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Osborne Russell
07-30-2010, 11:42 AM
Yes, training requires a safe haven where folks can congregate and train. Most training programs take a couple of months to take some well-meaning future jihadi and teach him what he needs to know to execute, along with indoctrinating him, etc. On-line correspondence courses just don't cut it. To some extent it is their achilles heel, the need for a place to train in weapons and skills. Requires space and equipment and leaves a footprint.

Afghanistan is a good choice because of the Taliban and their providing a warm nest, plus access to narco-funds. Somalia is moving in that direction. The hinterlands of Yemen offer quiet valleys where they can get their jihad on. Basically wherever the rule of law is not so much. Failed states are great. They had dreams of Iraq, but we kicked their $%# there.

Who is this they?

I think we're talking about two things which need to be considered separately although it's difficult to do.

1. Terrorism as a tactic used in a struggle against the local regime and
2. Terrorism as a strategy in a struggle against the infidel world generally.

The terms "nationalist/local" and "Islamist/global" come to mind.

The nationalist stuff needs training camps in the contested territory. Since the intention is to become the ruling government, they have to have a military.

The global stuff only needs training camps for military-style terrorism; but the great majority of global terrorism isn't military style. The intention is to create publicity and propaganda.

True, the local camp may be a good place to partially train the global people -- in weapons and explosives -- but that can be done anywhere.

There's a big political problem in occupying a country for the asserted reason of fighting the global terrorists. The people in the local camp, and the neighbors, have their own reasons for wanting to seize control of their own territory.

Consent of the governed, etc. An entire spectrum of people from Islamists and drug lords to university students and bored teenagers support the local camp because they have contempt for the existing government -- what else is new. The important thing is that they're not all anti-modern Islamists, but they are all nationalists.

A foreign power that comes in cannot avoid becoming associated with existing regime. The local regime lacks support among the people, for which the occupier attempts to substitute sheer force. It is unlikely that the local regime will ever win the support of the locals in this way. So the struggle is protracted indefinitely, and along with it, the training camps of the nationalists, and their potential to train people for the global stuff, and so, you wind up with more global terrorism rather than less.

The mosques are where the action is. It's a culture war.


While dictatorial regimes can preempt opposition nationalist or socialist campaigns by closing down their networks and headquarters, the centre for Islamist political organizing is the mosque. It is exempt from government crackdowns in the Muslim world (and often in the non-Muslim world) by virtue of its sacredness. "It is in the mosque where [Islamists] canvas neighbourhoods in the course of providing social services, spread their political messages and campaign for votes where permitted to participate."

-- Lewis, Bernard, The Crisis of Islam: Holy War and Unholy Terror, (2003), p.22; as quoted in Wikipedia, Islamism



The people in the mosques might really be peaceful people and may even denounce Al Qaeda and all violence, not just global, but local too, in the name of their religion. But they are not going to sit around thinking that as soon as NATO kills all the bad guys they can get their country back. They want the occupiers out.

The Bush Doctrine is: tough ****, America's interest predominates, at gunpoint. It's simply wrong, morally, apart from being grossly stupid.

Cuyahoga Chuck
07-30-2010, 11:49 AM
Cheney wanted to run a war before he died. And once he got his war an unexpected occuance changed everything. The bad guys jumped the border into Pakistan and their presence destabilized it. Then we had al queda and Taliban jerking the chain of a not too muscular nuclear power. Since Pakistan keeps the location of it's nukes a secret our sole option was to try and keep the insurgents busy so thay don't have time to overthrow Pakistan and get those nukes. It's a nutty scenerio but ut's the best we have.

switters
07-30-2010, 11:51 AM
After changing from a suit to an Air Force One flight jacket, Obama told the troops they were making progress against al Qaeda and its allies in the Taliban, the Islamic fundamentalist militia that ruled most of Afghanistan before the 9/11 attacks.
"All of that makes America safer, and we are going to keep them on the run," he said. "Because that is what is going to be required in order to ensure that our families back home have the security that they need."


And I say, totally different than the last administration, right?

Kaa
07-30-2010, 11:56 AM
We went into Afghanistan as a response to an act of war.

We are still in Afghanistan because the military-industrial complex needs to justify its size and appetite. Land wars in Asia are good for that.

Kaa

Osborne Russell
07-30-2010, 12:06 PM
Switters, your point is simplistic. Having started a war you cannot simply end it, responsibly. You break it, you own it. We broke it, we own it. This was a powerful reason not to do it in the first place. That's the difference between the previous and the current administration, if you really can't tell. IT WAS THE PREVIOUS ADMINISTRATION THAT STARTED THE WAR.


The question is why are we still there. Arguably we are perpetuating that which we sought to end.

switters
07-30-2010, 12:18 PM
President Obama's reason was simplistic. As was President Bush. If we are going to stay we should stay to win the war, if we do not have the guts to do what it takes to win the war we should leave. Right now we are trying to win the hearts and minds of the population by putting them in an untenable position between two opposing authorities that they cannot deny.

I'll define "win". Japan August 15th, 1945.

Andrew Craig-Bennett
07-30-2010, 12:18 PM
Neca eos omnes. Deus suos agnoscet.

Black-Jack
07-30-2010, 12:21 PM
Cheney wanted to run a war before he died.


apparently biden did as well

Kaa
07-30-2010, 12:21 PM
I'll define "win". Japan August 15th, 1945.

Cool. Whom would you accept to sign your documents of surrender? And what will happen afterward?

Kaa

switters
07-30-2010, 12:22 PM
If it is in latin does that mean it's sarcastic?

switters
07-30-2010, 12:24 PM
Cool. Whom would you accept to sign your documents of surrender? And what will happen afterward?

Kaa

I'm picturing a Dutchy of Fenwick scenario, burkas in socal will be optional.

paladin
07-30-2010, 12:28 PM
Lithium......we actually knew about it before the Russians......we have a couple of satellites up there looking for mineral resources.

Y Bar Ranch
07-30-2010, 12:43 PM
Who is this they?

I think we're talking about two things which need to be considered separately although it's difficult to do.

1. Terrorism as a tactic used in a struggle against the local regime and
2. Terrorism as a strategy in a struggle against the infidel world generally.

The terms "nationalist/local" and "Islamist/global" come to mind.

The nationalist stuff needs training camps in the contested territory. Since the intention is to become the ruling government, they have to have a military.

The global stuff only needs training camps for military-style terrorism; but the great majority of global terrorism isn't military style. The intention is to create publicity and propaganda.
"They" is Al Qaeda and all the groups that are affiliating with it directly or aligning their goals. It's a franchise. al Qaeda proper. Al Qaeda on Arabian Peninsula (Yemen mostly). Al Qaeda in Iraq. Al Shabaab is trying to prove they are worthy of inclusion. Etc.

I wouldn't separate the two of global and local. The global goal is a global islamic caliphate. But the approach is to think global, act local.

While the big terrorist attacks are hi-viz, most of the day-to-day stuff is local to their region.

Read that Rand Report I linked to. The jihadist will tell you exactly what they're thinking, what their plans are, if you'll isten.


True, the local camp may be a good place to partially train the global people -- in weapons and explosives -- but that can be done anywhere.
No it can't. If it could, they would. They don't have a wish to build sites where we can easily target them with cruise missiles, and have struck them with repeatedly. They do it because other approaches don't work for their needs.

And they try to run them surreptiously overseas all the time, but it just doesn't work trying to run a training camp in Montana, for example. Or in countries that OK with it, but that can be bought out by us so we can hunt them down there. Too big a footprint and they get found out. They need sanctuary to be anything more than an irritant. This is a fundamental. One of the keys to their defeat, or at least keeping them down to pest level, is to deny them sanctuary.


The Bush Doctrine is: tough ****, America's interest predominates, at gunpoint. It's simply wrong, morally, apart from being grossly stupid.The facts don't support. We of course acted in our interest, but The Bush Doctrine was to bring democracy, along with all of its failings. You think Al Maliki was our favored pick for President of Iraq? Or Karzai? He's a clown. Better for Bush to have acted as you accuse him of acting, and stuck in a strong man that we hand-picked and keep him in their by force.

spirit
07-30-2010, 01:02 PM
I am a Quaker and don't like wars.
That said, I will defend myself and friends.
Pushing back Hitler from England, France, Holland, Belgium etc. seemed essential.
What big George did to rescue Kuwait, I can understand...

But little George got us into wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, which created a horrible morass.

Now Obama, who seems to be an extraordinarily sensible and honorable man, has kept us in Afghanistan and Iraq.
Why is that?
Do we need to be there to counter terrorism at home? Nope.
Does being there secure our oil? Nope.
Are we making friends? Nope.

Lincoln Potter
Do we need to help our bankers wreck our economy and our jobs (and thereby our mortgages and homes)? Nope.
Are we increasing our "honor?" I don't think so.

If I were president, I cannot imagine ordering the death of a single American unnecessarily.
So why stay? Why not spend our monies on the people and prosperity of this country? Yes!

Let's just get out....
It's sensible, patriotic, honorable, timely and add your own adjectives!

Captain Blight
07-30-2010, 03:38 PM
We went into Afghanistan as a response to an act of war.

We are still in Afghanistan because the military-industrial complex needs to justify its size and appetite. Land wars in Asia are good for that.

KaaTHERE we go.

Captain Blight
07-30-2010, 03:39 PM
Neca eos omnes. Deus suos agnoscet.


If it is in latin does that mean it's sarcastic?

"Kill them all. God will know His own."

SamSam
07-30-2010, 04:38 PM
We went in as a response to an act of war. We're still there because we had no plans on how to win and get out. We're still there because we sidetracked all our energies and resources to Iraq for a number of years at a critical time. We're still there because of gross incompetence and gross overconfidence. We're still there because we apparently suck at this sort of stuff.

Osborne Russell
07-30-2010, 04:47 PM
President Obama's reason was simplistic. As was President Bush. If we are going to stay we should stay to win the war, if we do not have the guts to do what it takes to win the war we should leave.

I agree, but it's important to be conscious of which war, of the TWO.

We still give lip service to the idea of a stable Afghanistan as a national interest apart from the GWOT which is OK because it's a legitimate interest.

But we insist on making Afghanistan the theater of our war against Jihadism, which the Afghans clearly don't want. Suppose two gangs say they're going to fight it out in your back yard, so just keep your head down until we give the all clear. Really, you should be helping us, but you're so lame, its best if you just stand clear. It's your fault for letting them in in the first place. What a swell way to build an ally.

The wind up is that the Jihadists divide the Afghans from us rather than the other way around.

If we had the force to just scour the place clean then it would at least be honest, no matter how expensive, as you say. A reality-based approach.

But why quibble? If we had the means, we yet lack the will. So what's the point of staying?

Before the invasion of Iraq I was naive enough to believe that America understood that by attempting to steer history by stabilizing Iraq and Afghanistan, we were pledging ourselves to an unprecedented commitment of money, gigantic, fabulous amounts of money, to build nations capable and worthy of being allies, i.e. we were going to now be obligated to build their roads, water supplies, hospitals, airports, etc. because surely no one was stupid enough to believe we could go in, shoot the bad guys, and come home and leave it at that.

Osborne Russell
07-30-2010, 05:14 PM
I wouldn't separate the two of global and local. The global goal is a global islamic caliphate. But the approach is to think global, act local.

Yes but gosh darn it can't you understand that the Afghans are not obligated to look at it that way? That it's their country, not just some place where our interests happen to be implicated?

We agree that people trying to overthrow the regime in Afghanistan pretty much need camps or bases in or very near Afghanistan. We agree that some of these people are terrorists. It does not follow that without such camps no one can use terrorism to attack the United States. Therefore our occupation of Afghanistan is not justified as a defense against terrorism. Therefore, the only justification remaining is the plan to build a nation capable of being our ally.

Lacking the means and the will to force Afghanistan to build itself into our ally, the only alternative is to persuade them to do so.

I think Obama is just crossing his fingers, like George Washington, trying to not to commit until you get a shot at some decisive action. Otherwise all you're doing is losing in increments. The critical difference of course is that Washington was fighting in his own country against a foreign occupier. Now we're the occupiers. The people we're shooting in Afghanistan are not going to oblige us by geographically sequestering themselves so that we can force them to surrender and go home. They already are home.

It's their country, they have forever. Continuing with the analogy, they invite Al Qaeda because Al Qaeda helps them. That's why the Americans invited the French, remember? Not because they love them. Not because they wanted America to be French.

Very ironic. America's own position used to be, independence and self-government, no matter the consequences to trade, culture, international relations, or anything. And we will ally with whom we like to accomplish it. But we don't allow anyone else to take that position.

Y Bar Ranch
07-30-2010, 05:30 PM
Yes but gosh darn it can't you understand that the Afghans are not obligated to look at it that way? That it's their country, not just some place where our interests happen to be implicated?

We agree that people trying to overthrow the regime in Afghanistan pretty much need camps or bases in or very near Afghanistan. We agree that some of these people are terrorists. It does not follow that without such camps no one can use terrorism to attack the United States. Therefore our occupation of Afghanistan is not justified as a defense against terrorism. Therefore, the only justification remaining is the plan to build a nation capable of being our ally.
It does follow that Al Qaeda needs the camps to effectively attack outside entities, US included. The camps form the base of their efforts.

When we threw out the Taliban, we really didn't throw them out. We helped their opponents in Afghanistan throw them out, to include fellow Pashtun. One of the reasons Bin Laden is still kicking is because we depended on Afghans to do much of their own fighting. They'd been fighting before we got there. The Taliban had the support of Pakistan, which gave them the advantage that allowed them to dominate.

We aren't occupying Afghanistan. Stop trying to make the Taliban out to be some kind of beloved freedom-fighting network. They're not. Afghanis celebrated when they were tossed out, they'll suffer terribly if the Taliban regain power.

If we can leave and yet ensure the anti-Taliban portion is strong enough to keep the Taliban from regaining power, allowing us to keep enough smaller forces to keep hunting down and killing the High Value Individual targets, that will hopefully be good enough. What we'll have then is more explicitly a proxy war between us and Pakistan. Lots of Afghanis will get killed, but that's realpolitik.

Captain Blight
07-30-2010, 06:06 PM
It occurs to me that all our wars from 1865 onward have been wars of invasion and wars of occupation. Mind you, the last war we won was 60 years ago; and yet that's the one people point to when they want to trumpet American military might. Well, might we have; training and equipment are standard-setting. But the leadership is flawed and careerist in the extreme. If we want to start winning wars again, and I hope we don't even want to fight another war ever again, we need to fight the wars we're actually fighting at the time, not the war we fought decades ago.

pefjr
07-30-2010, 06:38 PM
We went into Afghanistan as a response to an act of war.

We are still in Afghanistan because the military-industrial complex needs to justify its size and appetite. Land wars in Asia are good for that.

KaaThat about sums it up.

goodbasil
07-30-2010, 06:44 PM
Why are we, (Canada) in Afghanistan? With a loss of 151 lives so far and many not returning complete.

PeterSibley
07-30-2010, 07:30 PM
I am a Quaker and don't like wars.
That said, I will defend myself and friends.
Pushing back Hitler from England, France, Holland, Belgium etc. seemed essential.
What big George did to rescue Kuwait, I can understand...

But little George got us into wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, which created a horrible morass.

Now Obama, who seems to be an extraordinarily sensible and honorable man, has kept us in Afghanistan and Iraq.
Why is that?
Do we need to be there to counter terrorism at home? Nope.
Does being there secure our oil? Nope.
Are we making friends? Nope.

Lincoln Potter
Do we need to help our bankers wreck our economy and our jobs (and thereby our mortgages and homes)? Nope.
Are we increasing our "honor?" I don't think so.

If I were president, I cannot imagine ordering the death of a single American unnecessarily.
So why stay? Why not spend our monies on the people and prosperity of this country? Yes!

Let's just get out....
It's sensible, patriotic, honorable, timely and add your own adjectives!

It's called ''face'' and saving ''face'' .Not only Asians .

SMARTINSEN
07-30-2010, 07:58 PM
Suppose two gangs say they're going to fight it out in your back yard, so just keep your head down until we give the all clear. Really, you should be helping us, but you're so lame, its best if you just stand clear. It's your fault for letting them in in the first place. What a swell way to build an ally.

An apt analogy.


It does follow that Al Qaeda needs the camps to effectively attack outside entities, US included. The camps form the base of their efforts.
For the past 10 years, we are throwing the vast might of the 21st century U.S. military against a bunch of CAMPERS. Our approach, if noble, is absolutely and unequivocally not working. It cannot work. Let us re-trench and fight the global Islamic jihad from our own shores.


Neca eos omnes. Deus suos agnoscet.
Andrew, you are straying dangerously close to the Albigensian Crusade, are you sure you want to go there?

SMARTINSEN
07-30-2010, 08:08 PM
No one was stupid enough to believe we could go in, shoot the bad guys, and come home and leave it at that.
I am not so sure of that



I really do believe that we will be greeted as liberators.

3/16/03 on Meet the Press.

BrianW
07-30-2010, 08:08 PM
Obama said it's a "war of necessity".

Must be true.

Y Bar Ranch
07-30-2010, 08:45 PM
For the past 10 years, we are throwing the vast might of the 21st century U.S. military against a bunch of CAMPERS. Our approach, if noble, is absolutely and unequivocally not working. It cannot work. Let us re-trench and fight the global Islamic jihad from our own shores.
That approach got us the Nairobi and Tanzania Embassy bombings, the first WTC attack, the USS Cole, and the 9/11 WTC attack. Won't work. We have to deprive them of their safe havens and sanctuaries. Period.

SMARTINSEN
07-30-2010, 09:13 PM
Obama said it's a "war of necessity".

Must be true.

Do you agree?

purri
07-30-2010, 10:52 PM
Meanwhile Yemen is bubbling away nicely.

PeterSibley
07-30-2010, 10:57 PM
That approach got us the Nairobi and Tanzania Embassy bombings, the first WTC attack, the USS Cole, and the 9/11 WTC attack. Won't work. We have to deprive them of their safe havens and sanctuaries. Period.

They hate us 'cos we're free .

S B
07-30-2010, 11:09 PM
It occurs to me that all our wars from 1865 onward have been wars of invasion and wars of occupation. Mind you, the last war we won was 60 years ago; and yet that's the one people point to when they want to trumpet American military might. Well, might we have; training and equipment are standard-setting. But the leadership is flawed and careerist in the extreme. If we want to start winning wars again, and I hope we don't even want to fight another war ever again, we need to fight the wars we're actually fighting at the time, not the war we fought decades ago.
Winning a war is a relative term and relatively speaking in WW2 the U.S. was on the winning side. That the U.S.won the war is, at best ,wishful thinking.

BrianW
07-31-2010, 09:05 PM
Meanwhile Yemen is bubbling away nicely.

Nice and small, next to the ocean... what's not to like.

stevebaby
07-31-2010, 09:18 PM
To answer the question..."Every now and then the US likes to pick up a small country and throw it against the wall a few times."
Pour encourager les autres.

BrianW
07-31-2010, 09:37 PM
In fact for 'liberating' Yemen, I'd send in the USS Cole first. Just to screw with'em.

purri
07-31-2010, 10:32 PM
Nice and small, next to the ocean... what's not to like.

sounds familiar>>>>>>:D

Osborne Russell
08-01-2010, 11:00 AM
If we can leave and yet ensure the anti-Taliban portion is strong enough to keep the Taliban from regaining power, allowing us to keep enough smaller forces to keep hunting down and killing the High Value Individual targets, that will hopefully be good enough. What we'll have then is more explicitly a proxy war between us and Pakistan. Lots of Afghanis will get killed, but that's realpolitik.

Why a war between us and Pakistan?

Also, I can't find the link you mention to a Rand study. Could you re-post it please?

Y Bar Ranch
08-01-2010, 11:47 AM
Why a war between us and Pakistan?

Also, I can't find the link you mention to a Rand study. Could you re-post it please?
We'd like a non-Taliban in charge of Afghanistan. Pakistan would prefer (I believe) the Taliban in charge. So not a fight between us, but a fight between our favorites.

Here's the monograph.
http://www.rand.org/pubs/monographs/MG602/

Cheers...

Edit: to be clear, I'm not hoping for a fight. The win-win would be to co-opt the Taliban and bring them to a political settlement. To do that, we need Pakistan as the negotiating partner. And in dealing with Pakistan, you have to figure that whatever they do is done with a focus on their friends in India. A tangled web.

Keith Wilson
08-01-2010, 12:02 PM
We went into Afghanistan as a response to an act of war.

We are still in Afghanistan because the military-industrial complex needs to justify its size and appetite. Land wars in Asia are good for that.Good enough. I would add to the second point that we're in still in Afghanistan because we don't know what else to do, and the alternatives to staying for the time being look a lot worse.

We're in the process of leaving Iraq.

Captain Blight
08-01-2010, 04:01 PM
That approach got us the Nairobi and Tanzania Embassy bombings, the first WTC attack, the USS Cole, and the 9/11 WTC attack. Won't work. We have to deprive them of their safe havens and sanctuaries. Period. THE FOLLOWING iS JUST FOR ILLUSTRATIVE PURPOSES!!!!!

If you don't vote Democrat in the next election, I'm going to come to your house in the night, kill your family, burn down your buildings, and salt the ground so nothing will ever grow there again. I demand that you believe in my ideas, or I'll kill you.

See how that works? You can hold a knife to someone's throat and demand that they believe in what you say they will; you might even get an agreement; there is no guarantee that the agreement will be heartfelt. If you can't change minds with dogma, the only other alternative is force of arms; and that is very clearly not working for us in Afghanistan. It has never worked, it is not working now, it will never work. I don't understand why the Right is so opposed to diplomatic solutions; I suppose that when all you have is a hammer, everything starts looking like a nail.

So, to return to my point: I would like to ask you what guarantee you have that the Taliban and other Islamist groups will even be a threat to us in three years' time, if we extract ourselves from the Afghan tar-baby. Because your argument depends entirely on the premise that the Afghan people are willing to tolerate their own rights being abused by their own people indefinitely and forever. The Taliban are as much an occupying force in the region as we are.

A further question: How do you deny an idea its 'safe haven?' If it is alive in only one mind, it is alive still. Since we've proven we can't change minds by force of arms, maybe it's time to try dogma instead.

Y Bar Ranch
08-01-2010, 05:36 PM
THE FOLLOWING iS JUST FOR ILLUSTRATIVE PURPOSES!!!!!...I'm going to come to your house in the night, kill your family, burn down your buildings, and salt the ground so nothing will ever grow there again. I demand that you believe in my ideas, or I'll kill you.
If you replace "believe in my ideas" with "not draw pictures of Mohammed" you have both the jihadist's stance and also our response. Interesting. Seems to be working for them. They got what they wanted out of it.


I don't understand why the Right is so opposed to diplomatic solutions; I suppose that when all you have is a hammer, everything starts looking like a nail. We made peace with the Sunnis in Iraq through the Anbar Awakening...oversaw the transition of Iraq o democracy through three elections now, with al Sadr participating...not sure why you suggest the Right doesn't like diplomacy. But diplomacy works better when you have a stick to motivate participation. Folks in that part of the world understand force, and it took a while for them to respect ours. In many ways Obama is working against the perception that electing a Dem President means we longer have threat. His ramping up the drone strikes immediately post-inauguration were as much a strategic message to the region as a tactical move.


So, to return to my point: I would like to ask you what guarantee you have that the Taliban and other Islamist groups will even be a threat to us in three years' time, if we extract ourselves from the Afghan tar-baby. Because your argument depends entirely on the premise that the Afghan people are willing to tolerate their own rights being abused by their own people indefinitely and forever. The Taliban are as much an occupying force in the region as we are.Guarantee? There are no guarantees in life. I can't guarantee that if/when we leave the Taliban will be able to restore themselves as rulers of most of Afghanistan. I'd bet it all, though, that they will expand their influence and control more territory once we go, since they'll be fighting a much lesser opponent.

As far as threat goes, since they give haven and protection to Al Qaeda right now even though they're being hunted down and killed for doing so, it'd be kind of dumb to think that they wouldn't continue to do so. Real dumb.

I like the way the Obama admin is thinking right now, as per today's NY Times article. Less emphasis on hearts and minds and more on killing Taliban leadership dead. They don't mind other Afghans dying, but they have no death wish themselves. More of this can help them see the benefits of the political process.
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/08/01/world/asia/01afghan.html?hp

Osborne Russell
08-01-2010, 07:11 PM
Here's the monograph.
http://www.rand.org/pubs/monographs/MG602/



450 friggin pages, man. I made it to 50 and quit for today. Nevertheless I want to make two points:


1. These people are bat **** crazy.
2. My real name is Osborne Russell and I was born in Bite Me, Arizona in 1878.

PeterSibley
08-01-2010, 07:11 PM
So how long should we stay Y bar , 50 years , 80 years , up the troop commitment to a million men ? It won't work otherwise ,it will just continue as it is .As Blight says ideas are hard to kill .

BrianW
08-01-2010, 09:03 PM
So how long should we stay Y bar , 50 years , 80 years , up the troop commitment to a million men ? It won't work otherwise ,it will just continue as it is .As Blight says ideas are hard to kill .

Sounds exactly like an question on Iraq.

Anyhow, Obama and gang are already starting to backpedal on the 2011 withdrawal, which comes as no surprise to anyone except the faithful. For them, there will always be an excuse.

PeterSibley
08-01-2010, 09:43 PM
No answer ? 50 years , 80 ? Afghanistan is not Iraq ,socially , politically , tribally , or militarily .Ask the Soviets .

Y Bar Ranch
08-02-2010, 08:20 AM
So how long should we stay Y bar...
That's not even the right question to ask.

PeterSibley
08-02-2010, 04:55 PM
It's sure one you won't answer .

sdowney717
08-02-2010, 05:18 PM
Afghanistan, the Saudi Arabia of Lithium
http://gm-volt.com/2010/07/16/obama-attends-lg-chem-battery-plant-groundbreaking-and-gets-first-seat-time-in-the-chevy-volt/
http://gm-volt.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/07/Obama-Volt1-e1279238881578.jpg

http://www.foxnews.com/leisure/2010/07/30/obama-drives-chevy-volt-feet/

http://www.foxnews.com/static/managed/img/Leisure/2009/obama640_397x224.jpg


http://news.discovery.com/earth/afghanistan-minerals-lithium.html


Afghanistan has nearly $1 trillion in mineral deposits, according to a study, but there are doubts the war-torn and graft-prone country can manage the windfall offered by the untapped riches.

We will be there to help them unload their mineral resources.
This is not a bad thing.
It is no secret that Obama likes electric cars, and that is a good thing

purri
08-02-2010, 10:24 PM
Solution:

Leave and let the Talibs at the lithium. Inside 6 months they'll all be normal folk with "medicated" smiles.

PeterSibley
08-02-2010, 10:32 PM
They might even sell it to customers if asked politely ....or is it better to try to kill them all and take it ?

nw_noob
08-03-2010, 01:36 AM
Solution:

Leave and let the Talibs at the lithium. Inside 6 months they'll all be normal folk with "medicated" smiles.

You might be on to something here. Then again, those guys already have an inexhaustible supply of opium and hash, yet they remain angry. Lithium may not work either, but it's probably worth a try.

On a side note, does anyone know if people have been drilling for mineral samples in Afghanistan? If not, there really isn't much to all the headlines about vast mineral wealth.

ramillett
08-03-2010, 04:04 AM
This tread was a great read Y> not what I expected , good educated and caring posts from both sides of the fence . thanks

PeterSibley
08-03-2010, 04:29 AM
So how long should we stay Y bar , 50 years , 80 years , up the troop commitment to a million men ? It won't work otherwise ,it will just continue as it is .As Blight says ideas are hard to kill .

Still asking .I'm quite serious , it will take a total occupation to begin to change ideas and ideals and without changing those ,the minute the US and friends leave it's all on again .It's apparently not a popular question ....I wonder why ?

Either commit to the VERY long haul or walk away now and save the lives and limbs of thouands of young men ,their and ours .

ramillett
08-03-2010, 05:06 AM
Still asking .I'm quite serious , it will take a total occupation to begin to change ideas and ideals and without changing those ,the minute the US and friends leave it's all on again .It's apparently not a popular question ....I wonder why ?

Either commit to the VERY long haul or walk away now and save the lives and limbs of thouands of young men ,their and ours .

We still have bases in Japan , Germany , America seems to have a history of caring for people , even if they attack us .

BrianW
08-03-2010, 05:08 AM
Still asking .I'm quite serious.

Don't get too excited. It's not like you're the first one to ever ask it.

PeterSibley
08-03-2010, 05:51 AM
We still have bases in Japan , Germany , America seems to have a history of caring for people , even if they attack us .

It will not be like Japan or Germany , it would be a fighting occupation and it will continue for generations .

Really , Brian ,I may not be the first to ask , but I'm also not the first to get no answer .The choice seems quite clear .Stay and militarily occupy for a VERY long time with sufficient men to totally control the country and kill the ideas that were mentioned (by Blight ?) or leave and save a hell of a lot of blood that will be all for nil if the objectives aren't fulfilled .

Y Bar Ranch
08-03-2010, 09:23 AM
Still asking .I'm quite serious , it will take a total occupation to begin to change ideas and ideals and without changing those ,the minute the US and friends leave it's all on again .It's apparently not a popular question ....I wonder why ?
You ask how long? The question is what events must occur? What conditions do we want set?

We want to deny Al Qaeda safe haven in that region. If we leave without doing so, then it's just a matter of time until we go back. So now we want to convince the Taliban it is in their best interests to reject Al Qaeda, or at least look the other way while we hunt them down. The Taliban isn't interested in conquering the world.

But I've already said all this. And so has your President. You just choose to ignore it and keep asking how long.

Again, if we leave with Al Qaeda still having a safe haven, planning and launching attacks from there, WE WILL BE BACK.

Osborne Russell
08-03-2010, 11:36 AM
So now we want to convince the Taliban it is in their best interests to reject Al Qaeda, or at least look the other way while we hunt them down.

Seems there was another time the Taliban were our allies . . .

Still reading the Rand Report, excellent, thank you.

BrianW
08-03-2010, 11:48 AM
Apparently some folks like to 'seriously' ask rhetorical questions to the Bilge.

Repeatedly.

Whatever.

PeterSibley
08-03-2010, 06:38 PM
You ask how long? The question is what events must occur? What conditions do we want set?

We want to deny Al Qaeda safe haven in that region. If we leave without doing so, then it's just a matter of time until we go back. So now we want to convince the Taliban it is in their best interests to reject Al Qaeda, or at least look the other way while we hunt them down. The Taliban isn't interested in conquering the world.

But I've already said all this. And so has your President. You just choose to ignore it and keep asking how long.

Again, if we leave with Al Qaeda still having a safe haven, planning and launching attacks from there, WE WILL BE BACK.


Basically I agree with you but the event isn't a physical thing about land and bases .The ''event'' that must take place is the Taliban loosing it's sympathy for Al Qaeda ,ceasing to share it's aims and ambitions , the same aims and ambitions that allied them in the first place .Difficult objectives to achieve with armed force , short of killing everyone who holds those thoughts and opinions.

You have said all this before but your presentation has been that the objectives are , as I said land and bases .They aren't ,they exist between the ears of the Pashtoons and their allies .

So when I ask '' how long'' ? It's to emphasise that changing the essential philosophy of a people can be a long term process , especially if you want to achieve the objectives you state .80 years would be short and quick .

BTW ,we have a Prime Minister , not a President .

Osborne Russell
08-05-2010, 04:16 PM
OK, here's the foundation of the case for remaining in Afghanistan: Jihadis must not be allowed to establish bases, training camps, any form of physical sanctuary but the most temporary.

1. The Jihadis -- i.e. the bat **** crazy Islamic fundamentalists -- do not care about nations, let alone any particular nation. They are proud to have left their homes and families and their countries forever. They're not locals. They deny that there is such a thing. Their express goal is the end of the nation state (and with it the international community) and the establishment of the Rule Of Islam. They look on the nation state itself, before it makes any laws at all, or claims any territory, as being a kind of blasphemy, because it presumes to interfere with the univeral rule of Islam. In effect they have declared war on every country in the world, and on every human relationship not dedicated to bringing about about the Rule Of Islam. They will tolerate a state as an interim step toward the rule of Islam, and no further. In their view Saudi Arabia was dedicated to this role but has betrayed her promises.


"Islam wishes to destroy all States and Governments anywhere on the face of the earth which are opposed to the ideology and programme of Islam regardless of the country or the Nation which rules it. The purpose of Islam is to set up a State on the basis of its own ideology and programme, regardless of which Nation assumes the role of the standard bearer of Islam or the rule of which nation is undermined in the process of the establishment of an ideological Islamic State." Mawlana Abul a’la Maududi (1903–1979) p. 71

2. Scoff all you like in the face of their bombings, assassinations and kidnappings, oil money and drug money, pirate money and every crime that turns a dollar, from the smallest to the very largest.

3. What I was talking about before with the "local and global" they call "the near enemy and the far enemy". There is debate about which to attack first and how, but there is no doubt about who is the enemy -- the enemy is all those that don't immediately submit, i.e. everybody but themselves. A semi-fixed base gives them the flexiblity to do either, depending on the circumstances. It allows them to be flexible and efficient.


Zawahiri’s contribution to jihadi ideology is severalfold. The followers of Qutb had been debating about whether jihadis should migrate to a safe area to gather strength or, as Faraj argued, remain near their targets and penetrate the institutions of the enemy apostate governments. Similarly, there had been differences over whether to attack the “near enemy” (secular Muslim governments) or the “far enemy” (the West, in particular, the United States). Zawahiri, in effect, synthesized the conflicting arguments by stressing the importance of a secure base such as Afghanistan from which jihadi attacks could be launched at both the near and far enemies.

[p. 84] Ayman al-Zawahiri (1952–present)

3. For practical purposes, there is a perpetual supply of new recruits, from all over the world. The fact that they leave their communities and join some Jihadi "community" is a key step. It weaponizes them psychologically, you might say.


Jihad is a way of life, so any portrait of it must begin with a picture of the lives led by jihadis. Many of them are vagabonds searching for the next conflict, wandering from Afghanistan to Algeria, Bosnia to Baghdad, Chechnya to Cairo. Despite the lyric descriptions in the poems and songs of jihad, it is a life of hardship and personal sacrifice, not romantic adventure. The violence and brutality of this life produce in jihadis a lack of affect, an emotional deadness that does not seem to be relieved by their devotion to religion.

The basic soldier training can be done anywhere, indeed, in one of their captured training manuals the point is stressed. Go backpacking and hunting so the camps can train for more complex operations.


“The basis of all Jihad training is something that can be done in every country of the World: physical training . . . . The majority of the time spent in Jihad is learning to cope with harsh, physically and mentally demanding living conditions. . . . The best way to learn these skills is to go camping into the outdoors with a small group of brothers. . . . The best training is to take some tents, food and water and warm clothes in a rucksack and go on treks lasting 2–3 days at a time. . . One can obtain almost any type of military training in some countries of the World, legally, so there is no need to risk going to prison for years just for learning how to use a single firearm illegally.” [p 292-295]


So the concern is not whether these jokers with their little diddly camps can actually acquire enough inertia to actually eliminate the nations of the world, but how much bull**** they can pull off in the attempt.

The obvious answer is to split them from the locals but that's down the road. A very delicate and complex matter. But the initial question is simple. These people have declared war on the whole world, the aim of which is to destroy all governments and force us to submit to Islam. Are we going to allow them to set up training camps, or not?

All quotes from David Aaron "In their own words : voices of Jihad : compilation and commentary"

http://www.rand.org/pubs/monographs/2008/RAND_MG602.pdf

Y Bar Ranch
08-05-2010, 09:56 PM
Nice summary. Some fascinating reading in there.

PeterSibley
08-05-2010, 10:04 PM
Training camps ? Anywhere they can pitch a tent .

Captain Blight
08-05-2010, 11:38 PM
Training camps ? Anywhere they can pitch a tent .Or just close the windows and draw the curtains. Could be in Brindisi, could be in Tirana, could be in Dead Carp South Dakota. The idea that an idea is constrained to a geographical area is charmingly naive, and would be laughable if it weren't believed so fervidly. Wait, scratch that: that's what makes it funny: that the people who say, 'we're fighting them there so we don't have to fight them here' actually believe it.

Captain Blight
08-06-2010, 01:52 AM
Define "camp."

BrianW
08-06-2010, 07:00 AM
Define "camp."

A van down by the river.

sdowney717
08-06-2010, 07:21 AM
Islamic jihadists, wish to destroy the west, economically, spiritually, physically, Christianity, Jews, Buddhism, Hinduism, anything that does not submit to the will of Allah in the variety of Islam they preach and teach.
Thing is, if your true to Islam with a zealous nature and desire to follow all the commands written in the Koran, you can justify every awful deed that has been done and think up lots more. That the Jihad-dist minded Imams know and use to further their murderous agendas. Change is really tough, there is large cultural pressure and support for jihad.
What will change these people, perhaps only death. In wars of the past going into antiquity, entire villages, areas, peoples and nations have sometimes been devastated, sometimes wiped out completely, then the land has peace for a time.

Bill Baillie
08-06-2010, 07:45 AM
The way I see it the wars in afghanistan and iraq were meant to take the fighting off shore after the sept 11 world trade tower attacks. In that it has been successful.
However, the tactics used so far have been to continue to take the fight to the taliban and al qaeda which history (afghanistan in the 1980s, viet nam, cambodia) has shown to be very difficult. The new tactic under general patreus is to set up safe enclaves, build hospitals and schools, set up reliable administration and get the lights on and the power running. It is a defensive approach that will not show positive results in a few months or even a few years but only after decades and generations. Again referring to history, britain did this in india, burma and africa. It works but it takes a lot of time and patience.

Syed
08-06-2010, 08:18 AM
Again referring to history, britain did this in india, burma and africa. It works but it takes a lot of time and patience.

The history as we know is that the British conquered India by conspiracies, bribery and all third degree tactics. All freedom fighters are our heroes. Had they not left India, we would have been fighting for independence even today. Our struggle will continue till economic independence is achieved. Right now we are under siege by puppet rulers but we will get rid of them, eventually. With this background nobody should be astonished by such polls (http://www1.voanews.com/english/news/Poll-Majority-of-Pakistanis-View-US-as-Enemy-99620719.html).

As it is mentioned in the above post that it worked for the British in India and other places, yes it did if the aim is to occupy foreign lands, suck back their resources and enslave the people for as long as possible.

Then why this .... .... about terrorism, peace and freedom of women and children.

downthecreek
08-06-2010, 08:43 AM
As it is mentioned in the above post that it worked for the British in India and other places, yes it did if the aim is to occupy foreign lands, suck back their resources and enslave the people for as long as possible.

Then why this .... .... about terrorism, peace and freedom of women and children.

A voice in the wilderness, I'm afraid, Syed.

It always amazes me that a people who pride themselves on having thrown off the yoke of British imperialism are (in some cases) so blind to the consequences of modern imperialism - in this case, largely American imperialism, but, sadly, aided and abetted still by my own governments. The US does not want to spread democracy and freedom - it wants compliance, and will support any tyrant or dictator in order to get it, as the history of the last 60 years clearly shows.

"We" are in Afghanistan for dominance of the region and its energy resources. Same as Iraq.

Osborne Russell
08-06-2010, 03:27 PM
Or just close the windows and draw the curtains. Could be in Brindisi, could be in Tirana, could be in Dead Carp South Dakota.

Yes that's true, and it is their aim to have one everywhere, eventually. In the meantime they want one close to Pakistan so they can get their hands on nukes, and/or provoke war between Pakistan and India. Remember, these people don't want to dictate terms to the non-Islamic world, they want to destroy the non-Islamic world. Physically destroy it. They also see Afghanistan and Pakistan as a potential funnel of Jihad into the Caucasus, Chechnya, etc. and on into Russia.

So to the Jihadis a camp can be anywhere but some locations are more desirable for certain reasons. The purpose of *these* camps is to train terrorist operatives and troops. They will find of course that it's one thing to resist Russian invasion and another to invade Russia, but they don't care how crazy something is and they can make a big mess in the meantime.


The idea that an idea is constrained to a geographical area is charmingly naive, and would be laughable if it weren't believed so fervidly. Wait, scratch that: that's what makes it funny: that the people who say, 'we're fighting them there so we don't have to fight them here' actually believe it.

Also very true. The only reason it has any currency at all is its simplicity. The combination of population growth and economic stagnation ensures a perpetual supply of Jihadis from all over the world. Chasing them out of Afghanistan and Pakistan will not change that. They'll go on attempting to set up camps wherever they can, including the US. Whenever and wherever and however they can congregate their force is multiplied. Force to do what? Whatever they can dream up. They don't fear failure. They don't care if they die. They like to die. Other movements realize only the fanatics will be kamikazes. The Jihadis believe only kamikazes can be Jihadis.


How can such people, who strive for death more than anything else, be deterred?

-- al Zawhiri

Preventing the formation of camps in Afghanistan is not victory over Jihad. A somewhat more sophisticated version of the fight-em-there-not-here idea is that if Jihadis from all over the world to Afghanistan, they can be killed more cheaply. That won't work because they breed faster than you could kill them in your dreams. Besides it's immoral.

Osborne Russell
08-06-2010, 03:49 PM
"We" are in Afghanistan for dominance of the region and its energy resources. Same as Iraq.

Yes, now when nothing else will really do the job, we learn the cost of forfeiting our credibility. "We've come a long way since the Crusades -- trust us."


In public and private the debate raged whether to keep the Philippines or turn them over to self-government by Filipinos. Even the usually hard-headed [Admiral Alfred Thayer] Mahan [author of *The Influence of Sea Power on History*] caught the fever of righteousness and wrote to an English friend about America’s duty to keep the Philippines," ‘DEUS VULT!” It was the cry of the Crusader and the Puritan and I doubt if man ever utters a nobler.’ "

- - -

The way the country puked up its ancient principles at the first touch of temptation was sickening. – William James

-- Barbara Tuchman *The Proud Tower* (1966) Bantam Books, p 177-179.



The best intentioned NATO operation, carried on in the mountains, away from civilians, with the minimum of collateral damage, free soccer balls for the kids, etc, will be seen as nothing more than self-interest in league with a puppet regime.

Osborne Russell
08-06-2010, 03:55 PM
The new tactic under general patreus is to set up safe enclaves, build hospitals and schools, set up reliable administration and get the lights on and the power running.

That's a strategy, not a tactic, and it's not a military strategy, it's a political strategy. That's because this isn't a war. As you say . . .



It is a defensive approach that will not show positive results in a few months or even a few years but only after decades and generations. Again referring to history, britain did this in india, burma and africa. It works but it takes a lot of time and patience.

And a lot of money. Foreign aid and nation-building. Not likely to get you elected.

Osborne Russell
08-06-2010, 03:57 PM
Right now we are under siege by puppet rulers but we will get rid of them, eventually.

I'm with you but I caution, beware exchanging one puppet-master for another.

Bill Baillie
08-06-2010, 06:38 PM
That's a strategy, not a tactic, and it's not a military strategy, it's a political strategy. That's because this isn't a war. As you say . . .




And a lot of money. Foreign aid and nation-building. Not likely to get you elected.

I agree with you that it's not likely to get you elected and the strategy or tactic has no guantees for success AND I agree with Syed that the purpose may be to suck resources out of a subject country and that it is not a nice neighborly thing to do, but it has solid precedents.