Afghan Biographies

Face saving “failing” in Afghanistan

Subject Face saving “failing” in Afghanistan

In spite of its international coalition, multiple strategies, hundreds of billions of dollars, and a surge of tens of thousands of troops, the NATO and the US is unable to conclude its longest war yet or at least reverse its trend.

Recent "reports" from the war front have been of two kinds. Some official or analytical in nature and heavily circulated in NATO HQ and the Capitals of the War Alliance portray a war going terribly well. On the other hand, hard news from the ground tell a story of NATO and US fatigue, backtracking and tactical withdrawals or redeployments which do not bode well for defeating the Taliban or forcing them to the negotiations' table.

NATO and Washington have given up on its counterinsurgency (COIN) strategy devised under McChrystal and Petraeus. Instead, it is pursuing a heavy handed and terribly destructive crackdown that includes special operations, assassinations, mass demolitions, air and night raids etc. that have led to anything but winning the country and hearts and minds.

Nor is the recruitment and training of the Afghan forces going well. Indeed, many seem to give up on the idea that Afghan security forces could take matters into their hands if NATO withdraws in the foreseeable future.

The Afghan government' incapability to take on the tasks of governing or securing the country beyond the capital, and the incapacity of NATO to break the Taliban's momentum does not bode well for an early conclusion of the war.

The mere fact that the world's mightiest superpower and NATO cannot win over the poorly armed Taliban after a long decade of fighting, means it has already failed strategically, regardless of the final outcome.

Now all NATO and US Spindoctors and Psywar experts are very busy conveying the message: We are winning the war in Afghanistan and that is why we can start with the transition of the responsibility for security to the Afghan Government. The western countries most important strategy now is to retreat from Afghanistan face saving and playing down that they have failed.

Released 2011-03-30