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That’s when the locals started finding bodies buried outside the American base in Nerkh, bodies they said belonged to the 10 missing men. Jane Crichton told has interviewed more than two dozen eyewitnesses and victims’ families who’ve provided consistent and detailed allegations of the involvement of American forces in the disappearance of the 10 men, and has talked to Afghan and Western officials who were familiar with confidential Afghan-government, U. and Red Cross investigations that found the allegations credible. The two had been trying to dig out a tree stump in front of Omar’s house, which looked out onto the village of Polad Khan, adjacent to the main road between the provincial capital of Maidan Shahr and Nerkh’s district center.

In July, the Afghan government announced that it had arrested Zikria Kandahari, a translator who had been working for the American team, in connection with the murders, and that in turn Kandahari had fingered members of the Special Forces for the crimes. “After thorough investigation, there was no credible evidence to substantiate misconduct by ISAF or U. Nerkh, despite its orchards of apple trees and clean Himalayan air, is not an easy place to live.

n the fall of 2012, a team of American Special Forces arrived in Nerkh, a district of Wardak province, Afghanistan, which lies just west of Kabul and straddles a vital highway. Army Green Berets, trained to wage unconventional warfare, and their arrival was typical of what was happening all over Afghanistan; the big Army units, installed during the surge, were leaving, and in their place came small groups of quiet, bearded Americans, the elite operators who would stay behind to hunt the enemy and stiffen the resolve of government forces long after America’s 13-year war in Afghanistan officially comes to an end. Sometimes our adversaries are the men and women of a community.” Officials at the American-led International Security Assistance Force, or ISAF, categorically denied these allegations, which came at an extremely delicate moment – as Afghan President Hamid Karzai and the American government were locked in still-unresolved negotiations over the future of American forces in Afghanistan. S.’s demand for continued legal immunity for its troops, which Karzai is reluctant to grant.

The members installed themselves in the spacious quarters of Combat Outpost Nerkh, which overlooked the farming valley and had been vacated by more than 100 soldiers belonging to the regular infantry. But six months after its arrival, the team would be forced out of Nerkh by the Afghan government, amid allegations of torture and murder against the local populace. Privately, some American officials have begun to grumble about a “zero option” – where, as in Iraq, the U. would rather withdraw all its forces than subject them to local law – but both sides understand that such an action could be suicidal for the beleaguered Afghan government and devastating for American power in the region.

” Fearing that Omar too had been killed, his family searched for his body to no avail. He trembles as he recalls to me what happened next. There were two Americans and their translators interrogating him, and they asked him about Gul Rahim, and about well-known insurgent commanders in the area; Omar professed to know nothing.