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Afghanistan: its present and future



 
 
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  #21  
Old June 16th, 2008, 5:38 pm
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Re: Afghanistan: its present and future

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Is this why they haven't found Osama Bin Laden ?
The Afghanistan mission as a whole hasn't been about Bin Laden for a long time.


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  #22  
Old June 16th, 2008, 7:13 pm
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Re: Afghanistan: its present and future

This is why we need to be fighting the "correct" war. Osama needs to be found (if not dead), his group destroyed (including the Taliban who supports him). This is what the war after 9/11 was SUPPOSED to be about.


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  #23  
Old June 16th, 2008, 8:42 pm
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Re: Afghanistan: its present and future

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Originally Posted by Overdose View Post
The Afghanistan mission as a whole hasn't been about Bin Laden for a long time.
So what is it about then ? Vaccinations ? Opium ?


  #24  
Old June 16th, 2008, 9:26 pm
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Re: Afghanistan: its present and future

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Originally Posted by WitchHunter View Post
As with Iraq, the problem in Afghanistan is that our military has been denied some of the most effective weapons and tactics for fighting in undeveloped nations. Firstly, it must be made clear to the Afghan people that anyone who does not cooperate with the US/NATO troops will be considered an insurgent, and will be treated accordingly. Secondly, we must make periodic shows of force to remind both the insurgents and any civilians who may be less than cooperative that resistance is futile and will result only in further death and chaos. Using air strikes to destroy any building that we suspect insurgents may be using, as well as occasionally patrolling the streets with tanks instead of the more easily destroyed Humvees. The Western world is at a crossroads, and must choose between being liked or being strong. As unfortunate as it may be, we cannot have both.
So you think you run Afghanistan? That you can just bomb it because you want to? Because you think insurgents might just happen to be there? What gives you the right to go into another country and decide whether the people of that country deserve to live?


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  #25  
Old June 16th, 2008, 9:54 pm
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Re: Afghanistan: its present and future

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Originally Posted by lindaluna View Post
So what is it about then ? Vaccinations ? Opium ?
Removing the Taliban.
Whilst searches are periodically launched for Osama I think most of the armed forces there know full well that their energy is far better spent sending combatants to defeat the Taliban and to train the Afghan military and police force to maintain a stable state.


Brit Troops to Increase in Afghanistan
- BBC Article

Quote:
This is why we need to be fighting the "correct" war. Osama needs to be found (if not dead), his group destroyed (including the Taliban who supports him). This is what the war after 9/11 was SUPPOSED to be about.
Granted, but the removal of Taliban and paramilitary groups is really the number one priority if we are to operate in Afghanistan and then the implementation of the Afghan state.


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Last edited by Overdose; June 16th, 2008 at 9:57 pm.
  #26  
Old June 16th, 2008, 9:56 pm
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Re: Afghanistan: its present and future

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Originally Posted by Overdose View Post
Removing the Taliban.
Well that's America. You need only one man so you change the mission to go for a government. Which the U.S. put in power in the first place - right?


  #27  
Old June 16th, 2008, 10:00 pm
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Re: Afghanistan: its present and future

It's America and 41 other countries. And also I don't really see what you're insinuating. Afghanistan has always been about the removal of the Taliban since they actively harboured Al'Quaeda. and besides which, let's not forget all that shocking repression they had going on.

As for the US instilling the Taliban, I again don't see your point. Surely that makes it even more their responsibility to make sure that the Taliban don't simply retake Afghanistan from the south.


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  #28  
Old June 16th, 2008, 10:21 pm
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Re: Afghanistan: its present and future

The U.S. put the repressive Taliban regime in place after Soviet Occupation (U.S. funded them while they were the insurgents).


  #29  
Old June 16th, 2008, 10:22 pm
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Re: Afghanistan: its present and future

I am aware of that. My point was that this makes it part of the US's responsibility to help remove the Taliban.


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  #30  
Old June 17th, 2008, 4:08 am
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Re: Afghanistan: its present and future

I see your point, but I think "laissez faire" has to start somewhere. I would prefer less meddling by the U.S. abroad.


  #31  
Old June 17th, 2008, 4:33 am
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Re: Afghanistan: its present and future

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Originally Posted by lindaluna View Post
The U.S. put the repressive Taliban regime in place after Soviet Occupation (U.S. funded them while they were the insurgents).
Well, no. The Taliban was born out of the mess that was post-invasion Afghanistan.

The Taliban was born in 1994 when Mullah Omar and 15 students attacked a local warlord who had kidnapped some girls for sweaty and nefarious purposes and destroyed a checkpoint which had been extorting travellers for years.

His allies, the much vaunted Arab fighters who went on to create Al Qaeda with US/Saudi/Pakistani assistance are another matter.


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  #32  
Old June 19th, 2008, 5:09 pm
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Re: Afghanistan: its present and future

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Originally Posted by Redhart View Post
This is why we need to be fighting the "correct" war. Osama needs to be found (if not dead), his group destroyed (including the Taliban who supports him). This is what the war after 9/11 was SUPPOSED to be about

I agree that Bin Laden needs to be found. He needs to be first priority, not the Taliban, imo. Take out the leaders and you have a less effective, easier to defeat opponent. I don't think it takes a genius to figure that much out.

But the war after 9/11---wasn't really about that, imo, and it goes back to the OP's question of "What went wrong?" What went wrong was the premise of using and army to take out the culprits of 9/11. It almost seems like it was a revenge plot when viewed from the outside in. Thousands of ours died, so thousands of yours must die. We had alot of popular support world wide when we were specifically going after Bin laden with a handful of troops, but when our original mission wasn't accomplished and we stayed and meddled in affairs that we had never troubled with before? That is what makes Afganistan so difficult. To all appearances we took it way too far. And then Iraq, yes I know this thread isn't about Iraq, but that war in conjunction with not being able to meet our original goals in Afganistan only serves to make us more vulnerable and disliked through out the region and continues to fuel anti-Americanism. Which of course makes things more difficult for our troops. IMO.


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  #33  
Old June 19th, 2008, 5:38 pm
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Re: Afghanistan: its present and future

Bin Laden is not nor ever has been the leader of the Taliban - that is Mullah Omar (another fugitive - though from Afghani justice not American) The problem with Afghanistan is that the job was never finished (eyes turned elsewhere) and the Taliban were able to regroup. The evidence coming out of the South is that they have been defeated as a conventional force again and are now turning to ieds and suicide bombers.

If we leave the Taliban will win and Afghanistan will become a home for terrorists again.

I understand the comparison with Iraq but they are two very different wars - Afghanistan had the overwhelming support of the UN and is of undoubted legality.

The one good side effect of rising food prices is that opium is becoming a comparatively less profitable crop for the farmers so one source of Taliban money may be in decline.


  #34  
Old June 19th, 2008, 7:53 pm
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Re: Afghanistan: its present and future

I seem to remember that the Taliban when in power weeded out all the poppy fields and forced the people to grow food instead. And when the Taliban was driven out the poppy came back immediately and is now almost the only crop in the country.

So do we have reliable knowledge about the Taliban changing their minds and accepting opium money now?


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  #35  
Old June 19th, 2008, 8:30 pm
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Re: Afghanistan: its present and future

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Originally Posted by Mundungus Fletc View Post
Bin Laden is not nor ever has been the leader of the Taliban
That's why I said leaders, in the plural. As for Bin Laden specifically he is now set up in that martyr role that insurgency who is opposed to the U.S. troops being there will look to for guidance and the role model for what is acceptable in combat. Again that is my opinion.

As for the opium, isn't that a separate issue from Bin Laden? Seems that we have one reason to go to war but then tout another reason for continuing said war... and nothing getting accomplished on either end...


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  #36  
Old June 20th, 2008, 3:48 am
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Re: Afghanistan: its present and future

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Originally Posted by Alastor View Post
I seem to remember that the Taliban when in power weeded out all the poppy fields and forced the people to grow food instead. And when the Taliban was driven out the poppy came back immediately and is now almost the only crop in the country.

So do we have reliable knowledge about the Taliban changing their minds and accepting opium money now?
Don't know how reliable it is, but here's a report from the Washington Post which states that military commanders in Afghanistan believe the renewed drug trade in Afghanistan is funding the terrorists.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn...082701356.html


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  #37  
Old June 20th, 2008, 7:36 am
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Re: Afghanistan: its present and future

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Originally Posted by Alastor View Post
I seem to remember that the Taliban when in power weeded out all the poppy fields and forced the people to grow food instead. And when the Taliban was driven out the poppy came back immediately and is now almost the only crop in the country.

So do we have reliable knowledge about the Taliban changing their minds and accepting opium money now?
Indeed they did and very effectively. However there is apparently evidence that they are now protecting the trade. See this Guardian article


  #38  
Old June 20th, 2008, 5:24 pm
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Re: Afghanistan: its present and future

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We had alot of popular support world wide when we were specifically going after Bin laden with a handful of troops, but when our original mission wasn't accomplished and we stayed and meddled in affairs that we had never troubled with before?
Your insinuation here is that the popular support has vanished more than it would do as with any protracted conflict. I'd point out that a sudden reversal of strategy by the US at the this point in Afghanistan is going to endanger the 40 other nations who have troops fighting the Taliban.


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  #39  
Old June 20th, 2008, 6:07 pm
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Re: Afghanistan: its present and future

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Originally Posted by Overdose View Post
Your insinuation here is that the popular support has vanished more than it would do as with any protracted conflict.
Did I? If the reasoning is still sound, then I think that people would still support it. In fact people still DO support the idea of finding and destroying Bin Laden and the Taliban. Except that Afganistan seems largely forgotten with other foriegn affairs taking the spot light. The original mission has come to a stand still with little or no quantifiable progress being made, no end in sight, and us just by virtue of our extended presence being drawn into affairs that, were we not physically present there, perhaps we have a different point of view.

As for the other nations that you speak of...of course no one wants us to abandon them to some unknown fate. Nor do I advocate leaving Afganistan with our mission unaccomplished. Rather, I believe there has to be a refocusing on Afganistan and why we went there, and also avoidance of being drawn into other issues that we are not equipped to deal with.


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  #40  
Old June 24th, 2008, 2:42 pm
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Re: Afghanistan: its present and future

The BBC are reporting that the Taleban made 100 million USD from the opium trade last year, which has financed their activities in Afghanistan.

The image below details where opium is most present.



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