Military blames 'human error' for hidden Afghan war data

WASHINGTON — The NATO-led command leading the war in Afghanistan blamed “human error” Tuesday for withholding information about America’s longest war and made the data public, denying any deliberate attempt to shield the conflict from public scrutiny.

A U.S. military watchdog, the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR), had suggested that the decision to classify the number of districts in Afghanistan, and the population therein, controlled by the Afghan government or the Taliban or contested by both sides, amounted to an effort to escape accountability.

“It was NOT the intent of Resolute Support to withhold or classify information which was available in prior reports. A human error in labeling occurred,” U.S. Navy Capt. Tom Gresback, public affairs director for NATO’s Operation Resolute Support, said in an emailed statement.

“The classification system, because it incorporates both a NATO and U.S. nomenclature, can be challenging, and a mistake was made,” Gresback continued. “The data is not classified and there was no intent to withhold it unnecessarily.”

His comments came hours after SIGAR said in a quarterly report on the conflict that the Pentagon prohibited the inclusion of information on the number of districts in Afghanistan, and the population therein, controlled by the Afghan government or the Taliban or contested by both sides.

“The number of districts controlled or influenced by the Afghan government had been one of the last remaining publicly available indicators for members of Congress — many of whose staff do not have access to the classified annexes to SIGAR reports — and for the American public of how the 16-year-long U.S. effort to secure Afghanistan is faring,” SIGAR said in a statement. “This is the first time SIGAR has been specifically instructed not to release information marked ‘unclassified’ to the American taxpayer.”

In his emailed statement, Gresback said that, as of October 2017, about 56 percent of the country’s 407 districts were under Afghan government control or influence, 30 percent remained contested, and roughly 14 percent were now under insurgent control or influence.

SIGAR had also said that the Pentagon had classified, for the first time since 2009, precise figures on the size of Afghan security forces and attrition from their ranks. Gresback’s statement did not address that issue.

SIGAR’s report came a month after the White House left the number of troops fighting in Afghanistan, Syria and Iraq out of the unclassified version of a semiannual report to Congress. The Pentagon has disclosed force levels for all three. In a late-August briefing last year, officials said that roughly 11,000 troops were serving in Afghanistan, to be reinforced by another 3,000-4,000 under Trump’s new strategy. And in early December, the Pentagon told reporters that 5,200 Americans were serving in Iraq and another 2,000 were in Syria. The latter marked a notable increase from the previously disclosed figure of 500. The official troop figures draw widespread skepticism from outside analysts, who note that America’s war-fighting machine relies heavily on military contractors, whose numbers are not disclosed.

The omissions reflected President Trump’s eagerness to keep secret the size of U.S. deployments in some global hot spots under the theory that the numbers, no matter how vague, might give extremists and other enemies a strategic advantage, a senior administration official told Yahoo News in December. Military, congressional and even some other administration officials privately dispute that theory and say some transparency is necessary for informed debate about America’s use of force. It is unclear whether the administration detailed the figures to Congress in a classified addendum to the letter.

SIGAR also found that Operation Resolute Support, as the military campaign is known, ramped up airstrikes over the past quarter, with U.S. forces dropping 653 munitions in October 2017. SIGAR called that number “a record high since 2012 and a more than three-fold increase from October 2016.”

And the watchdog said that opium cultivation in Afghanistan has reached an all-time high and now “approaches the area of Rhode Island.”

Read more from Yahoo News:

Source Article from https://www.yahoo.com/news/pentagon-hides-key-afghan-war-indicators-watchdog-says-191750455.html

Afghan migrant kicks Syrian pregnant woman in the stomach after dispute in Berlin

Alexanderplatz

    

A 27-year-old Afghan migrant attacked a pregnant woman at Berlin’s Alexanderplatz station.

The migrant kicked the woman in the stomach after a dispute at the station. German media say the man dragged the pregnant woman against her will into a train, while he kicked her several times.

A companion of the Syrian victim helped defend her against the man’s violence. As the man interfered in the conflict he was attacked as well. In the subsequent fight two windscreens of the train were broken.

Police officers are investigating both men for causing dangerous bodily harm. Both men were released later.

The idea of Angela Merkel to invite more than a million migrants to Germany, has caused a serious crime wave in the country’s larger cities.

Berlin’s former tourist hotspot Alexanderplatz has been turned into a “no-go area” and other cities have serious problems with uncontrollable migrant crime as well.

This week it also became clear that mostly migrants caused a 10 per cent rise in violent crime in the German state of Lower Saxony. Also Germany’s police observed that during this year’s New Year’s Eve celebrations, there were less women on the streets of several cities. A professor concluded that recent migrant sex attacks have a strong effect on women’s behaviour and feelings of safety in the country.

Source Article from https://www.sott.net/article/373216-Afghan-migrant-kicks-Syrian-pregnant-woman-in-the-stomach-after-dispute-in-Berlin

15yo Afghan boy arrested after stabbing to death German ex-girlfriend

Home » Crimes, Eurabia, Europe, Multiculturalism » 15yo Afghan boy arrested after stabbing to death German ex-girlfriend



 


A 15-year-old Afghan boy is reportedly being held by police on suspicion of stabbing his ex-girlfriend to death during an argument in a grocery store in Germany. Well just as we said in our previous article, Germany does deserve to be on that map as a red state… this story only goes to prove our point among many other similar stories. Why would a German girl even date a brown Muslim Arab? Why would her parents allow her? Why date at such a young age? Why is that Arab even in Germany? So many questions here… WHY WHY WHY? Had her parents read that article and listened to us, they would have had their daughter alive today…

The attack took place at around 3:20pm local time in a grocery store in Kandel, a town in Rhineland-Palatinate on the German-French border, according to the newspaper Die Rhinepflatz. The boy was apprehended by passersby and held until police arrived at the scene.

The victim, a German national who was said to have broken off a months-long relationship with the accused earlier this month, reportedly entered the store along with a companion. The girl was then attacked with a kitchen knife. She died in hospital Wednesday afternoon.

Prosecutor Angelika Moehlig said that the unidentified suspect, who has been in Germany since April 2016, is being kept in custody on suspicion of manslaughter. The Associated Press reports that while the motive is not yet known, the girl’s parents filed a complaint against the accused on December 15 alleging slander and threats. RT.com has contacted the local prosecutor for comment.

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Source Article from http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/TheEuropeanUnionTimes/~3/KoNuPvl0vo8/

40 killed in US raid on Afghan ISIS camp

At least 40 militants have been killed in a US air raid targeting a training camp of the Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) in the Achin district of Afghanistan’s eastern Nangarhar province. Among the casualties were several potential suicide bombers and two IS instructors named as Qari Quran and Qari Fida, Khaama Press reported citing local police commanders. An arms cache belonging to the group was also destroyed.
Islamic State had earlier claimed responsibility for a deadly attack on a Shiite mosque in Kabul on Friday in which 56 people lost their lives.

Source Article from https://www.rt.com/newsline/407445-kandahar-isis-camp-destroyed/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=RSS

Heroic Senator Vows to Hold Defense Bill Hostage Unless Congress Ends Iraq & Afghan Wars

The Senate on Monday took up the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), passing a motion in an 89-3 vote which allowed the legislation to proceed. That action essentially limits the procedural debate on the legislation and moves the NDAA to a full vote as early as Wednesday morning.

However, Paul made clear on his Twitter account that he had every intention of slowing down the passage of the NDAA – which sets forth the Pentagon’s budget and major programs for the next fiscal year beginning October 1 – until he was guaranteed a vote on amending the AUMF in Afghanistan in Iraq.

“I will object to all procedural motions and amendments unless and until my amendment is made in order and we vote on these wars,” Paul wrote.

He went on to note the length of time that the US military has been present in Afghanistan and Iraq.

“We have been there for 16 years. It is time for them to end. It is time for Congress to vote on whether or not they should end.”

Paul noted that the Senate was in a “quorum call,” unable to act because of his protest.

He vowed to continue the protest until Congress agreed to vote on whether or not to end the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Paul noted that his protest was for the soldiers, adding that “hypocrites” are happy to “pretend concern over our constitutional duty to declare war” but are happy to “block any vote on ending any of our 7 current wars.”

The senator said that he “sits nearly alone,” but he is happy to fight by himself if needed.

In addition to Paul, the NDAA cloture motion was opposed by Democratic Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont and Oregon Democrat Ron Wyden.

Paul took aim at both the “anti-war left” and the “conservative right” in his series of tweets.

“Where is the anti-war left demanding the wars end? Where is the constitional [sic] conservative right demanding Congress reclaim its war powers?” he wrote.

Although an increasing number of lawmakers have been calling on Congress to pass a new AUMF for Afghanistan, Paul has largely been alone in his mission to put a deadline on Congress for a vote.

Paul did appear to strike at least a partial deal with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky) about an hour after initially issuing his threats to delay the NDAA passage, with McConnell guaranteeing Paul four hours on Tuesday to state his AUMF reasoning on the Senate floor, the Washington Post reported.

However, that wasn’t enough to get Paul to back down, with the senator later reiterating his plan to “continue to fight, and if necessary, object, to continue this debate, secure a vote, and force Congress to do its duty.”

The war in Afghanistan, which began in 2001 as a US response to the September 11 attacks, is the longest war in US history.

Source Article from http://thefreethoughtproject.com/rand-paul-end-wars-ndaa/

Afghan migrant who raped then killed EU official’s daughter begs forgiveness

    

The teenage Afghan migrant who raped and murdered Maria Ladenburger, 19, in 2016 broke down in tears in court Monday as he lamented the decision destroyed his life.

Hussein Khavari claimed he was drunk and had been smoking hashish Oct. 16 when he heard Ladenburger, a medical student and the daughter of a top EU official, fall off her bike. He admitted that he then raped her, strangled her with her own scarf, and drowned her in a nearby river. He now claims he is “sad” for what he did, Express reported.

“When I saw how pretty she was, I wanted to have sex with her,” he told the court.

Khavari, who arrived in Germany in 2015, was arrested in December 2016 and had remained silent during his interrogations until his Monday court appearance.

“I beg your pardon. I want to apologize to the family of Maria. I wish I could undo it. What I have done, I am sad for from the bottom of my heart,” he said. “I live with the agony of what I did and this torment destroys my life.”

The murder struck an already on-edge Germany after a similar incident took place two weeks later. A 27-year-old jogger was found dead Nov. 10 in the nearby Endingen forest. An autopsy revealed the victim had also been raped before getting killed, but investigators have not found any connection between the cases, The Local reported.

Source Article from https://www.sott.net/article/361867-Afghan-migrant-who-raped-then-killed-EU-officials-daughter-begs-forgiveness

Trump’s Afghan Folly

Trump’s Afghan Folly

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Trump’s Afghan Folly
August 30, 2017 ©

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Fmr. Spec. Forces Officer: ‘Trump plans to build the Afghan Army not the nation’


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NURISTAN PROVINCE, Afghanistan — A U.S. Army Soldier with 1st Battalion (US ARMY)

(INTELLIHUB) On Tuesday, Lt. Col. Michael Waltz told Fox News anchor Bret Bayer that he is “proud of our president” in regards to Donald Trump’s recent announcements on the deployment of 4000 troops to Afghanistan and said that we are not going to see any “nation building” over there anytime soon.

“You are also not going to see a bunch of arbitrary timelines,” Waltz said, before taking a proverbial stab at Obama for his botched timeline.

The former Green Beret pointed out how it’s going to take the U.S. some time to train the Afghan Army to take care of themselves and that this is most likely what U.S. forces will be doing.

Waltz believes that the U.S. will make it tougher for other countries like Pakistan who support radical Islamic terror.

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Source Article from https://www.intellihub.com/fmr-spec-forces-officer-trump-plans-to-build-the-afghan-army/

Pentagon to answer for wasting $28 million on questionable camouflage for Afghan soldiers

The Pentagon will be called to account on Capitol Hill this week for its pricey plan to outfit Afghan soldiers in uniforms with a private-label forest camouflage scheme of dubious value in the desert country.

Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., fired off a letter Friday to the Pentagon about the report from the Special Inspector for Afghanistan Reconstruction that found the military may have squandered $28 million by purchasing uniforms for the Afghan army without testing their effectiveness. The uniforms use a proprietary forest pattern while woodlands cover just 2% of the country’s terrain.

Meanwhile, a panel of the House Armed Services committee will meet on Tuesday to hear from John Sopko, the inspector general, who blasted U.S. commanders in June for buying the uniforms that also featured fancier frills like zippers instead of buttons.

McCaskill, the ranking Democrat the Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee, called on the Pentagon to explain why it issued the contract without competitive bidding.

“This is a contracting decision that makes you smack your head in frustration,” McCaskill said in a statement. “It’s a prime example of wasting hard-earned taxpayer dollars, and we’ve got to get to the bottom of how this happened.”

Source Article from http://www.skidie.com/pentagon-to-answer-for-wasting-28-million-on-questionable-camouflage-for-afghan-soldiers/#new_tab