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Afghanistan on the brink? « Previous | |Next »
February 28, 2009

There's a lot being said about Afghanistan these days especially about whether to give up on democracy in favor of counter-terrorism alone, the role of Pakistan in fighting counterinsurgency, and NATO allies not all sharing U.S. priorities.

According to this Centre for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) report the fundamental problem in Afghanistan is that the Afghan government, the United States, NATO, the United Nations, and other key allies have not agreed on a common strategy for the country.

This is the testimony of Martin Strmecki to the Senate Armed Services Committee Hearing on Strategic Options in Afghanistan and Pakistan.

It gives a good insight into US thinking on Afghanistan. The main point of Marin Strmecki's testimony is that the United States cannot lower its sights in Afghanistan. It must fully resource a counterinsurgency strategy that integrates security, development, and good governance to "harden" the Afghan state, while peeling away the outer layers of the insurgency to isolate the hard core. The US can then increasingly pass that effort off to its Afghan partners over time. That's how the US should define success, and it's an "attainable goal."

| Posted by Gary Sauer-Thompson at 1:58 PM | | Comments (2)


Sounds an awful lot like the US goals for Iraq.

The tragedy currently unfolding in Pakistan is incredibly sad, and another consequence of Bush's obsession with Iraq and failure in Afghanistan.

Al Qaida have nothing on the Taliban, but while Bush was holding his mad hatter's tea party in Iraq for no good reason, the Taliban have been beavering away at regaining Afghanistan and now Pakistan. It's an epic fail in the true meaning of the word epic.



Isn't it ironic that the US, with it's recent history of using deadly force around the globe as it pleases, insists on doing so with total impunity?

Has any superpower in history ever remained utterly immune from attack?