Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby Pratyush » 05 Oct 2011 15:41

How long will the Karzai govt survive the pull out by the ISAF and others? The last election had major irregularities. Also will the northern alliance continue to support the Karzai in Kabul, when it looks like he doesn't have the support of the pashtoons.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby Pranay » 05 Oct 2011 17:46

http://www.nytimes.com/reuters/2011/10/ ... ?ref=world

NATO-led forces fighting in Afghanistan said on Wednesday that an airstrike had killed a senior commander of the Taliban-linked Haqqani network and two of his associates in eastern Khost province, near the Pakistan border.

Dilawar, who was only known by one name, was a "principal subordinate" to Haji Mali Khan, who NATO captured last week and said at the time was the top Haqqani commander for Afghanistan.

Dilawar's death is "another significant loss for the insurgent group," the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) said in a statement that described his responsibilities as including coordinating attacks on Afghan forces and arranging weapons deliveries.

NATO also said that Dilawar helped foreign militants move into Afghanistan and had links with both al Qaeda and the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan.

The Afghan and coalition force had conducted more than 530 operations to disrupt Haqqani network activities in eastern Afghanistan so far this year, NATO said.

Around 1,400 suspected Haqqani insurgents had been captured this year, 100 since the start of October alone, and 20 network leaders killed, NATO said.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby ramana » 05 Oct 2011 18:43

Rd, Combat operations over full spectrum of roles. Right now NATO training is only counter insurgency without the staying power. IOW the ANA acts as an occupying force and does hit(Taliban units/villages etc) and run(back to bases) actions instead of hit and stay actions.

Also ANA can now be the national army and there can be local levies of regional tribes like CRPF to regularise the surrendered Taliban. An Afghan Ikhwan so to speak. See my plan of Oct 2009 on page 10 of this thread.

US didn't want ANA to develop combat power in order to please the TSP MNNA(Major Non NATO Ally status given by Colin Bin Powell).

There are tons of reports from Nightwatch where the ANA couldnt fight and stay leading to retaking the field by Taliban. It was always US/NATO troops leading the fight and returning to bases. Sort of Vietnam strategy. You know where it lead.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby shivajisisodia » 05 Oct 2011 18:52

Pratyush wrote:How long will the Karzai govt survive the pull out by the ISAF and others? The last election had major irregularities. Also will the northern alliance continue to support the Karzai in Kabul, when it looks like he doesn't have the support of the pashtoons.



I agree. Unless Western forces still maintain a significant presence in Afghan post withdrawl, Karzai is sure to fall and Taliban (Paki) is sure to take over, like it did in the 90s. US knows this and will look for a political handing over of Afghan to Paki, with some kind of face saving granted to it by PAki, which doesnt make it an apparent and brazen US handing over Afghan to Paki.

If the Western foces pull out, I predict a Paki/Talib take over of Afgan.

Even if I am wrong and it is not as likely as I predict, it certainly is not outside of the realm of possibility and the Indian government should have contigency plan in place well in advance of this happening. I doubt if Indian government is planning for such a contingency. I doubt Indian government plans at all.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby Ananya » 05 Oct 2011 20:06

Plot to kill Afghan president foiled: agency

(Reuters) - Afghanistan's intelligence agency said on Wednesday it had thwarted a plot to assassinate President Hamid Karzai after arresting a bodyguard and five people with links to the Haqqani network and al Qaeda.

The plotters, who included university students and a medical professor, had been trained to launch attacks in the capital Kabul and had recruited one of Karzai's bodyguards to kill the president, the National Directorate of Security (NDS) said.

http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/10/ ... 2K20111005

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby Agnimitra » 05 Oct 2011 20:41

Alright folks, its MKB time...
India promises to prop up Karzai
If India has decided to take the plunge and stand overtly behind Afghan President Hamid Karzai and the axis of power that is taking shape in Kabul, it is in part because of Delhi's deep disillusionment over United States policies. {:rotfl: ...sigh} The stage is getting set for a vicious eruption of Pakistan-India animosities.

India, however, will not get away unchallenged in its newfound "pro-activism" and how the ensuing regional rivalries will play out in the coming period remains far from clear. The cloudy horizons may have got just a bit darker as Karzai's presidential jet takes off from the Indian capital on Wednesday.

[...]

The leadership in Kabul has traditionally reached out to India as a counterweight to Pakistan. Karzai's visit to Delhi (his second visit in seven months) falls within that classic mould, but what gives added dimension to his mission is that his principal political allies at home - groups belonging to the erstwhile Northern Alliance (NA) - also happen to be forces closely associated with India for the past several years.

His two vice presidents, Mohammed Fahim and Karim Khalili, were leading figures in the anti-Taliban resistance, which India promoted, and Fahim, in particular, is the inheritor of the war machine of the late Ahmad Shah Massoud who was substantially supported by the Indian security establishment during the anti-Taliban resistance of the late 1990s.

[...]

Just as Indian pundits concluded that the recent rift in US-Pakistan ties was far too advanced to lend itself to repair, Washington has once again kissed and made up with Islamabad. New details have begun emerging that the US Central Intelligence Agency might have taken the help of Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence in contacting the Haqqani network and that the US would have offered the Haqqanis a place in the Afghan government.

The fact that the US and Pakistan may be working together to finesse the Haqqani network (which India holds responsible for the two murderous attacks on its embassy in Kabul) and bring it into the peace process horrifies Delhi and it runs contrary to repeated American assurances to Indian officials.

Besides, Delhi is convinced that Pakistan masterminded the assassination of the head of the Afghan High Peace Council, Burhanuddin Rabbani, who was close to India, as part of a calculated plan to systematically remove from the political chessboard all figures who may challenge Taliban supremacy in the coming period, especially as the drawdown of US troops accelerates.

[...]

Three-pronged strategy
Within the framework of the dialogue with Pakistan, the Indian leadership had somewhat exercised self-restraint in robustly advancing its interests in Afghanistan in the recent period, but the Indian security establishment seems to have concluded that Islamabad is pushing the envelope nonetheless, aimed at exterminating all Indian influence in Kabul in a future set-up dominated by its Taliban proxies.

Equally, Delhi is not convinced about the efficacy of the troop drawdown plan of President Barack Obama. Ironically, India shares the skepticism recently voiced by Pakistani army chief Pervez Kiani as to whether the 2014 timeline to hand over responsibility to the Afghan security forces is realistic under the prevailing circumstances.

[...]

The concrete outcome of Karzai's visit to India is three-fold and it reveals the range of Indian thinking. First, India is poised to step in for the first time in the post-Taliban era to fulfill a role that it used to perform before the mujahideen takeover in 1992 when Afghanistan was under the communist regime - namely, a commitment to be a mentor of the Afghan security forces.

Second, Delhi is making a strong pitch for a major role in the exploitation of the multi-trillion dollar mineral resources in Afghanistan. Third, India and Afghanistan have decided to work on their respective bilateral cooperation grids with Iran with a view to developing a trade and transit route through Iranian territory, bypassing Pakistan.

[...]

Delhi doesn't rule out the possibility of another outbreak of civil war in Afghanistan. It is reviving its interest in "operationalizing" an airstrip it built in Tajikistan out of its own funds and has sought permission from Dushanbe to reopen a military hospital it built in the late 1990s at Farkhor on the Afghan border to provide medical treatment to the NA warriors fighting the Taliban.

[...]

Pakistan is sure to perceive the forthcoming Indian role as mentor of the Afghan forces and Delhi's decision to resuscitate its infrastructure in Tajikistan that used to provide underpinnings for the erstwhile NA's militia as moves directed against its "legitimate interests" in Afghanistan. The stage is getting set for a rather vicious eruption of Pakistan-India animosities. Pakistan's "asymmetrical" response in the past typically took the form of terrorist strikes at targeted Indian interests.

Indian restraint was commendable in the past when faced with the challenge of terrorism :roll: , but there is a school of thinking in the Indian strategic community that it is about time that India calls the Pakistani bluff {alhamdullilah}. At any rate, India seems to anticipate troubled times ahead and has just begun a massive two-month military exercise on its desert border with Pakistan in Rajasthan sector, involving some 20,000 troops belonging to its strike corps and its air force, with an ambitious agenda to test its offensive plans to capture and hold enemy territory deep inside.

[...]

Second, Delhi is encouraging Indian business to invest in Afghanistan's mineral resources by way of emerging as a "stakeholder" in that country. Delhi is currently pushing a policy of acquiring strategic "assets" abroad and Afghanistan's vast mineral resources offer big scope for Indian investment.

Indian corporate giants are getting interested in the proposition, too. An Indian consortium is preparing to participate in the tender for the Hajigak iron ores in Afghanistan, which is estimated to hold reserves of 1.8 billion tonnes. The two memoranda of understanding signed during Karzai's visit to Delhi - relating to the field of mineral exploitation and the development of hydrocarbon - signal the shared interest of the two countries in facilitating large-scale Indian investments in Afghanistan.

To be sure, India's moves in this regard will be keenly watched by other countries, especially China and the US, which are already neck-deep in the scramble for resources in Central Asia. For the first time in the post-Soviet era, India is spreading its wings in the region and is scouting for "assets". While it lags far behind China, it seems to estimate that the game is far from over.

[...]

Third, India's main challenge with regard to a trade and transit route to Afghanistan needs to be addressed in priority terms and Karzai's visit provided a timely opportunity to have consultations. Delhi has vaguely spoken for over a decade regarding the importance of a Silk Route via Iran, but a new criticality has arisen. The point is, India cannot hope to have an effective Central Asia policy in the absence of a viable and dependable access route to the region.

Delhi views Iran as the obvious choice as a partner in this regard.
Despite the improved climate in India-Pakistan relations and notwithstanding the stirrings of a more relaxed trade regime between the two countries, no one in his senses in Delhi quite expects that Islamabad would facilitate an access route for India's trade and investment ties with Afghanistan where the two countries are locked in rivalry.

Pakistan is dragging its feet with regard to the implementation of the trade and transit treaty it signed with Afghanistan under sustained American prodding. India does not see any prospect of Pakistan agreeing to include it in this treaty, as propagated by US officials.

Equally, India is far from optimistic about the US's grandiose Silk Road project connecting the Central Asian and South Asian regions, which is likely to be presented as a major regional initiative at a forthcoming conference in Istanbul on November 2.

Iran gets two suitors
Thus, finally, after some five years of neglect, Delhi has begun dusting up the framework of India-Iran strategic cooperation. This is no easy task, as Tehran harbors a deep sense of hurt that Delhi succumbed to US (and Israeli) pressures to atrophy India's ties with Tehran. But a beginning has been made in a dramatic manner recently with Delhi seeking a bilateral meeting with Tehran at the highest level of leadership and the latter promptly agreeing.

The fact that last month's meeting between Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Iranian President Mahmud Ahmadinejad took place in New York - on American soil - was in itself invested with great political symbolism. Clearly, Delhi was preparing the ground for Karzai's forthcoming visit.

At any rate, Manmohan seems to have taken a personal interest in breathing life into the India-Iran strategic partnership, which many hold him as responsible for stifling in recent years in deference to American wishes.


India's rapprochement with Iran coincides with an upswing in the latter's ties with Pakistan. Iran is going to be assiduously courted by the two South Asian rivals. Pakistan's efforts will be to forge a matrix of commonality of interests with Iran over the Afghan situation and India's attempt will also be orientated in the same direction. How Iran balances its multiple choices will form an absorbing template of regional politics.

[...]

This curious turn to regional politics gives Iran much strategic space to maneuver vis-a-vis the US. Washington's "containment" strategy toward Iran will be virtually rendered ineffectual if India and Pakistan ignore it and forge strategic links with Tehran.

[...]

The US will inevitably come to view Indian "proactivism" in Afghanistan with a sense of disquiet, just as it hopes to work with Pakistan to reconcile the Taliban and to bring on board the intransigent Haqqanis. Again, India is identifying itself as, arguably, the strongest supporter of Karzai in the region at a time when the US is patently disillusioned with the Afghan leader and is counting on the remaining part of his second term in office to somehow get over so that by 2014 a new leadership can take over in Kabul.

[...]

Again, the US will have misgivings about the decision by Afghanistan and India to rev up a trade and transit route via Iran. The very purpose of the US's Silk Road project with Afghanistan as a regional hub, which it is pushing with its European allies, aims at sidelining Iran (and Russia) in the "new great game". Whereas, Delhi now is showing preference to Iran for providing it with an access route that connects it with Central Asia (and Russia).

In overall terms, Washington is not going to be enthused by these Indian moves in Afghanistan, even if it doesn't pour cold water on Delhi's high enthusiasm for the Karzai regime. The US special representative on Afghanistan, Marc Grossman, is scheduled to visit India this week and will patiently search for rational explanations by his Indian interlocutors, while keeping his counsel to himself.

[...]

The Indian elites are not inclined to allow any serious contradiction to arise in the US-India strategic partnership in relation to the region - although they view with extreme distaste Washington's overtures to Beijing to step in as a provider of security for Afghanistan and as a "stakeholder" in the regional stability of South Asia.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby ramana » 05 Oct 2011 21:03

"Singh is King!!!"

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby Dilbu » 05 Oct 2011 21:06

ramana wrote:"Singh is King!!!"

You mean there was chanakianness in the policy, after all? :mrgreen:

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby ramana » 05 Oct 2011 21:08

Where did Chanakya implement his policy first!

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby devesh » 05 Oct 2011 21:55

Af-pak! from there he led the forces to Magadha.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby rohitvats » 05 Oct 2011 22:00

If there is any indication of India planning for the end-game in advance, it is the reports about hospital and Air Base in Ayni. Those MiG-29s in Ayni (if they go there) might just end-up providing a no-fly-zone over Northern Alliance territory. This time, the cards will be played more openly. CAR States and Russians know too-well about the poison of radical Islam emanating from Afganistan under Pakistan proxies. For all the huffing and puffing by the MUNNA (and naysayers like MKB), India is not going anywhere from Afganistan. That is for sure.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby ramana » 05 Oct 2011 22:05

I think the Indian end game is to confine the bad Taliban in TSP lands and let the dynamic take its own course.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby Samudragupta » 05 Oct 2011 22:10

devesh wrote:Af-pak! from there he led the forces to Magadha.


Ramana ji and Devesh ji,

This is a very dangerous self goal....Punjab was the first place to have reconquered from the Greeks....lets stop upto this....

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby shyamd » 05 Oct 2011 22:12

This was always the plan, remember the 120k troops in afghanistan. It was the US that said no to us.
India is quietly working away.
Today AKA landed in Ayni, another signal to how badly India wants the base. Russia is considering basing a fleet of Su 25 and attack heli's.
Let's hope we can get some MKI's based there, that would be a strong signal to PRC & TSP. The plans are enough to give GHQ sleepless nights.

What you will realise is that these plans hsave been in the offing for years!

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby devesh » 05 Oct 2011 22:18

Samudragupta ji,
the comment wasn't meant to be serious or replicated. it was more on the lighter vein...

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby ramana » 05 Oct 2011 22:24

Shyamd, Recall the NDA govt pact with Iran to be able to base IAF in Iran in case of hostilties with TSP? Dont know if its still in place.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby Samudragupta » 05 Oct 2011 22:25

devesh wrote:Samudragupta ji,
the comment wasn't meant to be serious or replicated. it was more on the lighter vein...


Like everything else the TFTA's on the other side will try to hijack the Mauryan empire also by this logic..... :D

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby chaanakya » 05 Oct 2011 22:56

ramana wrote:Where did Chanakya implement his policy first!

Takshila , in Pak

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby RamaY » 05 Oct 2011 23:52

ramana wrote:Where did Chanakya implement his policy first!


XPosting from 2G thread...


RamaY wrote:^ this is a know phenomenon.

A weak GoI attracts foreign influences/intervention. Any effort to destroy that weak govt is blamed for that foreign intervention.

During Chanakya days too Magadha (the then capital of Bharata varsha) became too weak due to the corrupt rule of Nanda. At the same time Alexanders army occupied most of west-of-Sindhu Bharat (today's Pakistan) and was ready to cross Sindhu river to get a hold on Magadha.

Chanakya's strategy (per the books I read) was to focus on defeating Alexanders forces using regional forces while creating havoc in Magadha using his manchurian candidates such as Indu Sharma and Badarayana.
From excerpts from Arya Chanakya:
The entire program has been divided into two parts. In the first part, each group is directed to settle in allocated regions/kingdoms and establish necessary influence in public and governing circles. The second part is to dedicated to influence the rulers and population in such a way that they will fight amongst themselves and create chaos and unrest in those kingdoms. Key members are trained in using birds as couriers to communicate with Chanakya.


Same situation can be observed in MB too. Alternative power structures were prepared and trained while creating havoc in the existing power center (Jarasamdha).

In current context, Indian Military and Jagat-Seths must focus their strengths in stalling foreign intervention while the administration (babudom) and Justice system (courts) works to create internal havoc.

The alternative (new power structure) must be developed in secrecy and introducing them to general public (3rd Bharat) and getting their mandate.

I see Jagannatha Ratha Chakras moving in that direction :mrgreen:

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby Prem » 06 Oct 2011 01:11

Poakchors have not sensed the next squeeze coming from the Hindu Ocean side. They are too dumb and numb looking toward Kabul only. Maritime boundary of New Afghanistan will soon be decided in Norway by its new neighbors India, UAE, Oman and Qatar along with Iran.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby shyamd » 06 Oct 2011 01:28

ramana wrote:Shyamd, Recall the NDA govt pact with Iran to be able to base IAF in Iran in case of hostilties with TSP? Dont know if its still in place.

Of course that makes sense. But with iran you need to be careful because you have 2 foreign policies. Hobnobbing with Ahmadinejad doesnt mean much. He doesnt control jack any more. Its all Khamanei. Thats why when ABV went to Tehran, he met So even if you get an agreement with the administration, its IRGC and Khamanei that really call the shots. So MMS really has to meet with Khamanei - so while our DDM will be looking at meetings with MA, what the real analysts are watching is what Khamanei says to MMS (if they meet).

Its just now, Iran knows that Taleban will join alliance against Iran if Talebs take over Afghanistan. So now they realise they need India at this juncture. Karzai is pro iran - he takes money from them and they fund some of the budgets. Iran wants to get rid of the US.

For India it is simple, force TSP to start spending more on the other front, let PRC get worried and start spending on the Tajik front, takes money away from the other fronts. J&K will be safer as long as focus is trying to take over Karzai/NA held Afgh. Win win for India. If there is another 26/11, worst case scenario is we have 10k commando's with Su-30's based in Ayni ready for ops.

The key here is that this plan has been there since the NDA days as you quite rightly pointed out, its just a continuation of the same story (most of the foreign policies are the same)

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby Prem » 06 Oct 2011 05:03

Enter The elephant!!
Indian love making will make Poaks experience the real pain of GUBO.This will tie down Poak Beggonomy for long and hasten the inevitable collapse. India has to make sure their defence budget trajectory remain northward like Minar E Ajlafstan.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby Karna_A » 07 Oct 2011 08:00

How are weapons coming into the secure zone in Kabul? Usually the security is tight and attacks like US embassy attack should not happen.

It looks like the only possibility is that they are coming in diplomatic pouches of TSP, since those are the only packages never checked.

Also if you have been around any Paki, all their jokes are on Pathans who they consider foolish.
It's surprising that Taliban Pathans have still not figured out that TSP is destroying their own country using them.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby Prem » 08 Oct 2011 09:18

The U.S. Drone Fleet Is Fully Infected By A Computer Virus

An unnamed computer virus is compromising the security of U.S. Reaper and Predator drones as they fly missions in Afghanistan, Iraq, Yemen, and Pakistan.
Wired reports the virus was found about two weeks ago and hasn't kept the drone pilots at Creech Air Force Base in Nevada from conducting missions.There haven't been any reports of classified data breaches, but the virus has resisted the military's best efforts to remove it.
And the infection underscores the ongoing security risks in what has become the U.S. military’s most important weapons system.“We keep wiping it off, and it keeps coming back,” says a source familiar with the network infection, one of three that told Danger Room about the virus. “We think it’s benign. But we just don’t know.”Network experts aren't sure if the "keylogger" virus was planted in the weapons system or naturally migrated there from unsecure points. Even more alarmingly, they do not know how far it has spread.Airforce spokesman Lt. Col. Tadd Sholitis declined to comment on the virus, but told Wired: “We generally do not discuss specific vulnerabilities, threats, or responses to our computer networks, since that helps people looking to exploit or attack our systems to refine their approach. We invest a lot in protecting and monitoring our systems to counter threats and ensure security, which includes a comprehensive response to viruses, worms, and other malware we discover.”Wired's source says, "[The virus] is getting a lot of attention, but no one is panicking. Yet."

http://www.businessinsider.com/us-drone ... us-2011-10

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby sum » 08 Oct 2011 11:17

More rumblings from MKB:
India’s moment of truth in Afghanistan

Recently I read an extraordinary book on Afghanistan - Cables from Kabul: The Inside Story of the West’s Afghanistan Campaign by Sherard Cowper-Coles. Sir Sherard had everything going for him as a career diplomat in the British foreign service when he completed his term in Kabul and was appointed as the special representative of the British prime minister for AfPak. He was a close associate of late Richard Holbrooke, apparently had smooth working relationship with his American colleagues, indeed had a sharp mind and acute diplomatic acumen.
In our set-up he would have become a national security advisor — that is, if only he didn’t have a mind of his own. But he not only did have one but he also had the professional integrity and intellectual honesty to know he couldn’t faithfully serve the British policies in Afghanistan. So he did what any honest man would do — he quit the foreign service.


The Indian security establishment may have done colossal damage to the Indian foreign policy by entrapping our leadership in another proxy war in Afghanistan. They are good at playing up the insecurities of weak leaderships and making them their playthings. For them, it is also an easy route to escape the blame for their ineptitude and comprehensive failure in safeguarding national security.
But it is a dark day for any country when it fails to optimally use its diplomatic skills and intellectual resources. The inescapable fact is that the one-dimensional men in our security establishment shall now be driving the country’s Afghan policy.
{ I for one am happy since the MEA policy till now anyways didnt reap anything}
The gravy train is leaving the Old Delhi railway station with gunny bags full of green bucks for the Afghan warlords. Come on, boys, let us have a jolly good time — at least until Manesh Tewari’s bill becomes India’s statute and our innocent parliamentarians finally acquire after 62 years of freedom the real democratic right to ask audacious questions to Smiley’s people as to where their slush money comes from and where it goes and what happens to the black hole, finally.
A bird in the tree whispers that the total amount disbursed to the Northern Alliance warlords in the late 1990s might alone have run into hundreds of millions of dollars. Our Hon’ble MPs may someday acquire the privilege to ask PMO what enduring result such squandering of resources produced for the country’s national interests.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby shyamd » 09 Oct 2011 15:50

Must read!

First in, last out: Special-Ops and CIA ready for the long war in Afghanistan



By Associated Press, Published: October 8

FORT BRAGG, N.C. — They were the first Americans into Afghanistan after the Sept. 11 attacks and will probably be the last U.S. forces to leave.

As most American troops prepare to withdraw in 2014, the CIA and military special operations forces to be left behind are girding for the next great pivot of the campaign, one that could stretch their war up to another decade.


“We put a CIA guy in first,” scant weeks after the towers in New York fell, said Lt. Gen. John Mulholland, then a colonel with U.S. special operations forces, in charge of the military side of the operation. U.S. Special Forces Green Berets, together with CIA officers, helped coordinate anti-Taliban forces on the ground with U.S. firepower from the air, to topple the Taliban and close in on al-Qaida.

Recent remarks from the White House suggest the CIA and special operations forces will be hunting al-Qaida and working with local forces long after most U.S. troops have left.

When Afghan troops take the lead in 2014, “the U.S. remaining force will be basically an enduring presence force focused on counterterrorism,” said National Security Advisor Tom Donilon, in remarks in Washington in mid-September. That will be augmented by teams that will continue to train Afghan forces, added White House spokesman Tommy Vietor.

The White House insists this does not mean abandoning the strategy of counterinsurgency, in which large numbers of troops are needed to keep the population safe. It simply means replacing the surge of 33,000 U.S. troops, as it withdraws over the next year, with newly trained Afghan ones, according to senior White House Afghan war adviser Doug Lute

It also means U.S. special operators and CIA officers will be there for the next turn in the campaign. That’s the moment when Afghans will either prove themselves able to withstand a promised Taliban resurgence, or find themselves overwhelmed by seasoned Taliban fighters.

“We’re moving toward an increased special operations role,” together with U.S. intelligence, Mulholland said, “whether it’s counterterrorism-centric, or counterterrorism blended with counterinsurgency.”

As out-going head of U.S. Army Special Operations Command, Mulholland has been in charge of feeding a steady stream of troops to commanders in the field. He knows they need as many special operations troops as he can produce and send. Those special operations forces are made up of U.S. Army Rangers, known for their raiding operations against militant targets, and U.S. Special Forces Green Berets, whose stock in trade is teaching local forces to fight a common enemy so the U.S. doesn’t have to.

Senior U.S. officials have spoken of keeping a mix of 10,000 such forces in Afghanistan, and drawing down to between 20,000 and 30,000 conventional forces to provide logistics and support. But at this point, the figures are as fuzzy as the future strategy.

A foundation for special-operations-style counterinsurgency already under way, Mulholland explained, with the establishment of hundreds of sites in remote Afghan villages, where Green Berets are paired with Afghan local tribesmen trained by the Americans.

The program has been so successful, in the eyes of NATO commanders, that they’ve assigned other special operators like Navy SEALs to the mission, and even paired conventional forces to stretch the numbers and cover more territory.

Intelligence officers know they will be a key component, whatever happens with U.S. troops.

A senior U.S. official tasked with mapping out their role envisioned a possible future in which Afghan forces are able to hold Kabul and other urban areas, but the Taliban comes back in remote valleys or even whole provinces.

In that event, the official said, CIA and special operations forces would continue to hunt al-Qaida in Taliban areas the Afghan forces can’t secure. The official spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss planning for sensitive operations.

“If the CIA built an intelligence network that could provide special operations forces with targets, we could do the job,” said Maj. Gen. Bennet S. Sacolick, who runs the U.S. Army’s Special Warfare Center and School.


The only question will be which organization is in charge, and that will depend on the Afghan government, the senior U.S. official said. If Afghan authorities are comfortable with U.S. raiders continuing to operate openly, the special operations forces can lead, the official said. If they want a more covert presence, the CIA would lead, with special operation raiders working through them.

Another branch of special operations would continue to support the Afghans in remote locations, trying to keep the Taliban from spreading. The bare bones of that force have been put in place over the past two years — a scattered framework of small teams of U.S. operators paired with Afghan local tribesmen trained by the Americans.

The notion of a pared down U.S. fighting force, consisting of a latticework of intelligence and special operators, plus the far-flung units in the field, has spurred some criticism on Capitol Hill.

“You cannot protect the United States’ safety with counterterrorism waged from afar,” said Rep. Mac Thornberry, R-Texas, chairman of the House Armed Services Committee’s emerging threats panel. His concern is that the White House has paid too little attention to how special operations and intelligence will keep the Taliban from overwhelming Afghanistan’s remote terrain.

“I would like to know how many special operations forces they need, and how many conventional troops they propose to support them,” he said, “and a rough time line.”

The smaller special operations footprint could work, if it’s part of a larger tapestry of counterinsurgency efforts, said retired Gen. Stanley McChrystal, former commander of the Afghan campaign.

“I believe direct action operations are only effective when part of a holistic strategy,” McChrystal said in an interview. “That does not necessarily imply large U.S. forces or responsibility, but it must include a spectrum of efforts that addresses root causes, partners with indigenous governments and efforts, and approaches the causes as well as the symptoms on extremism and-or terrorism.”

In other words, diplomats and aid groups would have to replace the current military efforts at building Afghan government and services — and do it without a large footprint of U.S. forces to provide them security.

The smaller numbers would also put the U.S. troops left behind at greater risk, officials concede, with fewer support troops to rush to the rescue.

That’s the mission a group of elite special operators was on in August, flying into a remote valley to aid another group of U.S. raiders on the ground, when the Taliban shot down their Chinook helicopter, killing 38 U.S. and Afghan forces on board.

Asked if it could happen again, Mulholland stopped and bowed his head, taking a long pause to think back to how it started.

“From the beginning, we accepted that risk,” Mulholland said, remembering the early days when he sent load after load of special operations forces into Afghanistan, with no sure way to get them out.

He paused again. “We still do.”


They are using the same technique that they used in Vietnam.What was it called? Project phoenix or something like that.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby vijayk » 09 Oct 2011 17:18

sum wrote:More rumblings from MKB:
India’s moment of truth in Afghanistan

Recently I read an extraordinary book on Afghanistan - Cables from Kabul: The Inside Story of the West’s Afghanistan Campaign by Sherard Cowper-Coles. Sir Sherard had everything going for him as a career diplomat in the British foreign service when he completed his term in Kabul and was appointed as the special representative of the British prime minister for AfPak. He was a close associate of late Richard Holbrooke, apparently had smooth working relationship with his American colleagues, indeed had a sharp mind and acute diplomatic acumen.
In our set-up he would have become a national security advisor — that is, if only he didn’t have a mind of his own. But he not only did have one but he also had the professional integrity and intellectual honesty to know he couldn’t faithfully serve the British policies in Afghanistan. So he did what any honest man would do — he quit the foreign service.


The Indian security establishment may have done colossal damage to the Indian foreign policy by entrapping our leadership in another proxy war in Afghanistan. They are good at playing up the insecurities of weak leaderships and making them their playthings. For them, it is also an easy route to escape the blame for their ineptitude and comprehensive failure in safeguarding national security.
But it is a dark day for any country when it fails to optimally use its diplomatic skills and intellectual resources. The inescapable fact is that the one-dimensional men in our security establishment shall now be driving the country’s Afghan policy.
{ I for one am happy since the MEA policy till now anyways didnt reap anything}
The gravy train is leaving the Old Delhi railway station with gunny bags full of green bucks for the Afghan warlords. Come on, boys, let us have a jolly good time — at least until Manesh Tewari’s bill becomes India’s statute and our innocent parliamentarians finally acquire after 62 years of freedom the real democratic right to ask audacious questions to Smiley’s people as to where their slush money comes from and where it goes and what happens to the black hole, finally.
A bird in the tree whispers that the total amount disbursed to the Northern Alliance warlords in the late 1990s might alone have run into hundreds of millions of dollars. Our Hon’ble MPs may someday acquire the privilege to ask PMO what enduring result such squandering of resources produced for the country’s national interests.


This is just a blog.

It is not like he is getting paid this for garbage.

May be every month Pakis deposit one lakh in his bank and he has to show some thing for it.

sum
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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby sum » 10 Oct 2011 09:12

This is just a blog.

It is not like he is getting paid this for garbage.

That is true but this man would have mentored loads of IFS officials, many of whom might now be the top guns in their depts.... Hope they didnt imbibe this kind of thought process from him..

As if on cue, MKB surpasses himself.

X-posting a piece of absolute garbage by a supposed Indian ex-Pak expert ( whom BRF knows well) which might even make the most hardcore RAPE look reasonable. The guy just keeps sinking deeper and deeper everytime we think we have seen the worst:
sum wrote:Is this guy for real???? I initially thought it was a Paki piece till i saw the author's name:

Pakistan is the real victim of Bush’s war

Treston is right, Pakistan has become the casualty of the US-led war in Afghanistan. It could have been as buoyant as India despite its elites being corrupt, inefficient and insensitive as India’s. India’s success story is that it is today able to chug along despite its inept and notoriously corrupt government. It’s the ‘atmosphere’, Stupid! :-? :-?

Pakistan’s got viciously polluted with the debris falling across the Khyber Pass. In spite of the ‘heavy burdens’ (what a beautiful way Treston has with words!) — that Pakistan carried (”preoccupation with India, the futile attachment to Kashmir, the hapless swings between corrupt democracy and army autocracy”), it did have a fighting chance to be alongside India in growth trajectory but for George W. Bush creating mayhem and anarchy in its neighbourhood.


What is appalling, as Treston points out, is that India also didn’t exactly make it easy for Pakistan. It hustled Islamabad in those fateful days 10 years ago by clapping ecstatically when the US invaded Afghanistan and rushing into the bandwagon as ‘natural allies’ without the foresight to know that the Hindu Kush is a graveyard for invaders and there could be no victors in this war — or that the raison d’etre of the invasion was questionable, that the US’ intentions were far from clear, or that foreign military presence would only stymie the region’s genius to sort out problems.

:x :x :x

India’s permanent establishment is now (unwittingly, perhaps) triggering a proxy war in Afghanistan by training and equipping the Tajik militia from Panjshir Valley that goes under the rubric of the ‘Afghan armed forces’. And, that too, when only 18% of the Pakistani nation regard India as a ‘threat’. Our chaps may end up bringing the US down from its high rating at 59% and regaining their traditional rating as Pakistan’s enemy number 1 — and restoring the ‘back channel’ to its special status as permanent substitute for a normal relationship.

Does this $%#^@& MKB actually believe the 18% Pakis treat India as real? And he was the Indian pointsman in Pak??


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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby JE Menon » 10 Oct 2011 12:36

sum,

everybody has their uses. :)

Keep in mind the Pakistani's optimal state of mind where we are concerned...

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby RSoami » 10 Oct 2011 21:42

Afghanistan cannot and should not be treated as one block anymore. The pashtoons are lost to India with their brainwashing done on Talibani lines.
And the murderous Taliban wars have led to very bad blood between the Tajiks, Hazaras and Pashtoons. Besides India does not actually need to train an Afghan army per se. It only needs to arm up the Hazaras and the Tajiks...The rest will take care of itself.
Trying to go in with noble ideas like democracy, secularism, and human rights in a god forsaken land is one very silly thing to do.
Lets not try to be one arrogant and dumb superpower.

It needs to be ensured that the arms provided by us do not reach those who intend to harm us..

Regards

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby ramana » 10 Oct 2011 22:29

Again, Pashtuns are not a monolithic group. The Taliban are mostly Ghilzai and live in K-P and its adjacent area.

shyamd
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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby shyamd » 11 Oct 2011 01:50

One can say India played its cards right. India postured in the last month.Massive mil exercises on the border. Stationing front line aircraft on the bases closest to TSP. Delivered a warning to PRC. Indo-Afg deal, blowing up Tajik base issue (TAjiks are telling everyone no, while India is telling everyone we have a/c etc there). It must have got the PRC and Pindi mega worried and the TSP broke down whnen PRC said no to back up. KSA is pissed of withTSP/Iran relations. Lets see what happens. India needs to maintain the pressure.

India just helped the US.

Haqqani network: Pakistan’s military ready to address US concerns
By Kamran Yousaf
Published: October 8, 2011

The corps commanders are reported to have discussed possible implications of the recent strategic partnership deal that Afghanistan signed with India. PHOTO: INP
ISLAMABAD:

The Pakistan Army is ready to address the US concerns vis-à-vis the Haqqani network but shows no signs of going after them in the North Waziristan tribal region where, Washington believes, the insurgent group is headquartered.

At a meeting in Rawalpindi on Friday, the top military commanders expressed their willingness to lower tensions with the United States by narrowing down differences on the Haqqani network.

“Pakistan wants a constructive engagement with the US to deal with the Haqqani issue,” an official familiar with the development told The Express Tribune.

The official, who wished not to be named, ruled out the possibility of a military operation in North Waziristan – a region dubbed by the US as the most dangerous place on earth.

“Use of force is not the answer to every problem,” he said repeating the recent statement by Army chief General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani.

Addressing the Pak-Saudi joint military exercises in Mangla on Thursday, Gen Kayani reportedly said that military operations were not the ideal way of dealing with every issue.

His remarks are being seen as Pakistan’s hardening stance on the North Waziristan operation despite the mounting US pressure.

However, it is unclear what exactly Pakistan is offering to the US as an alternative to a military operation in order to deal with the Haqqanis.

A senior military official, when approached, referred to the foreign ministry’s last news briefing in which it said that Pakistan’s policy was guided by its national interests.


“We have our own national interests … we have certain redlines and we are very clear that we won’t compromise on them,” said the official who spoke after being assured that his name would not be revealed.

The corps commanders also discussed possible implications of the recent strategic partnership deal that Afghanistan signed with India.The commanders voiced concerns on allegations by senior Afghan officials that the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) was involved in the assassination of former Afghan president Bhurhanuddin Rabbani.

A brief statement issued by the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) did not mention any of these issues. “The conference was a part of regular monthly meetings. The forum took a comprehensive overview of the routine professional matters aimed at enhancing proficiency of the army,” the statement said.

Meanwhile, US Ambassador to Pakistan Cameron Munter met with Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar to discuss the ongoing tensions between their countries.

“Bilateral relations and the regional situation were discussed. Both agreed to work together for strengthening bilateral cooperation and for coordination on regional issues,” said a brief statement issued by the Foreign Office.

An American diplomat commenting on the meeting said that the two countries were making efforts to sort out their differences.

Published in The Express Tribune, October 8th, 2011.


India did well. But of course MMS won't get credit where its due.,

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby Prem » 11 Oct 2011 02:04

shyamd wrote:One can say India played its cards right. India postured in the last month.Massive mil exercises on the border. Stationing front line aircraft on the bases closest to TSP. Delivered a warning to PRC. Indo-Afg deal, blowing up Tajik base issue (TAjiks are telling everyone no, while India is telling everyone we have a/c etc there). It must have got the PRC and Pindi mega worried and the TSP broke down whnen PRC said no to back up. KSA is pissed of withTSP/Iran relations. Lets see what happens. India needs to maintain the pressure.ndia just helped the US.India did well. But of course MMS won't get credit where its due.,

Poaks lost the last leverage they had and if above is true ,India now have the initiative and control of Bamboo , its length,breadth, push and the inserting place . Now every Poak Player knows which button to press to tune Baki behaviour.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby svinayak » 11 Oct 2011 02:16

Prem wrote:
shyamd wrote:One can say India played its cards right. India postured in the last month.Massive mil exercises on the border. Stationing front line aircraft on the bases closest to TSP. Delivered a warning to PRC. Indo-Afg deal, blowing up Tajik base issue (TAjiks are telling everyone no, while India is telling everyone we have a/c etc there). It must have got the PRC and Pindi mega worried and the TSP broke down whnen PRC said no to back up. KSA is pissed of withTSP/Iran relations. Lets see what happens. India needs to maintain the pressure.ndia just helped the US.India did well. But of course MMS won't get credit where its due.,

Poaks lost the last leverage they had and if above is true ,India now have the initiative and control of Bamboo , its length,breadth, push and the inserting place . Now every Poak Player knows which button to press to tune Baki behaviour.

Do not go overboard and overjoyed. This is just an intermission.
What happens in the future is still unknown. Do not be confident of a happy ending

ramana
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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby ramana » 11 Oct 2011 02:25

ShyamD, Try to game what the corps(e) commandus are planning to offer to the US.


I think they want to offer a "self" moratarium Hackany group ruminating in the badlands as a sop. This way the US interests of not facing the Hackany blowback and TSP gets to retain these elements for future. Most likely some sort of consular/chefs monitoring of the hackers will be there. If so then its stalemate till later date. Later date, because the inherent impulse of Hacknay is to hack and not sit tight.

Incremental or illusory progress wont get bouquets!

sum, take it easy the 18% is from Peter Preston linked by MKB!

Pak real victim of bush's war

...
A couple of years ago Gallup Pakistan asked people in the country what the most serious threat to Jinnah's pure state was. Some 11% said the Taliban, 18% India – but 59% picked the United States of America. Asked the same sort of question (via the Pew Research Centre) this summer, after Bin Laden was killed, and about 70% saw America as more enemy than saviour.....


Anyway was reading my copy of Arthsastra last night.

GOI did the right thing in offering support to US to fight terror in 2001. In immediate aftermath of such a large terrorist attack it was the right thing to do. however US withits paki pasand opinion makers chose to ignore it and Paksi were forced to offer support in order to avoid being labeled guilty by associating with Taliban. They gave sanctuary to the terrorists who are now rampant all over TSP.

Taking the Paki psyche into mind, it brought the war inside TSP eventually.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby ShauryaT » 11 Oct 2011 05:44

ramana wrote:ShyamD, Try to game what the corps(e) commandus are planning to offer to the US.
Also, watch for what they will ask. No Indian involvement in Afghanistan, or they pull out their troops from the west and and FATA.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby ShauryaT » 11 Oct 2011 07:08

A bit dated but worth listening to.
NPR program on Hackayni

shyamd
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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby shyamd » 11 Oct 2011 11:59

Ramana ji

If I was them I would basically ask Haqqani to lay low and wait for unkil to leave. In the meantime, give away more AQ leaders and maybe some mid/senioer level taleban guy.
So this should reduce tensions and pak can say - see we are indispensable in waer on terror. The paki's tried this with the Al mauritani killing/arrest.
Haqqani neeed to at minimum stop and TSPA need to tell Haqqani lay low or change leadership to "good" haqqani. Let the Haqqani's talk to the US.
Just basically give the US enough to shut up. Then once drawdown starts go in for the kill with all of its jihadi mite.

Whateveer happens, TSPA has to give away something. Al Mauritani was one, Haqqani stopping attacks/limited ceasefire is probably the next. The paki's need to sell the Haqqani's to the US and say they can help secure asia and deliver blow to PRC or Iran or Russia.

Acharya ji , of course its no reason to celeberate but we just threatened a take over of Pak via posturing. So Pak has to give up somee lever in Pak.
US is not getting fooled and means busineess about Haqqani. India is trying to extract moer concessions. Of course its not the end of the world for Pak but they are shit scared now that india is surrounding them.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby JE Menon » 11 Oct 2011 17:42

>>Do not go overboard and overjoyed. This is just an intermission.

Absolutely correct. Eye must remain firmly on the ball.

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Re: Af-Pak -> Pak-Af Watch

Postby Rangudu » 11 Oct 2011 18:32

ShauryaT wrote:A bit dated but worth listening to.
NPR program on Hackayni


From the Transcript of this program, a US Army officer called in to say:

TOM: In Regional Command East, just east of FOB Chapman back in summer of '07, we got into a firefight with Taliban forces. And they were picked up by flagged Pakistani helicopters.

CONAN: By flagged Pakistani helicopters, picked them up in Afghanistan territory and then flew them across the border?

TOM: Yes, and rules of engagement stated we were not allowed to attack Pakistani forces if we were to come upon them, even if they were helping out AQ or Taliban, and nor could we follow them into Pakistani territory.

CONAN: And did you have any idea who those particular Taliban were?

TOM: No, they're not uniformed. I mean, they were insurgents dressed in civilian garb, and they were attacking our forces. So we responded.

CONAN: So you didn't know if they were particularly important persons is what I'm saying?

TOM: You can't really tell the difference between, whether they're HIG or AQ or, you know, Haqqani. There are all different types of groups, and they're basically back and forth across the tribal region there, on the border.



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