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Old 05-05-2017   #21
davidbfpo
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Default Shifting sands in Kabul

Elsewhere, including SWJ Blog, there have been reports on US and NATO troops returning to Afghanistan.

I wonder if anyone in those governments has considered the impact of this long awaited Afghan compromise with an opponent returning to Kabul, not a Taliban leader or faction, rather Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, once labelled "The Butcher of Kabul" of Hezb-e-Islami. A faction noted for its warfighting capability, almost exclusively along the eastern border against US troops IIRC.

The initial, September 2016 BBC item on the agreement:http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-37438674

The latest report, which I note does not explain if his fighters will follow him:http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-39802833

I know this is the Afghan way of campaigning, with fighting and talking often in parallel and it is their country. Why should we commit blood and gold to support this?
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Old 05-05-2017   #22
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Default Wrong strategy in the wrong place

Professor Paul Rogers asks "Will more the same, fewer in number work" or something similar and near the start:
Quote:
....the war in Afghanistan is evolving into a conflict even more intense than in recent years, one that will inevitably demand far more of Donald Trumpís attention than he would like.
Citing the latest SIGAR report:
Quote:
A dangerous and stubborn insurgency controls or exerts influence over areas holding about a third of the Afghan population. Heavy casualties and capability gaps limit the effectiveness of Afghan soldiers and police. Opium production stands at near record levels.
He ends with:
Quote:
After 15 years of failure, more troops will be seen as the answer, with little chance of any other approach being tried. That makes three regimes toppled in the War on Terror era (the Taliban, Saddam Hussein, and Gaddafi), and three countries wrecked Ė but still no fundamental reflection on a strategy thatís clearly failed.
Link:https://theconversation.com/deadly-kabul-bombing-heralds-a-new-western-surge-in-afghanistan-77041?
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Old 07-21-2017   #23
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Default Now we have clarity from Pakistan's Army?

A curious commentary from a RUSI analyst, a Pakistani, that suggests a new firmness in the Pakistani Army's stance on Afghanistan under the new Chief of Staff's leadership:https://rusi.org/commentary/pakistan...on-fewer-words

Two passages:
Quote:
On the Afghan front, Bajwa’s argument seems to be that Pakistan has secured its own territory and it is not the Pakistani army’s job to secure Afghanistan, as this is up to NATO and the Afghan National Army. This may be debatable, but one conclusion is clear: Pakistan’s military leadership is no longer either apologetic or pretending to play along with any foreign narrative on Afghanistan.

(Later) ....in Afghanistan, Bajwa has brought more clarity
Really the Pakistan Army have pretended to play along with a foreign narrative? No, they have always followed their interests, even if that meant assisting killing NATO soldiers and enabling NATO to be in Afghanistan at the same time or with some temporary interruptions.
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