May 04, 2018
Trump's Afghanistan strategy stymied by vetting of local troops
Journalist Wesley Morgan
The plan to turn around the war in Afghanistan may already be running into quicksand.
An extensive effort aimed at weeding out Taliban sympathizers and terrorist infiltrators from the Afghan army has slowed the work of a new unit of 1,000 military advisers, whose deployment was billed as a key part of the strategy President Donald Trump authorized in August.
The U.S. Army’s 1st Security Force Assistance Brigade — a pillar of the strategy, and created with this kind of mission in mind — arrived in Afghanistan in March and assumed its mission last month. But partly because of the decision to vet so many partners, the brigade has not yet been able to link up with Afghan army battalions across the country, according to military officials and contractors involved in the effort.
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