Saturday, September 3, 2011

DynCop Falls Short of Required Advisors in Afghanistan

it seems that the special relationship between the Department of Defense and independent contractors for providing police advisors to a foreign country has fallen short again. Apparently, DynCorp has fallen short of its required amount of police advisors (728) to the Afghan police service. According to an audit they are 60% short on the number of advisors they should have in the field. Under the new $1 billion contract, DynCorp was supposed provide 728 police advisors for the Afghan Police. These advisors are responsible for setting up the training and mentoring of the Afghan police. One of the other problems that is going on is that there is not a set clear concise plan to train the Afghan police. Both the Department of Defense and the State Department have relied upon contractors for their own plans to train the police. While in and of itself this is not a problem, each contractor is working on a specific area of the police and this may not be the best way to improve the over all quality of the police in Afghanistan. The audit, which was focusing on the transfer of the Afghan police training program from the US State Department to the US Defense Department, criticized both institutions for a lack of co-ordination in regards to police training in Afghanistan. This training is a priority for the US-led NATO coalition as it prepares to transfer security to Afghan forces. As of now, none of the police units have shown that they can effectively operate independently without international assistance. Under the law, the State Department is supposed to train police and foreign countries. There is no legal basis for the Department of Defense to train police in a foreign country. Under the Bush administration, this started to happen in Iraq. There were significant problems when the US military took control of training the police in Iraq. As a matter of fact, the training of the police has now returned to the US State Department. Apparently there are supposed to be "field mentors" in the field with the police. Not enough of these field mentors have been put out into the field so far. I am not sure what the hold up has been, but between the US not having an over all budget in place, and other contractors filing grievances for not being chosen for the contract are the most likely culprits for this short fall. Maybe this means DynCorp is still looking for more advisors for Afghanistan. Whatever happens - stay safe.

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