This is my follow up to my original thread Afghanistan: An Individual Soldiers'
. That thread focused on my opinion of the Taliban. Like the other thread I welcome your political view points, your attacks
on me as a soldier, and anything else you wish to say on the matter of Afghanistan. But please keep it respectful.
This thread will focus on the Afghan National Army, heretofore referred to as the ANA.
Built in the aftermath of the US led invasion, the Afghan National Army is a conglomeration of the several tribes that make up Afghanistan. Plagued by
political corruption, tribal infighting, and insurgent infiltration, they have had a long, hard road thus far, and the road ahead is harder still.
Everyday these soldiers wake up in the morning, pray to Allah, and put on the uniform of Afghanistan to fight the resurgence of the Taliban and the
foreign insurgents who help them. They do not have the assets we do. They know full well that when they go out and fight the Taliban that they may not
be coming back. Their families are in danger. If they are wounded in action their golden
is non-existent. So even if they suffer a survivable wound, they may not make it off the battlefield fast enough to stave off infection, or
blood loss. They know this, and yet they still choose to take up the responsibility of protecting their nation from the slavery offered by the
The relationship between NATO forces and the ANA has been both beneficial and tumultuous. They have received excellent training and have been equipped
reasonably well for a startup army. But sometimes the lack of understanding of cultural differences by NATO personnel has led to what is referred to
as Green on Blue attacks, as well as unanswered grievances and infiltration by insurgents. By and large our relationship with the ANA has been a good
one. They have, for the most part, taken the leading role in the defense of Afghanistan over the last few years.
While our generals and diplomats raise concern over their readiness to go it alone entirely, I believe, from watching these very capable patriots
work, that they are far more ready than we give them credit for. They are keenly aware of what is at stake. They know the dangers, they know the
benefits. I remain cautiously optimistic that the ANA, with all of it's faults, can hold on to Afghanistan. They must, the choice to fail is simply
I have a lot of respect for these soldiers. They are the real heroes of Afghanistan and should be hailed as such. The sacrifices they make on behalf
of their people despite the hurdles they face is something no other professional army in the world can lay claim to, to include our own.
US led NATO forces have sacrificed a lot here in Afghanistan. Lord knows I have lost good friends out here and I will always remember them. To me, if
the ANA can stand and fight on their own, much of that sacrifice will have been worth it. But at the end of the day, we're going home. Afghanistan is
not our country and we do not face the same dangers that the brave soldiers of the ANA do. I pray for the ANA. I wish them good luck. And may Allah
stand with them in the fight for their nation, for they are the real freedom fighters of Afghanistan.
edit on pSat, 15 Mar 2014 06:44:57
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