The March 18 edition of the Washington Post reported that “A civilian "surge" of hundreds of additional U.S. officials in Afghanistan would accompany the already approved increase in U.S. troop levels” (see http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/03/18/AR2009031802313.html)
If this comes to pass it will be a giant step forward in Afghanistan, and, in my view, much needed shift in emphasis for much of the USG strategy in troubled nations. Key of course will be security and coordination between DoS and DoD personnel.
While the article states that a heavy concentration of these diplomats will remain at the Embassy in Kabul, there is also mention of Provincial Reconstruction Teams (PRT), a concept which is generally regarded as successful in Iraq. Given the nature of Afghanistan as noted in my previous posts – the more that are out in the villages – the merrier and the more likely USG objectives are to be obtained.
Since I’ve commented on negative aspect’s of USG efforts, I felt it was important to point out this positive step.