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Thread: Afghanistan Now

  1. #1
    Hall of Fame Member Goughy's Avatar
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    Afghanistan Now

    Interesting article

    It is a war that is long running, it is a war that Obama pledges to win yet there are no clear objectives.

    I have issues with the American raids (and Obama supported) over the border into sovereign Pakistan territory but given the 'enemy' crosses the border at will, the area is virtually lawless and as the 'enemy' has safehavens it is impossible to confront them any other way.

    Many locals are corrupt and making strategic decisions difficult.

    Basically there is no focus or clearly defined aim.

    Recipe for lots of young guys dying and achieving nothing.
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    Hall of Fame Member Goughy's Avatar
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    The reason I mention Obama is that after 8 crazy years of hawkish neo-Cons I dont think he will be that different and he is the future. Certainly not as different as many would have hoped judging by his stated policy aims.

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    Soutie Langeveldt's Avatar
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    It's always angered me that we have anything to do with events there in the first place.. Just another pointless incursion into the Muslim World which puts everyone in slightly more danger.. And yeah, how can you win a war without a tangible enemy?
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    Cricket Web: All-Time Legend Top_Cat's Avatar
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    What's really funny is that the US regularly lampoons the USSR for being stupid enough to fight a war there. At least the Russian offensive had strategic value (not that it absolves them that much....).
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    Hall of Fame Member Goughy's Avatar
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    I dont think the logic of going into Afghanistan can be criticised anywhere close to the level Iraq can.

    After 9/11 they had 3 (pretty) legitimate invasion aims to capture Osama bin Laden, destroy al-Qaeda, and remove the Taliban regime which had provided support and safe harbor to al-Qaeda.

    To that end they have achieved 1.5 out of 3. al-Qaeda exists but in a far more fractured and less cohesive and dangerous way.

    This also has probably made the world safer. It is the Iraq war that pissed away all good intentions and caused a considerable backlash.

    The problem in Afghanistan (and Iraq) was never the invasion but the nation building and end game strategy.

    Phase 1 was a success but each phase is getting more difficult without an end in sight.

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    International 12th Man Shaggy Alfresco's Avatar
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    What a ridiculous article. It's title is "the aimless war", yet it tells you what the aim is 8 paragraphs in.

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    Cricket Web: All-Time Legend Top_Cat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shaggy Alfresco View Post
    What a ridiculous article. It's title is "the aimless war", yet it tells you what the aim is 8 paragraphs in.
    AWTA, the article is pretty amateurish.

    Before he sends another U.S. soldier off to die or be maimed in Afghanistan, President-elect Obama needs to deliver the blunt message to the leaders of Pakistan and Afghanistan that we will no longer tolerate their complicity in the deaths of Americans and our allies, a slaughter that began on the morning of Sept. 11, 2001, and continues to this day.
    Yeah good luck with that.

    Love the implication that only now has the US had enough.

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    Cricket Web: All-Time Legend Uppercut's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Goughy View Post
    The reason I mention Obama is that after 8 crazy years of hawkish neo-Cons I dont think he will be that different and he is the future. Certainly not as different as many would have hoped judging by his stated policy aims.
    Quote Originally Posted by Goughy View Post
    I dont think the logic of going into Afghanistan can be criticised anywhere close to the level Iraq can.

    After 9/11 they had 3 (pretty) legitimate invasion aims to capture Osama bin Laden, destroy al-Qaeda, and remove the Taliban regime which had provided support and safe harbor to al-Qaeda.

    To that end they have achieved 1.5 out of 3. al-Qaeda exists but in a far more fractured and less cohesive and dangerous way.

    This also has probably made the world safer. It is the Iraq war that pissed away all good intentions and caused a considerable backlash.

    The problem in Afghanistan (and Iraq) was never the invasion but the nation building and end game strategy.

    Phase 1 was a success but each phase is getting more difficult without an end in sight.
    The problem in Iraq, though, is that there's not a great deal Obama can do to change things. He can't withdraw, the place would become a chaotic, militant, Islamic, anti-American country, probably heavily under the influence of hostile neighbours. He can introduce new military policies but they would take a long time to make a difference, while public opinion turns slowly against him for the lack of results.

    One journalist a few years ago summed up the situation well. "It's like sitting on the back of a rabid wolf holding it by the ears. Not a pleasant place to be but you certainly don't want to let go."
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    International 12th Man Shaggy Alfresco's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Langeveldt View Post
    It's always angered me that we have anything to do with events there in the first place.. Just another pointless incursion into the Muslim World which puts everyone in slightly more danger.. And yeah, how can you win a war without a tangible enemy?
    The aim is perfectly tangible. What the problem is, is that since the Iraq war is that Afghanistan saw less troops, and crucially a lot less money. Four years ago the war was nearly won and the Taliban were on the brink, the war can definitely be won again because now we're pulling out of Iraq and putting investment back in Afghanistan.

    And we are still in Afghanistan because without a functioning central government Al Qaeda will just return and be able to plan attacks at will again. Pulling out without a functioning government committed to fighting terrorism in place may lead to a collapse of Pakistan itself, and certainly a defeat in the War on Terror.

  10. #10
    International 12th Man Shaggy Alfresco's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Uppercut View Post
    The problem in Iraq, though, is that there's not a great deal Obama can do to change things. He can't withdraw, the place would become a chaotic, militant, Islamic, anti-American country, probably heavily under the influence of hostile neighbours."
    Nah, that's what we're doing at the moment. Iraq's gotten it's act together thanks to the Anbar Awakening, there's been a recent upsurge in violence but I'm...cautiously optimistic that Iraq will be fine, at least for the moment.

    Quote Originally Posted by Uppercut View Post
    One journalist a few years ago summed up the situation well. "It's like sitting on the back of a rabid wolf holding it by the ears. Not a pleasant place to be but you certainly don't want to let go."
    A few years ago was 2005. A lot has changed since then.

  11. #11
    Hall of Fame Member Goughy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Uppercut View Post
    The problem in Iraq, though, is that there's not a great deal Obama can do to change things. He can't withdraw, the place would become a chaotic, militant, Islamic, anti-American country, probably heavily under the influence of hostile neighbours. He can introduce new military policies but they would take a long time to make a difference, while public opinion turns slowly against him for the lack of results.

    One journalist a few years ago summed up the situation well. "It's like sitting on the back of a rabid wolf holding it by the ears. Not a pleasant place to be but you certainly don't want to let go."
    Iraq is a mess that should never have been entered. Afghanistan had to be dealt with. The problem is that Afghanistan needs more time and effort. Afghanistan needs to be the primary focus at the moment.

    I agree that Obama faces grave problems in Iraq which is why his idea of setting a timeline to leave US troops is unworkable and a terrible policy.

    As for the 'aimless' aspect of the article title, I think it clearly means that the troops are 'aimless' as they are unable to pursue military obectives due to one wall or another. When primary aims are not possible then secondary and aimless missions are followed. It is aimless as they cant do what they want to do and are stuck there thinking "what the **** should we do now?"
    Last edited by Goughy; 11-12-2008 at 04:11 PM.

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    Cricket Web: All-Time Legend Top_Cat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shaggy Alfresco View Post
    And we are still in Afghanistan because without a functioning central government Al Qaeda will just return and be able to plan attacks at will again. Pulling out without a functioning government committed to fighting terrorism in place may lead to a collapse of Pakistan itself, and certainly a defeat in the War on Terror.
    How is that not going to happen anyway? You have the Taleban, still enjoying plenty of popular support, in a friendly neighbouring essentially biding their time, waiting for when the US loses the stomach for the fight and leaves, similar in Iraq. Any government formed in either country has a fairly strong chance of being unworkable, the result is a regression to tribal/cabal loyalties, might is right and the strongest and most violent faction wins. The US has essentially jumped into what's rapidly turned into a civil war in each country, they're just holding back the bullies shaping up to each other and taking hits themselves from both sides because they're getting in the way of the 'real' fight.

    The US will leave both countries, leaving the most moneyed-up well-connected groups to take power, the others fighting for the scraps. In other words, the more things chance, the more they'll stay how they were before. Just who will win is the only thing in dispute.

  13. #13
    Cricket Web: All-Time Legend Uppercut's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shaggy Alfresco View Post
    Nah, that's what we're doing at the moment. Iraq's gotten it's act together thanks to the Anbar Awakening, there's been a recent upsurge in violence but I'm...cautiously optimistic that Iraq will be fine, at least for the moment.



    A few years ago was 2005. A lot has changed since then.
    I'm much less hopeful about the place. Is there any precedent of a major regime change bringing about a stable country within five years? There certainly aren't many. How confident are you in the Awakening troops? I'd say they're 100% guaranteed to form violent splinter groups at some stage.

    My knowledge of the particular situation is limited tstl though, and you may well be right. I certainly hope so.

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    State 12th Man godofcricket's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Goughy View Post
    I dont think the logic of going into Afghanistan can be criticised anywhere close to the level Iraq can.

    After 9/11 they had 3 (pretty) legitimate invasion aims to capture Osama bin Laden, destroy al-Qaeda, and remove the Taliban regime which had provided support and safe harbor to al-Qaeda.

    To that end they have achieved 1.5 out of 3. al-Qaeda exists but in a far more fractured and less cohesive and dangerous way.

    This also has probably made the world safer. It is the Iraq war that pissed away all good intentions and caused a considerable backlash.

    The problem in Afghanistan (and Iraq) was never the invasion but the nation building and end game strategy.

    Phase 1 was a success but each phase is getting more difficult without an end in sight.
    I completely disagree with you here. I think the situation in iraq and afghanitan is a no-win battle for the US, People who think Taliban or alqaeda has weekend are completely wrong since there is not just one enemy that the US is facing at the moment, there are literally several organized groups most of them influenced by alqaeda that are fighting against the Americans, the ammunition and weapons are coming from across the border. The innocent people and families who have lost their loved ones in the war are joining these groups to get rid of this invasion since the anger and frustration is extremely high amongst the people and radicalizing them in such a state of mind is not a difficult thing to do. There is complete divert of attention from these two countries since the US army is failing and has failed to gain control and what they will do in a couple of years is leave the country by showing the world that it is a stable country with a democratic government. The consequences of this war will be seen in many years to come as the mess they are leaving behind will spread extremism and terrorism and is likely to cause chaos in the region and the world. This can already be seen, especially in the region (look at india and pakistan). There was not a signle suicide bomb blast in pakistan before 9/11.

    The main purpose of US was to take on alqaeda, after almost 7 years, neither have they caught OBL, neither have they won against alqaeda, what we have seen is the creation of many terrorist groups which are getting stronger. The wars have done nothing but spread radicalization across the world which will take years and years to sort out if dealt with very sensibly.
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    Cricketer Of The Year Anil's Avatar
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    as long as this is treated as a war, it cannot be won, the enemy is not an army, it is an ideology...

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