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Index » Regional/Local » Africa/Middle East » Afghanistan Page: Previous  1, 2, 3, 4 ... 22, 23, 24  Next
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R_P

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Posted: Dec 12, 2012 - 3:46pm

“Nearly three years after U.S.-led forces launched the biggest operation of the war to clear insurgents, foster economic growth and set a model for the rest of Afghanistan, angry residents of Helmand province say they are too afraid to go out after dark because of marauding bands of thieves. And during the day, they say corrupt police and government officials bully them into paying bribes. After 11 years of war, many here long for a return of the Taliban. They say that under the Taliban, who routinely punished thieves by cutting off a hand, they were at least safe from crime and corruption.”

Servo

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Location: Down on the Farm
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Posted: Nov 29, 2012 - 1:56am

 RichardPrins wrote:
I don't think it had much if anything to do with Bin Laden, who as we (now) know was hiding comfortably in Pakistan, and was discovered by chance. 

If you want to keep up the brick wall of denial, please keep it to yourself.  The GOP propaganda failed.  Get over it.


R_P

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Posted: Nov 28, 2012 - 10:28pm

 Servo wrote:
Defining President Obama's much-needed support for the troops that had been left dangling in Afghanistan by the Bush/Cheney administration after they put their focus on invading Iraq as the same thing as "The Surge" that Bush/Cheney used to make up for the failure of their own plans is highly inaccurate and completely unfair to President Obama.  The fact of the matter is that while the American media was busy promoting war in Iraq (remember the embedded reporters?), there was a press blackout for Afghanistan.  Our troops in Afghanistan were suffering from IEDs and insurgency too.  And they were stuck in a place with no path for retreat.  Not by land, sea or air.

President Obama did what the former Commander-in-Chief should have done, and sent badly needed reinforcements.  Whereas Bush/Cheney's "Surge" was part of a plan to occupy Iraq forever, the personnel that Obama sent to reinforce and relieve those in Afghanistan had a completely different strategy: to finally get Osama Bin Laden and then get out Afghanistan. (...)

I don't think it had much if anything to do with Bin Laden, who as we know was hiding comfortably in Pakistan, and was discovered by chance.
The surge— announced in 2009 — committed additional forces to the conflict at the request of military leaders on the ground.

"The decision did help us blunt the Taliban's momentum, and is allowing us to transition to Afghan lead - so we will have recovered that surge at the end of this month, and will end the war at the end of 2014. (...)" Obama wrote.

The U.S. troop surge in Afghanistan ended last week. Conditions in Afghanistan are mostly worse than before it began.

That conclusion doesn’t come from anti-war advocates. It relies on data recently released by the NATO command in Afghanistan, known as ISAF, and acquired by Danger Room. According to most of the yardsticks chosen by the military — but not all — the surge in Afghanistan fell short of its stated goal: stopping the Taliban’s momentum.

Of course, that’s not ISAF’s spin. The command notes that enemy attacks from January to August 2012 are slightly lower, by 5 percent, from that period last year; and that the past two Augusts show a reduction in attacks of 30 percent. But the more relevant comparison is to 2009, when Afghanistan looked like such a mess that President Obama substantially increased troop levels. And compared to 2009, Afghanistan does not look improved.
Of course you could argue what "the Taliban's momentum" really means, but if it has anything to do with killing foreign soldiers, then that earlier graph shows it hasn't been blunted (and as the second quote from Wired confirms). The conclusion seems more that putting more soldiers on the ground means getting more soldiers killed. As the amount of Afghan soldiers ramp up, so will their casualties.

I don't think the more recent "green-on-blue" attacks are all that relevant to this surge. That's just an infiltration tactic that's fairly easy to pull off seeing how the easily identified occupiers can't really distinguish most of the factions in Afghanistan anyway, nor how they might be coercing each other to achieve similar goals, i.e. get foreigners out of there. What the corrupt central government might want or agrees to is mostly irrelevant in this picture. See the article on feudal warlords below.
Servo

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Location: Down on the Farm
Gender: Male


Posted: Nov 28, 2012 - 6:39pm

 RichardPrins wrote:

Did the "surge" work in Afghanistan? The Obama administration would like you to think that it did, mostly so that it can declare victory and get out. I'm all in favor of the latter option, but let's not deceive ourselves about the wisdom of the Afghan surge itself. (...)

 
Defining President Obama's much-needed support for the troops that had been left dangling in Afghanistan by the Bush/Cheney administration after they put their focus on invading Iraq as the same thing as "The Surge" that Bush/Cheney used to make up for the failure of their own plans is highly inaccurate and completely unfair to President Obama.  The fact of the matter is that while the American media was busy promoting war in Iraq (remember the embedded reporters?), there was a press blackout for Afghanistan.  Our troops in Afghanistan were suffering from IEDs and insurgency too.  And they were stuck in a place with no path for retreat.  Not by land, sea or air.

President Obama did what the former Commander-in-Chief should have done, and sent badly needed reinforcements.  Whereas Bush/Cheney's "Surge" was part of a plan to occupy Iraq forever, the personnel that Obama sent to reinforce and relieve those in Afghanistan had a completely different strategy: to finally get Osama Bin Laden and then get out Afghanistan.

The article makes assumptions that it fails to legitimize.  It doesn't show any relationship whatsoever with President Obama's renewed support of our troops in Afghanistan 3 years ago and the very recent sharp rise in "green-on-blue" attacks that's only 3 months old.  (There's a very large gap in time from the so-called "surge" and the sudden green-on-blue problem.)  The article gives the Taliban full credit for these attacks, but does so without any evidence or even a postulation about why the two should be connected.  It raises question-free "questions" as a veiled ad hominem attack against those who voted to do right by our troops in Afghanistan.  What were they supposed to do, Mr. Walt?  Leave them there unsupported?  That's not the American Way!  MOF it's not the way of any civilized nation.

Obviously something must be done about green-on-blue attacks.  Blaming President Obama for something that doesn't exist is not an answer.

Personally I'd like to see President Obama use the green-on-blue problem as a reason to get American boots off of Afghan soil a lot sooner than planned.  Similar to what President Obama did with Iraq.


HazzeSwede

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Posted: Nov 28, 2012 - 1:06pm

 oldslabsides wrote:

It's nice when a non-American politician/public figure says something really stupid. Makes me feel slightly less bad about all the stupid shit American politicians/public figures say.

 
Thank You !...i woiuld prefere..they just STFUP.. ! {#Silenced}
Red_Dragon

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Posted: Nov 28, 2012 - 12:55pm

 RichardPrins wrote: 
It's nice when a non-American politician/public figure says something really stupid. Makes me feel slightly less bad about all the stupid shit American politicians/public figures say.
R_P

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Posted: Nov 28, 2012 - 12:49pm

A few bricks shy of a load...

R_P

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Posted: Nov 28, 2012 - 12:37am

At the mercy of Afghanistan's warlords
In many areas of Afghanistan it is the warlords who hold sway - not the central government or the Taliban. They are able to exploit villagers with impunity using the threat, or the reality, of violence. (...)

Both the Soviets and the Taliban struggled to gain control of this part of Afghanistan and its "mujahideen warlords", who today rule unchallenged.

In some places they impose taxes on local traders. Some have become government officials. Some run anti-Taliban militia groups, called Arbaki, which are supported by the government and international forces.

And many ordinary Afghan people are terrified of them. They say the commanders extort money and food, grab land, assault people - and sometimes kill.

Takhar province is situated on the southern banks of the Amudarya - the biggest river in Central Asia. Its tributaries should be able to provide enough water for all the region's agriculture - but, oddly, many farmers struggle to irrigate their crops.

In one district, Khojaye Ghor, the irrigation canals have dried up completely and crops are failing - hundreds of families have had to abandon their homes in search of water.

The explanation lies upstream.

"Some powerful and armed people... diverted our river to power their hydro-electric generators," one local farmer, Muhammad Sharif, complains.

One of them is Mr Aghagul Qataghany, he says - a former mujahideen commander, now mayor of Taloqan, the capital of Takhar province.

When I meet him in his office, he denies the allegation.

"Show me that person and I'm ready to challenge him in court. I don't have any hydro-power generator," he tells me.

But others back up the farmer's story.

Najibulla Khaliqyar, the head of the Provincial Council of Takhar, agrees Qataghany and others are diverting rivers for power. (...)


R_P

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Posted: Nov 24, 2012 - 6:01pm

Did the "surge" work in Afghanistan? The Obama administration would like you to think that it did, mostly so that it can declare victory and get out. I'm all in favor of the latter option, but let's not deceive ourselves about the wisdom of the Afghan surge itself. (...)


R_P

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Posted: Nov 17, 2012 - 8:45am


If you find the Afghans a bit too implausible, feel free to exchange them with the Chinese... {#Wink}
Isabeau

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Location: sou' tex
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Posted: Nov 17, 2012 - 4:59am

 oldslabsides wrote:
Click here to find out how many US troops are left in Afghanistan.

 
CBO Report November 2009: Pentagon Military complex has lost and cannot account for  900 Billion in failed or incomplete Nation Building in the Middle East (Afghan and Iraq) between 2003-2008.

900 BILLION. Gone. Poof. zip.    More than the T.A.R.P. Bailout, more than the Stimulus. 
 
Red_Dragon

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Posted: Nov 17, 2012 - 4:43am

Click here to find out how many US troops are left in Afghanistan.
kurtster

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Location: drifting
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Posted: Nov 16, 2012 - 7:38am

 RichardPrins wrote: 

Didn't read the article, but the headline is enough to comment on all by itself.

Afghanistan has some of the largest known deposits of litium and untold reserves of rare earths that China presently has a lock on that are necessary for the manufacture of our high tech devices.  Add the route for a proposed major oil pipeline and opium, those are enough reasons to risk everything we have left to try and make it work.  That is not my position, just statng the obvious as far as an American policy.

And addng another direction, the Military is becoming increasingly more at odds with its present CIC.  I'll let y'all read into that and draw your own conclusions as there is only chatter in underground places regarding what that means.  I've also heard that there are presently petitions circulating in as many as 36 states regarding succession.

The times, they are a changin'....

As usual, YMMV.


R_P

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Posted: Nov 16, 2012 - 6:40am

Broadwell Defended Petraeus’ Village Destruction Policy
Analysis by Gareth Porter
WASHINGTON, Nov 15 2012 (IPS) - Paula Broadwell, whose affair with Gen. David Petraeus brought his career to a sudden end last week, had sought to help defend his decision in 2010 to allow village destruction in Afghanistan that not only violated his own previous guidance but the international laws of war.

Gen. David Petraeus (right) was under pressure from the Obama administration to produce tangible evidence of “progress” that could be used to justify troop withdrawals. Credit: U.S. Dod/public domain

But her efforts had the opposite effect.

The new Petraeus policy guidance allowed the destruction of villages in three districts of Kandahar province if the population did not tell U.S. forces where homemade bombs were hidden. (...)

R_P

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Posted: Nov 15, 2012 - 1:32pm

General: We're Staying in Afghanistan, No Matter What Obama Said | Danger Room | Wired.com

Servo

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Location: Down on the Farm
Gender: Male


Posted: Oct 30, 2012 - 8:18pm

 RichardPrins wrote:
If that were true, I'd expect it to be legal. {#Cheesygrin}
 
You don't understand.  You're free, but the government is more free than you are.  Yes, the federal government is playing both sides of the court, and making you the ball that gets whacked around all day long.  What are you going to do about it?


R_P

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Posted: Oct 28, 2012 - 9:18pm

 bokey wrote:
It's your my right as an American to use heroin should you I choose,and your my gummint supports you me all the way.
 
If that were true, I'd expect it to be legal. {#Cheesygrin}


bokey

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Posted: Oct 28, 2012 - 8:48pm

 RichardPrins wrote:

The complete and utter failure of the US and its NATO allies to get anything constructive done in Afghanistan for the past 11 years should be testament enough that another 11 years won’t do any good either.

 
Really, don't you know why we're there?

 It's your right as an American to use heroin should you choose, and your gummint supports you all the way.
R_P

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Posted: Oct 28, 2012 - 8:43pm

As Surge Ends, ‘Stalemate’ in Afghanistan Predicted
(...) We are probably headed for stalemate in 2014,” says Stephen Biddle, a George Washington University professor who has advised US commanders in Afghanistan and Iraq. Biddle warns that the US will probably be pumping billions of dollars a year into Afghanistan for decades to come in an attempt to prevent collapse and civil war.

US and Afghan negotiators in Kabul have been meeting to hammer out a formal security agreement that will govern the presence of US troops past 2014, perhaps until 2024.

The complete and utter failure of the US and its NATO allies to get anything constructive done in Afghanistan for the past 11 years should be testament enough that another 11 years won’t do any good either.

The stated mission of the US in the war in Afghanistan has been to eliminate the Taliban and al-Qaeda and prevent their return by building up a stable Afghan government and independent security forces. Every one of these goals have been objective failures, and experts and commentators across the political spectrum acknowledge this.

The fact that the insurgency in Afghanistan is as strong as ever, even after 11 years of facing off against the world’s most advanced military, is an indication that it will remain alive and well so long as there are any occupation forces on the ground and so long as the Kabul government is propped up by hostile foreign governments. Staying in Afghanistan beyond 2014 – indeed, beyond tomorrow – makes no strategic, or moral sense.


R_P

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Posted: Oct 27, 2012 - 6:09pm

British Psy Ops in Afghanistan (Mind Hacks)
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