`Taliban has been successful in infiltrating Afghan forces`
A top American commander in Afghanistan conceded that Taliban has been successful in infiltrating Afghan forces.
Washington: A top American commander in Afghanistan on Thursday conceded that the Taliban has been successful in infiltrating the Afghan security forces which can be attributed to nearly one fourth of the insiders attack on US troops in the war-torn country.
But the number is not that high, he argued. "We believe that there is Taliban infiltration," General John Allen, Commander of the US and NATO forces in Afghanistan told Pentagon reporters in a video conference call from Afghanistan.
Many of those have been motivated to undertake these attacks because of personal grievance or radicalisation or having become susceptible to extremist ideology, he said.
"There is a Taliban influence here, and it takes several forms. It might be an impersonator, someone who gets into the uniform in order to get into close proximity to the forces.
And I might remind everyone that in many cases these impersonators or these infiltrators have, indeed, killed Afghans, as well as they have killed coalition forces. Indeed, the Afghan casualties are higher than ours in this regard," Allen said.
"Yes, there are infiltrators involved, but I don`t believe at this particular junction, given the analysis that we`ve done, that that infiltration has increased and has generated this higher number," the general said, adding that is about one-fourth.
"We think it`s about 25 per cent. This still requires a lot of analysis. So if it`s just pure Taliban infiltration, that is one number. If you add to that impersonation, the potential that someone is pulling the trigger because the Taliban have coerced the family members, that`s a different number," he said.
"It is less about the precision of 25 versus 10 than it is acknowledging that the Taliban are seeking ultimately to have some impact in the formation. I know you are aware that the Taliban try to take credit for every one of these attacks, whether it`s a personal grievance or whether it was a successful infiltration," he said.
Allen said coalition and Afghan forces have maintained unrelenting pressure on the insurgents.
He said the insurgent attacks, while still indiscriminate and deadly, are increasingly localised, affecting an ever-shrinking proportion of the Afghan population.
"The insurgency we face today, while still active, dangerous and capable of inflicting harm, is trying hard to project its strength as its position continues to slowly erode," he asserted.
Allen said through the end of 2014 and beyond, the US is creating a series of conditions that will ultimately leave Afghanistan a sovereign state, secured by a capable Afghan military, and afforded the time and the space to develop its institutions of governance.