- The situation there is worse than is being reported.
- We are in Afghanistan not to rebuild that country but to control al-Qaeda.
- Al-Qaeda is sheltered next door in the Northwest territories of Pakistan.
- The Central government controls only the cities, the Taliban control the countryside.
- We don't have enough troops in our entire army to do what the Russians couldn't do with 300,000 soldiers in Iraq.
- We have no strategy.
- The Pakis are infiltrated with Taliban and al-Qaeda sympathizers.
- The current Paki government has no idea how to deal with the problem.
- When Obama talks about going into Pakistan to get al-Qaeda, he doesn't bring up the costs of doing so.
- Musharraf, although now irrelevant, lied to both sides in order to survive in power. He lied to us and he lied to his own people. Friedman says the next President must always bear that in mind. In other words, the Pakis are not to be trusted.
- Iran is bluffing about nuclear weapons. They are enriching uranium but are far from developing the war heads and their delivery systems.
- The issue between the US and Iran is not about nuclear weapons but the control of Iraq. The Iranians, remembering a million casualties in its war with Saddam Hussein, fear a US proxy. The US fears a Shia controlled Iraq.
- We can live with the Taliban.
“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."
Saturday, August 09, 2008
Stratfor's Thoughts on South Asia
George Friedman, the founder of Stratfor.com was a guest on Dennis Prager's radio show this week. He had some interesting comments about Afghanistan.
Posted by Anonymous at 8/09/2008 01:30:00 PM
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We offered to "live with the Taliban", they turned US down, flat.ReplyDelete
Regardless, the goal of the operation in Afghanistan was never achieved. That Goal was the destruction of aQ. We have, to date, failed in that.
FDR never once mentioned the costs when he spoke to Congress and asked for a Declaration of War. One does not quibble over costs, when fighting an existental threat.
That really is the issue, does the south asia status que present an existental threat to the US?
Or are we just projecting the US into a series of disconnected local wars, as the Supremes have decided.
Until the greater threat level is agreed to, the costs are going to be important.
The lack of strategy was apparent from Tora Bora onward. We couldn't deploy a Bn of Rangers, because we did not want a "large" footprint in Afghanistan. per General Franks.
That failure to send 800 combat soldiers has led to seven years of stalemate and a footprint of 30,000 US troops.
9 - 11ReplyDelete
The situation there is worse than is being reported.ReplyDelete
But the situation in Iraq is better than is being reported. What happens if the MSM shifts reporters between the two wars, do they get confused about what they're supposed to cover up?
We are in Afghanistan not to rebuild that country but to control al-Qaeda.
I don't want to control cockroaches, I want to kill them.
The Pakis are infiltrated with Taliban and al-Qaeda sympathizers.
Major-General Tariq Khan said his troops had recovered 50 boys whom the militants were training to be suicide bombers. Many of the boys told the soldiers they wanted to grow up to be doctors or pilots. Khan laconically noted: 'There's some serious disconnect here.'
The current Paki government has no idea how to deal with the problem.
A new government, established in March, has engaged tribal elders to persuade the militant leader to cease operations from their territory. Having helped create a stronger negotiating position, the army is leaving it to the politicians.
When Obama talks about going into Pakistan to get al-Qaeda, he doesn't bring up the costs of doing so.
The Iraq War was sold to us as a self-financing operation, paid for by Iraqi oil. We can't even get a discount for our military forces in theater.
They are enriching uranium but are far from developing the war heads and their delivery systems.
Israel took out Saddam's nuke plant when he was just as far from developing warheads and their delivery systems as Iran is now.
The Iranians, remembering a million casualties in its war with Saddam Hussein, fear a US proxy.
With good reason. The US won't kill a million Iranians, it looks bad on the evening news, but we sure as shit will let our proxies do it.
The US fears a Shia controlled Iraq.
Oh really? Al-Maliki isn't Shia?
From Aug 8 IHTReplyDelete
Gates proposes for Aghanistan:
1. Addtional $20 billion aid over five years from all NATO.
2. Restructuring NATO forces and placing all US forces under unified NATO command.
3. Doubling Afghan army to more than 120,000 troops.
Steve @ Threatswatch has a pessimistic view of the future wrt Mookie.ReplyDelete
Passing on him could ultimately prove to have been a fatal error.
Forming Hizballah: Mahdi Army Thunder Muted Into Muqtada's Whisper
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