Keep the Momentum

This month’s removal of two influential Afghan security officials may hinder the momentum of military operations against anti-government insurgents in Afghanistan, said Maj. Gen. Tod Wolters, who oversaw US air activities there from May 2011 to this May. Former Defense Minister Abdul Rahim Wadak and former Interior Minister Bismillah Khan Mohammadi, were “two of the most respected Afghans” in the country, and the Afghan army, police, and national security forces “revered” them, said Wolters on Aug. 14 during a speech in Arlington, Va., sponsored by AFA’s Mitchell Institute for Airpower Studies. Their removal was jarring, said Wolters, who now directs the Air Force’s legislative liaison office at the Pentagon. “If there is a perceived halt in the momentum,” he said, “the willingness of the international community to commit and help with this fight starts to drain.” Since May, thousands of rockets have been fired into Afghanistan from beyond Pakistan’s border. Afghanistan’s parliament voted to Aug. 4 to relieve Wadak and Mohammadi of their duties for failing to stop these assaults. Karzai has since appointed Wadak as a senior advisor, reports the Bangkok Post.