There are several different ways you can volunteer to fight in Afghanistan. You can join the military and train as a commando or recruit Afghans to fight the Taliban. However, there are some serious risks involved with volunteering to fight in Afghanistan. These risks include high security risk and the possibility of fighting anywhere.
The United States has begun a new recruitment campaign for Afghan soldiers. The campaign is called Vagner, and it is being run in conjunction with Iran and Russia. Former Afghan commandos have reportedly been contacted through messaging services about joining the force. The recruiters reportedly offer $1,500 a month and a safe haven for their families. An Afghan ex-commando told Foreign Policy that 400 fighters were already considering joining Vagner.
In its first phase, Vagner plans to recruit 1,000 Afghans, and then gradually expand the number of recruits. The Afghan commandos are in a vulnerable position because they are waiting to be resettled in the United States and Britain, which makes them an easy target for recruiters. The Russians, who are reportedly using the notorious mercenary Wagner Group to help them with the effort, are familiar with the Afghan commando mentality and understand their plight.
The Russian Defense Ministry has yet to comment on the recruitment drive. However, former Afghan commandos believe that the Wagner Group, a Russian private army, is behind it. The group is one of the only entities to recruit foreign soldiers for the Russian military. The founder, Yevgeny Prigozhin, is suspected of being close to Putin. He has also been accused of recruiting prisoner from Russia to fight in the Ukraine.
The United States military has long been concerned that Russia is targeting U.S.-trained Afghan commandos in Afghanistan. The Afghan military had been working closely with the United States in Afghanistan for 20 years, but the Taliban swarmed the country in the past year. The Americans have withdrawn their troops from Afghanistan and have left their equipment and training behind. But now the Russian military is seeking to recruit the Afghan special forces and other Afghan soldiers.
Recruiting former Afghan military and intelligence personnel is a major national security risk. These former forces are likely to have an advanced understanding of US military tactics, techniques, and procedures.
Training afghan commandos
A former top Afghan security official has revealed that Russia is actively recruiting Afghan commandos to fight in the Ukraine war. The recruiters lure them with offers of $1,500 a month and a safe haven for their families. He says they may recruit as many as 10,000 former commandos.
The Afghan commandos have received a lot of praise for their skills and esprit de corps. The Army Times and MSNBC have featured stories about the unit and its training. The National Public Radio (NPR) has also featured articles about Afghan commando training. The 207th Corps’ 6th Commando Kandak provided a demonstration of what the Afghan commandos can do.
The Afghan National Army has nine Commando Kandaks and plans to form up to twelve. However, the Special Operations division of the Afghan Army has put the expansion plans on hold. There are currently around 5,000 commandos with about 700 men in each Kandak. The Afghans hope to create a 10th commando kandak in the next few years.
The Russians are not the only ones looking to recruit Afghan commandos. It has links with Iran and the Kremlin. Some of these commandos have even been contacted by Russian mercenaries who are offering them the chance to fight in the Ukraine. The Russians are offering these elite soldiers lucrative salaries of EUR 1,500 per month in exchange for their services, and promising safe havens for their ex-servicemen. Unfortunately, most of these Afghan commandos have fled to Iran after the US pulled out, and are unable to return home because of the threat from the Taliban.
According to a recent report from the U.S. Office of Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction, at least 20,000 to 30,000 former commandos are still in the country, with thousands more being held in hiding. They fear execution or being killed by the Taliban. But some have been released after paying money.
The United States spent nearly $90 billion on building the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces in the country. However, these forces proved ineffective and quickly handed over the country to the Taliban. The Afghan commandos were trained by British and U.S. Navy SEALs, and were held in high regard by the Afghan people.
Fighting with the Islamic State
There are many reasons why an American citizen might be arrested for fighting with the Islamic State. First, most countries are refusing to repatriate citizens who have joined IS. Second, there are many shortcomings in the local justice systems in Syria and Iraq. Third, foreign fighters are committing crimes that should be punishable by law. While a small subset of European governments have called for a tribunal to try detainees, most have refused.
Walker’s first encounter with the Islamic State came about 80 miles outside Aleppo. He was in an abandoned village when he spotted a vehicle that looked suspicious. He alerted local Kurdish fighters, who then called in an anti-aircraft weapon. Soon afterward, Tassone spotted the Islamic State fighter on foot and opened fire.
The Lions of Rojava are a multinational force fighting the Islamic State in Syria. Walker reached out to the group in the spring of 2016, and they told him that they could help recruit foreigners for the fight. The Lions are affiliated with the YPG and are part of a larger alliance against the Islamic State.
Turkish officials have been buying contraband oil from the Islamic State through front companies. This has aided their survival. In 2014 and 2015, contraband oil was consistently sold at Turkish border points. And Erdogan has endorsed the use of former jihadists in the fight against Kurdish rebels.
The Islamic State is a well-funded, armed group. It has around $2 million in cash, an estimated $3 million in daily revenue, and 20,000 to 100,000 militants. The Central Intelligence Agency says its total is between twenty and thirty-five thousand, while the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights claims its number is closer to a hundred thousand. As of June, the group controls over thirty thousand square miles of territory.
Despite the vast majority of U.S. citizens supporting the Islamic State, there are several outliers. Most were funded by personal savings, and some had high-paying jobs. Moreover, some financed their activities through legal means.