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 Post subject: Leaving it a bit late
PostPosted: Wed Sep 23, 2009 4:43 pm 
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It is the New York Times that is now telling us that Obama is exploring alternatives to a major troop increase in Afghanistan. The process includes considering a plan advocated by vice president Biden to scale back American forces and focus more on rooting out al Qaeda there and in Pakistan.

View full article here

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 Post subject: Re: Leaving it a bit late
PostPosted: Wed Sep 23, 2009 4:58 pm 

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Obummer is getting huge heat from his liberal base......it's Vietnam, all over again etc, etc. He can't send more troops. Hell he has already changed the rules of engagement, to protect "innocent" civilians and 4 Marines just died because of the new rules, when they weren't given covering fire.

Expect a dogs dinner of a solution, which is what his presidency is going to be.....a real mess and consequently a disaster of probably epic proportions.


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 Post subject: Re: Leaving it a bit late
PostPosted: Wed Sep 23, 2009 4:58 pm 
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The "game changer" though appears to have been the Afghan presidential election, which has undermined the administration's confidence that it had a reliable partner in Karzai. As Bruce O. Riedel – the man who led the AFPAK strategy review – observes, "A counterinsurgency strategy can only work if you have a credible and legitimate Afghan partner. That's in doubt now."


The election shows Karzai is reliable, at least for the Durrani Pashtuns whom he represents. He had to stuff ballot boxes to win because the Taliban scared away his voters, but he did it. He's shown his supporters he's a man who can get things done. If only the ISAF could learn to be so practical as to make him a leader of Pashtunistan and give the rest of Afghanistan to someone else.

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 Post subject: Re: Leaving it a bit late
PostPosted: Wed Sep 23, 2009 5:12 pm 
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therewaslight wrote:
Quote:
The "game changer" though appears to have been the Afghan presidential election, which has undermined the administration's confidence that it had a reliable partner in Karzai. As Bruce O. Riedel – the man who led the AFPAK strategy review – observes, "A counterinsurgency strategy can only work if you have a credible and legitimate Afghan partner. That's in doubt now."


The election shows Karzai is reliable, at least for the Durrani Pashtuns whom he represents. He had to stuff ballot boxes to win because the Taliban scared away his voters, but he did it. He's shown his supporters he's a man who can get things done. If only the ISAF could learn to be so practical as to make him a leader of Pashtunistan and give the rest of Afghanistan to someone else.


That is not going to happen and it is not anywhere on the political agenda. The perverse thing is that Karzai would probably have won without the ballot stuffing, albeit not without a run-off. What he has done, therefore, is fatally weaken his position and undermined his own support from the international community. If Obama goes ahead with the counterterrorism strategy, they will cut Karzai adrift. After that, he will not survive for nanoseconds. Karzai has thus shown himself to be weak, short-sighted and lacking in political acumen. He has backed the wrong horse.

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 Post subject: Re: Leaving it a bit late
PostPosted: Wed Sep 23, 2009 5:35 pm 
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RAENORTH wrote:
That is not going to happen and it is not anywhere on the political agenda. The perverse thing is that Karzai would probably have won without the ballot stuffing, albeit not without a run-off. What he has done, therefore, is fatally weaken his position and undermined his own support from the international community. If Obama goes ahead with the counterterrorism strategy, they will cut Karzai adrift. After that, he will not survive for nanoseconds. Karzai has thus shown himself to be weak, short-sighted and lacking in political acumen. He has backed the wrong horse.


It's never been on the political agenda but it's not going away from it, either.

Ever thought maybe Karzai wanted to get caught? If his situation is made to look desperate, gets cut more slack.

This is opposite to your analysis so we'll wait for the outcome. If he's got the organisation ability to rig elections he's got organisational ability. Who else has real authority over a good number of Pashtuns other than he?

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 Post subject: Re: Leaving it a bit late
PostPosted: Wed Sep 23, 2009 5:46 pm 
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therewaslight wrote:
If he's got the organisation ability to rig elections he's got organisational ability. Who else has real authority over a good number of Pashtuns other than he?


I think you are reading it wrong ... Karzai did not mastermind the rigging. This was a case of over-enthusiastic supporters whom Karzai failed to control. It demonstrates a lack of authority.

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 Post subject: Re: Leaving it a bit late
PostPosted: Wed Sep 23, 2009 6:03 pm 
Hi, there!

Soon, the pot will begin to boil, with the iranian garbage which must be sweeped, is rotting for 30 years now.
Old fart Berlusconi wants to withdraw his troops. WTF ?!

The good news is to come from the Irish, the NO will prevail.
The site No2Lisbon2.com cannot be accessed, sabotage, maybe?
Best.


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 Post subject: Re: Leaving it a bit late
PostPosted: Wed Sep 23, 2009 7:32 pm 

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OT, Iran has lost its only AWAC aircraft in a crash

http://www2.debka.com/index.php

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 Post subject: Re: Leaving it a bit late
PostPosted: Wed Sep 23, 2009 7:39 pm 
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RAENORTH wrote:
therewaslight wrote:
If he's got the organisation ability to rig elections he's got organisational ability. Who else has real authority over a good number of Pashtuns other than he?


I think you are reading it wrong ... Karzai did not mastermind the rigging. This was a case of over-enthusiastic supporters whom Karzai failed to control. It demonstrates a lack of authority.


You can read that two ways! Of course Karzai would not be foolish enough to leave his fingerprints on the ballot boxes, but if he knew he did not stop them.

There is also the obvious retort, if over-enthusiastic supporters is a weakness, what's his strength?

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 Post subject: Re: Leaving it a bit late
PostPosted: Wed Sep 23, 2009 8:39 pm 
FU(fed UP)
Have you got a link for the Marine deaths please. I want to pass it on.


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 Post subject: Re: Leaving it a bit late
PostPosted: Wed Sep 23, 2009 8:54 pm 
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Peter wrote:
FU(fed UP)
Have you got a link for the Marine deaths please. I want to pass it on.


http://www.mcclatchydc.com/227/story/75036.html

and also this ...

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/co ... id=topnews

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 Post subject: Re: Leaving it a bit late
PostPosted: Wed Sep 23, 2009 8:58 pm 
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Quote:
Taliban commanders have taken Professor Athanasion Larounis, a Greek aid worker who has generated £2.5 million in donations to build schools, clinics, clean water projects and a museum.

They are now demanding £1.25 million and the release of three militant leaders in exchange for his safe return.


One to watch. What's the betting the money is handed over?

Of course the Telegraph doesn't draw the dots...

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 Post subject: Re: Leaving it a bit late
PostPosted: Thu Sep 24, 2009 2:07 am 
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Do not, on any account, miss this:

http://www.theospark.net/2009/09/vbs-tv ... html#links

A must see!

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 Post subject: Re: Leaving it a bit late
PostPosted: Thu Sep 24, 2009 11:23 am 
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I've seen some of that before somewhere, it's a few months old, but interesting. Average age those Marines 20/21.

Image

Cabannis: "what we're doing in Afghanistan is armed social work"


The reporter seems to get it. There are Al Qaeda bases in Algeria and Somalia. The Pashtun war is about "peace without dishonor", or women's rights if you ask DIFD.

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 Post subject: Re: Leaving it a bit late
PostPosted: Wed Sep 30, 2009 7:04 pm 
The sacking of a top American UN official, Peter Galbraith, for criticising the Karzai election points to the Americans putting the dodgy election behind them and throwing their weight behind Karzai. The US military, under McChrystal, seem to have made up their mind on a COIN strategy- I seriously doubt Obama will force a U- turn. He may haggle about the number of extra troops (are another 40,000 even available?) but a significant draw down to a counter terror/ whack- a- mole strategy is, by now, too much like a retreat.

The problem is that anyone who says they can guaruntee outcomes of either strategy is a liar. I believe the less risky option would be to draw down and contain, but politically, this would be unacceptable. Even if the ANA/ ANP numbers could be increased and training sped up, the chances of Afghanistan returning to it's natural state are huge. Abandoning the Afghan people to the Taliban, possibly creating a terrorist safe haven (even if only confined to Afghan borders and constantly under drone attack) and the al Queda propaganda victory will be prices the US will not pay.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/south_asia/8281934.stm


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