Afghanistan War

STURM

Well-Known Member
Again similar thing also being talked by US Political circle that they will not leave Vietnam and they will not leave Afghanistan.
South Korea is in an area of greater importance. For one is is close to Japan and in a area considered America's backyard. America could afford to lose in Vietnam in a way it never could or can in South Korea because of the importance it plays in the larger scheme of things.

Despite its many failings the South Vietnamese government in 1975 [as I pointed out previously] was in a far better and stronger position than the Kabul goverment was in 2021. That America decided to leave the country was largely due to there being no end in sight to the war and due to domestic American politics. Yes the Saigon government was weak and corrupt and these factors played a major role but again, so did a number of flawed and self defeating American policies.
 

Ananda

The Bunker Group
We already circle around and around. Your point does not convince me, as my point also does not convince you. Like I said before, lets agree to disagree and not bring this topic again. It will only bring endless debate.
 

John Fedup

The Bunker Group
WRT Vietnam, American involvement started at the height of the Cold War and the Domino Theory was still accepted. This theory was junked as the war progressed. This fact, 59,000 soldiers KIA, no win in sight, and massive opposition at home ended American involvement. Afghanistan, a knee jerk reaction albeit understandable that progressed into a complete C-F at great cost in terms of treasure, blood, and reputation.
 

STURM

Well-Known Member
The Domino Theory was based on the premise that the communist end game was to spread the revolution throughout the region. Whilst this is certaintly what the Soviets wanted, the North Vietnamese leadership had no such intent. We now know this thanks to a series of meetings held between former U.S. decision makers with their Vietnamese counterparts during the 1990's. The North Vietnamese on their part were absolutely convinced that the Americans had imperialists designs on their country. The irony is that Ho Chi Minh actually approached the Americans for help against the returning French in 1945.

Aghanistan went totally ratshit for the Americans who expended a lot of resources and lives but lets not forget the extremely large number of Aghans who lost their lives. Same with Vietnam, we know of the 50 odd thousand Americans killed but a much larger number of locals were killled, not just in Vietnam but Laos and Cambobia. What was it for : freedom and democracy?

One image which sticks in my mind is a civillian holding up his lifeless son to a group of ARVN troops on a M-113.
 

Ananda

The Bunker Group

This will be the test for Taliban abilities to provide relative stronger and stable government in Afghanistan. Like I said in one of my previous post, their threshold is not that high.
 

STURM

Well-Known Member
It will be a test indeed but it's still very early days. IS will continue to launch attacks in order to maintain pressure on the Taliban and to increase the level of support it has. The fact that it managed to carry out an atack on a soft or defenceless target is unsuprising and is not an indicator of things. To me it's inevitable that there will be some kind of cooperation between the U.S. and the Taliban in combating IS, as there was in the past.

Things will get pretty dicey for the Taliban when or rather if ISK manages to significantly increase the level of support it has, unlikely in my opinion. ISK has been around for years but has failed to garner widespread support.

The irony is that after years of conducting an insurgency campaign and relying on assymetric means, the Taliban now faces its own insurgent threat.

 

John Fedup

The Bunker Group
The Domino Theory was based on the premise that the communist end game was to spread the revolution throughout the region. Whilst this is certaintly what the Soviets wanted, the North Vietnamese leadership had no such intent. We now know this thanks to a series of meetings held between former U.S. decision makers with their Vietnamese counterparts during the 1990's. The North Vietnamese on their part were absolutely convinced that the Americans had imperialists designs on their country. The irony is that Ho Chi Minh actually approached the Americans for help against the returning French in 1945.

Aghanistan went totally ratshit for the Americans who expended a lot of resources and lives but lets not forget the extremely large number of Aghans who lost their lives. Same with Vietnam, we know of the 50 odd thousand Americans killed but a much larger number of locals were killled, not just in Vietnam but Laos and Cambobia. What was it for : freedom and democracy?

One image which sticks in my mind is a civillian holding up his lifeless son to a group of ARVN troops on a M-113.
Cold War mentality resulted in tunnel vision by the Americans wrt to communism. They couldn’t see past Vietnamese communism and realize they despised China and colonialism and just wanted to be on their own. If Ho Chi Minh has been a fascist, Euro type socialist, or greedy run of the mill dictator, he would have been the beneficiary of US aid.
 

STURM

Well-Known Member
Ho Chi Minh was a nationalist first before a communist. His main initial goal was a free Vietnam but the Americans had their own politics at play with the French. The greatest irony is that Ho Chi Minh approached the Americans for assistance but didn't received any. The seeds of what later became America's Vietnam war were laid following the return of the French, their subsequent defeat and the partition of the country.
 
Last edited:

STURM

Well-Known Member

Talks have with the U.K. and the Taliban on humanitarian aid. To me the issue is not about recognising the Taliban or whether it has indeed changed but the fact that ordinary Afghans are badly in need of assistance in order to survive. Whether one likes it or not, the Taliban is in power and one of the prerequsites of getting aid into the country is to have a level of dialogue with the Talibs.
 

OPSSG

Super Moderator
Staff member
To me the issue is not about recognising the Taliban or whether it has indeed changed but the fact that ordinary Afghans are badly in need of assistance in order to survive. Whether one likes it or not, the Taliban is in power and one of the prerequsites of getting aid into the country is to have a level of dialogue with the Talibs.
1. The latest aid talks are about getting former British interpreters out of Afghanistan; not about starving Afghans — aka peanuts for the Taliban monkeys — who released ISK prisoners, who are now conducting attacks in Afghanistan. Helping the UN address immediate starvation concerns is a priority but beyond that, it’s up to the Taliban to solve. With U.S. and UK troops withdrawn from the country and the Taliban now governing, ISK is waging a guerilla campaign against the Taliban.
  • ISK sees the Taliban as an existential threat and as such, will stop at nothing to undermine the legitimacy of their new government.
  • Another part of ISK’s strategy may be an attempt to lure Taliban fighters to break away from the organization and join the Islamic State’s ranks.
  • The Taliban was unquestionably an effective insurgent force, but now the group is facing a different role—that of counterinsurgent—and is struggling to prevent asymmetric and irregular attacks from ISK.
2. Meanwhile, the Taliban are busy killing innocent Hazara. In recent days since the group took power last month, reports of abusive treatment by Taliban fighters in Kabul and reprisals against members of the former government and military and civil society activists emerged despite promises of amnesty by the Taliban, raising alarm that Afghanistan's new rulers might be facing problems in controlling forces on the ground. Even the appropriate agency to help Afghanistan, the UN, would find the behaviour of the Taliban problematic. More importantly, without a mandate for UN troop deployment in Afghanistan — Afghans will starve. IMO, starving Afghanistan is a Taliban choice. There are plenty of starving people in the world. If the British are not stupid, they need to focus their aid efforts.

3. There is 300-strong UK Task Group deployed to Mali in December 2020 to support the UN mission, which is made up of over 13,000 peacekeepers from 56 different countries and works to support peace efforts, encourage security sector reform, protect civilians and promote human rights. If the British have too much aid money, give it to Mali, to help their troops restore order. They can make a real difference there as the French are in the middle of a huge disagreement with Col Assimi Goïta. Goïta has seized power in Mali, detaining transitional President Bah Ndaw and Prime Minister Moctar Ouane after accusing them of failing in their duties and trying to sabotage the West African state's transition to democracy.

4. Between 18 Sep 2021 and 4 Oct 2021, ISK claimed 28 separate attacks, including a bombing in Kabul earlier this week targeting the funeral of the mother of the Taliban’s chief spokesperson. The attack occurred at the entrance of the Eid Gah Mosque in Kabul. In its propaganda and media, ISK continuously derides the Taliban as “apostates” and mocks its members as puppets of the Americans. If the Taliban is unable to establish a monopoly on the use of violence within Afghanistan’s borders, groups like ISK will have the opportunity to resurge and regenerate its networks. To combat ISK, the Taliban is going to rely on the Haqqani network, al-Qaeda, and other violent non-state actors for manpower, combat expertise, and logistical support.

5. Indeed, ISK is merely taking a page from the Taliban playbook. Over the past two decades, the Taliban and its Haqqani network and al-Qaeda allies, often through the Kabul Attack Network, repeatedly attacked Afghan government officials, Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF), and U.S. and coalition soldiers in order to demonstrate to Afghan civilians that the government in Kabul was weak and ineffective. Now, through relentless and highly lethal attacks, ISK is demonstrating to the Afghan people how the Taliban, like the ANSF before, are unable to protect the population.

6. There are reports that the Taliban has provided Tajik militants based in northern Afghanistan with new military vehicles, weaponry, and other equipment over the past two weeks, security sources in Tajikistan and Afghanistan say.

7. Starving Afghans and ISK attacks on the Taliban affect Pakistan, China, Tajikistan and Iran far more than anyone else — and not the UK. China says it’s the new number 1, so they should do the heavy lifting. Pakistan’s ISI has installed their guy in the centre of Taliban power — so I say good luck to them. Because of the poor infrastructure and security problems blocking mineral extraction, Afghanistan has mostly downsides for China and precious few upsides. At a minimum, China will need to send more economic aid to Afghanistan through Pakistan; at worst they'll see extremists infiltrate Xinjiang from Afghanistan.
 
Last edited:

STURM

Well-Known Member
Indeed. The Taliban now faces its own non state threat, similar to many other insurgent groups who managed to gain power but which in turn later faced their own non state or insurgent threat.

ISK's aim to to ensure instability and maintain pressure on the Talibs, not only to show that the Talibs are unable to guarantee complete security [no suprises here - even when the Americans were present in full force they were unable to completely eradicate IS] and to draw in recruits.

The good news is that support for IS remains largely isolated and limited. The vast majority of Afghans desire peace and although a large segment saw the Taliban as a legitimate means against foreign occupation which propped up a government widely viewed as being lackeys, they renain largely indifferent to IS whose ideology is largely derived from Saudi Wahabbism with a mixture of Salafist learning [similar to the so called Syrian "moderate" groups whom the West put their faith in but who weren"t as "moderate" as believed], as opposed to the Taliban's whose ideology, althought also based on Wahabism also is heavily influenced by Pashtun cultures and norms [a fact often not realised by outsiders].

On Pakistan I will continue to sress the point that it too is very worriried. Having Talibs in power does not solve all of Pakistan's problems, not only have the Taliban [like all Afghans] been had to control but Pakistan has a even larger Pashtun population of its own, plus unresolved border issues along the artifically created Durand Line.

Afghanistan's neighbours fully understand that unlike IS the Talibs have no desire to spread their ideology across borders. The fear is mainly centered not on foreign fighters infiltrating their own countries but of spreading the ideology. This is the primary reason why Russian, with the Caucasus, is keen to maintain dialogue with the Taliban and why it supported Assad, who was pitted against various foreign [read Western and Gulf Arab] backed Salafist groups.
 
Last edited:

STURM

Well-Known Member

A very informative and interesting article about a very remote district the Americans vacated long before they left the country and about how the experiences of ordinary Afghans there and how they view things.

"While the final departure of U.S. forces literally happened overnight, and without any fanfare or even a clear announcement, the full U.S. disengagement from Afghanistan was a long goodbye. Some provinces and outposts were already abandoned years ago, like Combat Outpost Keating in Kamdesh, a district in the eastern Afghan province of Nuristan, which was vacated by U.S. forces over a decade ago, in 2009"

"In spite of the heavy casualties the Taliban suffered, when U.S. forces abandoned Keating soon after the Battle of Kamdesh, the Taliban were again in control of almost all of Kamdesh and felt victorious – a feeling now echoing through the whole of the country, and still persistent"
 
Last edited:

swerve

Super Moderator
... as opposed to the Taliban's whose ideology, althought also based on Wahabism also is heavily influenced by Pashtun cultures and norms [a fact often not realised by outsiders]....
I can't remember the particular issue, but I recall that during the first spell of Taliban rule a foreigner (journalist?) publicly queried some rule the Taliban had decreed, on the grounds that there was no mention of it in the Koran, Hadith etc., & said that as far as he knew it was Pashtun tribal custom. The senior Taliban official he challenged agreed - but said that through long usage it had become identified with Islam & Muslims so it was legitimate to class it as Islamic.
 

STURM

Well-Known Member
Indeed there can be a very sharp distinction regarding what's actually Islamic and what's actually cultural or tribal. We know that quite a number of Islamic customs/practices were actually based on Arab cultural norms which were related to the environment they lived in, plus cultural factors.

Iran is an interesting case. It became Islamic when Islam spread to its borders but unlike other places in the Middle East, North Africa and Central Asia; the Persians adopted Islam but 'Persianised' it to large degree.

Back to Afghanistan; Iran is to host a meeting on Afghanistan which will be attended by countries which border Afghanistan.

 
Last edited:

Ananda

The Bunker Group


This's actually already few days old. Put two video that shown Taliban doing Military Parade to shown their new 'rebrand' army as Islamic Emirates Afghanistan National Army. The Parade being done in their strong hold of Kandahar.

Seems they're manage also to revive some helicopters, both types of the US UH-60 and Russian Mi-17. Indicating they have manage to make enough Pilots and Mechanics from previous Government Army to work with them again.
 

sark

Member
..the US did not lose the Afghanistan war
1. most wars are not total--they are contained = no super clear winner ..usually no unconditional surrender .....
--wars are complex ...Afghanistan is very, very complex--next:
2. Afghanistan was very unstable/etc- to say the least--politically/etc
--they had 3 heads of state changes in less than 2 years!! these were bloody changes! [ akin to South Vietnam ]
...there is no way anyone is going to go in there and change the culture and/or politics [ akin to South Vietnam/North Vietnam ]
.....the Brits and Russians could not do it [ akin to Vietnam-the French could not do it ]
...the US went in there and killed a lot of bad guys--in a ''blitz'', at first - impressive ...they got Bin Laden/etc
like Vietnam, it was ''unwinnable''' to think we could change Afghanistan..not a loss
 

sark

Member
3 VVS Il-76s have shown up in Kabul. Why is unclear. I wouldn't be surprised if we saw some sort of deal between Russia and the Taliban that involved military-technical assistance.

and if so, the '''circle'' continues! the Russians went in there, the head of state was murdered, then the war .......same with the US!!!! we are friends with countries, then enemies, then friends, then enemies/etc ie: Iran and Iraq
 
Top