Counter-Terrorism: The Best Friends Money Can Buy


December 7,2008: In the last three years, Britain has made about 28 payments a month to Afghans who had property damaged, or suffered injuries as bystanders during battles between British troops and the Taliban. The total paid out has been less than a million dollars, and about half the payments were for property damage. While the average payment has been for less than a thousand dollars, one payment was for nearly $100,000 (for property damage).

The money is being used as a weapon. People who are friendly and helpful to the British get these payments. The money is delivered discretely, in U.S. dollars. If the Taliban knew a family was receiving such a payment, the family might be robbed by the Islamic terrorists, or physically injured for "working with the foreigners." But word does get around, to like-minded, pro-British Afghans, that the British troops would look after you if you suffered losses because of the fighting.

In addition to the injury and damage compensation, the British also paid cash rewards for information about the Taliban. People who had received compensation for battle losses were more likely to come forward with information.



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