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Old 07-15-2013   #21
Peter Dow
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Quote:
Originally Posted by omarali50 View Post
I wish the CIA had actually succeeded in whatever nefarious conspiracy they were up to. Their failure will embarrass them
Well unlike
  • in Pakistan where the Pakistani military intelligence agency, the ISI, doesn't answer to the civilian government but is a part of the independent Pakistani military, which maintains a political role and often imposes a military dictatorship upon Pakistanis and whose ISI is a tool of the military's imperial ambitions, in this context sponsoring an irregular, auxiliary or paramilitary force, the Taliban, to regain Afghanistan as a vassal state of the Pakistani military empire
the CIA does answer to the elected president, it follows the orders of the government, under the law and the constitution of the USA.

As an American you ought to know that. As a Pakistani, you may not know truth from fiction so often have you been lied to by the Pakistani state.

So whilst conspiracy nuts like you may imply that the CIA is an independent unaccountable power with its own political agenda, it is not.


The invasion of Afghanistan was as it was declared to be according to the Bush Doctrine, to go after those who did 9/11 - both the terrorists and their state sponsors.

What we are seeing is an American (and British and NATO) political failure to go to 2nd base with the Bush Doctrine, to follow the trail of intelligence evidence identifying the 9/11 culprits and the Taliban enemy as sponsored by the Pakistani ISI and therefore showing the Pakistani state to be a state sponsor of Al Qaeda and Taliban terrorism.

Here again is the BBC Panorama documentary, "Secret Pakistan" which presents the evidence of Pakistani state sponsoring of terrorism, this time in 2 x 1 hour videos.

SECRET PAKISTAN - Part 1 - Double Cross (YouTube)

SECRET PAKISTAN - Part 2 - Backlash (YouTube)



So there's a political failure to hold Pakistan accountable for 9/11 and the deaths of our forces in Afghanistan.

So the US and NATO government trend is towards doing less than the Bush Doctrine would imply and simply going home, the job half done. That's not a "conspiracy", it is losing focus, abandoning the mission, letting the Pakistani state which hosted Al Qaeda and the Taliban, killed thousands of our people, off the hook.


Now I don't agree with abandoning the mission - I want the Afghan mission converted into an openly Afghanistan-Pakistan mission. That's my politics but I am not part of a CIA or state conspiracy because I am just this guy, you know?

Last edited by Peter Dow; 07-15-2013 at 03:34 AM.
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Old 07-15-2013   #22
jmm99
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Default Peter,

what is meant by your usage of "to hold Pakistan accountable" ? Are you suggesting that the US use armed force (pursuant to the 2001 AUMF) against Pakistan ? If so, from where and by what means ?

Regards

Mike
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Old 07-15-2013   #23
Peter Dow
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Talking It's war, with Pakistan!

Quote:
Originally Posted by jmm99 View Post
Peter,

what is meant by your usage of "to hold Pakistan accountable" ?
Thanks for your questions Mike.

I mean our governments ought to face up to the evidence that the Pakistani state has secretly been waging war against us by secretly employing Al Qaeda terrorists and the Taliban to wage Pakistan's secret war against us.

I mean our governments ought to respond to the revelation of Pakistan's acts of war against us by declaring that a state of war now exists between us and Pakistan and accordingly command our forces to confront the aggressor, Pakistan, with retaliatory acts of war of our own against Pakistan, in our own self-defence, with a view to bringing Pakistan's secret war to an end and to compel Pakistan to agree and to deliver peace terms which would satisfy our need for security into the future.

I mean it is war with Pakistan, Mike. There's no point in sugar-coating what needs to be done.


Quote:
Originally Posted by jmm99 View Post
Are you suggesting that the US use armed force (pursuant to the 2001 AUMF) against Pakistan ?
Yes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jmm99 View Post
If so, from where and by what means ?

Regards

Mike
That's a very good question Mike. I am glad you asked that. It's really very important that we find the best answers to those sorts of questions.

I have been attempting to provide some answers to those difficult but critical questions in this topic thread.

I would ask you to review my 4-point plan in my OP and my suggested approach to managing Pakistan in post #2.

I don't however believe that a large-scale ground invasion of Pakistan would be a good option to pick in order to prosecute this war to a speedy and successful conclusion any time soon.

So attack Pakistan, sure but "invade Pakistan", I don't think so.

PS. We have many non-military methods as well we can use to apply pressure to Pakistan to bring them to terms - financial sanctions, for example.

Last edited by Peter Dow; 07-15-2013 at 03:25 PM.
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Old 07-15-2013   #24
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Default Peter, thank you for your candor

You deserve the same candor from me.

My worldview is very different from yours; but also very different from that of the Bush II and Obama admins (one might as well also include the Bush I and Clinton admins). I don't believe in the New World Order or in US global hegemony; and I would limit US force projection out to our Atlantic and Pacific far littorals, except in exigent circumstances.

UBL was an "exigent circumstance", whose death (and those of his subordinates who happened to be caught in the net) were justified for reasons of retribution, reprobation and specific deterrence. No doubt, one can go far beyond UBL and his immediate associates to argue that a number of groups and nations are "worthy" of inclusion within the scope of the 2001 AUMF because of their support of AQ and associated groups (e.g., the Taliban).

I believe that the US has achieved militarily what it can achieve in the Muslim World. So, I'd leave Eurasia and Africa to those who live there. Hence, no point exists for you and me to argue about operational and tactical military details - as to which I have no particular expertise anyway.

Regards

Mike
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Old 07-15-2013   #25
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Peter, i was being facetious.
I am not sanguine about the prospects of "our" victory in Afghanistan http://www.3quarksdaily.com/3quarksd...if-we-win.html
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Old 12-09-2013   #26
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Talking

Quote:
Originally Posted by jmm99 View Post
You deserve the same candor from me.

My worldview is very different from yours; but also very different from that of the Bush II and Obama admins (one might as well also include the Bush I and Clinton admins). I don't believe in the New World Order or in US global hegemony; and I would limit US force projection out to our Atlantic and Pacific far littorals, except in exigent circumstances.
From sea to shining sea and leave empires like the British, Japanese, German, Russian to fight for global domination, huh?

That's a very different worldview from FDR too.

It's not a good plan Mike because the empire that finally achieves hegemony over the rest of the world would eventually come for the USA and then you'd be on your own.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jmm99 View Post
UBL was an "exigent circumstance", whose death (and those of his subordinates who happened to be caught in the net) were justified for reasons of retribution, reprobation and specific deterrence. No doubt, one can go far beyond UBL and his immediate associates to argue that a number of groups and nations are "worthy" of inclusion within the scope of the 2001 AUMF because of their support of AQ and associated groups (e.g., the Taliban).
One can and one should. Otherwise there's no "specific deterrence" to those groups etc.

On the contrary there is specific payment to such groups in the order of $18 billion in US aid paid to Pakistan after groups there supported the 9/11 attacks and another $1.6 billion promised.

It's not like the generous US Marshall plan to invest in the recovery of Germany and Europe after world war 2. There, the Nazis could not claim credit for the Marshall plan since the top Nazi leaders had been executed and others jailed.

With Pakistan, the generals who supported 9/11 and Taliban attacks on the US can still claim their part in extorting or blackmailing the aid from the US and other countries they've threatened with their state sponsored terrorism.

So it looks to the Pakistani people like the US is weak, can be bullied, blackmailed, extorted. So there's no deterrent. There's an open invitation - who else wants a piece of the USA's wealth and is prepared to kill Americans to get it?

Quote:
Originally Posted by jmm99 View Post
I believe that the US has achieved militarily what it can achieve in the Muslim World. So, I'd leave Eurasia and Africa to those who live there. Hence, no point exists for you and me to argue about operational and tactical military details - as to which I have no particular expertise anyway.

Regards

Mike
It doesn't take a particular expertise to understand that the USA and its global allies constitute the dominant military power in the world and can beat anyone else if we go about the business of war in a militarily efficient way, instead of like fools.

Last edited by Peter Dow; 12-09-2013 at 12:35 AM.
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Old 12-09-2013   #27
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Default Yes, Yes and Could Be ...

Quote:
From sea to shining sea and leave empires like the British, Japanese, German, Russian to fight for global domination, huh?

That's a very different worldview from FDR too.

It's not a good plan because the empire that finally achieves hegemony over the rest of the world would eventually come for the USA in due course and then you'd be on our own.
As to the third point, there's a lot of ifs both ways. As I said, we've very different worldviews.

Regards

Mike
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Old 12-09-2013   #28
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Default Imperialists? That would be Pakistan.

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Originally Posted by omarali50 View Post
Peter, i was being facetious.
I am not sanguine about the prospects of "our" victory in Afghanistan http://www.3quarksdaily.com/3quarksd...if-we-win.html
No but you do make an entirely inappropriate distinction between "the imperialist powers or Pakistan".

Whereas in fact it is imperial Pakistan that wants Afghanistan back as its vassal Taliban state, Kashmir from India, Bangladesh back as East Pakistan and perhaps another bits and pieces of Asia which the global jihad can grab for Pakistan.

Though I do note that it is somewhat of a cowardly imperialism that prefers to grab territory via proxy irregular forces and terrorist groups such as the Taliban, controlled by the ISI, no doubt because the generals can't persuade the regular army nor the people of Pakistan to serve in such imperialist wars of expansion.

Oh no, the USA and NATO allies are not "imperialists". We are simply defending our homeland by removing terrorism which threatens us at source.

Last edited by Peter Dow; 12-09-2013 at 12:50 AM.
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Old 12-09-2013   #29
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Default Condi Rice to India. Pakistan a "state sponsor of terror"

Condi Rice to India: Pakistan a "state sponsor of terror"

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hindustan Times
State sponsors of terror have to clean up their act, says Condoleezza

The leadership of countries that practice “embedded terrorism” – state sponsored terrorism – have to be told they must “clean up”, said former US secretary of state Condoleezza Rice at the Hindustan Times Leadership Summit. The US policy towards state sponsors of terrorism, she said, which includes Pakistan, has been to say “you don’t have an option” about dealing with this terrorism.


Former US secretary of state Condoleezza Rice speaks during the Hindustan Times Leadership Summit 2013 in New Delhi.

Rice, who delivered the keynote address at the summit’s second day, said one has to be nuanced in responding to state-sponsored terror. Pakistan is a country that turns a blind eye to groups within its borders who practice terrorism, Rice noted. But their system can be mobilised to take action against terrorists with the right pressure and persuasion.

“I came here after the Mumbai attacks and then told (former) Pakistani president Asif Ali Zardari: what has happened here is clearly unacceptable and Pakistan is responsible,” said Rice. She admitted this does not work quickly. “This is a long-term problem, it can’t be turned around quickly but over decades.”

Rice, one of the authors of the Indo-US nuclear deal, said that the Indo-US relationship “was without limits” because the two countries shared both common interests and values.

She listed some of the interests she saw shared by India and the US: a world safe from terrorism, stability in South and Central Asia, energy security, preserving an international system based on rule of law.
For the full story visit the Hindustan Times website via this link
http://tinyurl.com/CondiToIndia

Video recalling the visit of Condoleezza Rice to India after the Mumbai terrorist attack.

Condoleezza Rice is like a provost of the whole world! Condi handed over the provost job at Stanford University to one of her helpers long ago, though she still works as a professor at Stanford.

I do wish Condi would not be so patient with Pakistan though. I don't think the world can afford to wait decades for Pakistan to put its own house in order. I don't think the Pakistani politicians are strong enough when faced with an obstinate Pakistani state which sees some purpose in sponsoring terrorism.

I would like in future to hear of Condi recommending that the world take a much tougher approach with Pakistan, an "iron fist" approach, so to speak, led by the US and its NATO allies, and hopefully with India's support, to force Pakistan more quickly to confront the state sponsors of terrorism - generals and former generals of the Pakistani military who dictate military policy behind the scenes in Pakistan.

This could involve suspending aid to Pakistan, international arrest warrants for those state-sponsors of terror Pakistani generals and former generals, raids like the raid to get Bin Laden but against those in the Pakistani state who were sheltering Bin Laden, assassination missions against those terror generals and former generals, more drone attacks, targeted missile or bombing air raids, seizing control over Pakistan's satellite broadcasting to call for the arrest of all involved in sponsoring terror and so on.

I would not heed any complaints from the Pakistani state which is not putting its own house in order. I would not be impressed by any threats Pakistan made about blocking supplies into Afghanistan. We would like the honest people in the Pakistan military to take action against those in the Pakistani military, such as the ISI, who have long been dishonest sponsors of terrorism.

The world needs to pressure Pakistan to make the reality that for the honest Pakistani military it will be an easier course of action to confront their dishonest comrades than daring to confront the rest of the world about any actions we take to raise the pressure on Pakistan.

I would even be prepared to raise military tensions to a level that was last seen in the Cuban missile crisis with US forces on high military alert.

No I would not like to see a nuclear war which would hurt many Pakistani civilians. We love the people of Pakistan but it is in their interests for someone to take a tough stance against the state sponsors of terrorism in Pakistan because that terrorism is, as often as not, turned against the people of Pakistan with their own politicians and leaders being targeted.

The exact measures to be taken are not really my point. Those are up for discussion and modification as required.

My real point is the pressure on Pakistan needs to be stepped up 100 fold by the West led by the US and NATO and with the support of India. No more softly, softly.

This would be my advice to our dearly beloved Condoleezza Rice. No-one inspires me more than she. No-one is better placed to decide on what is good advice and what is not. I trust her judgement but I want her to hear my advice.

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Old 12-09-2013   #30
jmm99
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Default Worldviews

An Americas-centric map;



also showing the US pivot to the Pacific which is more than a century old (shown more clearly in the larger version); and showing Astan, Pstan and India to the edge of the radar screen.

An Eurasia-centric map:



based on Mackinder's 1904 Heartland and Geographical Pivot of History, who left us this 1919 ditty:

Quote:
Who rules East Europe commands the Heartland;
who rules the Heartland commands the World-Island;
who rules the World-Island controls the world.
(Mackinder, Democratic Ideals and Reality, p. 106)
I believe it fair to assert that Mackinder's worldview has been accepted (in variants) by Huntington, Kissenger, Brzezinski and Rice; as well as by most of the American political elite.

Mackinder's basic concept is very well-accepted in Eurasia, though in particular versions in state geopolitics (British, French, German, Russian, etc.).

In fact, there is even a Pakistani version by Brig. Nadir Mir, Pakistan and Geopolitics and User:Nadir Mir, which appears to me an attempt to make the case for a larger Pakistani regional presence (hegemony ?). It may be of more interest to others here than to me.

Regards

Mike
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Old 12-21-2013   #31
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Default Condi: No good & bad Taliban, sceptical of peace talks

Quote:
Live Mint: There are no good Taliban and bad Taliban: Condoleezza Rice
by Elizabeth Roche

There are no good Taliban and bad Taliban: Condoleezza Rice

Pakistan is complicated, Iran is still a problem internationally, opines former US secretary of state



Former US secretary of state Condoleezza Rice has voiced doubts about the readiness of Taliban to join a reconciliation process.
Photo: Ramesh Pathania/Mint


As the US and the international community prepare to scale down their military involvement in Afghanistan in 2014 and the Obama administration seeks talks with the Taliban to stabilize the war-torn country, former US secretary of state Condoleezza Rice has voiced doubts about the readiness of the group to join a reconciliation process. In an interview, Rice said she was "sceptical whether the Taliban can be brought into a peace process". Rice, currently a professor of political science at Stanford University, was in New Delhi last week for the 11th Hindustan Times Leadership Summit. Edited excerpts:

This is a critical time for the US in Afghanistan in the context of the transition in 2014. How do you see US-Afghanistan and US-Pakistan relations against the backdrop of this?

The US-Afghan relations is difficult because it is a difficult set of circumstances. It's a relationship of partnership first of all. We have had to do a whole lot of hard things in Afghanistan. We had an apology from our military for innocent civilian deaths in Afghanistan. It's not like the American military would have it that way, but unfortunately it happens. We have pressed the Afghans on the drug trade, we have pressed them on corruption, sometimes the relationship can be difficult, but I think it's a long-term relationship and we will remain engaged there. I hope we will keep a military presence there. I think that would help. But we are in this relationship for the long term. We are not going to leave like we did after the Soviet Union was defeated there (in 1989), leaving then the kind of chaos that led to the Taliban and ultimately the Al Qaeda setting up home base there. With Pakistan again, it's not easy. It takes patience on our part just as it takes patience on the part of India.

If you were secretary of state, would you have thought of opening a line of communication with the Taliban given what happened on 9/11?

I guess you have to think about it and I am not on the inside, and I am always careful because I know that you don't always know all of the factors (involved). I think you have to be extremely careful. I don't think there are good Taliban and bad Taliban. I don't think there are Taliban who are in favour of the stability of Afghanistan. And so I am sceptical whether the Taliban can be brought into a peace process. Eventually there will have to be reconciliation of the Afghan people and I don't doubt there are some who were Afghan people who fought on the wrong side. Everybody has to have reconciliation at some point. But people have to be ready for reconciliation and I don't know the degree to which the Taliban is ready for reconciliation.

There was this recent agreement between the international community and Iran on its controversial nuclear programme. What are the opportunities that this deal throws up for the US in Afghanistan for example?

Well I don't know if it would open up opportunities in the geo-strategic issues. It seems sometimes to me that the Iranian government is in two minds - it wants to have a nuclear deal and it wants to have better relations with the United States, and it wants to reshape the Middle East in ways that are antithetical to our interests and I don't see that changing, frankly, in the short term. Now it may be on Afghanistan because to a certain extent terrorism in Afghanistan is a problem for the Iranians; there would be some small opening there. But I would not generalize from what happens in the nuclear deal to a stronger, better relationship with the Iranians. I think that takes work on other kinds of issues like Iran's interference in the Persian Gulf.

So Pakistan will still have primacy in any Afghan calculations?

Pakistan has to be part of the calculations. Instability in Pakistan is a problem for Afghanistan and instability in Afghanistan is a problem for Pakistan. So those two are forever linked in that way. And I do hope that the Pakistanis will recognize that the Taliban in Pakistan is a real problem for Pakistan, not just for Afghanistan. As long as you have extremism in Pakistan, Pakistan will be a large part of the equation. You will have to pay a lot of attention to it.

Read more in Rice for President Yahoo Group, message 2278
Thank you Condi once again for trying to save those who will listen from the hell on earth, the sacrifice of our cherished values, the dishonour to all that we hold dear, that would be surrendered in any peace deal with the Taliban.

The AfPak Mission

The AfPak Mission (YouTube)

The AfPak Mission on the internet is about war on terror military and security strategy for NATO and allied countries with ground forces in action in Afghanistan and air and airborne forces including drones and special force raids in action over Pakistan.

The AfPak Mission helps implementation of the Bush Doctrine versus state sponsors of terror and is inspired by the leadership of Condoleezza Rice.

The AfPak Mission approach to the Taliban is uncompromising.
  • There should be no peace with the Taliban.
  • The only "good" Taliban is a dead Taliban.
  • Arrest all Taliban political leaders and media spokesmen.
  • Capture or kill all Taliban fighters.
The AfPak Mission identifies useful content across multiple websites.

On YouTube, the AfPak Mission channel presents playlists of useful videos.

The AfPak Mission forum offers structured on-line written discussion facilities and the forum is the rallying and reference centre of the AfPak Mission, linking to all other AfPak Mission content on the internet.

The AfPak Mission has a Twitter, a Flickr and a wordpress Blog too.
You are invited to subscribe to the channel, register with the forum and follow on twitter, flickr and the blog.
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Old 12-22-2013   #32
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Cool

A couple of new videos in my AfPak Mission channel.

Susan Rice loves US Forces in Afghanistan!

Global War On Terror - Final Duel (Video allegory)

Soon ...
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Old 12-24-2013   #33
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Exclamation Return of the Taliban now patrolling with the ANA. Mission failing.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Daily Mirror
Return of the Taliban - gunmen take part in joint patrols with Afghanistan forces ahead of 2015 withdrawal
Daily Mirror, Dec 21, 2013. By Chris Hughes

The revelations from Sangin make a mockery of David Cameron’s overblown claim this week that it is “mission accomplished” in Afghanistan


Not over yet: Afghan National Army (ANA) soldiers and Taliban jointly patrol areas in the Sangin district of southern Helmand province

Swaggering Taliban gunmen have been taking part in joint patrols with Afghan government forces in Helmand’s deadliest town.

The revelations from Sangin make a mockery of David Cameron’s overblown claim this week that it is “mission accomplished” in Afghanistan.

And it raised fears the Taliban will take over the country again as international troops prepare to withdraw by 2015.

Last night an Afghan Taliban source in Pakistan confirmed to the Daily Mirror: “Already it is true that our mujahideen have retaken some security posts in Afghanistan and this will continue to happen.”

Agreements between the Afghan National Army and the Taliban are a huge betrayal of brave British soldiers who trained local security forces to secure Afghanistan by themselves.

British troops handed over the policing of Sangin – once dubbed “bomb alley” – to US forces in 2010 after fighting daily battles from 2006 to drive the insurgents out of the town notorious for its opium trade. It was handed over to Afghan security control earlier this year.

A senior military source told the Daily Mirror last night: “Such a public display of co-operation between the Taliban and the ANA is a disgace to the memory of brave British troops who have fought to vanquish the Taliban from communities they treated with brutalism for so many years. There is very little doubt that the Taliban are already making a comeback in various locations throughout Afghanistan, and it is a huge worrry.”

Two members of the town’s community council told local media they had seen Afghan National Army soldiers and Taliban carrying out joint patrols. Taliban men toting weapons and radios were seen parading through a Sangin market place. And tribal elder Ali Shah Khan said: “I saw an ANA car following a Taliban vehicle.”

Former commander of British forces in Afghanistan Colonel Richard Kemp said: “If these reports are true, this is a foretaste of what will happen when Nato forces fully withdraw. The Taliban will seize control of huge swathes of the countryside and many towns such as Sangin.

“Government forces and the Taliban will come to accommodations based on money, power or political convenience.”

But he insisted the 446 British troops killed in Afghanistan have not died in vain. He said: “They killed many extremists who would have threatened our country.”

Colonel Kemp said Afghan forces will still need help after the withdrawal of troops, adding: “I would expect US Special Forces and air power to continue to hit terrorist networks.”

Fears of a resurgence emerged in October when senior Taliban commander Qari Nasrullah told the Daily Mirror his #insurgents will make a comeback. Most British troops in Afghanistan have withdrawn to Camp Bastion in Helmand.
With our enemy the Taliban now patrolling with the Afghan National Army which the NATO countries have funded with billions of pounds (mostly US dollars actually), anyone who is not in denial can plainly see the fatal flaw of funding an Afghan army over which we have no political control.

Also, we've been funding the Taliban's masters - Pakistan with more billions in aid and Saudi Arabia with even more billions in oil purchases. So the Taliban have been well funded, if indirectly, by us too.

So the Taliban have not been short of money to spend on training up new recruits to replace their fighters we've killed on the battlefields of Afghanistan.

It is a military fundamental that you don't win a war by funding your enemy but rather you win a war by bankrupting your enemy, cutting off the resources the enemy needs to sustain its army.

So we've made the war in Afghanistan much more difficult to win because of the incompetent management of the war by our governments which we've seen over the years. The mission can now be seen to be failing and it will take thorough remedial measures to bring the mission back on course.

Part of the solution would to be re-organise the Afghan forces as I have already described to counter green-on-blue attacks by Afghans on our own soldiers.

We should establish a new auxiliary NATO force of Afghans recruited from the Afghan National Army but which would be commanded by our NATO generals and be under our political control.

We should stop funding the ANA.

Last edited by Peter Dow; 12-24-2013 at 01:16 PM.
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Old 12-30-2013   #34
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Afghanistan already has a structural problem with too many internal factions vying for power; that's what prompted the success of the Taliban, the first unified government for the country in 20 years, in the early 1990s. The Afghan government's credibility already suffers from overt political support from the West among the rural population (which accounts for ~75% of the population); how would formalizing a NATO-controlled Afghan paramilitary organization address of any of those problems?
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Old 12-30-2013   #35
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Afghanistan already has a structural problem with too many internal factions vying for power;
Firstly, thank you for joining this thread.

The warlords, yes; they are a problem. Perhaps though those warlords should not be described as entirely "internal" in that they have external sponsors, such as the international governments which fund the nominally "Afghan" state?

From the beginning of our involvement in Afghanistan, in 2001, the warlords were brought together as the Northern Alliance because in agreeing to cooperate under US oversight they received funding and air power support from the US forces which helped them take power from the Taliban.

So from day one of the West's intervention in Afghanistan, the warlords have not been a purely internal Afghan power, not solely deriving their power from the people of Afghanistan.

With the establishment of what we described as the "Afghan president" Karzai, he has maintained a similar sharing of power among the warlords by carving up the "Afghan" state power with the warlords, giving the warlords positions of power within the structures of state institutions such as the "Afghan National" Army and the "Afghan" police.

As the "Afghan" state has been, as its Northern Alliance predecessor was, sponsored with billions of dollars by the US and other allied governments then the "Afghan" state is not a purely internal-to-Afghanistan state; it has an external dimension to it too and the nature of this state is shaped by the wealth and power it derives from its external sponsors.

Thus the warlord factions of that externally funded "Afghan" state today are not purely "internal" to Afghanistan.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AmericanPride View Post
that's what prompted the success of the Taliban, the first unified government for the country in 20 years, in the early 1990s.
Back then of course the warlords we know today were probably more genuinely "internal" because they didn't have the external funding and support they have now.

The warlords then were at a disadvantage compared to the Taliban which was sponsored by the Pakistani military and that's why Pakistan's Taliban were able to conquer most of the country, but "unify" no because the warlords would have been forced to flee the country because the Taliban would not tolerate them under their rule.

The fact that the Taliban didn't unify the warlords meant that they were living lurking outside Afghanistan presumably just waiting for their opportunity to be empowered with a more powerful external sponsor, the US, in comparison to the Taliban's external sponsor, Pakistan.


Quote:
Originally Posted by AmericanPride View Post
The Afghan government's credibility already suffers from overt political support from the West among the rural population (which accounts for ~75% of the population);
The reason is obvious. The so-called "Afghan" state derives most of its power and wealth from its external sponsors so answers to them (or to "us" as the UK government is also funding the "Afghan" state I understand) or rather the "Afghan" state fiddles from us the maximum amount of funding it can since the strings of our control are weak or non-existent and will be no doubt be financing rules such as - "well if the Afghan state recruits X number of troops into the ANA we will give you X times Y dollars to spend on the ANA."

Therefore this is how we have created and guaranteed a corrupt "Afghan" state which looks primarily to maximise its revenue by fiddling our financing rules and with that money rigs elections and can rule irrespective of whether or not the "Afghan" state has the genuine support of the Afghan people and frankly many commentators doubt that and believe that the nominally unified "Afghan" state under Karzai would not hold together long without our support because its power is derived from our wealth, not from the political authority of Afghans.


Quote:
Originally Posted by AmericanPride View Post
how would formalizing a NATO-controlled Afghan paramilitary organization address of any of those problems?
Quite simply. In terms of funding forces with Afghans, we would fund only our auxiliary force and the accountability and political control would be to us in an open and honest way.

We would cease any direct funding of the Afghan state and any Afghan state which was able to stand alone would have to rely much more on the genuine political support and the taxes raised from the Afghan people because we wouldn't be propping it up with our money, that's for sure.

If and when the Afghan state truly speaks for Afghans because it can stand alone then we know when that truly representative Afghan state asks for practical help, not money, either from our auxiliary force which we fund or from our regular forces in country we'd be sure and the Afghan people would have more confidence that the help we were asked for was the help that the Afghan people genuinely wanted not what corrupted politicians and warlords wanted.

Now, the danger with that plan for an accountable and honest Afghan state is that other foreign powers - the either hostile or backstabbing states of Iran, Pakistan and Saudi Arabia, or perhaps even our very good friends India - might be tempted to do as we had been doing - directly fund the Afghan state and corrupt it in accordance with their financing rules or even with their direct orders.

We'd have to be suspicious of requests from a stand-alone Afghan state which did not seem to accord with the wishes and interests of Afghans but seemed more to be in the interests of foreign governments. Not that in the case of our very good friends India, any Indian-sponsored Afghan government would be expected to be hostile to our interests but nevertheless it would not serve the Afghans to have their state bought by India any more than it serves their interests to have their state bought by us.

That danger noted, it is a better scheme because for every penny or cent we spend on Afghanistan we are institutionally able to make our own judgements and decisions about whether the power we were asked by the Afghan state to use was being used according to the wishes and in the interests of the people of Afghanistan.

Additional

In addition, the needs of our forces in Afghanistan, even if we have an agreement with the Afghan state to remain, and I'd be content with reverting to an occupation, with no formal permission signed by an Afghan president, no "Bilateral Security Agreement" (BSA) nor "Status Of Forces Agreement" (SOFA) signed, even with a formal agreement to remain in Afghanistan, our forces' needs are different and our priorities different from those of any Afghan state.

For example, our forces in Afghanistan have an interest in confronting Pakistan over its sponsoring of the Taliban. The Afghan state may wish to be less confrontational in its approach to the Taliban and Pakistan, leaving us to fight them both ourselves.

For example, we may need to use our auxiliary Afghan force to help to defend our bases and supply lines to and between our bases. That's never going to be a priority for the Afghan state.

Misunderstanding

It is possible to misunderstand that in the absence of a BSA or SOFA signed that might be taken to imply that this would allow somehow the officers of the Afghan state to arrest our forces and subject them to Afghan national justice.

No, that's a misunderstanding which shows only how subservient the international political class has become firstly to Maliki in Iraq and now Karzai in Afghanistan.

If the Afghan national forces come to arrest our troops, we don't submit. We arrest them; if needs be we point our guns at them; if needs be we shoot them; if needs be we declare war on the Afghan state. It's an occupation so we don't need a damn BSA or SOFA. Understand yet?

Well even if you understand you can be sure that US Secretary of State John Kerry and Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel have simply no comprehension of what it means not to have their BSA signed. They are out of their depth and should be replaced by the president.

Last edited by Peter Dow; 12-30-2013 at 09:56 PM.
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Old 01-23-2014   #36
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Talking NATO tribute video to Pakistan Air Force: Don't Stop Me Now!

BBC: Pakistan jets bomb Taliban positions in North Waziristan (YouTube)

Quote:
Washington Post:
Deadly Pakistani airstrikes target militants believed responsible for recent attacks

By Haq Nawaz Khan and Tim Craig, Published: January 21

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan — Pakistan’s military launched airstrikes in its restive tribal areas on Tuesday, killing 40 suspected militants, in an attempt to combat terrorist attacks that are escalating across the country.

Tribal elders, speaking on the condition of anonymity because they feared reprisal from militants, said the strikes appeared more accurate than previous such efforts.

The local elders said that the home of Adnan Rashid, a senior Taliban commander, was hit and his family members were injured, but that he escaped unhurt. Another strike, on al-Noor Mosque in the village of Essorhi, killed 15 people — all reportedly militants, according to the elders.

“So this time the army gunships and jet fighters are accurately targeting the militants,” one elder from the town of Mir Ali said in a phone interview.

The strikes, among the heaviest bombardments of the tribal areas in several years, were conducted in the aftermath of a suicide bombing Sunday that killed 20 Pakistani soldiers. On Monday, 13 people were killed in a blast at a market near army headquarters in Rawalpindi. And Tuesday, three people administering polio vaccinations were fatally shot in Karachi, and at least 20 Shiite pilgrims were killed when an explosion tore through their bus in the country’s southwest.

The military airstrikes began late Monday over a troubled area of North Waziristan, a hotbed for Pakistani and foreign militants near the Afghan border. According to local officials and the Reuters news service, it was the first time the military had carried out airstrikes in North Waziristan since a cease-fire deal with local Taliban leaders in 2007.

Military officials said those killed in the strikes included militants suspected of carrying out a bombing in September that killed 85 people at a church in the northwestern city of Peshawar.

Although some of the elders interviewed said that many of those killed were Taliban militants, area residents said there also were numerous civilian casualties. They said they and their families were fleeing the area because they feared for their safety.

“Can you hear the noise of the gunships? They are just over our heads,” Haji Jamaluddin, a resident, told Reuters by phone. “Everyone in the village is running around with children and women, looking for a safe place to hide.”

The strikes, which followed smaller military operations in tribal areas in recent weeks, could be a sign that Pakistan’s new army chief, Gen. Raheel Sharif, plans to take a harder line against militants. Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif appointed him in late November to head the country’s nuclear-armed, 550,000-member military. The two men share a last name but are not related.

The prime minister has been pushing to hold peace talks with the Pakistani Taliban, which has waged a decade-long insurgency that has claimed thousands of lives. But those talks have yet to materialize. In the meantime, former military officials say, the country’s top generals — faced with rising violence — have been pushing for more decisive action.
NATO tribute to Pakistan Air Force: "Don't Stop Me Now!" (YouTube)

Quote:
A friend of NATO, the AfPak Mission presents a tribute to the Pakistan Air Force in recognition of air strikes against the Taliban, enemy of mankind, from January 2014 - "Don't stop me now!"

No peace with the Taliban.
The only "good" Taliban is a dead Taliban.
Way to go Pakistan!
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Old 01-23-2014   #37
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Cool Pentagon's proposal for a 10,000 minimum force

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wall Street Journal
Wall Street Journal: U.S. Military Proposal Seeks Shorter Afghan Stay

U.S. military leaders have presented the White House with a plan that would keep 10,000 U.S. troops in Afghanistan after 2014

WASHINGTON—U.S. military leaders have presented the White House with a plan that would keep 10,000 U.S. troops in Afghanistan after 2014, but then start drawing the force down to nearly zero by the end of President Barack Obama's term, according to senior officials.

The request reflects a far shorter time frame for a U.S. military presence in Afghanistan than commanders had previously envisaged after the current international mission ends this year. The new approach is intended to buy the U.S. military time to advise and train the Afghan army but still allow Mr. Obama to leave office saying he ended America's longest war, the officials said.

Military leaders told Mr. Obama that if he rejects the 10,000-troop option, then it would be best to withdraw nearly all military personnel at the end of this year because a smaller troop presence wouldn't offer adequate protection to U.S. personnel, said officials involved in the discussions.

The Pentagon's approach, discussed in White House National Security Council meetings last week, encountered pointed questions from some NSC officials who asked what difference 10,000 U.S. troops would make on such a temporary basis, U.S. officials said.

Vice President Joe Biden has been a leading skeptic within the administration about keeping troops in Afghanistan to train and advise Afghan forces after 2014, officials said.

A senior administration official declined to characterize Mr. Biden's position on the new Pentagon proposal, saying only that he "has asked questions and listened carefully to presentations" about possible troop levels. The official said Mr. Biden will make his recommendation to Mr. Obama "at the appropriate time."

Mr. Biden has advocated deploying special operations forces to Afghanistan for counterterrorism missions, officials said.

Afghan officials in Washington didn't immediately respond to requests for comment on the new Pentagon proposal.

As an important boost to the request, the 10,000-troop proposal has the backing of intelligence agencies and the State Department. They have told the White House that their activities on the ground inside Afghanistan will depend on whether the Pentagon gets the troops it says it needs to secure bases where military advisers, spies and diplomats would do their work.

Senior U.S. officials called it a "binary" proposal, meaning the Pentagon wants one troop level or the other, not a midpoint that they said will be too small to protect deployments and support the goals of the mission.

Defense and intelligence officials who disagree with Mr. Biden's approach said any future special operations force in Afghanistan will be of limited utility without a robust intelligence network to track militants and guide "kill teams" to their targets.

"To have an intelligence network, you have to have a footprint, and to have a footprint, you have to have force protection," said one senior U.S. official involved in the discussions.

Currently, there are about 37,500 U.S. troops in Afghanistan and another 19,000 international forces. The U.S. is scheduled to draw down to 32,000 forces by the end of February.
Regarding the Pentagon's proposal for a MINIMUM of 10,000 troops in Afghanistan.

One does require more troops to keep an airbridge (that is to say a military base supplied only by air, with airfields, runways etc) open vs all foes.

20,000 French troops proved to be insufficient when in 1954 they were guarding one airbridge military base at Dien Bien Phu, Vietnam when the French base was overrun by the Viet Minh.


Wikipedia: Battle of Dien Bien Phu

If you have only one large base then fewer troops are required. You need to occupy a big area to defend the landing and takeoff fight paths vs enemy ground-to-air missiles and anti-aircraft gun-fire.

The area occupied by the French at Dien Bien Phu proved to be too small at only 2 x 5 miles.

Occupying a base area of at least 20 x 20 miles would be better, more practical to defend.

One does need to defend a large perimeter to keep the enemy guns out of range of the base's runways.

Typically 1000 guards are required to defend one 1 base in routine circumstances to defend the perimeter defences alone.

If the Taliban are surged massively, perhaps supported by regular troops of Pakistan, Iran or even Afghanistan, and the enemy army brings artillery to bear and concentrates a sustained attack on one base, as did the Viet Minh at Dien Bien Phu then the base would need 10,000 guards to defend the base and win the battle.

Fewer troops are required if engineers build impenetrable wide perimeter defences, meaning vehicle barriers anti-tank minefields, infantry barriers, barbed wire, anti-personnel mine-fields - to a mine field thickness of 2 miles all around the base, and that could be 40 miles or more of a perimeter circumference to build - and the perimeter watched over 24/7 by guards in hardened machine gun positions.

For Afghanistan, if I only had 10,000 troops to deploy then I wouldn't have enough for the proposed 9 bases.

Since each base would require 1000 guards in routine circumstances then 9 bases would require 9 x 1000 = 9000 troops just to guard the 9 bases, which would only leave me 1000 troops for operations outside the bases.

With only 10,000 troops I'd establish no more than 5 bases which would need 5 x 1000 = 5000 troops to guard the bases and leave 5000 troops for operations outside the bases, an average of 2000 troops per base.

In the event of a sustained assault as per Dien Bein Phu, if I could fly in reinforcement troops from reserves outside Afghanistan to the base under attack, I would fly in an additional 8000 troops to each base that came under a sustained attack.

If there were no troops available to fly in to reinforce the attacked bases then I would abandon some of the 5 bases, if necessary all but one, redeploying the troops from abandoned bases so that I had enough troops to defend the fewer remaining bases.
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Old 02-09-2014   #38
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Post Obama's 3 options for Afghanistan fight to win, retreat, surrender

Obama's 3 options for Afghanistan
  1. Fight to win,
  2. Retreat,
  3. Surrender

Quote:
Obama Weighs All Afghanistan Options in Meeting Generals
Bloomberg Politics
By Gopal Ratnam and David Lerman Feb 4, 2014 7:54 PM GM

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-0...-generals.html

The Obama administration is considering its options to withdraw some or all U.S. forces from Afghanistan as time runs out for a new security agreement, the chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee said.

“They’re planning for all options,” Senator Carl Levin, a Michigan Democrat, said after a closed-door briefing today with defense officials at the Capitol. “They have to.”
1. Fight to win

See above

2. Retreat
Americans dropping dead to terrorist attacks after 'Drop-Dead Date'

Quote:
‘Drop-Dead Date’

Several senators today said they’ve concluded that Karzai will never sign the agreement and are looking past him toward a successor. Levin said waiting for the next president would give the U.S. and NATO allies enough time to plan for a limited military presence after this year.

Really, the drop-dead date is the next president,” said Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, a Republican member of the Armed Services Committee.

American city nuked after the so-called 'Drop-Dead Date'

What Senator Lindsey Graham doesn't realise is that he and President Obama if they agree with a "drop-dead date" policy may be condemning Americans in American cities to be the ones who are dropping dead after the 'drop-dead date'.

Why should American civilians in cities like New York be the ones to drop dead?

That's not what Senator Graham has in mind. He thinks the ones to drop dead would be Afghans. Not so. It would be Americans.

How could this be?

Well for example, if the Pakistani military give a nuclear weapon to an Al-Qaeda terrorist to set off in an American city then it will be American civilians dropping dead from a nuclear blast.

Plenty of Americans dropped dead on 9/11.

Plenty of Americans would drop dead in a terrorist nuclear attack on an American city.

Now that is the danger that Senator Graham and his "drop-dead date" policy are heading Americans into.

So before anyone thinks that a "drop dead date" policy is clever and a good sound bite then we first need to look at why the danger is to American civilians in American cities dropping dead.

Senator Graham is the Senator from South Carolina and the largest metro in that state is Greenville with a population of more than 800,000.

Now if Greenville is unlucky and Al-Qaeda terrorists choose Greenville to set off a terrorist nuclear bomb in then very many of those 800,000 American citizens of Greenville will be dropping dead.

Now I am sure that Senator Graham does not have in mind the good citizens of Greenville would be the ones to be dropping dead after his "drop-dead date" policy had gone in to operation.

Nevertheless Senator Graham and other Senators really ought to think of that scenario or some other American metro being destroyed by a terrorist nuclear weapon before he goes to the media boasting about his "drop-dead date" policy.

Someone needs to explain to the good Senator that all those in the Oval Office who think a "drop-dead date" is a good policy may be condemning American civilians in American cities to be dropping dead some time after their much flaunted "drop-dead date".

Why?

Because if we pull our forces out of Afghanistan, retreat, after a "drop-dead Date" then the Pakistani military will believe that their terrorists are winning the war on terror, that the US is weak and on the retreat, doesn't have the will to win, will pay billions of dollars to Pakistan and then go home.

The Pakistani military will see that as a green light to intensify terrorist attacks in America with which to make further blackmail and extortion demands on the USA.


The Pakistani military got $10 billion in military aid after 9/11 and if they get away with that, if the USA retreats from Pakistan having done nothing but give money to the USA's enemies in the Pakistani military then the next terrorist attack will be bigger and more damaging with a view to get even more than $10 billion.

I do not know how much the Pakistani military will be looking to get from the USA after their nuclear attack on an American city but I would expect that they would be expecting a great deal more than $10 billion - maybe $100 billion or more. I don't know.

But if the USA is weak and paying up to terrorists then they will terrorise the USA even more to get as much money as they can get.

We need to keep the Afghan bases to wage war on our enemies in Afghanistan and Pakistan - both the terrorists sponsored by the ISI of the Pakistani military and we need to wage war on the ISI itself and all Pakistani generals and former generals who are dictating policy to sponsor terrorism.

We need to keep the Afghan bases without paying Afghanistan anything or giving any ground whatsoever in the war on terror.

Keep the bases as an act of war against our enemies in Afghanistan and Pakistan.

That is the best way to be make sure that our enemies in Pakistan know that we are not retreating, that we are still at war with our enemies in Pakistan and that we will hold them accountable one day for 9/11 and certainly even more so if there are any further big terrorist attacks on the USA like that.

We must teach Pakistan accountability for their terrorists and if we withdraw our forces after a drop dead date then Pakistan will have escaped accountability for 9/11 and our enemies in Pakistan will believe that they can escape accountability for another such massive terrorist attack on America, perhaps next time with nuclear weapons.

So don't use the phrase "drop-dead date" except to explain how stupid and dangerous such a policy is because it will be Americans dropping dead.

Don't abandon our Afghan bases. Keep them even if the next Afghan president doesn't sign the BSA.

That's the way to win the war on terror.

Retreating after a 'drop-dead date' is not the way to win.

3. Surrender
Obama going soft on war on Al Qaeda

Quote:
WSJ: U.S. to Curb Pakistan Drone Program

The CIA has long added new targets to a longer "kill list" on a rolling basis as old targets are hit.

Now, U.S. officials say, the "kill list" is not self-replenishing, a change long sought by Islamabad. "By taking one off, we're not automatically putting one on," a senior U.S. official said. As a result, the number of targets on the list are decreasing as the CIA's drones focus on a more limited number of high-level targets that "will enable us to conclude the program," the official said.
And here are the headlines of the next few years (maybe)
  • US stops adding al Qaeda leaders to 'kill list'
  • US announces peace talks with Al-Qaeda.
  • US president signs peace treaty with Al-Qaeda.
  • Pentagon purges military to quell dissent against Al-Qaeda treaty.
  • Rump US military stages joint exercises with Al-Qaeda.
  • Obama appointed senior Al-Qaeda commander in America.
  • US military joins Al-Qaeda renamed as "Al-Qaeda in America".
  • Al-Qaeda in America occupies Congress and the Supreme court.
  • US Congress members and Supreme Court judges beheaded.
  • Al-Qaeda in America defeats National Rifle Association in last stand.
  • Al-Qaeda declares Sharia Law in America.
  • Barack Obama gets his 2nd Nobel Peace Prize.
Yes he can?

Last edited by Peter Dow; 02-09-2014 at 01:37 AM.
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Old 03-21-2014   #39
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Default What Pakistan Knew About Bin Laden

Quote:
Originally Posted by The New York Times
What Pakistan Knew About Bin Laden
By CARLOTTA GALL. MARCH 19, 2014
...

Soon after the Navy SEAL raid on Bin Laden’s house, a Pakistani official told me that the United States had direct evidence that the ISI chief, Lt. Gen. Ahmed Shuja Pasha, knew of Bin Laden’s presence in Abbottabad.

Pakistani ISI chief "knew of Bin Laden's presence in Abbottabad"
Lieutenant General Ahmed Shuja Pasha, was the Director-General of the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), Pakistan's main intelligence service, from October 2008 until March 2012.


Quote:
The information came from a senior United States official, and I guessed that the Americans had intercepted a phone call of Pasha’s or one about him in the days after the raid. “He knew of Osama’s whereabouts, yes,” the Pakistani official told me. The official was surprised to learn this and said the Americans were even more so. Pasha had been an energetic opponent of the Taliban and an open and cooperative counterpart for the Americans at the ISI. “Pasha was always their blue-eyed boy,” the official said. But in the weeks and months after the raid, Pasha and the ISI press office strenuously denied that they had any knowledge of Bin Laden’s presence in Abbottabad.

Colleagues at The Times began questioning officials in Washington about which high-ranking officials in Pakistan might also have been aware of Bin Laden’s whereabouts, but everyone suddenly clammed up. It was as if a decision had been made to contain the damage to the relationship between the two governments. “There’s no smoking gun,” officials in the Obama administration began to say.

The haul of handwritten notes, letters, computer files and other information collected from Bin Laden’s house during the raid suggested otherwise, however. It revealed regular correspondence between Bin Laden and a string of militant leaders who must have known he was living in Pakistan, including Hafiz Muhammad Saeed, the founder of Lashkar-e-Taiba, a pro-Kashmiri group that has also been active in Afghanistan, and Mullah Omar of the Taliban. Saeed and Omar are two of the ISI’s most important and loyal militant leaders. Both are protected by the agency. Both cooperate closely with it, restraining their followers from attacking the Pakistani state and coordinating with Pakistan’s greater strategic plans. Any correspondence the two men had with Bin Laden would probably have been known to their ISI handlers.

...

According to one inside source, the ISI actually ran a special desk assigned to handle Bin Laden. It was operated independently, led by an officer who made his own decisions and did not report to a superior. He handled only one person: Bin Laden. I was sitting at an outdoor cafe when I learned this, and I remember gasping, though quietly so as not to draw attention. (Two former senior American officials later told me that the information was consistent with their own conclusions.) This was what Afghans knew, and Taliban fighters had told me, but finally someone on the inside was admitting it. The desk was wholly deniable by virtually everyone at the ISI — such is how supersecret intelligence units operate — but the top military bosses knew about it, I was told.

America’s failure to fully understand and actively confront Pakistan on its support and export of terrorism is one of the primary reasons President Karzai has become so disillusioned with the United States. As American and NATO troops prepare to withdraw from Afghanistan by the end of this year, the Pakistani military and its Taliban proxy forces lie in wait, as much a threat as any that existed in 2001.
Carlotta Gall's excellent article is consistent with the findings of the BBC's Panorama documentary "SECRET PAKISTAN" (2011).

The buck stops with the President, Obama. Why is Obama turning a blind eye to the enemy rooted in the Pakistani military?

This is not Obama, the community organizer, representing the interests of the American communities threatened by a Pakistani nuclear bomb which the ISI could give, claiming "theft", to their Al Qaeda terrorists for a devastating attack on the US homeland.

This is Obama, the peace-prize winner, wishing a legacy of "war is over", and welcoming advice to surrender Afghanistan to the Pakistani military from Pakistan's woman inside the White House, Robin Raphel.

This is Obama, the defamation lawyer, denying the incompetence of his Secretaries of Defense - Gates, Panetta & Hagel - and their Pentagon advisers who have founded their failing Afghan strategy on co-operation with the treacherous Pakistani military, depending on Pakistan's roads and air-space for US and NATO logistics purposes but at the price of taking off the table the winning Afghan and war on terror strategy of regime-change of Pakistan via policies of ultimatums, sanctions and war under the Bush Doctrine to root out the generals and former generals comprising the Pakistani military dictatorship which continues to sponsor jihadi terrorism and imperialism behind the scenes of an elected but relatively powerless government of Pakistan.
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Old 03-21-2014   #40
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This thread has been locked whilst a review is conducted. The latest post refers to a NYT report, this is being discussed on the main thread on working with Pakistan.
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