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groovedaddy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-28-11 12:12 PM
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Warning Against Wars Like Iraq and Afghanistan
WEST POINT, N.Y. Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates bluntly told an audience of West Point cadets on Friday that it would be unwise for the United States to ever fight another war like Iraq or Afghanistan, and that the chances of carrying out a change of government in that fashion again were slim.

In my opinion, any future defense secretary who advises the president to again send a big American land army into Asia or into the Middle East or Africa should have his head examined, as General MacArthur so delicately put it, Mr. Gates told an assembly of Army cadets here.

That reality, he said, meant that the Army would have to reshape its budget, since potential conflicts in places like Asia or the Persian Gulf were more likely to be fought with air and sea power, rather than with conventional ground forces.

As the prospects for another head-on clash of large mechanized land armies seem less likely, the Army will be increasingly challenged to justify the number, size, and cost of its heavy formations, Mr. Gates warned.

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/02/26/world/26gates.html
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polichick Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-28-11 12:16 PM
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1. So can we end the travesty NOW?! Let's do what's right and fix the budget...
...at the same time.

k&r
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Skip_In_Boulder Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-28-11 12:19 PM
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3. That would seem to be the logical conclusion of his statement.
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polichick Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-28-11 12:21 PM
Response to Reply #3
4. Too bad logic has so little pull against the mic. nt
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Kennah Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-28-11 12:18 PM
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2. Maybe I'm misreading him, but it sounds like Gates is asserting Iraq and Afghanistan are successes
If so, then :wtf:
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bemildred Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-06-11 10:01 AM
Response to Reply #2
7. Mr Gates would never say that the emperor actually right now has no clothes. nt
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usbek Donating Member (3 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-06-11 12:07 AM
Response to Original message
5. Russian president special representative's point of view
Edited on Wed Jul-06-11 12:17 AM by usbek
Medvedev's Special Representative: Russia is ready for talks with Afghan Taliban
Published: March 28, 2011, 14:36
last updated: March 28, 2011, 15:47

Russia is not only a supporter of a military solution to the Afghan problem and is ready for dialogue with the Taliban, said the Russia president's special representative for Afghanistan,
Zamir Kabulov. But today Russia is not in a dialogue with the extremists, he said.

"We have no direct contact with the Taliban there. But it is essential that Russia supported the national reconciliation process in Afghanistan," - he said in an interview to "Interfax".

Kabulov said that militants who want to return to civilian life, should be given the opportunity, if they cease to fight with the Afghan authorities and tear due to the "Al-Qaeda." "If there are people among the Taliban, which could take such a step, as they are, we are open to talking with them" - added Kabulov.

He noted that in Moscow are concerned about threats of terrorism, extremism and drug trafficking emanating from Afghanistan. According to the Special Representative of the President Russia is interested in seeing that Afghanistan was "independent, peaceful and sought to prosperity."
At the same time he criticized NATO's actions in that country, and the Afghan authorities who are unable to ensure the safety of its citizens.

Russia has no plans to supply arms to Afghanistan, said Kabulov.
"We now do not deliver, and we have no such plans - he said - although I confess honestly, Afghan partners would be happy to get Russian weapons."

The diplomat added that "for many, including - history, the circumstances of the Afghan armed forces prefer Russian weapons: they consider it a low-maintenance, easier to use, more reliable." According Kabulov, now available weapons in Afghanistan by the NATO line.

"We do not advocate an overload Afghanistan with redundant weapons.
One have to treat this very carefully, not to do it uncontrolled.
Everything should be addressed", - said Russian President's special representative, stressing that Moscow "must be clearly convinced that these weapons reaches the right hands. "

Kabulov said that before - in 2010 - Russia delivered for Afghan Interior Ministry 20 thousand automatic Kalashnikov, and 2.5 million rounds of ammunition for them. Even earlier - in 2004-2005 - the years through a protocol signed between the Defence Ministries of two countries, Afghanistan has been delivered to military property for about $ 150 million.

"It was not about weapons or ammunition: it was a lot of spare parts for tanks and artillery, about 200 cars UAZ and" Kamaz ", military vehicles of communication, this type of equipment - non-lethal - the diplomat said. - We didn't have such cooperation with Afghanistan since that."

The Russian side is ready to donate to Kabul three helicopters, a decision endorsed by Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, said Kabulov. "We are talking about the possibility of delivery of three helicopters for free, and the Russian president has given in principle approval
for such a thing" - he said.

Earlier, Russia and NATO reached an agreement that the alliance will buy the Russian side 21 Mi-17 helicopter for the needs of the Afghan army. NATO officials have expressed hope that some of the equipment will be delivered free of charge, transmits "Point of View".

The Russian diplomat criticized the activities of NATO in Afghanistan

The activities of the International Security Assistance Force to stabilize the situation in Afghanistan is not efficient enough, says Zamir Kabulov. Accordingly the "Afganistan.ru" last week the diplomat criticized the strategy of the coalition forces, saying that over the past 10 years, the U.S. and its NATO partners "have done very little to create a truly effective armed forces in Afghanistan."

"The figures given that the creation of about 120 thousand police officers, about 150 thousand people for army, it is correct. But we must not forget that the level of desertion by their admission, 30% a year. The main fundamental question - the quality," - underlined the President's Special Representative of the Russian Federation.

He recalled that the Afghan army is armed mainly with small arms, armored vehicles is in deficit, almost no combat aircraft. "What army can fight without air cover? This is absurd. Very little was done in this direction. Of course, to create huge army for Afghanistan is possible, but it will not be viable" - sure Kabulov.

"Without solving these problems can not be serious talk about self-security. We believe that some are already designated time frame - 2014, during which will be a gradual process of transmission, and it may be extended after 2014. Still there is a time to give serious attention
to the creation of truly combat-capable armed forces.
If this is not done, then will be difficult, "- he concluded.

Also, he said, despite the important steps in the field of security, NATO did not pay enough attention to the subsequent economic development of areas in which the situation has been improved through combat operations. Thus, the achieved stability is transient condition because were not created the necessary economic conditions to maintain it.

"If NATO will conduct its operation in Afghanistan the same way as now,
and here I mean not only the military aspect, it will take a century -
said Kabulov. - We do not see any practical steps that could realistically lead to stability in the country. "

President's Special Representative expressed concern in connection with the fact that NATO forces are still not actively participate in ongoing operations "Channel", aimed at combating drug trafficking from Afghanistan. "So far there is no progress, to be honest, - said Kabulov. -
Some countries have sent in their personal capacity observers in this operation, but we didn't see the practical part from their side."

Kabul: Afghan authorities are not prepared to provide security in the country

According to the website "Afganistan.ru" President's Special Representative has made a number of constructive suggestions concerning the stabilization of the situation in Afghanistan.
In particular, Kabulov noted that the main role in this task should be given the Afghans themselves. "The Afghans must lead the process of rebuilding the country and its statehood, economy, national unity," - he stressed, calling on Afghanistan to provide opportunities for effective management.

At the same time in an interview to "Interfax" the Russian diplomat said that according to Moscow, the Afghan authorities are not yet ready to assume full responsibility for security in the country. "For now (the Afghan side) is not ready for this, but if to delay with this decision
the situation could get worse," - said Kabulov.

He noted that in the perception of many Afghans to foreign military presence is seen as occupation. "It can not continue forever," - said the diplomat.

Original post at http://www.newsru.com/russia/28mar2011/kabulov.html
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bemildred Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-06-11 10:00 AM
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6. Mr Gates would have been far more useful had he resigned in protest against those wars.
But he chose to serve his own career rather than the good of the country.
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Name removed Donating Member (0 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-18-11 08:33 AM
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bemildred Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-18-11 08:44 AM
Response to Reply #8
9. Assuming for the moment that you are serious, what sort of action would you suggest? nt
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JayceR Donating Member (33 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jul-19-11 02:11 AM
Response to Original message
10. Gut the fucking wars already
The Iraq War was justified by the following:
-With Us or Against Us
-Brown People of Another Religion are Scary!
-Saddam has nukes! God told me so, fuck all that CIA bullshit!
-They Did 9/11... who is this "Al Qaeda" you speak of?
-OIL OIL OIL OIL!!!

Afghanistan was pointless as well... your chances of dieing in a terrorist attack are what, a million to one? We've even got people complaining about overzealous security. It's pretty obvious 9/11 will never happen again. Bush failed at catching Bin Laden... we've killed him now. Justice is served. USAUSAUSA!!!11

Really, people would rather cut SOCIAL SECURITY than this?!
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