Theodore's World: Catch-and-release of Taliban in Afghanistan Angers Troops ~ You Can Thank Dem.Obama and President Hamid Karzai

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December 08, 2010

Catch-and-release of Taliban in Afghanistan Angers Troops ~ You Can Thank Dem.Obama and President Hamid Karzai

Catch-and-release of Taliban in Afghanistan Angers Troops

The Washington Examiner

More than 500 suspected Taliban fighters detained by U.S. forces have been released from custody at the urging of Afghan government officials, angering both American troops and some Afghans who oppose the policy on the grounds that many of those released return to the battlefield to kill NATO soldiers and Afghan civilians.

And those numbers understate the problem, military officials say. They do not include suspected Taliban fighters held in small combat outposts or other forward operating bases throughout the region who are released before they ever become part of the official detainee population.

An Afghan official who spoke on condition of anonymity said that President Hamid Karzai's government has personally sought the release of as many as 700 suspected Taliban fighters since July, including some mid-level leaders. "Corruption is not just based on the amount of money that is wasted but wasted lives when Taliban return only to kill more NATO forces and civilians," said the official, who opposes what he considers corruption in the Karzai administration.

U.S. Air Force Maj. Karen Davis, a spokeswoman in Kabul, told The Washington Examiner "nearly 500 detainees held in the [detention facility in Parwan] have been released outright or transferred to the [Afghan government] for disposition under Afghan law" so far this year.

She did not comment on detainees held at other facilities throughout the country, dozens of whom have been released, according to U.S. military officials in Afghanistan. Parwan is the main prison facility located at Bagram Airfield, just north of the capital of Kabul.

Davis added "nearly 200 of those 500 [at Bagram] have been released" since July.

The criteria for detention is not based upon a particular affiliation, such as the Taliban, "but rather is an assessment based upon a preponderance of evidence that an individual participated in the conflict as an enemy combatant and, if so, detention is necessary to mitigate the threat posed to the government and people of Afghanistan, the U.S. and its coalition partners," Davis said.

The Detainee Review Board, made up of three U.S. commissioned officers with a rank of major or above, determines when a prisoner is eligible for release and whether a detainee is likely to be rehabilitated.

Prisoners held at the Bagram facility are not considered guilty or innocent but rather a determination is made "based upon evidence that detention is necessary to mitigate the threat the detainee poses to the government and people of Afghanistan, the U.S. and its coalition partners," states a document provided by the International Security Assistance Force.

Earlier this year, The Examiner reported that numerous insurgents captured in Pakistan, including some members of al Qaeda, were returned to Afghanistan upon the request of the Karzai government, and then, according to a senior Pakistani official, "released back to the Taliban as bargaining chips in negotiations."

A Marine stationed in southern Afghanistan's volatile Helmand province told The Examiner that efforts to detain insurgent fighters are "worthless."

Earlier this year, his unit held a man known to be working with the Taliban. The Marines had gathered evidence that the man was transporting hundreds of pounds of bomb-making equipment and explosives for the Taliban. But, shortly after they captured him, he was set free.

"Less than two weeks later, we saw the same guy walking through the bazaar," said the Marine, who spoke on condition that he not be named. "He recognized us. I wanted to shoot him right then and there. We got the guy, and yet there he was, walking around planning to kill again, and we couldn't do a thing about it."

For American combat troops in Afghanistan, the release of suspect Taliban is seen as a symptom of the corruption of the Karzai government.

"Back-room dealings between Karzai officials and local government connected to the Taliban make NATO's work almost impossible," said a military official stationed in Afghanistan. "They call the shots, and we've got to release the bad guys."

The release of more than 250,000 diplomatic cables by WikiLeaks last week provided a rare glimpse into what the State Department considers official corruption in the Karzai government.

That was the opinion of Afghan officials interviewed recently. "Afghanistan is a corrupt mess populated by citizens who are far more comfortable thinking and acting locally and tribally than nationally," one official said. "Karzai takes advantage of that for his own benefit," he added. "The U.S. turns a blind eye because they don't know how to stop it."


Wild Thing's comment.........

More than 500 suspected Taliban fighters detained by U.S. forces have been released from custody at the urging of Afghan government officials.

Then what in HELL are we DOING there?????????????????????????????????

Just say it Obama you want to KILL our troops!!!!

Then there is also how our US troops are being prosecuted for killing the Muslim enemy.

If Obama will not let us win it with his rules of engagement and this shit going on in this latest article, then lets get out. Obama will not speak up for our troops, no way, he favors his precious freaking Muslims even if they are terrorists.

In war you kill the enemy and destroy their means of making war, but not with Obama at the helm.

....Thank you Mark for sending this to me.

3rd Mar.Div. 1st Battalion 9th Marine Regiment
1/9 Marines aka The Walking Dead
VN 66-67

Posted by Wild Thing at December 8, 2010 04:55 AM


Pull the troops out and carpet bomb the place with iron. The Afghan people have no allegiance to anyone and will follow who is the strongest and right now, we're not presenting the image of being the strongest. Our ROE's are getting American troops killed and allowing the enemy a free hand.

I have a good friend whose brother is a Marine in Afghanistan. His brother said they'll get into a firefight with the Taliban and when it starts to go against them, they'll throw their weapons down and just walk away, knowing the Marines cannot shoot or capture them. Once they throw the weapon down, they're considered noncombatants and as such are untouchable.

Posted by: BobF at December 8, 2010 08:19 AM

There is no point in being there. I mean in fishing they want me to throw the Trout back. I don't think so.

We are not there to win just get soldiers Maimed and killed this is not worth, one American life.

Posted by: Mark at December 8, 2010 02:23 PM

Bob, Oh my gosh!!! Bob thank you for sharing about your friends brother and what he is experiences there. It just tired my tummy into a knot. wow This is horrible what is going on.

I agree about pulling our troops out and the carpet bomb.

Posted by: Wild Thing at December 8, 2010 05:33 PM

Mark, your right, Obama has said in the past he does not want victory. When he said that our troops should have been brought back asap.

Posted by: Wild Thing at December 8, 2010 05:35 PM

Aghanistan is going to be rougher than Iraq. If our troops are going to have the added burden of the ROE and captured Taliban released to fight again, then I am beginning to think that maybe we need to cut our losses and leave it to it's inherent anarchy.

Posted by: TomR,armed in Texas at December 9, 2010 09:47 AM