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Petraeus Redux
First Things Magazine ^ | David P. Goldman

Posted on 06/26/2010 12:04:52 PM PDT by Pride_of_the_Bluegrass

One doesn’t get promoted at the Pentagon, or for that matter on Wall Street, by telling the boss to sacrifice this quarter’s results in order to address a looming disaster in the long term. Petraeus pulled the Bush administration’s chestnuts out of the fire, as well as the reputations of conservatives who signed on to the COIN (for “counterinsurgency”) strategy of turning the American military into a Peace Corps with guns.

Afghanistan is different. Hiring the locals with bags of money is far more difficult for a number of reasons. One is that there is no clear sectarian division; the Iraqi Sunnis had every incentive to take the American paychecks and stockpile weapons for the inevitable confrontation with the Iran-supported Shi’ites. In Afghanistan, tribal leaders will take American money one day and shoot at the Marines the next.

There are several reasons America can’t win the Afghan war. One is that Pakistan’s intelligence services continue to provide refuge and support for the Taliban. America is going to leave, and the Taliban will stay, and they want to keep the fundamentalist thuggery in place as an instrument against India. Threats and bribes can’t persuade Pakistan to stop. The only way to keep Pakistan in line is to terrify it, and the way to do that is to involve India in the Afghanistan campaign in a big way.

(Excerpt) Read more at firstthings.com ...


TOPICS: Editorial; Foreign Affairs; Government; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: afghanistan; bho44; bhoforeignpolicy; china; foreignpolicy; india; mcchrystal; obama; pakistan; petraeus; russia; spengler; wot

1 posted on 06/26/2010 12:04:54 PM PDT by Pride_of_the_Bluegrass
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To: Pride_of_the_Bluegrass
There were reasons other then the liberal take of vengeance that Bush made the focus of the war Iraq and not the garbage pit Obama pushing us into.
2 posted on 06/26/2010 1:19:43 PM PDT by whershey
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Thanks Pride_of_the_Bluegrass.
David P. Goldman: In Afghanistan, tribal leaders will take American money one day and shoot at the Marines the next. There are several reasons America can't win the Afghan war. One is that Pakistan's intelligence services continue to provide refuge and support for the Taliban. America is going to leave, and the Taliban will stay, and they want to keep the fundamentalist thuggery in place as an instrument against India. Threats and bribes can’t persuade Pakistan to stop. The only way to keep Pakistan in line is to terrify it, and the way to do that is to involve India in the Afghanistan campaign in a big way.

3 posted on 06/26/2010 3:33:54 PM PDT by SunkenCiv ("Fools learn from experience. I prefer to learn from the experience of others." -- Otto von Bismarck)
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To: SunkenCiv

Not a problem SC. The Bhadrakumar article is also worth a read. I have posted others by the former ambassador here on FR, we has a very clear view in that region.

http://www.atimes.com/atimes/South_Asia/KJ10Df01.html


4 posted on 06/26/2010 4:55:04 PM PDT by Pride_of_the_Bluegrass
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