Night raids a losing tactic in Afghanistan: Report
A report says even nighttime raids conducted with the best practices breed discontentment and mistrust among Afghans.
Kabul: Increased nighttime military raids by
international military forces in Afghanistan have created a
resentment that has undercut any battlefield gains from the
tactic, according to a report released today by a US think
The New York-based Open Society Foundations, founded by
liberal billionaire George Soros, said in its report that NATO
and US troops have made important improvements in the way they
conduct night raids following complaints from the Afghan
government that its citizens were being treated unfairly or
rudely. Civilian casualties are down, and the operations are
However, the report says even nighttime raids conducted
with the best practices breed discontentment and mistrust
among both ordinary Afghans who feel less secure knowing that
men in uniform might burst into their homes at any time.
The Afghan government has repeatedly called for a
reduction in nighttime operations over which it has little
control and said such raids undermine efforts to reconcile
with those who open
to leaving the insurgency, according to the report.
The findings are potentially troubling for an
international mission that is likely to depend even more on
quick-strike operations like night raids as the US and other
troop-contributing nations draw down forces over the next few
Afghan President Hamid Karzai has publicly denounced
nighttime raids in speeches and interviews, saying that the
operations - in which a small group of soldiers push into a
compound and search the premises and the residents - treat too
many civilians as if they are insurgents and violate citizens`
privacy in an intensely closed society.