Tuesday, September 1, 2009

The Afghan 8os are back

Nato's failing mission is increasingly coming to resemble the Soviets' disastrous campaign

Jonathan Steele
guardian.co.uk, Monday 31 August 2009

"It is deja vu on a huge and bloody scale. General Stanley McChrystal, the US commander in Afghanistan, is about to advise his president that "the Afghan people are undergoing a crisis of confidence because the war against the Taliban has not made their lives better", according to leaked reports. Change the word "Taliban" to "mujahideen", and you have an exact repetition of what the Russians found a quarter of a century ago.......

The big difference, so far, is that after years of remorseless losses the Soviet leadership realised the war was unwinnable. Mikhail Gorbachev tried talking to the enemy to form a coalition Afghan government (shades of the current "Do we talk to the Taliban?" debate), but when they and their western backers refused, he pulled out anyway. Does Obama have the sense to do the same? ........"

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