Afghan night raids by the numbers
April 4th, 2012
01:24 PM ET

Afghan night raids by the numbers

By Adam Levine

Afghanistan and the United States may soon reach a deal over night raids that could increase Afghan control over and participation in the controversial operations, CNN's Nick Paton Walsh reports from Kabul.

Night raids are deeply unpopular among Afghans, but  Gen. John Allen, who commands U.S. and NATO troops in Afghanistan, recently told Congress how vital and frequent those raids are.

Approximately 2,400 night raids are conducted by U.S. Special Operations each year, according to Allen's testimony to the Senate Armed Services Committee last month.

Allen argued the night raids are far less violent than they are often perceived to be. Allen said that in 2011, 83 % of the raids succeeded in getting either their primary target or an associated insurgent.

"This last year we had about 2,200 night operations ," he said. " Of those 2,200 or so night operations, on 90 % of them we didn't fire a shot. On more than 50 % of them we got the targeted individual , and (in) 30 % more we got the next associate of that individual as well ."

As for civilian casualties, in the 10 % of the night raids where shots were fired, "less than 1.5 % civilian casualties" resulted , Allen said.

"Now, I don't diminish any civilian casualties by reducing it to a percentage point. Every one of those is tragic," Allen told the committee. "That would argue for the power of night operations preserving life and reducing civilian casualties in all other kinds of operations , than necessarily being a risk of creating additional civilian casualties."

Pentagon spokesman George Litttle also said Afghan security forces are working "hand in hand with our Afghan partners on night operations."

Little, speaking to Pentagon reporters Tuesday, could not say exactly how many of the raids involved Afghan security forces as well , but said the amount was "not an insignificant number." Asked if it was more than half of the raids, Little said he thought it was "in the ballpark."

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Filed under: Afghanistan • Gen. Allen • ISAF • Military
soundoff (17 Responses)
  1. Arnulfok Elserq

    Since the admin of this site is working, no hesitation very quickly it will be famous, due to its feature contents.

    July 29, 2012 at 12:31 pm | Reply
  2. concerned cit

    The only terrorists in Afghanistan are those who continue to conduct attacks on ANSF and ISAF. ISAF wouldn’t even be in the country if the Afghan people would educate themselves and act civilized. AF is full of uneducated people who hold tribal differences for decades, cutting each other’s ears off as if its normal. And how can you relate this war to Vietnam or any war for that matter? Sounds like a simple comment to a complex problem in which you shouldn’t even speak about. Instead try reading a book about the afghan culture and how they attempt to force their religious view point on one another.

    Night raids are likely more effective at catching the more nefarious individual, and causes less civilian casualties than any other regular operation. Throw that in your pipe and smoke it. And while you're smoking that pipe, think of some sort of way to educate yourself on the subject at hand before you throw out ridiculous comments.

    April 5, 2012 at 8:22 am | Reply
    • JayBee

      Agreed Cit, I would also direct DOU44 to have a look at 'Just War Theory' before referring to the American "Invasion and Occupation Force" as terrorists. The events of 9/11 were a direct attack perpetrated by groups who operated out of Afghanistan (All be it they are not a state sponsered military) it was still within America's right to attack the Taliban and their stow away Al Qaeda (may be spelled wrong).

      Furthermore, To call it an invasion/occupation force is completely false. Before we sent in our military we made sure to secure a teamate in the matter (The Northern Alliance). The NA which is made up of a few of the predominant northern ethnic groups in Afghanistan was begging for our assistance. Along side the NA, we defeated the Taliban and drove it south. So in securing our own National Security interests in the arena we were also directly involved in securing the interests of thousands of afghani citizens who were sick and tired of the Taliban's rule. So while some may view it as "terrorism". I view it as a series of tactics with the National and future interests of both states in mind.

      April 5, 2012 at 11:47 am | Reply
      • fio deus

        O shut up. You fool, trying to justify a pointless invasion.

        We just gave militant islamists their second great victory, you wanna defend that??

        These countries are a threat to Israel, not the USA. Are they gonna swim over here?

        19 of the 21 9-11 hijackers were Saudi Arabian....OUR SUPPOSED ALLY!

        the northern alliance was shattered when Massoud was killed. Read a book.

        April 5, 2012 at 8:28 pm |
  3. DOU44

    The Americans are the terrorists being the invading and occupation force. Afghans have the right to defend their homes and families.This reads just as the German occupation of the Ukraine or the Japanese occupation of Korea. More cameras and more communication outlets temper the brutality.

    April 4, 2012 at 5:41 pm | Reply
    • i am sam

      Agreed, but they do this all for Israel.

      April 4, 2012 at 6:48 pm | Reply
      • JayBee

        The United States did not send thousands of its own troops to die in the name of Israel. Israel is an ally but not the driving force behind every decision America makes in international affairs. Your an idiot.

        April 5, 2012 at 11:52 am |
      • i am sam

        Your a fukking moron, who put bush in office???


        April 5, 2012 at 5:52 pm |
      • Jo

        Nazi skinhead dipshits like you don't even get to comment. so go see your proctoligist see if he can wrench your head out of your ass lmao. Loser lol. Your remark just proves your a lil skinhead living in your parents basement

        April 6, 2012 at 9:32 am |
    • Lee Oates

      The real question is who are the real Terrorist? I have not heard of Tahlaban terrorist going around at night killing Americans in the USA.

      April 12, 2012 at 12:31 am | Reply

    get my men, out of dat crocky den-obama

    April 4, 2012 at 4:00 pm | Reply
  5. repeating a failed history


    April 4, 2012 at 3:21 pm | Reply
  6. i am sam

    Israel is a proven terrorist state, that has carried out aggressive actions against their own allies, not to mention innocent civillians.

    White phosphorous...

    Bomblets in lebannon..

    And AIPACS enourmous influence in American politics.

    That is the face of true terrorism.

    April 4, 2012 at 2:25 pm | Reply
    • Jo

      Your obviously belong to an anti Israel hate club. You might even be King of the group. Because I see you posting on every site even if it has absolutely nothing to do with Israel. I would suggest you watch yourself. Homeland security monitors these sites. you can bet your ass that they do. You might find your dumb ass in prison for making terrorist statements.

      April 5, 2012 at 9:59 am | Reply
      • fio deus

        I don't see anything threatening in his post...I think you just hate those people that don't approve of Israel.

        Good on you Sam, tell these fukkers the truth.

        April 5, 2012 at 8:44 pm |
      • Jo

        Another Skinhead dipshit. keep on posting i need a few laughs

        April 6, 2012 at 9:34 am |

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