Tuesday, November 03, 2009

An Afghanistan Strategy That Works

"But the big fool said to push on." - (click photo for graphic source)

Is Sorya Sarhaddi Nelson really and truly in Afghanistan? I've heard her interviewed the last day or so regarding the fortunes of of the US debacle in Afghanistan - in light of the non-runoff runoff and the "victory" of Hamid Karzai - and I can't say I've learned anything from it.

Nelson was on ATC Monday talking to Michelle Norris and this exchange occurred:
Norris: "With Hamid Karzai now declared the official winner of the presidential election, to what degree does that now solve the political uncertainty in Afghanistan?"

Nelson: "Well, for the West it gives them - in particular, President Obama - a green light to move ahead in redefining and setting an Afghanistan strategy that works, in terms of international involvement here. But the question remains whether Afghans will accept this government as a legitimate one. I think much can be forgiven, including the fraud, in a very lengthy and disappointing election process if in fact the new Karzai administration delivers services and delivers security, which is what people here are really wanting."
Keep that little nugget in mind as you read Tony Karon's brutal assessment of Sen. Kerry's mission to Afghanistan where he rather publicly retied the strings to the wayward US puppet - and was hailed as some kind of diplomacy wizard by "the spoon fed media."

Or consider Nelson's open ended optimism ("a strategy that works, in terms of international involvement there" and "whether Afghans will accept this government as a legitimate one") as you read just the first two or three paragraphs of Tom Engelhardt's depressing assessment of where things stand in Afghanistan and how the US is likely to proceed there.

Or consider Gareth Porter's Halloween article in the Asia Times about the US-warlord ties.

Can anyone in her right mind still pretend that there is a US-led Afghanistan strategy that works, or that the Afghan people (whoever that vague constituency is) will come around to welcome the US-Karzai-NATO occupation?


WarOnWarOff said...

Those who fail to learn from history are...most likely Americans.

(Oh, and doomed to repeat it as well.)

miranda said...

Thank you for the invaluable links, myt. Deeply depressing and absolutely essential.

Anonymous said...

For an independent "look" at Afghanistan we turn now to . . .

Former UN Ambassador Kalizhad (sp?) who I suspect has been a CIA asset since the late 70's.

My post on Morning Edition yesterday was blocked. I suspect it was because I asked them to compare and contrast reaction of NPR to Afghan elections and Iranian elections.

Wonder if Scott Simon will pontificate on the fraudulent election and subsequent installation of the Mayor of Kabul. Or maybe he and Juan will declare the election, sorry, non-election, valid and legitimate.

Whatever happened to matthew Hoh? lol


Anonymous said...

WarOnWarnoff said: "Those who fail to learn from history are...most likely Americans (Oh, and doomed to repeat it as well.)

And there is this corollary:

"Those who fail history [class] in school are also most likely Americans (Oh, and doomed to repeat it [in summer school] as well.)

I'm sure those Afghans don't suspect foul (American) play in the "resolution" of the election.

Not a chance of THAT.

If it were not so tragic, it would be pathetic that our leaders actually believe they can dictate reality merely by turning the "dials" (Steve Inskeep, Shepard Smith) on NPR and Fox.


Excellent point MTWs, here's another thing that has me scratching my head:

A political party steals an election through blatant voter fraud despite protested by the opposition.

When it happens in Iran, it's deemed proof that Iran is an immoral untrustworthy violent player in the region.

When in happens in Afghanistan, it's evidence of the compromises necessary to protect our interests and evidence of modest success of spreading democracy.

NPR doesn't see any contradiction. It's whatever memo the Pentagon and Beltway Pundits agree on.

Just like it's not "torture" when the US does it, this isn't antidemocratic authoritarianism.

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