The Af-Pak Train Wreck

Discussion in 'Politics' started by KenH, Dec 14, 2009.

  1. KenH

    KenH
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    The Af-Pak Train Wreck

    Posted By Conn Hallinan on December 13, 2009

    When President Barack Obama laid out his plan for winning the war in Afghanistan, behind him stood an army of ghosts: Greeks, Mongols, Buddhists, British, and Russians, all whom had almost the same illusions as the current resident of the Oval Office about Central Asia. The first four armies are dust. But there are Russian survivors of the 1979-89 war that ended up killing 15,000 Soviets and hundreds of thousands of Afghans as well as virtually wrecking Moscow’s economy.

    One is retired Gen. Igor Rodionov, commander of the Soviet’s 120,000-man 40th Army that fought for 10 years to defeat the Afghan insurgents. In a recent interview with Charles Clover of the Financial Times, he made an observation that exactly sums up the president’s deeply flawed strategy: “Everything has already been tried.”

    ...

    Looking back at years of blood and defeat, Gen. Rodionov put his finger on the fundamental flaw in Obama’s escalation: “They [the U.S. and its allies] have to understand that there is no way for them to succeed militarily. … It is a political problem which we utterly failed to grasp with our military mindset.”

    That misunderstanding could become the epitaph for a presidency.

    - more at http://original.antiwar.com/hallinan/2009/12/13/the-af-pak-train-wreck/print/
     

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