The Self Inflicted Tragedy Of The Afghanistan Strategy

BY Herschel Smith
4 years ago

Mark Steyn observes:

The pitiful self-inflicted tragedy of the west’s “strategy” in Afghanistan is summed up in this opening sentence:

KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — A newly recruited Afghan village policeman opened fire on his American allies on Friday, killing two US service members minutes after they handed him his official weapon in an inauguration ceremony.

There’s nothing clever or sophisticated about this attack. You don’t have to plot, or disguise yourself, or break into a secure facility. They come to you, to your village. They even give you money. And then they give you the gun. And then you shoot them.

Do they cover that in Pentagon-approved must-read Three Cups Of Tea? Afghanistan is just another in the long roll-call of America’s un-won wars these past six decades – except that it’s taken longer to lose than the others, and in their barbarity the locals demonstrate an almost gleeful contempt for a lavishly endowed enemy with everything except the one thing it needs: strategic purpose. This ought to be a national scandal …

To some degree we’ve covered this in Green On Blue Bloodbath In Afghanistan.  At least now they have changed their disposition towards the ANA and ANP.

The uptick in attacks by Afghan security forces against coalition troops has hit home, with all troops at NATO headquarters and all bases across Afghanistan now ordered to carry loaded weapons around the clock, CNN learned Friday.

Gen. John Allen, the NATO commander in Afghanistan, ordered the move, according to a U.S. official with direct knowledge of the orders. The order, made in recent days, was divulged amid two more so-called green-on-blue or insider attacks Friday.

It’s ridiculous that we weren’t already behaving this way.  This is part of the impetus behind me asking why all Soldiers and Marines don’t already carry a sidearm. In Iraq when the Marines, 2/6 Golf Company, was in Fallujah (2007), they wouldn’t even sleep around ISF unless they had concertina wire and armed, on duty Marines between them and ISF soldiers.

As for the tragedy of the Afghanistan strategy, it isn’t that there wasn’t one.  It’s that the flag and staff officers from the Pentagon to Afghanistan came under the spell of the doctrines of population-centric counterinsurgency and nation-building.  For it, as Steyn observes, “We came, we saw, we left no trace. America’s longest war will leave nothing behind.”  Not even killing enough of the enemy.  We will be back again, hopefully as grown ups next time.



  • Rich Buckley

    Greg Mortenson was not fighting a war and he earned the blessing of the supreme religious leader of the district, from Sayed Abbas Resvi: “Protect and embrace these two American brothers in our midst. Let no harm come to them. Share all you have to make their mission successful. ”

    The only weapon Mortenson carried into the country was his courage and determination to give. At that point of Mortenson’s strange journey, the only empire in his mind he was determined to build was a school house.

  • TS Alfabet

    The bitter irony of all this is that all the people who advocated a restrained, population-centric, restrictive ROE, nation building approach have unwittingly ensured that the “next time” (and does anyone doubt there will be a “next time”?) the U.S. has to come back to Afghan-Pakistan region, there will be no room for any soft approach. The policy will be widespread devastation and collateral damage because that is what the American people will demand after the next attack on U.S. soil that is traced back to this corner of the globe.

    Perhaps that is the only silver lining in this disastrous Afghan campaign: the American people have learned that this soft approach doesn’t work and overwhelming force is needed.

  • jean

    After reading the CNN article on Sunday, it dawned on me that this is probably an extension of the yellow PT belt madness that has infected the rear area, except there are no rear areas per say. Does it take a flag officer to direct soldiers to carry weapons is war zone? Have we gone to a garrison environment in a war zone, arms rooms protected by 200 series locks and alarms? Ask any RC East veteran about their experiences in Bagram or Salerno, being treated like a child or retard concerning their weapons or uniform. It’s a complex war environment, we need to trust the leadership in the field to execute the commanders’ intent, give them the “what”, and they can figure the “how”. Relaxed tactical posture indicts and restrictive ROEs have resulted in additional causalities and have emboldened our enemies in Afghanistan and beyond.

  • http://Www.firstcontactProject.org Rich Buckley

    What many of us learned from “this longest war” was to open our eyes to the need for simple, uncomplicated, straight-up use of the Constitutional Declaration of War.

    We learned that there is no lie too big for government to engage in as it deceptively prepares its citizens to want to go to war through false flag operations so large in scope that rational minds are unable to believe there are widely disbursed, embedded, compartmentalized human elements within the war machine on every level that are running a dark agenda… An agenda spelled out in plain view in stone, as “The Georgia Guide Stones.” This very agenda which has always been thrown back in our faces as “balderdash”, is nothing less than the dying legacies of hundred’s of years of the Rothchild’s lineage playing both sides of humanity against each other with Illuminati profits going to the banksters no matter who “wins” the war.

    Here we are, we proud warriors. We have nearly lost our own country in our patriot zeal
    with the rise of NDAA, the rise of a Department who’s very name harkens the Nazi regime renaming America, “Homeland” offending everyone old enough to hold memories of WWII, and finally the militarization of our police forces, strung together by Presidents of both parties.

    The real thing I think I learned is, if you serve the military: Ours IS to now question WHY, and no longer just to DO or DIE. There are real White Hats risking much, working to bring us through this tumultuous time, to break the backs of the perpetrators this
    dark agenda. If I’ve learned anything it is to pray they prevail.

  • Pingback: Gun Grabbers Go To Afghanistan | Daily Pundit()


You are currently reading "The Self Inflicted Tragedy Of The Afghanistan Strategy", entry #8939 on The Captain's Journal.

This article is filed under the category(s) Afghanistan,Counterinsurgency and was published August 19th, 2012 by Herschel Smith.

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