The United States has renewed pressure on Pakistan to expand the areas where CIA drones can operate inside the country, reflecting concern that the U.S. war effort in Afghanistan is being undermined by insurgents' continued ability to take sanctuary across the border, U.S. and Pakistani officials said.The theater of the absurd keeps on churning out black comedy, gallows humor and irony at blockbuster levels.
The CIA's drone campaign in Pakistan has accelerated dramatically in recent months, with 47 attacks recorded since the beginning of September, according to The Long War Journal, a Web site that tracks the strikes. By contrast, there were 45 strikes in the first five years of the drone program.
Washington Post. 20 November 2010
The U.S.-led NATO alliance, charting a new course for the new century, declared Friday that it will focus on ... fighting terrorism in Afghanistan and "around the globe."
Washington Post. 19 November 2010
I'm not sure, but I think the above means that NATO and the U.S. are going to war against NATO and the U.S. to stop them from committing acts of terrorism against the civilian populations of Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan, but it sure sounds like that must be the case. The campaign of predator drone bombings - and perhaps the wider war - will end shortly. I've long maintained that the best course of action is for the U.S. to re-invade Afghanistan and liberate the Afghans from the U.S. military. We get to go home with a solid W, give ourselves and angst free pat on the back for actually liberating a country, and the Afghans get what remains of their battered country back to do with it as they must.
Sticking to the same topic, U.S. officials and military personnel often criticize the Afghan army they are training and working with of being supportive of the Taliban. Of course, we are also not so secretly supportive of the Taliban. We pay them protection money and bribe them to switch 'sides.' And we may be directly supplyingmilitary arms.
A few hundred yards above Daud's police station in the deserts of Badghis province, Lt. Mirwais Safai, 29, smoked a cigarette and brooded over this partnership.I have to wonder if any Americans who pursue this line of criticism of Afghanis ever pause to consider that they are guilty of the exact same thing? Is it a funny thing that Afghanis and Americans can truthfully level the same criticism at one another? Funny doesn't feel like the right adjective.
"I will tell you the truth," he began. "The Americans themselves support the Taliban."
They began as trusted comrades in a dangerous fight, he said, but he soon grew suspicious of the Americans' secrecy. At one point, he said, U.S. troops were holding conversations with villagers in a clinic, and excluding the Afghan medic. "Spies were coming and going," he said.
The Americans recovered most of the airdropped supply crates, including water and ammunition, Safai said, but left one of them in the village. Safai and his men found it the next day, pried it open and found it packed with mortars and boxes of explosives, he said.