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Afghanistan isn't doing too well...just in case anyone was wondering

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Fleshdancer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-03-06 04:37 AM
Original message
Afghanistan isn't doing too well...just in case anyone was wondering
The Forgotten War...

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/20...

The situation is dire. The Taliban offensive in the south and the counteroffensive by British, Canadian and U.S. troops under NATO has escalated into a full-scale war, with a dozen attacks every day and 700 lives lost since mid-May. Most Afghans are angry with the United States and the West for ignoring the alleged sanctuary provided to the Taliban by Pakistan, and with Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf for apparently supporting Karzai and the Taliban at the same time.

Papering over the cracks between Pakistan and Afghanistan, as Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice tried to do in her recent visit to the region, is clearly not enough. The charges and suspicions on both sides have to be addressed. Ordinary Afghans say the Taliban virus is spreading. The Taliban have been reported just 25 miles from Kabul, and they have attacked in the north and the west -- hundreds of miles from their main bases in the south. According to the United Nations, every single day somewhere in Afghanistan a girls' school is burned down or a female teacher killed by the Taliban.

....

After reading this, I Googled to discover that the British are deploying 1,000 more troops to Afghanistan. By the way, a bomb killed 8 female students at a Herat University today...it's assumed that the bomber doesn't particularly care for educated women.

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Sherman A1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-03-06 04:39 AM
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1. boots on the ground
Too much Rummy, war on the "transformational" cheap. Just that those "gee whizz" weapon systems don't go into caves to find the bad guys.....
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H2O Man Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-03-06 05:56 AM
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2. "Imperial Hubris"
Anyone who read Michael Scheuer's book in '04 must recognize that what he predicted would begin to happen in that land is now happening.

Good post! Thanks!
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livvy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-03-06 06:35 AM
Response to Reply #2
3. I'm about half way through it right now...
and like you posted, he was right on the money with his prediction. This is the price to be paid for "ignoring the checkables" and "winging it".
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H2O Man Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-03-06 06:39 AM
Response to Reply #3
4. It's a great book.
I think it is one of a few books I consider essential reading for understanding the conflict between the US and the Middle East.
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Fleshdancer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-03-06 06:43 AM
Response to Reply #2
5. I went to Amazon.com to read the book description
Sounds like I have a new book to read. In the meantime though, could you give me a few details about what Scheuer predicted in Afghanistan? Does he give any opinion about Karzai at all?
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livvy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-03-06 07:36 AM
Response to Reply #5
6. He basically said that it was not possible...
to "make" Afghanistan be the democracy that the maladministration claimed it could be. Had "we" done any homework about the history and culture of the people, we would have realized that. As far as Karzai, Scheuer said he was an Afghan in name only, and not considered to be a leader by the Afghani tribal leaders. Scheuer predicted that due to the anti-American sentiment, similar to the anti-Soviet or anti-any-nation attitude toward an unwelcome presence or occupation in Afghanistan, there would be increasing resistance and attempts to evict the US-led forces, even by some who assisted in installing Karzai.
I'm really learning a lot about Afghanistan and its people, and coming to a better understanding of why this, although not like, but the same as Iraq, is just another waste of our resources and people, largely due to the ignorance and "hubris" of the squatters in our White House.
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H2O Man Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-03-06 08:11 AM
Response to Reply #6
7. Right.
One of the things that struck me as important was the Ayman al-Zawahiri quote Michael ended the introduction with: "We thank God for appeasing us with the dilemma in Iraq after Afghanistan. The Americans are facing a delicate situation in both countries. If they withdraw they will lose everything and if they stay, they will continue to bleed to death."

He also speaks to the cultural differences regarding the concept of "time." There are no "quick wars" in Afghanistan.
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livvy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-03-06 08:31 AM
Response to Reply #7
9. I was also struck by the patience and determination of the people.
He gives the example, which "may even be true" about when a US diplomat in the 1980's was trying to convince an Afghani chief to slow down military attacks on the Soviets to encourage them in their desire to leave the country. Apparently this chief and others of the mujahideen, had been the recipient of large amounts of money, and the diplomat thought that this would encourage his and others cooperation. The chief responded to this suggestion by saying, "No, we will kill them until they go." The diplomat reminded him of how integral the US was in negotiating a Soviet withdrawal. Unimpressed, the chief walked away and restated, "No, they will leave because we are killing them and we will kill them until they leave. If we keep killing them, they will go."
This type of cultural attitude doesn't bode well for our troops, does it?
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adriennui Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jul-03-06 08:31 AM
Response to Original message
8. thanks to america
the russians were defeated in afghanistan, what made us think this outcome would be any different.


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