[Dawn] THE visit to Kabul by NATO ...the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. It's headquartered in Belgium. That sez it all.... Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen along with the 35 ambassadors who participate in the NATO council in Brussels was, from Afghanistan's perspective, particularly welcome.
A delegation of permanent representatives of the UN Security Council (UNSC) had cancelled a scheduled visit for security reasons shortly after the UNSC authorised the extension of the stay of NATO forces in Afghanistan up to Oct 13, 2013.
There was good reason for concern on the part of the UN delegation. The Taliban are not conquering territory or restoring their writ in areas they have vacated. But they have established through attacks on Camp Bastion and subsequently on another base in eastern Afghanistan that they are capable of launching sophisticated and complex attacks on what were considered to be invulnerable targets.
They have also been able to create the perception that either because of their infiltration or as a consequence of what is termed 'cultural differences', a substantial number of Afghan cops cannot be relied upon to protect their NATO partners and may well attack what they perceive as lucrative targets such as a high-level UN delegation.
There was also good reason for the NATO delegates to come despite the security threat. Rasmussen needed to reassure the Afghans that despite all the news that had been appearing about the US and other NATO countries, NATO was committed to the end-2014 withdrawal timetable.
He also made reassuring noises about NATO being prepared to maintain a presence in Afghanistan and that the latter would not be left alone after 2014.
In answers to questions, however, Rasmussen did concede that if conditions permitted, the withdrawal could come earlier. This has to be read in conjunction with an interview given to the Guardian by the new British ambassador in Kabul who, having acknowledged that there was an ongoing debate about withdrawal, hinted that not only was an early pullout possible but that it was preferable.
What was perhaps of greater importance was Karzai's assertion that he was quite prepared to handle the situation arising from an earlier withdrawal -- the sort of defiant note that has characterised all his recent statements about his NATO allies. This is, to put it mildly, something of a departure from reality given that not one Afghan battalion is graded as capable of handling an operation without assistance.
An International Crisis Group report published a few days ago asserts in this context that only seven per cent of the army and nine per cent of the national police units are considered capable of independent action even with advisers.
To make matters more difficult, the Afghan cops, particularly the army, are faced with a situation where the annual desertion rate is 33 per cent and 65,000 soldiers have to be recruited every year to fill the ranks.
Posted by: Fred ||
10/25/2012 00:00 ||
Top|| File under: Taliban
IMO, post-2014 increased reliance by the US-NATO on Drone strikes to take out assorted Hard/Bad Boyz directly infers Global Prompt Strike = Space Strike.
Iff UAV-launched Hellfires, etc. don't get 'em, Armed Dirigibles in high atmospheric orbit, ABL + Space-based Lasers will.
[STAR WARS' "GRAND ARMY OF THE [Space]REPUBLIC" here].
Afganistan is not a place where you grow old and live in comfort and peace.
The former ruler was a man named Najibullah ( the Bull ) When the Russians pulled out they abandoned him. He fled to the UN compound and....
"Perhaps Najibullah deserved a bad death as much as any man in the country, but his end was still horrifying. In 1996, Mullah Omar captured Kabul. The Taliban broke into the UN compound and dragged Najibullah out into the street. They beat, hanged, and shot him, leaving his swaying battered corpse in the street, a sacrifice to the victims of KhAD."
the body swung up there in the cold breeze and nobody cut it down anytime soon. After a couple of weeks it was naked and stripped and had cigarette burns all over the swollen corpse and Afghan paper currency stuffed between his butt cheeks.
Karzai is in a line of work which doesn't have a lot of space to live to get old. If the US were to abandon him ( couldn't happen right?) he would last about a week...maybe.
he is a fractious sock puppet. he won't make it in the long term.
We've been training them for 10 years. We've put tens of billions into arms, infrastructure, salaries. The result is a handful of combat effective units, a fair number of units that are at least cohesive and a lot of units that are made up of illiterates, drug users, Taliban syms or some combination of the three.
Posted by: lord garth ||
10/25/2012 9:27 Comments ||
..that's why so much aid money has gone off the books. Unlike the parsimonious Russians with his predecessor, the current personage probably has a nice retirement fund set aside in a secure account somewhere.
There are many ways to apply pesticide. One that is quite effective is from the air. There is no good reason for us to keep troops on the ground in this cess-pool. Get them out, and then, should anything happen that starts there, bomb from on high.
"The result is a handful of combat effective units, a fair number of units that are at least cohesive and a lot of units that are made up of illiterates, drug users, Taliban syms or some combination of the three Democrats."
Somebody had to do it. ;-p
Posted by: Barbara ||
10/25/2012 19:24 Comments ||
The writer certainly does capture things accurately.
The MSM has been apathetic about this story with the exception of Sharyl Attkinson, Fox, and occasionally CNN. Otherwise, the MSM is overly concerned with minutia and trivia such as what Moochelle is wearing, Gloria Allred and possible revelations that might be damning to Romney, how "O" is ahead in the polls and how how he won the debates (despite having a poor showing or in the first instance not showing up), or "O's" next stop on the pop culture fund-raising circuit. The MSM is agenda-driven, carrying water for Obama, not doing their job, lazy, and silly in its focus.
I have a feeling Benghazi is far more ugly than most can imagine if the rocks start getting turned over. By reasonable standards, one would think F & F and Benghazi would bring about charges for high crimes (treason) and misdemeanors. Unfortunately, our standards have changed. Had this occurred during Nixon's time, it would be in the headlines everyday. There would be a steady drumbeat to remove those from office who are responsible and prosecute them. Republicans and Democrats would be calling for justice. Segments of our population have been inured to a tabloid mentality by massive give-aways to buy votes, underlying simmering racial issues, Balkanization of various groups in our country, Clinton sexcapades in the WH, and all the Obama shenanigans such as crony capitalism, voter fraud, F & F, and forcing Obamacare. Where are the voices within the administration who still have integrity and a shred of decency. There is a cancer in our government that needs to be excised. God help our country if those who really know what's going on don't speak up instead of focusing on their careers or the next election. Citizens should demand that with either party whomever is in power.
Tonight it seems that the burg is infested with trolls.
Shipman, your statement is logically akin to saying that celery is worse than basketball. Meaningless on its face and any attempt to apply some consistent moral evaluation to the two leads straight under the crazy bridge to where the trolls live.
What the Euro Nation may not realize, is that after the election Barry would not need to prop them up, in fact may sabotage them for better relations with Russia and Turkey. But hey, have to flamethrower the coop to make a quiche.
History says, yep National Defense is expensive.
It also says that either you play the game, which requires that expense, or the game will eventually play you. You can either influence events as a doer or be influenced by events as a victim.
The right wing has lost the election of 2012. I'm OK with that, as long as Obama and the left wing loses. It'll be a whale of a lot easier to rebuild with Mitt in the White House.
The evidence for this is overwhelming, yet it is the year's best-kept secret. Mitt Romney would not be throwing virtually all of his past positions overboard if he thought the nation were ready to endorse the full-throated conservatism he embraced to win the Republican nomination. Maybe he learned something from the "Smartest President Ever' - get elected first.
The right is going along because its partisans know Romney has no other option. This, too, is an acknowledgment of defeat, a recognition that the grand ideological experiment heralded by the rise of the tea party has gained no traction. It also means that conservatives don't believe that Romney really believes the moderate mush he's putting forward now. Not to put too fine a point on it, but if the conservatives are forgiving Romney because they think he is lying, what should the rest of us think? The rest of you should think he is more interested in progress than ideological stalemate.
It turns out that there was no profound ideological conversion of the country two years ago. We remain the same moderate and practical country we have long been. In 2010, voters were upset about the economy, Democrats were demobilized, and President Obama wasn't yet ready to fight. All the conservatives have left now is economic unease. So they don't care what Romney says. They are happy to march under a false flag if that is the price of capturing power. Didn't that happen four years ago?
Romney knows that, by substantial margins inside the Beltway, the country favors raising taxes on the rich and opposes slashing many government programs, including Medicare and Social Security. Since Romney's actual plan calls for cutting taxes on the rich, he has to disguise the fact. Where is the conviction?
The biggest sign that tea party thinking is dead is Romney's straight-out deception about his past position on the rescue of the auto industry.
"Ideas have consequences" is one of the conservative movement's most honored slogans. That the conservatives' standard-bearer is now trying to escape the consequences of their ideas tells us all we need to know about who is winning the philosophical battle -- and, because ideas do matter, who will win the election. And now, left E. J. Dionne embraces the conservative movement's most honored slogans. What shall we think of him?
A multi-volume chronology and reference guide set detailing three years of the Mexican Drug War between 2010 and 2012.
Rantburg.com and borderlandbeat.com correspondent and author Chris Covert presents his first non-fiction work detailing
the drug and gang related violence in Mexico.
Chris gives us Mexican press dispatches of drug and gang war violence
over three years, presented in a multi volume set intended to chronicle the death, violence and mayhem which has
dominated Mexico for six years.