The commander of Afghan troops being trained by Australians has urged the Australian government to withdraw its troops immediately - provided they leave behind millions of dollars' worth of sophisticated war-fighting equipment.
Brigadier-General Mohammed Zafar Khan said his Afghan National Army soldiers were capable of providing security in Oruzgan province, despite the fact that Australia has said it could take another three years to train them adequately.
He said he had repeatedly and unsuccessfully asked Australian and coalition officials, including the Defence Minister, Stephen Smith, to give the Afghans equipment for night vision and counter-improvised explosive device capability, artillery and access to medical evacuation helicopters.
''Three years is too much time for the Australians to stay here,'' General Zafar told the Herald through an interpreter at his Tarin Kowt headquarters.
I wouldn't bother leaving any equipment behind. The Afghan security forces will be worthless with, or without it.
In any event, the Afghanistan mission provides no valid security value to Australia.
Worried about the special security relationship with the U.S.? Don't be. Canada, the U.K. and others have pulled the plug and their "special relationship" with the U.S. won't change.