September 19, 2012

Coalition Remains Resolute Despite Insider Threat, Chairman Says

By Jim Garamone | American Forces Press Service | ABOARD A U.S. MILITARY AIRCRAFT, Sept. 18, 2012 – The insider threat will not lessen the coalition’s resolve to accomplish its objectives in Afghanistan, Army Gen. Martin E. Dempsey said today.

The chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff spoke about the insider threat in Afghanistan during an interview conducted after a visit to Turkey.

“We are absolutely resolute in our commitment to the objectives of our campaign, but … on the path to achieving those objectives we will make adjustments as we go,” he said.

The insider threat -- attacks on coalition personnel by members of Afghanistan’s security forces or people wearing Afghan uniforms -- is serious, and coalition and NATO leaders are leaving no stone unturned in the efforts to reduce and eliminate the threat, Dempsey said.

“I have a very close relationship with my Russian counterpart [Army Gen.] Nikolai Makarov, chief of the General Staff, and I’ve had two video teleconferences with him, seeking their insights into the experience of insider threats during their time in Afghanistan,” Dempsey said. “It was very helpful.”

The chairman also takes lessons from history. He noted that the British also faced an insider threat when they were in Afghanistan in the 19th century. The threat is part of every war in which outside forces help build indigenous forces, he said.

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