The nation’s top officer, Army Gen. Martin E. Dempsey, recently visited Afghanistan in an unannounced trip for the second time in two months to address the topic with his Afghan counterparts.
“I can tell you without hesitation they are taking this as seriously as we are and taking active measures to help us and them defeat this threat,” Gen. Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told reporters on the day after he returned. “So I came back with a renewed sense that we can lower the risk of the insider threat.”
Afghan officials have appointed a top-level army officer to reduce insider attacks, increased the number of counterintelligence agents, directed cultural and religious officers to help NATO train Afghan troops, set up a threat-mitigation team with NATO, and undertaken a “wholesale review of all recruitments” in recent years.
In addition, the Afghan government has allowed NATO personnel working on the presidential compound in Kabul to arm themselves — one example of the Afghan commitment in helping to stem these attacks, a coalition spokesman said.
However, the move also indicates that coalition personnel are not safe anywhere, even in the most secure of compounds in one of the most secure cities in Afghanistan.
The international coalition aims to remove all combat troops from Afghanistan by the end of 2014, when Afghan forces will assume full responsibility for the security of their country.
© Copyright 2013 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
Kristina Wong is a national security reporter for The Washington Times, covering defense, foreign policy and intelligence affairs. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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