Afghanistan: Legislation in the 115th Congress

For nearly two decades, Congress has shaped the U.S. approach to Afghanistan and the ongoing conflict there. This product provides a summary of legislative proposals considered in the 115th Congress that relate to U.S. policy in Afghanistan. These address a number of issues, including the following.

The size, mission, and other aspects of the U.S. troop presence in the country.

Types of information that the executive branch provides to Congress, largely as part of regular reporting requirements.

The role of women in Afghan society, government, and the military.

The purposes for U.S. aid, and conditions under which it can be obligated.

The overall U.S. strategy in Afghanistan, including prospects for a negotiated settlement.

Regional dynamics, including the role of Russia in Afghanistan.

While Pakistan is a key player in the Afghan conflict, the measures described in this report do not include any primarily related to Pakistan, though many such proposals reference the war in Afghanistan. This report also does not include legislative proposals related to special immigrant visas for Afghan nationals who work for or on behalf of the U.S. government in Afghanistan. For more on that program, see CRS Report R43725, Iraqi and Afghan Special Immigrant Visa Programs, by Andorra Bruno.

For more information on U.S. policy in Afghanistan, see CRS Report R45122, Afghanistan: Background and U.S. Policy In Brief, by Clayton Thomas.

Afghanistan: Legislation in the 115th Congress

Updated October 3, 2018 (R45329)
Jump to Main Text of Report

Summary

For nearly two decades, Congress has shaped the U.S. approach to Afghanistan and the ongoing conflict there. This product provides a summary of legislative proposals considered in the 115th Congress that relate to U.S. policy in Afghanistan. These address a number of issues, including the following.

  • The size, mission, and other aspects of the U.S. troop presence in the country.
  • Types of information that the executive branch provides to Congress, largely as part of regular reporting requirements.
  • The role of women in Afghan society, government, and the military.
  • The purposes for U.S. aid, and conditions under which it can be obligated.
  • The overall U.S. strategy in Afghanistan, including prospects for a negotiated settlement.
  • Regional dynamics, including the role of Russia in Afghanistan.

While Pakistan is a key player in the Afghan conflict, the measures described in this report do not include any primarily related to Pakistan, though many such proposals reference the war in Afghanistan. This report also does not include legislative proposals related to special immigrant visas for Afghan nationals who work for or on behalf of the U.S. government in Afghanistan. For more on that program, see CRS Report R43725, Iraqi and Afghan Special Immigrant Visa Programs, by [author name scrubbed].

For more information on U.S. policy in Afghanistan, see CRS Report R45122, Afghanistan: Background and U.S. Policy In Brief, by [author name scrubbed].


Overview: U.S. Policy in Afghanistan, 2001-Present

Afghanistan has been a central U.S. foreign policy concern since American forces, in the wake of the September 11, 2001, attacks, helped lead a military campaign against Al Qaeda and the Taliban government that harbored it. Since then, the United States, along with NATO and other international partners, has deployed tens of thousands of troops and provided tens of billions of dollars in development assistance. The overarching goal of this effort is to support the elected Afghan government and bolster its security forces against a resilient insurgency by the Taliban and others, including (since 2014) an active affiliate of the Islamic State (IS, also known as ISIS, ISIL, or the Arabic acronym Da'esh).

After an Afghan opposition coalition known as the Northern Alliance drove the Taliban government out of Kabul with the help of American airpower and a small number of U.S. special forces, the U.N. convened Afghan leaders in Bonn, Germany to lay out a roadmap for the creation of a democratic government in Afghanistan. Taliban representatives were not invited to participate in the meetings in Bonn. That conference established an interim administration headed by Hamid Karzai, and called for a June 2002 emergency loya jirga (a traditional Afghan consultative assembly). Another loya jirga was convened in late 2003 to endorse a new constitution, which was ratified in January 2004. Afghanistan held its first presidential election in October 2004, and Karzai was elected with 55% of the vote. The first parliamentary elections followed in September 2005.

Sporadic Taliban attacks continued during this time, with U.S. intelligence collecting evidence of an "organized Taliban revival" by early 2004.1 Under intense U.S. pressure most Al Qaeda and Taliban fighters had fled into Pakistan, where they helped to inspire an Islamist insurgency that would later drive the Pakistani state into full-scale crisis. At the same time as they battled Al Qaeda and other Islamist militants at home, Pakistan's security institutions aided the Afghan Taliban, including by providing safe haven to much of its leadership, a legacy of Pakistan's formal recognition of the group from 1996 to 2001. By 2007, despite nascent democratic development and improvements in most Afghans' quality of life, the American effort in Afghanistan, once described as "the good war," appeared "off course," with security deteriorating, narcotics production increasing, and levels of Taliban violence steadily rising.2

In response, President Barack Obama increased the number of American forces (from approximately 36,000 in February 2009 to a high of about 100,000 in 2011) as part of an effort to combat the Taliban insurgency and increase the capacity of the Afghan government and security forces. Most security metrics improved during the "surge," but uncertainty rose as Afghan forces took the lead for security nationwide (in mid-2013) amidst a steady drawdown of U.S. and international forces as part of a planned withdrawal. That uncertainty was compounded by the 2014 presidential election, which was marred by widespread allegations of fraud and was only resolved with the creation of a fragile unity government formed after months of U.S. mediation. Still, the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF, 2003-2014) mission was replaced by Resolute Support Mission (RSM, 2015-present) at the end of 2014 as scheduled.

The killing of Taliban leader Mullah Mansour (successor to original Taliban leader Mullah Omar, who died of natural causes in 2013) in a May 2016 U.S. airstrike in Pakistan demonstrated continued Taliban vulnerabilities to U.S. military and intelligence capabilities. At the same time, the Taliban expanded their control and influence in rural areas while pressuring urban centers (as evidenced by their brief seizure of the provincial capital of Kunduz in 2015).

Trump Administration Policy

President Donald Trump expressed few policy positions on Afghanistan during the 2016 presidential campaign, though he had previously conveyed skepticism about the American effort there. After months of debate within the Administration, President Trump announced a new strategy for Afghanistan and South Asia in a nationwide address on August 21, 2017. The strategy features a tougher line against Pakistan and a larger role for India; no set timetables; expanded targeting authorities for U.S. forces; and around 3,000 additional troops, bringing the total number of U.S. forces in the country to approximately 14,000-15,000 (about 8,500 of which are part of RSM).3

President Trump, who criticized his predecessor's use of "arbitrary timetables," did not specify what conditions on the ground might necessitate or allow for alterations to the strategy going forward.4 Some have characterized the Trump strategy as "short on details" and serving "only to perpetuate a dangerous status quo."5 Others welcomed the strategy, contrasting it favorably with proposed alternatives such as a full withdrawal of U.S. forces, which President Trump described as his "original instinct," or a strategy that relies heavily on contractors.6

More than a year after President Trump's speech, it remains unclear to what extent the new strategy has changed dynamics on the ground in Afghanistan. While U.S. officials continue to publicly express optimism,7 the extent of territory controlled or contested by the Taliban has steadily grown in recent years by most measures. In its July 30, 2018, report, the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) reported that the share of districts under government control or influence remains at 56%, tied for the lowest level recorded in the two years SIGAR has tracked that metric, with 14% under insurgent control or influence, and the remaining 30% contested.8 While most Taliban gains have been in sparsely populated rural or mountainous areas, the group has also been able to contest urban centers; militants have briefly overrun two provincial capitals in 2018 thus far (Farah in May, Ghazni in August).9 Additionally, the Taliban have demonstrated an ability to conduct operations in different parts of the country simultaneously and inflict significant casualties on Afghan forces, though the U.S. military classified those figures and various other metrics related to ANDSF performance in 2017.10

Reflecting the Trump Administration's reported frustration with the 17-year-old U.S. war effort, 2018 has seen a flurry of diplomatic activity that may portend progress toward peace talks.11 Most importantly, the Trump Administration is reportedly considering direct talks with the Taliban in what would represent a significant change in American policy.12 Other reports, which U.S. officials have not denied, indicate that at least some preliminary discussions between U.S. and Taliban officials have already taken place.13 However, the Afghan government, or some of its members, may be opposed to any negotiation with the Taliban in which they are not the lead interlocutor,14 and the Taliban's own stance on negotiations is unclear.15 Ongoing disputes between Afghan leaders may worsen in advance of long-delayed and already controversial parliamentary elections, set for October 2018, and the presidential election slated for April 2019.

Recent Congressional Engagement on Afghanistan

In the decade before the September 11, 2001, terror attacks, Afghanistan was not a major focus of congressional attention.16 Since then, Congress has taken an active role in shaping U.S. policy toward Afghanistan. Major initiatives and areas of congressional interest are described below.

Authorization for Use of Military Force

U.S. military forces deployed into Afghanistan under the 2001 Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF, P.L. 107-40), which allows the president "to use all necessary and appropriate force against those nations, organizations, or persons he determines planned, authorized, committed, or aided" the September 11, 2001, attacks as well as any entities that harbored them. The Taliban regime collapsed after about two months of major combat operations. U.S. operations in Afghanistan against the Taliban, Al Qaeda, and the local Islamic State affiliate continue under that resolution, though Members have proposed a range of measures to replace the 2001 AUMF with a new authorization that could alter U.S. military engagement in Afghanistan, as outlined in the chart below.17

Afghanistan Freedom Support Act

After the fall of the Taliban, U.S. efforts shifted quickly to providing humanitarian support to the Afghan people, stabilizing the country, and building up a democratic Afghan government. One of the most important congressional measures in this regard was the 2002 Afghanistan Freedom Support Act (AFSA, P.L. 107-327), which authorized a total of $3.8 billion in humanitarian, developmental, counter-narcotics, and security assistance over four years.18 The act contains a number of provisions directing U.S. efforts in Afghanistan and establishing congressional oversight thereof; many of these provisions anticipate additional congressional directives enacted in subsequent years. Such provisions include the authorization of funds for specific purposes (including the creation of positions within executive branch agencies; see below); regular notification and reporting requirements; and subjecting aid to Afghanistan to the same conditions as assistance provided under other pieces of legislation, like the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 and the Arms Export and Control Act of 1976.

Reporting and Oversight

The U.S.-led invasion of Iraq in March 2003 largely overshadowed the war in Afghanistan, and much of the legislative attention to Afghanistan in the subsequent several years came in bills and legislative provisions that treated the two wars together. As conditions in Afghanistan deteriorated, however, congressional attention returned to Afghanistan and some Members sought to scrutinize the U.S.-led international project there more closely. Congress mandated a number of reports, which remain among the most important sources for information on U.S. efforts in Afghanistan. One of the most significant congressional oversight actions was the 2008 establishment of a Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR), modeled in part on a similar office overseeing Iraq.19 Congress directed that SIGAR publish quarterly reports detailing the obligation and expenditure of funds appropriated for Afghan reconstruction. Congress also required periodic audits and investigations of specific projects and funds.

The FY2008 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) added more reporting requirements. Section 1230 of the Act directed the President, through the Department of Defense, to submit a biannual report on "Progress Toward Security and Stability in Afghanistan." The first report was submitted under that title in June 2009. In the FY2015 NDAA (P.L. 113-291), Congress required a report on "Enhancing Security and Stability in Afghanistan," among other reporting requirements, and biannual reports have been submitted under that title since June 2015 (most recently on July 3, 2018). In addition to these ongoing reports, Congress has regularly mandated the submission of one-time reports on specific issues in appropriations and defense authorization bills. Individual report directives proposed to and included in legislation in the 115th Congress can be found below.

Aid Directives and Conditionality

Congress has appropriated $126.3 billion for relief and reconstruction in Afghanistan since FY2002, according to SIGAR's July 30, 2017 quarterly report.20 During the Karzai administration, the United States and other international donors "increasingly sought to condition assistance funds for Afghanistan…as a result of inadequate reforms."21 A 2014 report by majority staff of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee also recommended that "a higher proportion of U.S. assistance should be conditioned based on specific reforms by the Afghan government."22

Accordingly, Congress has imposed a number of directives and conditions on the use of both security and development assistance to Afghanistan (e.g., Economic Support Fund, ESF, and International Narcotics Control and Law Enforcement, INCLE) for a number of years. Most of those statutory conditions have been enacted through appropriations measures. As outlined below, FY2019 appropriations bills would prohibit the use of funds for activities that involve individuals suspected of involvement in corruption, narcotics trafficking, or human rights violations. Additionally, they would require the Secretary of State to certify that the Afghan government is governing democratically, protecting women's rights, and publicly reporting its national budget (among other conditions) before obligating funds. There are a number of additional conditions on U.S. assistance not specific to Afghanistan, such as the Leahy Laws prohibiting security assistance to foreign security forces that have perpetrated a gross violation of human rights. Some have suggested that Afghan forces may have committed such violations.23

Special Representative

Congress has also played an important role in shaping the bureaucratic structures within the executive branch that are responsible for U.S. policy on Afghanistan. In the 2002 AFSA, Congress authorized the creation of a "coordinator" for Afghanistan and U.S. assistance there, to serve at the rank of ambassador. In 2007, the House passed a bill that would have authorized a Senate-confirmed special envoy to promote cooperation between Afghanistan and Pakistan. The George W. Bush Administration described the section authorizing the special envoy as "significantly objectionable," and the Senate did not take up the bill."24 In 2009, however, the Obama Administration created a similar position under State Department general authorities by appointing Richard Holbrooke as the first Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan (SRAP). Various congressional proposals in recent years would have statutorily authorized, altered the mission of, required reporting on, or otherwise addressed the office, which the Trump Administration closed in September 2017.25

Force Limitations

Other congressional measures have sought to condition, limit, or end the U.S. military effort in Afghanistan. While no measure limiting or terminating the U.S. military presence in Afghanistan has ever passed either chamber, support for such proposals in the House of Representatives generally seems to have grown from 2009 to 2014, the period when most of these measures were introduced.26 House bills calling for a "responsible end to the war in Afghanistan," for example, attracted 33 cosponsors in 2010 and 72 cosponsors in 2011; NDAA amendments that would have cut off funding for U.S. operations (other than the withdrawal of U.S. forces) attracted 113 and 153 votes in 2012 and 2014, respectively.27

Since the Trump Administration's announcement of the South Asia strategy in August 2017, congressional interest in Afghanistan seems to have increased, with some Members assessing the new strategy, events on the ground, and broader U.S. foreign and domestic policy interests as they relate to Afghanistan. The table below provides summaries and information on the status of proposed and enacted Afghanistan-related legislation in the 115th Congress.

Table 1. Proposed Legislation on Afghanistan

Bills, Resolutions, and Amendments offered in the 115th Congress

Bill Number

Sponsor

Summary

Status

Resolutions and Standalone Legislation

H.R. 1666

Rep. Jones (R-NC)

15 cosponsors (as of 8/22/18)

To Prohibit the Availability of Funds for Activities in the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan and for Other Purposes Would prohibit funding for U.S. activities in Afghanistan (other than U.S. Embassy operations or intelligence gathering) one year after enactment, unless the President submits a national security certification waiver and Congress, within 30 days of receipt of that waiver, enacts a joint resolution authorizing the use of funds for purposes described in the certification (under expedited procedures).

Introduced on 3/22/18 in the House. Referred to the Committee on Foreign Affairs on the same day. Sponsor introductory remarks were given on 4/27/18.

H.R. 330

Rep. Lee (D-CA)

No More Ghost Money Act – Would prohibit payments from U.S. employees to foreign officials for the purposes of bribery or coercion; would also require within 180 days after enactment the submission of a report from the Director of the CIA on all monetary payments made by the CIA to Afghan officials since September 11, 2001.

Introduced on 1/5/17 in the House and referred to the Committee on Intelligence on the same day.

S. 1891

Sen. Cardin (D-MD)

Promoting Peace and Justice for the People of Afghanistan Act of 2017 Would require the President to submit within 60 days after enactment the U.S. strategy for engagement in Afghanistan; authorizes the creation of the Afghanistan Peace and Justice Initiative for FY2018 and FY2019; requires two reports within 180 days after enactment and annually thereafter on (1) U.S. diplomatic engagement to bring about a negotiated settlement and (2) Afghan and U.S. efforts to address corruption and abuses by Afghan civilian security forces.

Introduced in the Senate on 9/28/17 and referred to the Committee on Foreign Relations.

Authorizations for the Use of Military Force (AUMF)

H.J.Res. 89

Rep. Banks (R-IN)

AUMF Against al-Qaeda, the Taliban, and the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria Would authorize the use of force against al-Qaeda and the Taliban (in addition to ISIL), as well as "successor organizations, and associated forces;" would mandate a report every 60 days on actions taken pursuant to the authorities granted in the joint resolution.

Introduced on 3/15/17 in the House and referred to the House Committee on Foreign Affairs on the same day.

H.J.Res. 100

Rep. Schiff (D-CA)

Consolidated AUMF Resolution of 2017 Would authorize for three years the use of force against al-Qaeda and "the Afghan Taliban" (in addition to ISIL), as well as associated groups engaged in hostilities against the United States.

Introduced in the House on 4/27/17 and referred to the Committee on Foreign Affairs on the same day.

H.J.Res. 112

Rep. Perry (R-PA)

AUMF Against Islamic Extremism – Would authorize the use of force against al-Qaeda, the Haqqani Network, and the Taliban (among other groups), as well as "any substantial supporters, associated forces, or closely related successor entities."

Introduced in the House on 7/20/17 and referred to the House Committee on Foreign Affairs on the same day.

H.J.Res. 118

Rep. Coffman (R-CO)

AUMF Against al Qaeda, the Taliban, and the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria – Would authorize for five years the use of force against al-Qaeda and the Taliban (in addition to ISIL), as well as "any person…that is a part of, or substantially supports" those groups.

Introduced in the House on 10/21/17 and referred to the House Committee on Foreign Affairs on the same day.

S.J.Res. 31

Sen. Young (R-IN)

AUMF Against al-Qaeda, the Taliban, and the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria – Would authorize the use of force against al-Qaeda and the Taliban (in addition to ISIL), as well as "successor organizations, and associated forces;" would mandate a report every 60 days on actions taken pursuant to the authorities granted in the joint resolution.

Introduced in the Senate on 3/2/17 and referred to Committee on Foreign Relations.

S.J.Res. 59

Sen. Corker (R-TN)

AUMF of 2018 Would authorize for four years the use of force against al-Qaeda and the Taliban (in addition to ISIL), as well as associated forces, including the Haqqani Network (among others) and any other groups designated by the President and confirmed by Congress under expedited procedures.

Introduced in the House on 4/16/18 to the Committee on Foreign Relations. Committees on Foreign Relations and Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs held hearings on 5/16/18 and 6/6/18, respectively.

S.J.Res. 61

Sen. Merkley (D-OR)

Constitutional Consideration for Use of Force Resolution – Would authorize the use of force against al-Qaeda and the Taliban (in addition to ISIL) in order to protect the United States "and its compelling interests" from attack by those groups; would mandate semiannual certification by the President that groups remain a threat.

Introduced in the Senate on 5/23/18 and referred to the Committee on Foreign Relations.

National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2019

H.R. 5515

Rep. McGovern (D-MA), Rep. Jones (R-NC), Rep. Lee (D-CA), Rep. Garamendi (D-CA), Rep. Kildee (D-MI), Rep. Welch (D-VT)

House Rules Committee Amendment 173 Would have required the President to notify Congress of any increase in U.S. force levels in Afghanistan after September 30, 2018, including the number, purpose, and duration of such deployments, and allow for the passage, within 30 days of the presidential determination, of a joint resolution to disapprove of such increases.

Introduced on 5/15/18.

Defeated in Rules Committee Record Vote No. 218, 4-9.

H.R. 5515

Rep. Welch (D-VT), Rep. Jones (R-NC), Rep. Lee (D-CA)

House Rules Committee Amendment 214 Would have required the Secretary of Defense to develop sustainment plans for projects funded through the Afghanistan Infrastructure Fund and submit those plans to appropriate congressional committees.

Submitted on 05/15/18.

Not made in order by Rules Committee.

H.R. 5515

Rep. Lee (D-CA), Rep. Jones (R-NC)

House Rules Committee Amendment 231 – Would have required the Secretary of Defense to submit within 90 days of passage, and by annually thereafter by January 15 each year through 2020, an unclassified report on progress made by the Afghan government in achieving the benchmarks outlined in the Kabul Compact.

Joint Explanatory Statement "The conferees welcome the introduction of the bilateral U.S.-Afghanistan Compact, and the focus on the four pillars of governance, economics, peace and reconciliation, and security. However, the conferees are disappointed by the lack of transparency provided by the Department of Defense and the Department of State on the central tenants of the Compact and associated benchmarks."

Submitted on 05/16/18.

Made in order as Amendment 76 in H.Rept. 115-698.

Adopted by voice vote as part of en bloc H.Amdt. 643.

Incorporated as Section 1230B and engrossed in the House on 5/24/18.

House receded in conference, not incorporated into final bill, but addressed in Joint Explanatory Statement.

H.R. 5515

Rep. Lynch (D-MA), Rep. Cummings (D-MD), Rep. Welch (D-VT)

House Rules Committee Amendment 255 Would have required the Secretary of Defense to rescind the decision to redact troop levels for Afghanistan, Iraq, and Syria in the quarterly Defense Manpower Data Center report, and to publish troop numbers based on deployment location instead of permanently-assigned unit location.

Submitted on 05/15/18

Not made in order by Rules Committee.

H.R. 5515

Rep. Lynch (D-MA), Rep. Welch (D-VT)

House Rules Committee Amendment 256 Would have required the Secretary of Defense to "facilitate meaningful access and assistance" to Members of the committees of jurisdiction traveling to Afghanistan, Iraq, Kuwait, and Syria as part of congressional oversight efforts.

Submitted on 05/21/18

Not made in order by Rules Committee.

H.R. 5515

Rep. Lynch (D-MA), Rep. Cummings (D-MD), Rep. Welch (D-VT)

House Rules Committee Amendment 257 – Would have directed the Secretary of Defense to make public all performance data about the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces that have not been publicly available since October 2017.

Joint Explanatory Statement: "The conferees are disappointed by recent public decisions regarding a lack of transparency on basic information such as kinetic strike data, [and] ANDSF development, retention, and casualty rates…The restriction of information in this manner undermines public confidence, hinders necessary congressional oversight, and raises legitimate questions about the efficacy of current U.S. efforts in Afghanistan."

Submitted on 05/15/18

Not made in order by Rules Committee, but addressed in Joint Explanatory Statement.

H.R. 5515

Rep. Engel (D-NY)

House Rules Committee Amendment 449 Would have directed the Secretary of State to establish an office (of at least three full-time employees) for peace and reconciliation in Afghanistan to lead and coordinate U.S. efforts to seek a negotiated settlement to the war.

Submitted on 05/14/18

Not made in order by Rules Committee.

H.R. 5515

Rep. Boyle (D-PA)

House Rules Committee Amendment 522 Would have required the State Department and Department of Defense to report on Russia's support of the Taliban in Afghanistan.

Joint Explanatory Statement "The conferees note with deep concern Russia's destabilizing activities in Afghanistan… To better understand the nature of these activities, the conferees direct the appropriate agency within the Department of Defense, in conjunction with the Intelligence Community, to provide a report to the congressional defense and foreign relations committees no later than January 31st, 2019. The required report should be made at the classified level with an unclassified summary and should address Russian destabilizing activities in the region over the past 10 years, an articulation of Russian goals in executing such activities and an assessment of their abilities and potential to affect future operations that run counter to U.S. and Afghan goals in the region."

Submitted 5/21/18.

Made in order as Amendment 35 in H.Rept. 115-702.

Adopted by voice vote as part of en bloc H.Amdt. 645.

Incorporated as Section 1242 and engrossed in the House on 5/24/18.

House receded, not incorporated into final bill but Joint Explanatory Statement directs submission of related report.

H.R. 5515

Rep. Thornberry (R-TX)

Section 1211 – Extends authority (first granted in 2013 NDAA) for Secretary of Defense to transfer, without reimbursement, excess U.S. defense articles in Afghanistan as of January 2, 2013 to Afghan security forces.

Engrossed in the House on 5/24/18.

Engrossed in the Senate on 6/18/18 as Section 1213.

Incorporated into final bill as Section 1221.

H.R. 5515

Rep. Thornberry (R-TX)

Section 1521 –Extends authorities and reporting requirements regarding the use of Afghanistan Security Forces Funds (ASFF); also directs that at least $10 million of ASFF be used for recruitment and retention of women in the Afghan security forces; also directs the submission of a report on the Afghan government's ability to manage equipment provided through the ASFF and would allow withholding of such assistance in the event that the Afghan government is determined to have made insufficient progress toward maintaining the equipment.

Engrossed in the House on 5/24/18.

Engrossed in the Senate as Section 1211 on 5/24/18.

Incorporated into final bill as Section 1223.

H.R. 5515

S.Amdt. 2656

Sen. Merkley (D-OR)

Senate Amendment 2656 Would have directed the Secretary of Defense to submit within 180 days a report on U.S. diplomatic, defense and security, and development strategies in Afghanistan.

Submitted on 6/11/18.

Not considered.

H.R. 5515

S.Amdt. 2775

Sen. Durbin (D-IL), Sen. Duckworth (D-IL)

Senate Amendment 2775 Would have directed the Secretary of Defense to submit within a year of enactment an assessment of security cooperation programs in Afghanistan (along with nine other countries).

Submitted on 6/11/18

Not considered.

H.R. 5515

S.Amdt. 2779

Sen. Bennet (D-CO)

Senate Amendment 2779 Would have established an 8-member "Long Wars Study Group" to examine U.S. involvement in the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq; the working group would produce a final report, including lessons learned and recommendations, within two years of enactment.

Submitted on 6/11/18

Not considered.

Fiscal Year 2019 Appropriations

Defense Appropriations Act for Fiscal Year 2019

H.R. 6157

Rep. Khanna (D-CA)

House Rules Amendment 76 – would have prohibited the use of funds to increase the U.S. force presence in Afghanistan above current levels.

Submitted on 620/18.

Not made in order by the Rules Committee.

 

 

 

 

Foreign Operations Appropriations Act for Fiscal Year 2018

H.R. 6385

Rep. Rogers (R-KY)

Section 7013 – prohibits the use of funds to provide foreign assistance unless a bilateral agreement guarantees that U.S. assistance will be exempt from taxation by the foreign government.

NOTE: while this provision does not refer to Afghanistan in particular, the only reference to it in the bill with respect to a specific country occurs in Section 7044

Reported by the House Committee on Appropriations on 7/16/18.

H.R. 6385

Rep. Rogers (R-KY)

Section 7044 – (1) prohibits the use of ESF and INCLE funds in projects/activities in which individuals suspected of narcotics production, human rights violations, or corrupt practices are participating or for projects in areas where resource disbursement monitoring cannot be performed (with national security certification waiver); (2) requires the Secretary of State to certify that ESF and INCLE funds are used to advance civil society, women's rights, transparency, and other U.S. goals, and report on the status of related goals and benchmarks within 90 days and biannually thereafter (with national security waiver); (3) makes funds available for programs to assist women and girls, help the Afghan government develop its financial system, and expand regional linkages, among other purposes; (4) requires the Secretary to certify that the United States and Afghanistan have agreement in place to guarantee compliance with Sec. 7013 (above); and (5) prohibits the use of any funds to enter into a permanent basing rights agreement between the United States and Afghanistan.

Reported by the House Committee on Appropriations on 7/16/18.

H.Rept. 115-829 to H.R. 6385

House Committee on Appropriations

Directs the submission of two reports:

  • A report on progress made in achieving a political settlement with the Taliban and detailed information on specific steps to encourage a political resolution (within 90 days of enactment); and
  • A report on the number of personnel in Afghanistan under Chief of Mission authority (within 30 days of enactment, and every 120 days thereafter through FY2020)

Additionally, directs that funds be made available for programs that support children of imprisoned Afghan mothers.

Reported by the House Committee on Appropriations on 7/16/18.

S. 3108

Sen. Graham (R-SC)

Section 7044 – (1) authorizes the use of funds to reestablish one or more Embassy Branch Offices in Afghanistan; (2) authorizes the use of up to $2.8 million in ESF for the Office of Inspector General to conduct oversight on assistance for Afghanistan; (3) prohibits the use of funds for projects in which individuals or entities suspected of involved in corruption, narcotics, or human rights violations are participants; and (4) requires the Secretary to certify that the United States and Afghanistan have agreements in place to guarantee compliance with Sec. 7013 (same as the House provision above) and that U.S. companies and organizations are not subjected to Afghan taxes or fees.

Reported by the Senate Appropriations Committee on 6/21/18.

S.Rept. 115-282 to S. 3108

Senate Committee on Appropriations

Directs the submission of two reports:

  • A report on monitoring and evaluation procedures for U.S. assistance programs in Afghanistan (within 45 days of the submission of the FY2020 budget request); and
  • A report assessing progress made in preparing for parliamentary and presidential elections, including recommendations (within 90 days of enactment).

Reported by the Senate Appropriations Committee on 6/21/18.

National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2018

H.R. 2810 (NDAA)/P.L. 115-91

Rep. Khanna (D-CA)

House Rules Committee Amendment 72 – requires the Secretary of Defense to conduct a cost-benefit analysis when entering into a contract for uniforms for Afghan forces.

Submitted on 7/6/17.

Made in order as Amendment 24 in H.Rept. 115-212.

Adopted by voice vote as part of en bloc H.Amdt. 173.

Incorporated as Section 344 in final bill.

H.R. 2810 (NDAA)/P.L. 115-91

Rep. Kildee (D-MI)

House Rules Committee Amendment 153 – would have added projected casualties and costs, as well as objectives, of U.S. deployments to Afghanistan to list of metrics in Section 1212 (requiring a report on U.S. strategy in Afghanistan).

Joint Explanatory Statement – "The conferees direct the Secretary of Defense, in coordination with the Secretary of State, to provide a report on the Afghanistan strategy no later than February 15, 2018. The report should include a description of U.S. security interests and objectives; the current and planned military efforts to support such objectives; the anticipated timeline necessary to achieve such objectives; a description of the projected long-term U.S. military role in Afghanistan; an analysis of the risk to force, including green on blue attacks, and the efforts to mitigate such risks; an accounting of the costs associated with accomplishing the security objectives over the projected timeline; a description of the interests, objectives, and activities of other regional actors in Afghanistan, including Russia, Iran, Pakistan, China, India, and any other country the Secretary believes to be influencing Afghanistan's stability and security."

Submitted on 7/10/17.

Made in order as Amendment 68 in H.Rept. 115-217.

Adopted by voice vote as part of en bloc H.Amdt. 193.

Incorporated as part of Section 1212. Engrossed in the House on 7/17/17.

Struck in conference but incorporated in altered form in Joint Explanatory Statement.

H.R. 2810 (NDAA)/P.L. 115-91

Rep. McGovern (D-MA), Rep. Jones (R-NC), Rep. Lee (D-CA), Rep. Massie (R-KY), Rep. Garamendi (D-CA), Rep. Welch (D-VT), Rep. Kildee (D-MD)

House Rules Committee Amendment 165 – would have required the President to notify Congress of any increase in U.S. force levels in Afghanistan after September 30, 2018, including the number, purpose, and duration of such deployments, and allow for the passage, within 30 days of the presidential determination, of a joint resolution to disapprove of such increases.

Submitted on 07/12/2017.

Defeated in Rules Committee Record Vote No. 71 2-8.

H.R. 2810 (NDAA)/P.L. 115-91

Rep. Gallego (D-AZ)

House Rules Committee Amendment 271 – would have added a description of foreign support (from Russia, Iran, Pakistan, and others) to the Taliban and other extremist groups to the list of matters included in a report on U.S. strategy in Afghanistan submitted by the Secretary of Defense.

Not agreed to in Conference- House recedes, Section 1212 of House bill struck from NDAA but incorporated into Explanatory Statement directive to Secretary of Defense to provide report on Afghanistan strategy by February 15, 2018 (see above).

Submitted on 07/12/17.

Made in order as Amendment 60 in H.Rept. 115-212.

Adopted by voice vote as part of en bloc H Amdt 175. Incorporated as part of Section 1212.

Struck in conference, but incorporated into Joint Explanatory Statement directive.

H.R. 2810 (NDAA)/P.L. 115-91

Rep. Connolly (D-VA)

House Rules Committee Amendment 357 – Requires a review of Department of Defense civilian personnel air travel to and from Afghanistan, and requires the Secretary to issue updated guidelines regarding the use of commercial or alternative forms of air transportation.

Submitted on 07/12/17.

Made in order as Amendment 79 in H.Rept. 115-217.

Adopted by voice vote as part of en bloc H Amdt 194.

Incorporated as Section 1081 and engrossed in the House on 7/14/17.

Incorporated as Section 1098 in final bill.

H.R. 2810 (NDAA)/P.L. 115-91

Rep. Lee (D-CA), Rep. Jones (R-NC)

House Rules Committee Amendment 381 – Would have transferred $28 million from ASFF to the Office of Suicide Prevention

Submitted on 07/12/17.

Not made in order by Rules Committee.

H.R. 2810 (NDAA)/P.L. 115-91

Rep. Thornberry (R-TX)

Section 1521 – Extends authorities and reporting requirements regarding the use of Afghanistan Security Forces Funds (ASFF); also would have directed that at least $41 million of ASFF be used for recruitment and retention of women in the Afghan security forces; also directs the submission of a report by the Secretary of Defense on steps the Afghan government is taking to reduce corruption in the ANDSF and on the extent to which extent ANDSF capabilities are improving.

Agreed to in Conference House version directed $41 million for recruitment and retention of women in ANDSF (compared to a $25 million "goal" in the Senate bill, Section 1531); final bill language directs at least $10 million, with the goal of $41 million, be directed to that purpose.

Engrossed in the House on 7/14/17. Agreed to in conference and incorporated in modified form as Section 1531 in final bill.

H.R. 2810 (NDAA)/P.L. 115-91

Rep. Thornberry (R-TX)

Section 923 Would have expressed the sense of the House that force management levels in Afghanistan necessitate the substitution of costlier contract support in place of military personnel; also would have required a briefing by March 31, 2018 by the Department of Defense on steps by the Secretary to revise deployment guidelines to "avoid to the extent practicable these costly practices in the future."

Joint Explanatory Statement – "the conferees understand the Department of Defense is revaluating the practice of substituting contractor personnel," but directs a briefing on the topic by March 31, 2018.

Engrossed in the House on 7/14/17. The Senate engrossed amendment contained no similar provision. The House receded in conference, but directive maintained in Joint Explanatory Statement.

H.R. 2810 (NDAA)/P.L. 115-91

S.Amdt. 511

Sen. Sullivan (R-AK), Sen. Peters (D-MI), Sen. Cornyn (R-TX), Sen. Warner (D-VA)

Senate Amendment 511 – would have directed the Secretary of Defense to work with the Afghan and Indian governments to establish priorities and opportunities for investment in Afghanistan; identify gaps in Afghan military capacity; and improve delivery of humanitarian assistance.

Submitted on 7/27/17.

Not considered.

H.R. 2810 (NDAA)/P.L. 115-91

S.Amdt. 529

Sen. Leahy (D-VT)

Senate Amendment 529 – authorizes the Secretary of Defense to create within the Department of Defense one or more permanent positions to oversee and support human rights vetting with regard to the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces.

Submitted on 7/27/17.

Engrossed in Senate amendment on 9/18/17 as Section 6203.

Incorporated as Section 1216 in final bill.

H.R. 2810 (NDAA)/P.L. 115-91

S.Amdt. 609

Sen. McCain (R-AZ)

Senate Amendment 609 – would have expressed the sense of Congress that the United States should pursue an "integrated civil-military" strategy in Afghanistan.

Submitted on 7/27/17.

Not considered.

H.R. 2810 (NDAA)/P.L. 115-91

Sen. McCain (R-AZ)

Section 1215 – Extends the semiannual reporting requirement on enhancing security and stability in Afghanistan (in place since 2015 NDAA) through December 2020.

Engrossed in Senate amendment on 9/18/17. House contained no similar provision; House receded in conference and incorporated into final bill as Section 1215.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

FY2018 Appropriations

H.R.3219 – Make America Secure Appropriations Act, 2018 (Defense Appropriations)

H.R. 3219

Rep. Brownley (D-CA)

House Rules Committee Amendment 21 (version 1) would have required the Secretary of Defense to submit a report on steps being taken by Afghan forces to end sexual abuse, sex slavery, and rape.

Introduced on 7/21/17.

Not made in order.

H.R. 3219

Rep. Davis (D-CA)

House Rules Committee Amendment 77 (version 3) – broadens use of funds from "recruitment" of Afghan women in the ANDSF to "recruitment, retention, and training."

Introduced on 7/26/17.

Revised; made in order and incorporated in revised form under "Afghanistan Security Forces Fund."

Incorporated into H.R. 1625.

H.R. 3219

Rep. Welch (D-VT), Rep. Lee (D-CA), Rep. Khanna (D-CA), Rep. Jones (R-NC), Rep. Walberg (R-MI)

House Rules Committee Amendment 111 (version 1) – Would have prohibited the use of ASFF funds to procure uniforms for the Afghan National Army.

Introduced on 7/21/17. Made in order as Amendment 40 in H.Rept. 115-261.

Engrossed in the House on 7/27/17 as Section 10004.

Not incorporated into H.R. 1625.

H.R. 3219

Rep. Nolan (D-MN)

House Rules Committee Amendment 130 (version 2) – Would have decreased ASFF funding by $12 million.

Introduced on 7/26/17. Made in order as Amendment 53 in H.Rept. 115-261. Engrossed in the House as 7/27/17 under "Afghanistan Security Forces Fund."

H.R. 1625 reduced ASFF by more than $12 million below the level in H.R. 3219.

H.R. 3219

Rep. Granger (R-TX)

Section 9005 – Authorizes $5 million for the Commanders' Emergency Response Program (CERP) in Afghanistan.

Engrossed in the House on 7/27/17.

Incorporated into H.R. 1625.

H.R. 3219

Rep. Granger (R-TX)

Section 9007 – Prohibits the use of funds for, among other purposes, establishing any base that provides for "permanent stationing" of U.S. forces in Afghanistan.

Engrossed in the House on 7/27/17.

Incorporated into H.R. 1625.

H.R. 3219

Rep. Granger (R-TX)

Section 9009 – Among other purposes, prohibits the obligation of ASFF funds prior to approval of financial and activity plan by the Afghanistan Resources Oversight Council at the Department of Defense.

Engrossed in the House on 7/27/17.

Incorporated into H.R. 1625.

H.R. 3219

Rep. Granger (R-TX)

Section 9019 – Rescinds $100 million in 2017/2018 ASFF funds.

Engrossed in the House on 7/27/17.

Incorporated into H.R. 1625 as Section 9020.

H.R. 3354 (minibus)

Rep. Rosen (D-NV), Rep. Gallego (D-AZ)

House Rules Committee Amendment 93 (version 1) – Would have prohibited the use of funds to close or merge the Office of the Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan.

Introduced 9/5/17.

Not made in order.

State/Foreign Operations Appropriations

H.R. 3362

Rep. Rogers (R-KY)

Section 7044 – (1) Directs the Secretary of State to submit a report on the number of personnel in Afghanistan under Chief of Mission authority; (2) prohibits the use of ESF and INCLE funds in projects/activities in which individuals suspected of narcotics production, human rights violations, or corrupt practices are participating; (3) requires the Secretary of State to certify that ESF and INCLE funds are used to advance civil society, women's rights, transparency, and other U.S. goals, among other conditions; (4) requires the Secretary to submit a report on progress toward goals and benchmarks of U.S. assistance; (5) makes funds available for programs to assist women and girls, help the Afghan government develop its financial system, and expand regional linkages, among other purposes; (6) requires the Secretary to certify that U.S. companies and organizations implementing U.S. foreign aid programs are not subjected to taxation by the Afghan government and (7) prohibits the use of any funds to enter into a permanent basing rights agreement between the United States and Afghanistan.

Approved by House Appropriations Committee on 7/19/17.

H.R. 1625 does not include required reporting on U.S. personnel in Afghanistan, but the directive is included in the Joint Explanatory Statement.

S. 1780

Sen. Graham (R-SC)

Section 7044 (1) prohibits the use of ESF and INCLE funds for projects/activities in which individuals suspected of narcotics production, human rights violations, or corrupt practices are participating or for projects in areas where resource disbursement monitoring cannot be performed (with national security certification waiver); (2) requires the Secretary to submit a report on progress toward goals and benchmarks of U.S. assistance; (3) reconciliation and reintegration activities

Approved by Senate Appropriations Committee on 9/7/17. Incorporated into H.R. 1625.

Consolidated Appropriations FY2018 (Omnibus)

In addition to provisions noted above, H.R. 1625 contained the following on Afghanistan:

H.R. 1625 (Omnibus)/P.L. 115-141

 

Section 9019 – prohibits the use of funds to transfer additional C–130 cargo aircraft to Afghan forces until the Department of Defense provides a report on Afghan airlift requirements.

Incorporated into final bill as signed into law on 3/23/18.

H.R. 1625 (Omnibus)/P.L. 115-141

 

Section 9022 – allows for ASFF funds to be used in training and equipping units for which assistance would otherwise be prohibited by Leahy Laws (10 U.S.C. 362) if the Secretary of State certifies that denial of such assistance would harm U.S. national security, among other conditions.

Incorporated into final bill as signed into law on 3/23/18.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Table 2. U.S. Assistance to Afghanistan

($ in thousands)

 

FY2018

FY2019

 

President's Budget

Senatea

Houseb

Omnibus

President's Budgetb

Senate

Houseb

H.R. 6157

Economic Support Fund

650,000

500,000

-

650,000

500,000

500,000

-

 

Nonproliferation, Anti-terrorism, Demining and Related Programs

37,000

37,000

-

37,000

(not requested by country)

37,000

-

 

International Narcotics Control and Law Enforcement

95,000

160,000

-

95,000

95,000

160,000

-

 

International Military Education and Training

800

800

-

800

800

800

 

 

Operation Freedom's Sentinel (OCO)c

47,100,000

-

-

-

46,300,000

-

-

-

Afghanistan Security Forces Fund

4,937,515

4,178,815

4,937,515

4,666,815

5,199,450

4,666,815

5,199,450

4,920,000

a. Draft FY2018 Defense Appropriations bill and accompanying report published Nov. 21, 2017 by the chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, at https://www.appropriations.senate.gov/news/majority/fy2018-defense-appropriations-bill-released.

b. In reports accompanying its State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs Appropriations bills for both FY2018 and FY2019, the House Appropriations Committee stated that "The Committee understands that the staffing and programming requirements in [Afghanistan and Pakistan] will remain under continuous review and, for that reason, has not designated specific funding recommendations." Additionally, while Congress authorizes and appropriates ASFF levels, they do not otherwise allocate funding for specific operations, including Operation Freedom's Sentinel.

c. OFS numbers from President's budget requests; Congress does not direct specific breakouts (i.e., by operation) of OCO spending, except for the Afghanistan Security Forces Fund.

Author Contact Information

[author name scrubbed], Analyst in Middle Eastern Affairs ([email address scrubbed], [phone number scrubbed])

Acknowledgments

Carmelina Palmer contributed significant research assistance to this report during her internship at CRS in summer 2018.

Footnotes

1.

Steve Coll, Directorate S: The C.I.A. and America's Secret Wars in Afghanistan and Pakistan (Penguin Press, 2018) p. 199.

2.

David Rhode and David E. Sanger, "How a 'Good War' in Afghanistan Went Bad," New York Times, August 12, 2007.

3.

President Trump delegated the authority to set force levels, reportedly limited to around 3,900 additional troops, to Secretary of Defense Mattis in June 2017. Jim Garamone, "President Gives Mattis Authority to Set U.S. Troop Strength in Afghanistan," Department of Defense, June 14, 2017. In August 2017 it was reported that due to units rotating in and out of theater, the actual number of U.S. troops in Afghanistan was actually between 11,000 and 12,000 on any given day. The Pentagon had previously reported that figure at the authorized level of 8,400. Gordon Lubold and Nancy Youssef, "U.S. Has More Troops in Afghanistan Than Publicly Disclosed," Wall Street Journal, August 22, 2017. Some media sources report that there are currently around 15,000 U.S. troops in Afghanistan; the figure cited in U.S. government sources is usually 14,000. In April 2018, the Pentagon reportedly removed troop statistics for Afghanistan (as well as Iraq and Syria) from its quarterly reporting. Kathryn Watson, "Pentagon takes down troop numbers in Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan: Report," CBS News, April 10, 2018. For more on the debate around the merits of revealing troop levels, see Jon Donnelly, "Analysis: Why Won't Trump Discuss Troop Numbers?" CQ News, August 23, 2017.

4.

The White House, Remarks by President Trump on the Strategy in Afghanistan and South Asia, August 21, 2017.

5.

Rebecca Kheel, "Dems: Trump 'has no strategy" for Afghanistan," The Hill, August 21, 2017.

6.

Philip Rucker and Robert Costa, "'It's a hard problem': Inside Trump's decision to send more troops to Afghanistan," Washington Post, August 21, 2017. For more on one such proposal, see Tara Copp, "Here's the blueprint for Erik Prince's $5 billion plan to privatize the Afghanistan war," Military Times, September 5, 2018.

7.

Luis Martinez, "'Cautious optimism' Afghanistan strategy working: US general," ABC News, July 23, 2018.

8.

Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction, Quarterly Report to the United States Congress, April 30, 2018. For another, perhaps less positive, assessment of district control in Afghanistan, see Bill Roggio and Alexandra Gutowski, "Taliban control of Afghan districts remains unchanged despite increased US military pressure," Long War Journal, May 1, 2018.

9.

Samim Faramarz, "7 Provincial Centers Face 'Serious Security Threats,'" Tolo News, May 16, 2018.

10.

Shawn Snow, "Report: US officials classify crucial metrics on Afghan casualties, readiness," Military Times, October 30, 2017; Rod Nordland, "The Death Toll for Afghan Forces Is Secret. Here's Why," New York Times, September 21, 2018.

11.

Mujib Mashal and Eric Schmitt, "White House Orders Direct Taliban Talks to Jump-Start Afghan Negotiations," New York Times, July 15, 2018.

12.

Mashal and Schmitt, op. cit.

13.

Vinay Kaura, "US-Taliban talks a momentous shift in Afghan strategy," Middle East Institute, August 27, 2018.

14.

Sharif Amiri, "Govt Rejects Possibility Of Talks Between US And Taliban," Tolo News, July 17, 2018.

15.

Borhan Osman, "A Negotiated End to the Afghan Conflict," United States Institute of Peace, June 18, 2018.

16.

Traditional levers of congressional influence, such as foreign aid, were limited or nonexistent in Afghanistan under the rule of the Taliban. The United States contributed tens of millions of dollars in humanitarian assistance to Afghanistan before 2001, but without a U.S. diplomatic presence (the U.S. embassy was closed from 1989 to 2002), that aid was administered by the U.N. and non-governmental organizations. "U.S. gives $43 million to Afghanistan," CNN, May 17, 2001. Congressional engagement was mostly limited to resolutions calling for the return of representative government to Afghanistan (e.g., H.Con.Res. 414, S.Con.Res. 150), condemning the Taliban's treatment of women (e.g., S.Res. 68), and expressing concern for the human rights situation in the country (e.g., H.Con.Res. 156).

17.

For more on the AUMF, related measures, and the debates around them, see CRS Report R43760, A New Authorization for Use of Military Force Against the Islamic State: Issues and Current Proposals, by [author name scrubbed].

18.

Additional congressional action in 2002 included laws establishing Radio Free Afghanistan (P.L. 107-148), appropriating supplemental funds for international disaster assistance (P.L. 107-206), and authorizing educational and health care assistance for Afghan women and children (P.L. 107-81).

19.

SIGAR was established by Section 1229 of the FY2008 National Defense Authorization Act (P.L. 110-181). The FY2008 NDAA stipulates that SIGAR will be terminated 180 days after unexpended funds for reconstruction in Afghanistan reach less than $250 million.

20.

Of that amount, $78.2 billion (62%) has been for security. The remainder has been allocated for governance and development ($33 billion, or 26%), humanitarian aid, ($3.4 billion, or 3%), and civilian operations ($11.6 billion, or 9%). John Sopko, the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction, said in a 2015 speech that there were essentially "no conditions" on security assistance as late as 2013. "No More Free Lunch: Afghan Aid with a Purpose," Prepared Remarks of John F. Sopko, Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction, For Delivery at the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Princeton, NJ, October 6, 2015.

21.

Trent Ruder, "Donor Aid Challenges in Shaping Incentive Programs and Spurring Afghan Reform," United States Institute of Peace, November 2014.

22.

"Afghanistan in Transition: U.S. Civilian Presence and Assistance post-2014," Committee on Foreign Relations, United States Senate, October 27, 2014. Additionally, the July 2015 SIGAR quarterly report contains a lengthy treatment of the benefits, limitations, and challenges of aid conditionality.

23.

Dan Lamothe, "Pentagon and watchdog at odds over efforts to prevent sexual abuse of children by Afghan troops," Washington Post, January 23, 2018. For more on the Leahy Laws, see CRS In Focus IF10575, Human Rights Issues: Security Forces Vetting ("Leahy Laws"), by [author name scrubbed].

24.

Statement of Administration Policy: H.R. 2446 – Afghanistan Freedom and Security Support Act of 2007, June 5, 2007. Available at http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/ws/index.php?pid=75168.

25.

The once prominent Office of the SRAP was folded into the Bureau of South and Central Asian Affairs in September 2017 (the SRAP was not itself established by statute, but was dual-hatted as the Coordinator for Afghanistan and Pakistan, as authorized, with reference to Afghanistan, by AFSA).

26.

For example, in 2009, legislation was introduced to require a report from the Department of Defense on the U.S. "exit strategy" from Afghanistan (H.R. 2404); other legislation introduced that year would have prohibited any increase in the number of U.S. military personnel serving in Afghanistan (H.R. 3699).

27.

Those measures, respectively, are: H.R. 6045, H.R. 780, H.Amdt. 1103, and H.Amdt. 928.