Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Losing Afghanistan

While everyone's attention, mine included, has been focused upon events in the Arab world, Afghanistan is quietly going from bad to worse.

The relationship between Afghan President Hamid Karzai and the Obama administration continues to go downhill, with Karzai 3 days ago refusing to accept Obama's apology for the killing of nine Afghan children in a US raid.

As LBJ did in Vietnam, Obama is now floundering desperately in Afghanistan. The so-called COIN strategy, which was hailed with much fanfare and hoopla last year, is a failure. This should come as no surprise. COIN was not anything new, despite loud claims to the contrary. COIN was a re-hash of old strategies which failed in Vietnam. "Clear and Hold" sound familiar? "Fortified Hamlets", perhaps? Strategies such as these ignore the basic facts of guerrilla warfare; they are an attempt to apply conventional warfare concepts to unconventional warfare. And the whole point of guerrilla warfare is that the conventional warfare strategies do not work.

I will repeat my earlier prediction. The US involvement in Afghanistan will end badly, as badly as the fall of Saigon in 1975, with the helicopters taking off from the US embassy with people hanging off the landing skids.

No comments:

Post a Comment