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The Army Is Wary Of Future Insider Attacks Amid Its New Advise And Assist Missions
In the aftermath of the insider attack that took the life of a U.S. soldier last week, Army officials are reaffirming their concerns over the prevalence of such incidents among U.S. military personnel deployed to Afghanistan to train, advise and assist local security forces, the Associated Press reports.
- Army Cpl. Joseph Maciel, one of 300 soldiers deployed with Task Force 1-28 infantry in support of the brand new 1st Security Force Assistance Brigade, was killed during an apparent insider attack in southern Afghanistan on July 7.
- Speaking to reporters on July 13, Army chief of staff Gen. Mark Milley told the Associated Press that "casualties are going to occur" among U.S. military personnel "in exposed positions" on training and advisory teams, adding that such a deployment "is a high-risk situation."
- The AP notes that Milley's comments echo those of delivered by Col. Scott Jackson in June: “We have had our Afghan partners come to us with intelligence that pre-empted potential attacks, and they have been proactively taking care of their own problems."
- So-called "green-on-blue" insider attacks hit their peak in 2012, when U.S. personnel and Afghan security forces endured 44 incidents, according to 2017 data from The Long War Journal. By 2017, the number of insider attacks had dropped to just three.
The 1st SFAB training brigade deployed to Afghanistan earlier this year. The Army is intent on standing up and deploying at least six such new brigades to help augment the existing train, advisory, and assistance mission in the war-torn country. In the meantime, Milley told the Associated Press that the Army "is still trying to determine if the shooter was from the Taliban or another insurgency or just an angry Afghan soldier."
The Navy relieved a decorated explosive ordnance disposal (EOD) officer on Thursday due to a loss of confidence in his ability to command, the Navy announced on Friday.
Former Defense Secretary James Mattis, who led a Marine task force to Afghanistan shortly after the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks, said the Washington Post's recent reporting about the U.S. government's pattern of lies about the war over the last two decades is not "revelatory."
Mattis, who was interviewed by the Washington Post's David Ignatius on Friday, also said he does not believe the U.S. government made any efforts to hide the true situation in Afghanistan and he argued the war has not been in vain.
Here are 10 key quotes from Mattis regarding the Washington Post's reporting in the 'Afghanistan Papers.'
Get ready for some gun-fu: Both 'John Wick 4' and 'Matrix 4' will be premiering on the same day in 2021
The Taliban may not have breached the walls of Bagram, but they damaged the hell out of its main passenger terminal
Blasts from Taliban car bombs outside of Bagram Airfield on Wednesday caused extensive damage to the base's passenger terminal, new pictures released by the 45th Expeditionary Wing show.
The pictures, which are part of a photo essay called "Bagram stands fast," were posted on the Defense Visual Information Distribution Service's website on Thursday.
Editor's Note: The following is an op-ed. The opinions expressed are those of the author, and do not necessarily reflect the views of Task & Purpose.
Shortly after seven sailors died aboard USS Fitzgerald when she collided with a merchant ship off Japan in 2017, I wrote that the Fitzgerald's watch team could have been mine. My ship had once had a close call with me on watch, and I had attempted to explain how such a thing could happen. "Operating ships at sea is hard, and dangerous. Stand enough watches, and you'll have close calls," I wrote at the time. "When the Fitzgerald's investigation comes out, I, for one, will likely be forgiving."
So, am I forgiving? Yes — for some.