Afghanistan: December 21, 2001


U.S. special forces searching the al Qaeda caves in Tora Bora have hired hundreds of Afghans to assist in the search for documents and surviving al Qaeda fighters. This arrangement was made to try to rein in the Afghan's search for loot. One of the major things motivating Afghan warriors is the prospect of loot. This has been, and still is, a major incentive for warrior type fighters. The Tora Bora region was seen as rich in loot for the Afghans to take. Al Qaeda was known to have stored a lot of stuff up there and now, with the al Qaeda fighters either dead or run off, the Afghans were eager to cash in. But their search for loot often led to the loss of terrorist documents or equipment of interest to American investigators. So a deal was made to pay the Afghan's to find stuff the American's wanted. The Afghan's are still allowed to grab stuff not of use to terrorism investigators (like trucks, personal items, money, arms and the like). This makes it unnecessary to bring in U.S. troops to do the search, a move that might have led to disputes with the Afghan's still eager to get on with their search for loot. In other parts of Afghanistan, local fighters are also being put on the payroll to assist in the search for terrorists or Taliban leaders. This arrangement is one special forces troops are taught to use (and was used successfully in Vietnam , especially with the mountain tribes). The Afghan warriors are not reluctant to serve foreigners for pay. It's another ancient tradition. It is, as the saying goes, just business. Besides, there's not much else to do for money.

The vanguard of the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF, or the UN peacekeeping force) arrived in Kabul as 30 British Royal Marine Commandos landed. The Afghan government will allow 3,000 foreign peacekeepers, which will be assigned to key airports around the country. Of more concern to aid agencies is the safety of the roads, which are still endangered by bandits and pro-Taliban troops. Negotiations are still under way throughout the country to arrange the surrender of thousands of armed Taliban troops. 


Article Archive

Afghanistan: Current 2023 2022 2021 2020 2019 2018 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 2007 2006 2005 2004 2003 2002 2001 2000 1999 



Help Keep Us From Drying Up

We need your help! Our subscription base has slowly been dwindling.

Each month we count on your contribute. You can support us in the following ways:

  1. Make sure you spread the word about us. Two ways to do that are to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.
  2. Subscribe to our daily newsletter. We’ll send the news to your email box, and you don’t have to come to the site unless you want to read columns or see photos.
  3. You can contribute to the health of StrategyPage.
Subscribe   contribute   Close