Skip to comments.In Afghanistan, doubts grow and weariness deepens
Posted on 06/23/2010 11:58:15 PM PDT by gandalftb
For many Afghans, U.S. Army Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal's dismissal over intemperate remarks in a magazine profile has served mainly to underscore their own weariness with a conflict that has dragged on for nearly nine years with no end in sight.
For some, the general's woes have sharpened fears that the Western campaign against the Taliban movement which ruled the country for five long, harsh years is floundering. And many Afghans think that the Americans, like the Soviet Union two decades ago and so many would-be conquerors, ultimately will fail.
McChrystal won the respect, even affection, of many Afghans with his stance that Western forces' chief aim should be the safeguarding of Afghan civilian lives. But even widespread gratitude for that doctrine does not outweigh a nagging sense that key Western goals are going unmet, such as stamping out corruption in the administration of President Hamid Karzai and providing basic government services, absent in so much of the country.
But the summer has brought a steady stream of disquieting news: a much-vaunted Western campaign in the Taliban stronghold of Kandahar clouded by delays; the relentless pace of suicide bombings.
"All this is good for the Taliban," said lawmaker Fawzia Kofi, who recently escaped an assassination attempt. "Not for anyone else."
(Excerpt) Read more at latimes.com ...
Both of them have found out that competing at that level takes a kind of aloofness, introspection, and grit that they don't have. They are left with trying to sort out the machinations of those around them and lack the big picture experience to put into perspective, competing ideas. They become stuck and indecisive. They became marginalized from each other.
Neither Obama or McChrystal want to do their jobs anymore. At least McChrystal had a way out.....
They both agreed on a strategy of counter-insurgency rather than counter-terrorism in Afghanistan. This is their critical mistake. They should have picked both and had separate commands to prosecute both unique kinds of conflict, side by side.
Counter-insurgency requires years of hearts and minds, particularly in a highly decentralized, primitive, and remote tribal-run area like Afghanistan. Yet they both agreed to scale down in a two year window..... Astonishing. They both never grasped that the goal of war is to get your enemy to quit fighting. In two years in Afghanistan? This is a people, the Pakhtun, many of whom can still name the British commanders that were defeated in 1842.
Rest assured, Petraeus will assess the battlefield and in about a month, sit down with Obama and Emmanuel and Gates and tell them to stop looking at the calendar and decide to fight smarter and longer, years longer. Or cut our losses, garrison the country and conduct raids and UAV attacks at a much lower cost in blood and money.
To conduct a total war of counter-insurgency and counter-terrorism will take twice the troops, eradication of the poppies, and will require operations in Pakistan. McChrystal had come to know that and had told Obama so. He was told flat out no, do what you can with what you've got. McChrystal did not want to just "manage" the war until the scale down and that was all he saw that he could do.
Dis-spririted, he let his guard down, got sloppy with his comments and sabotaged his own command by challenging Obama.
McChrystal chose to be a quitter and allow a fresh command to take over, rather than be a historical loser.
Thank you for the ping Gandalftb.
The “weariness” is due to the lack of leadership/direction/purpose by -0 and his administration.
Americans both home and abroad will be lose their “weariness” once a strong PRO-AMERICA leader who can/will lead our country with vigor and purpose emerges.
Failing in Afghanistan will be America’s single-most expensive military mistake, if this were to ever happen.
The war must be taken into Pakistan, where the ISI and their Pakistani Army lap-dogs operate the campaign against the West, covertly.
Amen, we have hardly touched the most potent insurgents of them all, the Haqqani’s.
It’s McChrystal’s fault. He should’ve never interviewed with The Rolling Stone. /sarcasm
I think the destructive power and intent of this presidency is being vastly understated on this thread.
Correcting post no. 3 to read:
will lose their “weariness”...
Tanks for the ping,,,
What is needed is a war of Total Annihilation of these
That is the only thing that they understand,,,
Tamerlane knew how to deal with them...
The Taliban know, as do most of our enemies (and even his supporters), that this pretender to the Presidency, this organizer who has discovered that he is not a leader, doesn't have the vision or skills or conviction needed to win this fight, is now only interested in finding a way out.
A liberal rag notorious for putting bogus captions to photos in order to manipulate public opinion, talking about stamping out corruption in Afghanistan ... while the most severe case of corruption this country’s ever known sits in the White House and heads the House and Senate. Now, that’s RICH.
We’ve been there almost 9 years. 9 years, with most of them under Bush. This is about more than Obama, who has many faults.
McChrystal was effed from the get go. Operating and planning from the Bush NSS, he accepted his job as Gates was still there.
Obama failed to deliver the manning after months of delays of his own National Security Strategy.
The rules of engagement changed from week to week and finally, Obama answered with about 1/3 the troops being requested approved.
McChrystal knew this would not fufill his plan for success, as did most of the rest of the folks in theatre.
I have know idea what a Petreus demotion brings to the table. But, at least, Petreus has an Obama NSS to work from to formulate a strategy.
know = no
I couldn’t say it better!
Appreciate the ping. Obama is a horrible leader for this country, and at times I am convinced that because he hates this country so much, a lot of it is on purpose. What he does seem to forget is that if he ever wants to become dictator of the country (and I think that’s exactly what he wants), he must show qualities of leadership. In working against his country’s best interests, he works against his own.
There’s some other freeper trying to sell this as a McChrystal brilliant stroke. In contrast, your analysis makes sense.
Ironic that Petraeus, Bush's appointment and historical savior now gets tapped to be Obama's savior. Cincinnatus redux.
You are right in that Obama dithered for months that were crititcal to a logistical buildup of our forces. We will not have our assets in place until September, halfway through the fighting season.
That hesitation destroyed McChrystal's tactical options.
One hopes that the eminence and credibility of Petraeus, who wrote the book on counter-insurgency, will succeed where his student could not.
However, (hopefully) positive results will still come too late to rehabilitate Obama's image for re-election, he's toast.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.