Afghanistan: The War Logs

ANGLO AMERICA, BIG BROTHER - SPYING - SURVEILLANCE - WHISTLEBLOWING, MILITARISM, CENTRAL ASIA, 2 Aug 2010

Simon Rogers – The Guardian

Wikileaks Afghanistan Files: Download the Key Incidents as a Spreadsheet

Key incidents from the Wikileaks Afghanistan war logs selected by Guardian writers. As a spreadsheet, with co-ordinates
• Get this data
INTERACTIVE: These key incidents mapped
Glossary of military terms
How our datajournalism project worked

It must be one of the biggest leaks in intelligence history. An archive of almost 90,000 files has come to light thanks to Wikileaks, logging the history of the war in Afghanistan, practically blow-by-blow. We’ve trawled through these incidents to help you make sense of the key events.

We have reproduced full military logs behind more than 200 of the key events from the database – you can navigate around them. But if you want to download this data to play with it yourself, this is the place to come.

These detailed reports show coalition forces’ attacks on civilians, friendly fire incidents and Afghan forces attacking each other – so-called green on green.

Before you can read the original reports, however, these logs need a bit of explanation. Here’s how they’re organised:

Each entry is divided into lots of columns. Some contain map references and the like – which we’ve used to map some of the incidents for instance.

Here is what the columns mean:

Col A: Key

This is the unique indentifying code for each incident – if you have this, it makes it much easier to find.

Col G: Date and time

Obvious – and in UK format (dd/mm/yy) which is used by Nato forces, rather than the US format (mm/dd/yy). It also often includes the time each incident occurred. They run from 2004 up to the end of 2009.

Col H: Type

This section describes the type of incident. “Friendly fire” for instance, means coalition troops mistakenly firing on each other. “Friendly action” on the other hand, means “fighting started by our side” rather than an enemy attack.

Col I: Category

This can have similar information – but with slightly more detail. ‘Blue-blue’ for instance, means our own troops shooting at each other.

Col L: Title

This often has a brief summary of how many people were KIA – killed in action or WIA – wounded in action.

Col M: Summary

This is the really important entry. It contains a short account of what happened, – although it’s often, but not always, written in pretty impenetrable military jargon. We have put together a glossary of the key terms here.

Cols T to AA: statistics

There follow some columns for statistics – friendly troops, host nation, civilians ‘KIA’ or ‘WIA’. Unfortunately, they are highly unreliable and the authors – many of them in the field of battle – often simply failed to fill them in.

Col AH: CCIR

This is sometimes important – it may say “likely to cause negative media” or that there is a “credible allegation” civilians have been killed.

We’ve also put together an interactive map of every IED – improvised explosive device – attack, all 16,000, where you can see how the number has rocketed since 2004.

The data we have selected is below – as an Excel file (Google spreadsheets can’t cope with the enormous amount of text in these documents). What can you do with it?

Download the data

DATA: download the full list as a spreadsheet (XLS file)

Can you do something with this data?

Flickr Please post your visualisations and mash-ups on our Flickr group or mail us at datastore@guardian.co.uk

World government data

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GO TO ORIGINAL – GUARDIAN.CO.UK

 

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