2011, possibly supplemented by an additional $200 million later in the fiscal year. The fund will be used mostly for electricity projects, including an ongoing major electricity project for Qandahar, but could be used for other infrastructure projects later on, such as roads. That was authorized in H.R 6523, the National Defense Authorization Act for FY2011, cleared for the White House. Congressional Research Service 84 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Table 20.Total Obligations for Major Programs: FY2001-FY2009 ($ millions) Security Related Programs (mostly DOD funds) Afghan National Security Forces Counter-Narcotics Karzai Protection (NADR funds) 21,297 3,436 226 DDR (Disarmament, Demobilization, Reintegration of militias) 20.42 Detainee Operations 57.33 MANPAD Destruction (Stingers left over from anti-Soviet war) 2.25 Small Arms Control 10.59 Commander Emergency Response Program (CERP) 1,976 De-Mining Operations (Halo Trust, other contractors) 98.53 International Military Education and Training Funds (IMET) 3 Humanitarian-Related Programs Food Aid (P.L. 480, other aid) 958 Refugee/IDP aid 743 Debt Relief for Afghan government 11 Democracy and Governance Programs (mostly ESF) Support for Operations of Afghan Government 80.86 Good Governance (incentives for anti-corruption, anti-narcotics) 1,044 Afghanistan Reconstruction Trust Fund (funds National Solidarity Program) 305.5 Civil Society (programs to improve political awareness and activity) 31.88 Elections Support Rule of Law and Human Rights (USAID and INCLE funds) 600 552.66 Economic Sector-Related Programs (mostly ESF) Roads 1,908 PRT-funded projects (includes local governance as well as economic programs) 698.11 Education (building schools, teacher training) 535.93 Health (clinic-building, medicines) 620.59 Power 934.38 Water (category also includes some funds to compensate Afghan victims/Leahy) 128.02 Agriculture (focused on sustainable crops, not temporary alternatives to poppy) 441 Private Sector Development/Economic Growth (communications, IT, but includes some cash-for-work anti-narcotics programs) State Dept. operations/Embassy construction/USAID operations/educational and cultural exchanges/SIGAR operations Total (including minor amounts not included in table) Congressional Research Service 627.52 2,445 39,730 85 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Table 21. NATO/ISAF Contributing Nations (As of December 14, 2010; 15%20NOV.Placemat%20page1-3.pdf) NATO Countries Non-NATO Partners Belgium 519 Albania 258 Bulgaria 589 Armenia 40 Canada 2,913 Austria 3 Czech Republic 472 Australia 1,550 Denmark 750 Azerbaijan 94 Estonia 139 Bosnia-Herzegovina 45 France 3,850 Croatia 311 Germany 4,877 Finland 165 924 Greece 134 Georgia Hungary 522 Ireland 7 4 Jordan 0 Iceland Italy 3,770 Macedonia 163 Latvia 190 Malaysia 30 Lithuania 179 Mongolia 49 Montenegro 31 234 Luxemburg 9 Netherlands 190 New Zealand Norway 352 Singapore Poland 2,448 38 South Korea 246 Portugal 95 Sweden 491 Romania 1,664 Ukraine 17 Slovakia 293 United Arab Emirates 35 Slovenia 80 Spain 1,505 Turkey 1,815 United Kingdom 9,500 United States Tonga 0 90,000 Total Listed ISAF: 131,730 Note: As noted elsewhere in this report, U.S. force totals in Afghanistan are approximately 98,000. Non-U.S. forces in the table total 41,700. In addition, the NATO/ISAF site states that troop numbers in this table are based on broad contribution and do not necessarily reflect the exact numbers on the ground at any one time. Congressional Research Service 86 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Table 22. Provincial Reconstruction Teams Location (City) Province/Command U.S.-Lead (all under ISAF banner) 1. Gardez Paktia Province (RC-East, E) 2. Ghazni Ghazni (RC-E). with Poland. 3. Jalalabad Nangarhar (RC-E) 4. Khost Khost (RC-E) 5. Qalat Zabol (RC-South, S). with Romania. 6. Asadabad Kunar (RC-E) 7. Sharana Paktika (RC-E). with Poland. 8. Mehtarlam Laghman (RC-E) 9. Jabal o-Saraj Panjshir Province (RC-E), State Department lead 10. Qala Gush Nuristan (RC-E) 11. Farah Farah (RC-SW) Partner Lead (most under ISAF banner) PRT Location Province Lead Force/Other forces 12. Qandahar Qandahar (RC-S) Canada (seat of RC-S) 13. Lashkar Gah Helmand (RC-S) Britain. with Denmark and Estonia 14. Tarin Kowt Uruzgan (RC-S) Australia (and U.S.) (Replaced Netherlands in August 2010) 15. Herat Herat (RC-W) Italy (seat of RC-W) 16. Qalah-ye Now Badghis (RC-W) 17. Mazar-e-Sharif Balkh (RC-N) 18. Konduz Konduz (RC-N) 29. Faizabad Badakhshan (RC-N) Spain Sweden Germany (seat of RC-N) Germany. with Denmark, Czech Rep. 20. Meymaneh Faryab (RC-N) Norway. with Sweden. 21. Chaghcharan Ghowr (RC-W) Lithuania. with Denmark, U.S., Iceland 22. Pol-e-Khomri Baghlan (RC-N) Hungary 23. Bamiyan Bamiyan (RC-E) New Zealand (not NATO/ISAF). 24. Maidan Shahr Wardak (RC-C) Turkey 25. Pul-i-Alam Lowgar (RC-E) Czech Republic 26. Shebergan Jowzjan (RC-N) Turkey 27. Charikar Parwan (RC-E) South Korea (Bagram, in Parwan Province, is the base of RC-E) Note: RC = Regional Command. Congressional Research Service 87 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Table 23. Major Factions/Leaders in Afghanistan Party/ Leader Leader Ideology/ Ethnicity Regional Base Taliban Mullah (Islamic cleric) Muhammad Umar (still at large possibly in Afghanistan. Umar, born in Tarin Kowt, Uruzgan province, is about 65 years old. Ultraorthodox Islamic, Pashtun Insurgent groups, mostly in the south and east. Haqqani Network Jalaludin and Siraj Haqqani. Allied with Taliban and Al Qaeda. Said to be heavily influenced by elements within Pakistani military intelligence. Same as above Paktia, Paktika, Khost, Kabul 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 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. 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. Was Karzai rival in October 2004 presidential election, then his top “security adviser.” Secular, Uzbek Jowzjan, Balkh, Faryab, Sar-i-Pol, and Samangan provinces. Hizb-eWahdat Composed of Shiite Hazara tribes from central Afghanistan. Karim Khalili is Vice President, but Mohammad Mohaqiq is Karzai rival in 2004 presidential election and parliament. Generally pro-Iranian. Was part of Rabbani 1992-1996 government, and fought unsuccessfully with Taliban over Bamiyan city. Still revered by Hazara Shiites is the former leader of the group, Abdul Ali Mazari, who was captured and killed by the Taliban in March 1995. Shiite, Hazara tribes Bamiyan, Ghazni, Dai Kundi province Pashtun Leaders Various regional governors and local leaders in the east and south; central government led by Hamid Karzai. Moderate Islamic, Pashtun Dominant in the south and east Hizb-e-Islam Gulbuddin (HIG) Mujahedin party leader Gulbuddin Hikmatyar. Was part of Soviet-era U.S.-backed “Afghan Interim Government” based in Peshawar, Pakistan. Was nominal “prime minister” in 1992-1996 mujahedin government but never actually took office. Lost power base around Jalalabad to the Taliban in 1994, and fled to Iran before being expelled in 2002. Still allied with Taliban and Al Qaeda in operations east of Kabul, but open to ending militant activity. Leader of a rival Hizb-eIslam faction, Yunus Khalis, the mentor of Mullah Umar, died July 2006. Orthodox Islamic, Pashtun Small groups in Nangarhar, Nuristan, and Kunar provinces Islamic Union Abd-I-Rab Rasul Sayyaf. Islamic conservative, leads a proKarzai faction in parliament. Lived many years in and politically close to Saudi Arabia, which shares his “Wahhabi” ideology. During anti-Soviet 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. orthodox Islamic, Pashtun Paghman (west of Kabul) Source: CRS. Congressional Research Service 88 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy 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 ouster of the Taliban, common estimates suggested that 200-300 Stingers remained at large, although more recent estimates put the number below 100.80 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 controlled by Afghans now allied to the United States and presumably pose less of a threat, in part because of the deterioration of the weapons’ batteries and other internal components. 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 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 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. In February 2002, the Afghan government found and returned to the United States “dozens” of Stingers.81 In late January 2005, Afghan intelligence began a push to buy remaining Stingers back, at a reported cost of $150,000 each.82 The danger of these weapons has become apparent on several occasions, although U.S. commanders have not reported any recent active firings of these devices. 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 1999.83 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 million to 7 million mines remain scattered throughout the country, although some estimates are lower. U.N. teams have destroyed one 80 Saleem, Farrukh. “Where Are the Missing Stinger Missiles? Pakistan,” Friday Times. August 17-23, 2001. Fullerton, John. “Afghan Authorities Hand in Stinger Missiles to U.S.” Reuters, February 4, 2002. 82 “Afghanistan Report,” Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty. February 4, 2005. 83 “U.S.-Made Stinger Missiles—Mobile and Lethal.” Reuters, May 28, 1999. 81 Congressional Research Service 89 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy million mines and are now focusing on de-mining priority-use, residential and commercial property, including lands around Kabul. As shown in the U.S. aid table for FY1999-FY2002 (Table 10), the U.S. de-mining 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%. Congressional Research Service 90 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Appendix. 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. • P.L. 108-458 (December 17, 2004, referencing the 9/11 Commission recommendations) repealed bans on aid to Afghanistan outright. On October 7, 1992, President George H.W. Bush 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.) • 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 Ariana, and directed U.N. member states to freeze Taliban assets. Resolution 1333 prohibited the provision of arms or military advice to the Taliban (directed against Pakistan); ordered a reduction of Taliban diplomatic representation abroad; and banned foreign travel by senior Taliban officials. Resolution 1363 provided for monitors in Pakistan to ensure that no weapons or military advice was provided to the Taliban. • 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 had been denied GSP on May 2, 1980, under Executive Order 12204 (45 F.R. 20740). • 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. 96-72; 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 exports to the United States; and Congressional Research Service 91 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy 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 denial of U.S. credits or most-favored-nation (MFN) 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 importing 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 Taliban-controlled territory had essentially ended on January 29, 2002, when the State Department determination that the Taliban controls no territory within Afghanistan.) Congressional Research Service 92 Figure A-1. Map of Afghanistan Source: Map Resources. Adapted by CRS. CRS-93 Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy Figure A-2. Map of Afghan Ethnicities Source: 2003 National Geographic Society. Adapted by Amber Wilhelm, CRS Graphics. Notes: This map is intended to be illustrative of the approximate demographic distribution by region of Afghanistan. CRS has no way to confirm exact population distributions. Author Contact Information Kenneth Katzman Specialist in Middle Eastern Affairs, 7-7612 Congressional Research Service 94