Grumbling heard at Khyber Pass intel post

Jan. 12, 2009 at 2:13 PM
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TORKHAM, Afghanistan, Jan. 12 (UPI) -- Some U.S. military officers say mistrust among the staff of a new intelligence outpost in Afghanistan's remote Khyber Pass is limiting its effectiveness.

While officers remain hopeful about the Khyber Border Coordination Center, the security situation along the critical supply lines in the area remains dicey, the Washington Post reported Monday.

NATO, Afghan and Pakistani troops man the center with the goal of reducing Taliban activity and keeping trade and military supplies moving.

Along with language and logistical issues still being worked out, there has been some grumbling that the Pakistani contingent has been less than enthusiastic about cracking down on guerrillas and local bandits.

"There's a hell of a lot of lip service," said one U.S. officer who remained anonymous. "The Pakistanis talk a good game but don't play a good game."

The Post said Pakistan harbors concerns about the safety of its personnel.

U.S. commanders in Afghanistan say they believe the Khyber center will become more effective as time goes on and see any level of cooperation between Pakistan an Afghanistan as a positive development.

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