Friday, 15 October 2010

A Change of Plan

Apart from the tragic death of aid worker Linda Norgrove, there has been very little mention of Afghanistan from our politicians.  David Cameron hasn't uttered the words 'war cabinet' since his first week in office.

There's been much talk about impending Strategic Defence and Security Review.  That's the review in which our defence and security will be decided by how much we can afford to pay rather than do an in-depth study of what we require for our safety and then decide how we fund it.  What is already evident is that our security may well be compromised, particularly since George Osborne decided the cost of the replacement Trident had to be included in the defence budget.

To find information about our present situation in Afghanistan I have to look outside the UK and it wasn't too surprising to discover an article, by Fred Kaplan, in which he states:

Officials say a shift in U.S. war strategy has begun to take place in Afghanistan, away from classic counterinsurgency (protecting the population, providing basic services, promoting good government) and toward the traditional business of killing and capturing bad guys.

So the strategy has changed again and counterinsurgency has taken a back seat while there has been a huge increase, just in the last three months, of military attacks.  It is now calculated, even by many COIN advocates, that the process would take too long - and be too corrupted by Afghan politics - to work in any practical sense.  In the US, the time needed for success through a COIN campaign alone - another six to ten years or more the strategy's most avid supporters estimate - is seen as politically unsustainable.

Part of the failure of COIN is that it is only successful when it is supported by the host government.  Karzai's government is so distrusted by its own people - and so incompetent at, on uninterested in, providing services - that it can't really serve as a reliable partner in a COIN campaign.

As our armed forces are under the command of Gen. Petraeus, they will also be aware that COIN is ineffective and progress is exceptionally slow.  Is that why David Cameron is reluctant to mention the words 'Afghanistan' and 'progress' in the same sentence?

To quote Kaplan 'The path to the end of this war is suddenly a bit clearer, but how this thing ends and what happens afterward remains as murky as ever'.  How true.



Oldrightie said...

It is so the history of Afghanistan. As the occupying power stalls and loses any credibility, the Taliban steadily gain the upperhand. The only thing keeping us there are the NWO financial "investments" led by the Rothschilds. Naturally their plan B is to sign up the Taliban for when they resume a revengeful and murderous regime in the model of Pol Pot and North Vietnam.

Billy said...


Apparently that is what they are up to as well trying to negotiate with the Taliban for peace while acting as if they are tough and winning with all this attack stuff that has got them nowhere to date.

John said...

We now have Mrs Clinton 'worried' that our cuts will damage NATO credibility. Given the way MOD purchases stuff (Mr Top Shop's report etc) such that vast sums are wasted we will not get the full bang for our buck anyway. Afg is a lost cause just as so often in past wars. The new plan to kill off the baddies will not work given the size and nature of the country. We have the cabability to turn much of the place into rubble but the world would rebel at such tactics which leaves the initiative to the dissidents. I feel the solution is for the coalition to set a firm date for withdrawal as did the Russians and stick to it. Not allow the American generals to defy their President. We then set our forces up as a home defence provider. Anyone outside UK mainland that might need help is on their own - give them a map to the UN. Anyone attacks us - individually as 7/7 or as a nation - is attacked with maximum force from Day 1.
If we are not careful in the US alliance we will just move the troops from Sangin to Tehran. Our kids will end up born with a stick of chewing gum in their mouth.

RMcGeddon said...

" To find information about our present situation in Afghanistan I have to look outside the UK"

Yes there seems to be a secret ban on proper reporting of the war. Apart from 'Eureferendum' and 'Defence of the Realm' blogs.

It's similar with the global warming scam. No proper investigations due to lazy journalism and vested interests.
A weird twist in the Jim Devine affair that introduces Fiona Fox (pro global warming scam journalist ). It was her who allegedly made the hoax call that initiated Devine's secreatry to get sacked.

Ms Fox is very sanctimonious about ethics of course..

Leaving the poor secretary to suffer for 2 1/2 years while knowing she is innocent isn't very ethical.


Smoking Hot said...

For the soldiers and the people

subrosa said...

A perfectly feasible scenario OR. I'm sure you'll be proved very near the mark.

subrosa said...

Yes John, I heard that after I wrote this post. What has our defence spending to do with her?

But we're not being careful, that's the problem. We're being led by the nose and trotting along nicely.

subrosa said...

Yes I've just read about that in the Scotsman RM. It appears Devine can't defend at the tribunal because he allowed the time to elapse. Dreadful behaviour from him what he put the woman through, by all accounts.

subrosa said...

A superb clip that is Smoking Hot. Many thanks.

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