Afghanistan Weekly Reader: Moving Supplies to Afghanistan Cost $2.1 Billion

In good news for U.S. operations in Afghanistan, Pakistan reopened its border crossings to NATO supply convoys this week. The eight-month closure had a high price: over $2.1 billion transferred from other defense programs to pay for moving supplies through the more expensive alternate routes.
Concerns about the costs of the Afghanistan war will continue as leaders meet at an international aid conference in Tokyo this Sunday. Afghanistan is expected to seek at least $4 billion per year from international donors. That may be a tough sell, particularly against the backdrop of attacks by Afghan security forces against NATO troops. Five U.S. troops were wounded in such an attack this week. a few days earlier an Afghan policeman shot and killed three British soldiers, bringing the number of fatal ‘green on blue’ attacks to 26 this year.

From ASG
Afghanistan War Costs Come at the Expense of Other Defense Programs
Afghanistan Study Group by Mary Kaszynski

That $2.1 billion isn’t just additional money tacked on to the war budget for 2012. Instead, the Pentagon (pending congressional approval) will reprogram the funds—taking money from other defense programs and moving it the war budget.

IMF approves disbursement after first review of Afghan program
Reuters by Lesley Wroughton

The International Monetary Fund on Friday approved an $18.2 million disbursement to Afghanistan following the first performance review of the country’s new loan program.

Tokyo conference crucial to future Afghan aid
Associated Press

Afghanistan will seek at least $4 billion from international donors this weekend at a crucial aid conference aimed at propping up the country after most foreign combat troops leave at the end of 2014.

In Afghanistan, another turncoat shooting wounds five Americans
LA Times

An Afghan soldier opened fire on a group of American troops, wounding five of them, Western and Afghan military officials said Wednesday.The attack, which took place Tuesday in Wardak province in eastern Afghanistan, was the second incident of its kind in three days.

Rare meeting between Afghan government, Taliban
Associated Press by Kathy Gannon

A Taliban emissary sat face-to-face this week with a senior Afghan government official responsible for peace talks in a rare high-level gathering between the bitter adversaries

The Military Solution
Tomdispatch by Tom Engelhardt

The militarization of the United States and the strengthening of the National Security Complex continues to accelerate. The Pentagon is, by now, a world unto itself, with a staggering budget at a moment when no other power or combination of powers comes near to challenging this country’s might.

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