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Posts Tagged ‘Afghanistan

(WAR) Lone Tipster Triggered Afghan Air Strike Decision…

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markfollman.files.wordpress.com__a-stan-air-strike(Newser Summary) – A single eye witness was responsible for much of the intelligence guiding the decision to bomb two fuel tankers surrounded by more than 100 Afghanis, including civilians, reports the Washington Post. Dropping the 500-pound bombs based on the word of a single source appears to violate recent directives aimed at limiting civilian casualties in Afghanistan, according to observers.

Thermal imaging from airborne surveillance confirmed the basic information, but not whether people around the trucks were insurgents or civilians. At least two dozen civilians were incinerated when the bombs were dropped—others were wounded. Some had come for free fuel or just to gawk at the trucks stuck in the mud. Others had been forced by Taliban soldiers to help free the trucks.

Mat Probasco

Source: Washington Post

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Written by dnnnewshound

September 6, 2009 at 10:07 am

Posted in Military, WAR

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(WAR) UK Army Too Broke To Recruit More Troops…

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Source: Times Online

www.timesonline.co.uk_Afghanistan_British_Troops_610067aThe army is being forced to cap its growth because recruitment is “unaffordable”, a leaked Ministry of Defence document has disclosed.

The briefing note — entitled Controlling Growth in Army Strength — is the first admission by defence officials that they do not have enough money to expand and provide further support to overstretched forces in Afghanistan.

Senior army figures believe troop shortages are responsible for the growing number of British casualties in Helmand.

Yet the Ministry of Defence concedes in the memo that increasing the size of the army beyond its full strength of 102,000 is too READ MORE

Written by dnnnewshound

September 5, 2009 at 8:06 pm

Posted in Military, WAR

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(WAR) Read: Obama’s Meaningless War…

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Source: TruthDig

warBy Robert Scheer

True, he doesn’t seem a bit like Lyndon Johnson, but the way he’s headed on Afghanistan, Barack Obama is threatened with a quagmire that could bog down his presidency. LBJ also had a progressive agenda in mind, beginning with his war on poverty, but it was soon overwhelmed by the cost and divisiveness engendered by a meaningless, and seemingly endless, war in Vietnam.

Meaningless is the right term for the Afghanistan war, too, because our bloody attempt to conquer this foreign land has nothing to do with its stated purpose of enhancing our national security. Just as the government of Vietnam was never a puppet of Communist China or the Soviet Union, the Taliban is not a surrogate for al-Qaida. Involved in both instances was an American intrusion into a civil war whose passions and parameters we never fully grasped and could not control militarily.

The Vietnamese Communists were not an extension of an inevitably hostile, unified international communist enemy, as evidenced by the fact that Communist Vietnam and Communist China are both our close trading partners today. Nor should the Taliban be considered simply an extension of a Mideast-based al-Qaida movement, whose operatives the U.S. recruited in the first place to go to Afghanistan to fight the Soviets.

Those recruits included Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, the alleged mastermind of the 9/11 attack, and financier Osama bin Laden, who met in Afghanistan as part of a force that Ronald Reagan glorified as “freedom fighters.” As blowback from that bizarre, mismanaged CIA intervention, the Taliban came to power and formed a temporary alliance with the better-financed foreign Arab fighters still on the scene.

There is no serious evidence that the Taliban instigated the 9/11 attacks or even knew about them in advance. Taliban members were not agents of al-Qaida; on the contrary, the only three governments that financed and diplomatically recognized the Taliban—Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Pakistan—all were targets of bin Laden’s  group. READ MORE

Written by dnnnewshound

September 4, 2009 at 9:08 pm

Posted in Military, Obama, President, WAR

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(WAR) READ: McChrystal: US Is Failing in Afghanistan…

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www.newser.com_Stanley McChrystal, the US general in charge of turning..._288587-6-20090831060818(Newser Summary) – The US military’s strategy in Afghanistan is failing, Gen. Stanley McChrystal will tell commanders in Washington today. A copy of the US commander’s remarks leaked to the BBC compares the military to a bull charging at a matador—losing strength with each individual cut. McChrystal’s report says Afghans are suffering a crisis of confidence, since their lives have not improved since 2001.

The long-awaited report says that Afghan military forces will not be ready to take the lead in peacekeeping for at least three years, and training police will take even longer. McChrystal also says the US should engage more with Taliban insurgents, estimating a 60% reduction in violence if they were found jobs. The report stops short of asking for more troops, but increased troop levels are implied—and may be made explicit in a second report to come.

Jason Farago

Sources: BBC, Reuters

 

 

Written by dnnnewshound

August 31, 2009 at 3:33 pm

(READ): Gordon Brown hints at Afghan withdrawal…

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Source: Times Online

www.timesonline.co.uk_Gordon Brown_News_607228a_000GORDON BROWN yesterday prepared the ground for a pre-election announcement of troop withdrawals from Afghanistan next year.

During a lightning visit to the front line in Helmand province, the prime minister announced plans to double a training programme for the Afghan army to reduce its reliance on British and American troops.

“Stepping that up means the Afghans themselves take responsibility for their own affairs,” Brown said.

He also hinted that there could be a temporary increase in UK troops to support and mentor local forces, with government sources suggesting that Taliban fighters could even be granted an “amnesty” in the effort to bring the conflict to a close.

The announcement will be interpreted by opposition politicians as an attempt to lay the groundwork for a highprofile commitment next year to begin withdrawing troops from Afghanistan.

Although there is little sign that the war is being won, with this month’s democratic elections blighted by low turn-out and claims of corruption, Brown is under intense pressure to enter the general election campaign in a position to say the mission in Afghanistan is reaching its conclusion.

During yesterday’s trip, he did not specifically refer to an exit strategy or timetable for withdrawal, but moves to train more local forces would pave the way for British troops to be sent home.

It follows a bloody summer during which the number of British service personnel killed in Afghanistan has risen to 208, prompting mounting public hostility to the conflict. Recent opinion polls suggest that two in three British voters believe that UK forces should withdraw from the region. Read More

Written by dnnnewshound

August 29, 2009 at 9:38 pm

Posted in Military, Terrorism, WAR

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