SIGAR Report on DoD Efforts to Advise the Afghan MoD and MoI

The SIGAR report on advising Afghan Ministries has been released (October 2018). The Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction provides its analysis of the U.S. Department of Defense’s efforts to select, train, and employ advisors to train, advise, and mentor key individuals in the Afghan Ministry of Defense (MoD) and Ministry of Interior (MoI). The report finds that improvements need to be made to ensure that the advisory effort by the Resolute Support Mission is successful. The SIGAR report on advising the MoD and MoI identifies some weak areas and makes four general recommendations that would correct the deficiencies.

The SIGAR report on advising was released on October 31, 2018 and is 27 pages long. The full title of the document is Afghanistan National Defense and Security Forces: DoD Lacks Performance Data to Assess, Monitor, and Evaluate Advisors Assigned to the Ministries of Defense and Interior, SIGAR 19-03-AR.

U.S. Navy Commander Mitch Albin, an Afghan Hand strategy advisor chats with BG Esas Wakil of the ANA. Photo by Lt. Kristine Volk, RS HQs, July 26, 2018.
Photo: U.S. Navy Commander Mitch Albin, an Afghan Hand strategy advisor chats with BG Esas Wakil of the ANA. Photo by Lt. Kristine Volk, RS HQs, July 26, 2015.

NATO’s Resolute Support Mission (RSM) is attempting “. . . to create well-trained, equipped, and sustainable Afghan National Defense and Security Forces (ANDSF) that are capable of securing the country.” The RSM provides advisors to the Afghan Ministries of Defense and Interior to “. . . improve their resource management, procurement, logistics, and maintenance capabilities, and overall sustainability.”

There are several types of advisors to include military personnel, Afghan Hands, civilians in the US DoD Ministry of Defense Advisors program, DoD Expeditionary Civilians, and contractors.

The SIGAR report on advising had three main objectives of the audit report:

  • evaluate the advising effort to the MoD and MoI
  • evaluate the methodology of tracking advisors
  • evaluate the advisor training prior to employment

SIGAR had several “findings”:

  • DoD did not have an assessment or evaluation process to determine if the advisors were meeting the goals of the advising effort
  • Measurement of MoD and MoI progress is difficult because Resolute Support continued to change the evaluation process – therefore never really establishing a true baseline
  • The statement of work for the DynCorp contract that provides for the hiring and employment of civilian advsiors did not have measurable performance standards against which to assess the contractor’s performance.
  • Many advisors did not work in the positions that they deployed to Afghanistan to fill; therefore making it difficult for DoD forecast the true future advisor requirements. Many advisors were reassigned to different positions.
  • Many advisors, especially U.S. military members, did not receive the necessary advisor training at either DoD advisor training courses or the NATO advisor training provided at the Joint Forces Training Center (JFTC) in Bydgoszcz, Poland.
Incoming Resolute Support advisors attend in-country advisor training (ICAT) at RS Headquarters in Kabul. Photo by Lt. Kristine Volk, RS HQs, July 26,2018.
Photo: Incoming Resolute Support advisors attend in-country advisor training (ICAT) at RS Headquarters in Kabul. Photo by Lt. Kristine Volk, RS HQs, July 26, 2015.

SIGAR provided four broad recommendations:

  • Compliance with DoD policies regarding security cooperation assistance (including DoD Instruction 5132.14)
  • Incorporate specific, measurable performance standards into its current and future ministerial advising contracts
  • Develop and implement a mechanism to accurately identify and track all personnel performing advising tasks at the MoD and MoI
  • Enforce existing requirements for all uniformed U.S. personnel to receive advisor-specific training before deploying to Afghanistan to be advisors at the MoD and the MoI

The report can be read online or downloaded at the link below from the SIGAR website:

www.sigar.mil/pdf/audits/SIGAR%2019-03-AR.pdf

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References:

Annotated Bibliography for Resolute Support, Afghan War News
www.afghanwarnews.info/pubs/RSM-Bibliography.htm

Ministry Advisors in Afghanistan, Afghan War News
www.afghanwarnews.info/sfa/ministry-advisors.htm

RS Security Force Assistance Guide 3.0, Resolute Support, July 2014
www.afghanwarnews.info/sfa/ISAF-SFA-Guide.htm

Guidance on Common Training Standards for Security Force Assistance (SFA), Department of Defense, January 2014.
www.afghanwarnews.info/sfa/sfa-training-standards-jan14.htm

Read more articles about Afghanistan by SOF News
www.sof.news/category/afghanistan/

 


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