... meanwhile, back in Afghanistan ...

:army:… word has just come through that a suicide car bomber has taken out a British Embassy vehicle. Details are somewhat unclear, but it appears that 4-5 people in that vehicle were killed, possibly including one Briton. Some 34 Afghans were injured. The Taliban have claimed responsibility for the hit.

As the deadline for US/UK operational military withdrawal from Afghanistan approaches, the Taliban have been upping their number of attacks on foreign installations and personnel. To use the phrase coined by one of our Irish “armed strugglers” (it is alleged), Gerry “Grizzly” Adams, “They haven’t gone away, you know.”. The fears of those of us who thought that the “allied” intervention in this place would ultimately be unavailing, producing only a “Vietnam with Rocks” seem all too likely to be realized. And, next door, we have Iraq - Vietnam with Sand.

I don’t know. It should have been blindingly obvious to the US and the UK that military intervention in Afghanistan was a Very Bad Idea. One does not need to have access to government-level military and diplomatic advice and intelligence to see that Afghanistan is, not so much a failed state as a never-was state. It has been the womb of empires (notably the Mughal), but only outside what we now regard as Afghanistan. In recent times, it has been a graveyard of imperialists, mainly Russian and British (remember the Retreat from Kabul ?).

A few years ago, a British journalist interviewed a group of grizzled Pashtun elders somewhere up the Hindu Kush. Asked whether they or their followers were interested in coming to an accommodation with the shambolic puppet Afghan government put in place by the Infidels, their response, with a shrug, was that they would wait. Just wait. The foreigners would leave eventually and then …

… and then, the Taliban, their Pashtun allies, and the northern warlords will get back to their ancient practices of fueding, fighting and so on, complicated by the more recent phenomenon of strict Islamisation espoused by the Taliban from their southern mountain fastness. It is hard to see how any Afghan “central government” can avoid being torn apart by this process without substantial “allied” support, including substantial “boots on the ground”. As the political will to do this is absent in the US and the UK, this support is unlikely; in any case, even as it was, the large “allied” forces were just holding on against the Taliban in the south. With a greatly reduced direct commitment, just holding on is an unlikely prospect. Helicopters launching from the roof of the US Embassy at Kabul is much more likely. Not that any heed was paid to it … but some of us tried to tell them so … Yours from somewhere Up the Khyber, JR.

In the same way as they did when the Sovs left, Terry will have to put in a fair amount of symbolic actions as the last troops pull out to project the idea that they, and they alone have ousted the kaffirs.

I’m surprised there’s not been more spectaculars already.

President Obama has indicated that the US withdrawal from an operational presence in Afghanistan will not be so complete after all. It appears that some US units will be left there on an operational basis. Of course (!) their main function will be to train and organize the Afghan security forces. However, they will also have the duty of actively assisting these forces where … appropriate. Recent events - shockingly, in northern Afghanistan rather than in the Taliban’s southern heartland - suggest that this will not be nearly enough to keep the situation relatively stable. Raises the question - will the US gradually be drawn in to a further major (probably futile) “commitment” ? Or are we headed inexorably to a “helicopter scenario” ? Answers on a postcard … Yours from the Hindu Kush, JR.

Those who do not learn from history are doomed.

Never mind the usual addendum “to repeat it”.

Some military adventurism and failure often springs from the same source as large scale financial disasters: arrogance of the next generation. Which ensures that about every 15 to 30 years or so there will be a major disaster brought on by clever ****s who have risen to positions of power and who think they are dealing with circumstances which differ from the previous major disasters or that they have superhuman powers which allow them to overcome reality. As in “sub-prime mortgages are a really good idea, based as they are on lending to people who can’t afford the payments while the people / institutions to whom / which we sell bundles of them will also see that they are a really good idea from which to profit beyond avarice by endless rivers of gold streaming from the poor and insolvent saddled with unaffordable debt” and “put more US troops into [insert preferred disaster of Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan] and we’ll definitely win”.

Anyway, what’s it all about, Alfie?

The war the public thinks is being fought for good and moral reasons is usually quite different to the war being fought for commerce and other reasons by the leaders who tell the public it is being fought for good and moral reasons, which encourages the public to sacrifice themselves and their children to the greater good.

Case in point: Look at the machinations of Pan Am during WWII to try to gain global control of post-war civil air routes and air fields built with government money converted to Pan Am’s commercial benefit, and look at the British resistance to this in Britain’s own interests. This was going on in 1943, when victory was far from assured.

So what commercial machinations are going on about Afghanistan? Central Asian pipeline? Who knows? We’ll be told long after it’s all over.


[edit: to avoid offending American delicacy by clarifying the asterisks preceding s above with a word starting with d and ending in k which is not ducks, and to demonstrate the absurdity of this inconsistently puritanical auto editing, the word I used is a synonym for penis, schlong, erect part of wedding tackle, male member, cock, prong, beef bayonet, pork sword, spear for the bearded clam, love stick, etc, all of which refer to the same thing but will not be auto censored, but in this context **** in ‘clever ****s’ has nothing to do with any of that but is an innocent expression.]


It appears that certain parties have had a falling-out over control of Afghanistan’s opium trade. They may even have declared jihad … against each other ! Another improvement in general quality of life for poor ordinary bloody Afghans, no doubt. Yours from the crossfire, JR.

They haven’t gone away, you know. Mullah Akhtar Mansour and his bearded, pakora-topped Taliban terrorists have produced another “spectacular”, attacking the Afghan Government’s Diplomatic and VIP security headquarters by car bomb. At least 64 people killed and 300 injured. Naturally, most of these casualties were poor bloody civilians. As usual.

The Afghan “government” has, for the last six months at least, been involved in an “intensive diplomatic process” with the Bearded Ones, “mediated” by the rascally Pakistanis. This seems to have achieved little, and the latest outrage in Kabul may shatter the “process” totally. The reality is that the Taliban are again on the march. Helmand Province, where US and UK soldiers lost their lives or received crippling injuries, has been the scene of continuing low-level warfare between the Taliban and the Afghan security forces for some time now. The Taliban seem to be winning. A summer campaign of bombings and murders beckons.

I mentioned somewhere else In Here that anybody with their head screwed on - even without the benefit of “secret intelligence” - should have known that intervening in this non-country was a no-win enterprise in the long term. History must view the past in its own terms - but that does not mean that it never offers us lessons. As the Taliban continue their slow, patient advance, and undertake operations designed to undermine whatever authority the Afghan “government” may have, it will be interesting to see how the US and its allies respond. “Send the Marines” ? Yours from Trump Tower, JR.

Yeah , the taliban is winning, just like evrywhere else where the US troops “brings the democracy”. In Iraq , Lybia - the same. And as they plans for Syria - but the damned Assad, against all the plans, seems now is winning the ISIS:) What a distress for world-owners!!

The answer lies just on the surface, my friend. The heroin production is multi-billionare bisiness for owners( or for whom controll the owners). More over since the “coalition liberation” in 2001 the production of heroin rises in …40 times. What a excellent investmen;) Forget about oil pipe and wearpon trade- the heroine bisiness is the best! Antoher giant profit is that the afgan heroine goes to Europe ( 90%) - killind the tens of thousands per year!!!

America’s problem is that it consistently fails to distinguish between crushing an enemy, which it has long had the military power to do but frequently fails to use that power efficiently or effectively (notably Vietnam) and insists on dressing that process up in “morally” justifiable rubbish such as bringing “democracy” to people who, after finding out what America bringing “democracy” to them involves, probably would have been quite happy to have stuck with the previous regime. Which previous regime, or worse, is pretty much what they end up with after America f**ks up and pisses off.


Also less direct interventions in the interests of “democracy”, such as Chile in the early 1970.

Russia, on the other hand, doesn’t inhibit itself with naked self-interested intrusions into other countries, as currently in Syria. Then again, Russia in its former existence as the boss of the USSR did a lot worse than America in Afghanistan.

The simple lesson is that some places are ungovernable by external powers, which the British learned in Afghanistan a couple of centuries ago and which the USSR and America and America’s allies have learned more recently.

Another lesson is that major imperial nations such as Britain, France, Russia and America have caused the current problems in the Middle East and various ‘stans’ by their meddling going back about one and a half centuries.

The last lesson is that “Those who do not learn from history…” , which is a lesson rarely learnt by politicians.

Yeah the soviets done a much evil in afganistan, no doubts. The firebombings of the villages as an option. But for sake of true untill the coalition forces come there were never such a good conditions for giant heroine narco traffic. Which make suffer not only Europe but also and own afgan population. Even taliban fought the narco plantation. But not pro-democratic gov in Kabul- it make to think about.

Another lesson is that major imperial nations such as Britain, France, Russia and America have caused the current problems in the Middle East and various ‘stans’ by their meddling going back about one and a half centuries.

The current problems cause the US and its regional allies like Saudi Arabia or Turkey who is major sponsor of ISIS in region, arent’t they?
I didn’t hear the France or Bratain has a big deal with middle east policy , which totally under control of US and Israel. Yes, and probably Israel stood behind US and behind all that destabilisation mess in middle east. Becouse only anti-israeli regimes suffer today.

The last lesson is that “Those who do not learn from history…” , which is a lesson rarely learnt by politicians.

Or politicans , manipulated by military concerns, specially creats conditions for endless wars and blood? Is it not that simple answer?