Welcome to Scribd. Sign in or start your free trial to enjoy unlimited e-books, audiobooks & documents.Find out more
Download
Standard view
Full view
of .
Look up keyword
Like this
2Activity
0 of .
Results for:
No results containing your search query
P. 1
Languishing In the Valley of no Return_NATO’s Stalled Efforts in Eradicating the Taliban

Languishing In the Valley of no Return_NATO’s Stalled Efforts in Eradicating the Taliban

Ratings: (0)|Views: 42|Likes:
Published by Richard L. Dixon
The U.S. and NATO involvement in Afghanistan has disintegrated into a quagmire that in the years to come will even be more painful than our military adventures in the jungles of Southeast Asia over 40 years ago. Afghanistan as a country has earned a notorious reputation for being a black pit where would be conquerors have met their fatal demise.
The U.S. and NATO involvement in Afghanistan has disintegrated into a quagmire that in the years to come will even be more painful than our military adventures in the jungles of Southeast Asia over 40 years ago. Afghanistan as a country has earned a notorious reputation for being a black pit where would be conquerors have met their fatal demise.

More info:

Published by: Richard L. Dixon on Dec 27, 2009
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

Availability:

Read on Scribd mobile: iPhone, iPad and Android.
download as DOC, PDF, TXT or read online from Scribd
See more
See less

05/11/2014

pdf

text

original

 
Languishing in the “Valley of no Return”: NATO’s Stalled Efforts in Eradicatingthe TalibanBy Richard L. Dixon
The U.S. and NATO involvement in Afghanistan has disintegrated into a quagmire that in theyears to come will even be more painful than our military adventures in the jungles of SoutheastAsia over 40 years ago. Afghanistan as a country has earned a notorious reputation for being a black pit where would be conquerors have met their fatal demise. From the likes of “The Medianand Persian Empires, Alexander the Great, the Seleucids, the Indo-Greeks, Turks, Mongols,British and Soviets all met the end of their ambitions in Afghanistan.” (Dahr Jamail).The inhabitants view us as occupiers instead of liberators. This is especially true within theincreasing amount of collateral damage in terms of noncombatant casualties. In essence, we have become the same empire just as the British in the past. Our military is overstretched and under-supplied in trying to maintain stability in a region of the world that has never experienced such aconcept in its history.
Framing the idea of empire as a force for good, however, is one of the recurring themes of empiresthroughout history. Indeed the Roman and British empires were formed, not by force alone, but on the basis of their capacity to present their authority at home andabroad as being in the service of right and peace. That is how empires have regularly justifiedtheir authority to use instruments of coercion extraterritorially; that is, they have felt they wereexercising “imperial sovereignty” rather than just “national sovereignty.” (Ivan Eland, November 26,2002).
 
In fact, our continued presence in the guise as Empire has emboldened the enemy (Al Qaeda) and provided ready-made recruits who view the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq as a crusade against Islam.Our continued presence will become a blowback which will threaten other regimes such as Bahrain,Qatar, Kuwait, UAE, and Yemen which is now experiencing a Shia rebellion in their Northern most provinces. Pakistan is trying to throw the yoke of a Taliban uprising in the SWAT Valley whichthreatens nearby Islamabad. “It also shows that imperial behavior by one power can lead tocounterbalancing by other powers. Imperial expansion can even cause proliferation of weapons of mass destruction among poor countries as the great equalizers vis-à-vis the imperial power.Finally, the military interventions required to maintain an empire can erode the foundationsof the constitutional system of a republic such as the United States.” (Ivan Eland, November 26,2002).
All have underestimated the terrain, people, culture, and history of the country and the region.Throughout its history Afghanistan has been a country steeped in tribal conflict, ruled bywarlords, poor mountain terrain, and governed by a fierce independence. It’s no wonder thatFrank L. Holt called Afghanistan the “Land of Bones.” Unless the United States and NATOquickly changes it mode of operations in Afghanistan, no amount of Troop increases will give usleverage for a quick victory in such a God forsaken country. Both the U.S. and NATO would bewise to learn from the failed military strategies of their predecessors.“Second, we must acknowledge that the wars waged in Afghanistan by Alexander, Britain, theSoviet Union, and now the United States share some salient features that may not bodewell for our future. For example, all these invasions of Afghanistan went well at first, but so far no superpower has found a workable alternative to what might be called the recipefor ruin in Afghanistan:
 
1. Estimate the time and resources necessary to conquer andcontrol the region.2. Double all estimates.3. Repeat as needed.Afghanistan cannot be subdued by half measures. Invaders must consider the deadly demands of winter warfare, since all gains from seasonal campaigns are erased at every lull. Invaders mustresolve to hunt down every warlord, for the one exception will surely rot the fruits of all other victories. Invaders cannot succeed by avoiding cross-border fighting, since the mobile insurgentscan otherwise hide and reinforce with impunity. Invaders must calculate where to draw thedecisive line between killing and conciliation, for too much of either means interminableconflict.” (Frank L. Holt, 2005).Afghanistan itself is a contrast in culture, language, and tradition. It presents both an opportunityand problem for the major players in the region which includes the United States, NATO, Russia,China, Pakistan, Iran, and India. The country poses a danger to all parties involved and threatensto destabilize the Eurasian region and Indian subcontinent. The Pakistanis are already trying to put down a Taliban insurgency in the SWAT Valley which is only 70 Kilometers fromIslamabad and threatens to put nuclear weapons in the hands of crazed and radical Islamists.India has been fighting a rebellion in the Kashmir region that it shares with Pakistan since the partitioning of the region by the British. Iran is dealing with both a huge influx of Shia refugeesthat they are desperately trying to integrate into their nation. The U.S. and NATO are not onlyfighting a resurgent Taliban but also a thriving heroin trade in the Golden Triangle area whichfunnels drug money back into the insurgency. In essence, Afghanistan is like the bad in-laws

You're Reading a Free Preview

Download
scribd
/*********** DO NOT ALTER ANYTHING BELOW THIS LINE ! ************/ var s_code=s.t();if(s_code)document.write(s_code)//-->