In the last three years, Britain has made about 28 payments a month to
Afghans who had property damaged, or suffered injuries as bystanders during
battles between British troops and the Taliban. The total paid out has been
less than a million dollars, and about half the payments were for property
damage. While the average payment has been for less than a thousand dollars,
one payment was for nearly $100,000 (for property damage).
The money is
being used as a weapon. People who are friendly and helpful to the British get
these payments. The money is delivered discretely, in U.S. dollars. If the
Taliban knew a family was receiving such a payment, the family might be robbed
by the Islamic terrorists, or physically injured for "working with the
foreigners." But word does get around, to like-minded, pro-British
Afghans, that the British troops would look after you if you suffered losses
because of the fighting.
to the injury and damage compensation, the British also paid cash rewards for
information about the Taliban. People who had received compensation for battle
losses were more likely to come forward with information.