Inquiry: Constant Tensions Between NATO, Afghan Troops

'Constant But Manageable,' Insists Australia

Rogue shootings by Afghan soldiers and police against NATO troops are a growing problem, and a new inquiry by the Australian government into one such incident shed light on the relationship between Afghan forces and their NATO occupiers.

The inquiry was related to a May 2011 shooting which killed an Afghan military cook, Lance Corporal Andrew Jones. Prefacing it by calling the death a “cowardly act of murder,” top Aussie military official Air Marshal Mark Binskin detailed the situation.

While trying to claim a “strong” relationship with Afghanistan, Binskin conceded to “constant tensions” with the domestic forces, later terming them “constant but manageable” and insisting they were the result of cultural differences.

Constant tension is a reality that is only starting to sink in for those analyzing the situation, as the number of shootings continues to rise precipitously. Terming the situation “manageable” seems questionable, however, as despite many promises to “screen” Afghan troops better the incidents continue to increase.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.