Report: Afghan military woefully inept

Nov. 1, 2012 at 7:50 PM
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WASHINGTON, Nov. 1 (UPI) -- A U.S. government report casts serious doubt about whether Afghan forces will be able to maintain control of the country after foreign troops leave in 2014.

The audit, conducted by the special inspector general for the war in Afghanistan, also pointed out $230 million in repair parts for equipment given to the Afghan army have disappeared, the British newspaper The Guardian reported Thursday.

The report pointed out that initial efforts by U.S. and NATO troops to train a fighting force fell short because the Afghan soldiers lacked the logistical capabilities necessary to wage war against the Taliban. The native fighters couldn't get supplies like food, water and weapons to the battlefield, making fighter training useless.

"The Afghan government's challenges in assuming [operations and maintenance] responsibilities include a lack of sufficient numbers and quality of personnel, as well as undeveloped budgeting, procurement and logistics systems," the report concluded. "As a result, U.S. funds invested in the construction and maintenance ... are at risk of being wasted."

Another problem plaguing training efforts is the high illiteracy rates among Afghan soldiers. Most Afghan men with more education are being lured into the private sector for more money, The Guardian said.

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