April 15, 2012
What Is ISAF Smoking?
Act 1: No sign of spring offensive by Taliban, NATO says
KABUL, April 10 (Reuters) - Afghan insurgents have so far shown no sign of planning a repeat of last year's spring offensive against foreign and Afghan forces, preferring isolated attacks on small units and bases, a NATO spokesman said.
With the traditional summer fighting months only weeks away, German Brigadier General Carsten Jacobson said available intelligence did not point to a unified Taliban assault.
Jacobson said the attacks of last year - which also included the assassination of the head of the Afghan government peace council in charge of reconciliation efforts - had failed to revitalise the insurgency.
"We are waiting, how they are positioning themselves in their attempt to regain momentum. We are very optimistic that we will be, as last year, able to stop all the efforts that they are throwing against us," Jacobson said.
Act 2: Coordinated Attacks Rock Afghan Capital and Provinces
In a wave of attacks that rolled through the diplomatic and government centers in the Afghan capital and struck at least three eastern provinces as well, the Taliban on Sunday launched a complex assault using teams of suicide bombers and gunmen who held buildings for hours after the first explosions.
A statement by the Taliban called the attacks the start of their spring offensive, adding: “It is also a message to those foreign commanders who claim that the Taliban have lost their momentum. We have just showed that we are here and we can stage an attack whenever we want.”
Act 3: ISAF commander statement on insurgent attacks
[T]he very fact that the enemy chose these particular targets speaks volumes about where we are in this campaign and the degree to which we have advanced the very things the enemy fears the most – a sovereign Afghanistan responsive to its people and an enduring commitment by the international community.
Each attack was meant to send a message: that legitimate governance and Afghan sovereignty are in peril. The ANSF response itself is proof enough of that folly.
Nine hours on the attack in Kabul is still not over.
We know that Afghanistan agriculture provides some great mind altering products. We didn't know that the ISAF command is such an avid user of these products.
Posted by b on April 15, 2012 at 01:45 PM | Permalink
By the sounds of US empty suit (or Ambassador) Ryan Crocker the Afghan wacky-tabacky is potent indeed. Here is the Ambassador to Afghanistan somehow always finding the silver lining to bad situations:
"We've seen a very professional performance by Afghan security forces," Crocker told CNN on Sunday after militants launched a series of gun and suicide attacks which they said marked the start of a spring offensive. "They are able to deal with events like this on their own. A clear sign of progress"
A clear sign of progress? What the Guardian are calling "the largest assault on Kabul in 11 Years" is a clear sign of progress? I suppose Ambassador Crocker didn't say who was progressing....
Finally another pearl of wisdom from Ryan:
"The attacks however also "demonstrate why we need to be here," said Crocker
Posted by: Colm O' Toole | Apr 15, 2012 2:15:27 PM | 1
There is a prominent right-wing blogger in America, once said by Limbaugh to be in his top ten reading list, whose son is serving in the Mideast, who said that the Taliban were cornered in a small corner in Afghanistan ripe for the total kill. it wasn't close to true then....circa 2007...and it's much less true now.
Posted by: amspirnational | Apr 15, 2012 2:34:08 PM | 2
Maybe the ISAF are smoking these...
...Magic Bullets fired from an XM25. According to the article the Yankees have already prevailed in more than 200 fire-fights with concealed Taliban suspects.
Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Apr 15, 2012 2:42:10 PM | 3
Oops! Sorry. That's not what the article says. It says...
"So far, they have been used on more than 200 occasions. Most of these fights ended quickly, and in America’s favour, according to Lieutenant-Colonel Shawn Lucas, who is in charge of the weapon’s field-testing programme."
Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Apr 15, 2012 2:56:35 PM | 4
That fucking piece of shit McCain is already blathering on about "premature pullouts", not enough troops", and "we can still win".
("Win" what, you asshole?)
Cheney, Bush, and all the other criminal sacks of shit that used 9/11 as a springboard for our clusterfuck of a "foreign policy" should be hung.
Posted by: PissedOffAmerican | Apr 15, 2012 3:34:14 PM | 5
What Is ISAF Smoking?
They're smoking Hindu Kush's finest - Kabul nukes aka Afghan opium in its purest form..NATO's grip on Afghanistan can be described as tenuous at best..They only control a few suburbs of Kabul while the vast portion of Afghanistan is pretty much Taliban-stan where NATO dare not go without air support. This war will keep draining the US dry until the people revolt.
Posted by: Zico | Apr 15, 2012 5:23:19 PM | 6
Does this begin to remind anyone of the Tet offensive? The US Army et al will go on winning battles but they are far too dumb to realize they have already lost the war.
As for the XM25, a few Taliban will survive, workout why and the weapon's advantage will be negated - it's called natural selection.
Posted by: blowback | Apr 15, 2012 5:27:50 PM | 7
'Afghan insurgents have so far shown no sign of planning a repeat of last year's '
notice how reuters uses the word 'insurgent' here...with regard to afghan fighters....BUT in libya or syria these same men would be called 'rebels' by reuters!
Posted by: brian | Apr 15, 2012 5:38:54 PM | 8
We've seen a very professional performance by Afghan security forces," Crocker told CNN on Sunday after militants launched a series of gun and suicide attacks which they said marked the start of a spring offensive. "They are able to deal with events like this on their own. A clear sign of progress
Classic!!! This passes all the spin test of the century. You gotta love these guys. I mean, seriously??? I'm somewhat convinced they're on something much stronger than Hindu Kush's finest. How could he make such statement with a straight face? I'm beginning to think this "ambassador" likes the war to continue so he can keep his job..What else will he do when the war ends? Same goes for all the NATO general running around there..It'll be a classic comedy script if it wasn't so serious and real.
Posted by: Zico | Apr 15, 2012 5:43:01 PM | 9
'By the sounds of US empty suit (or Ambassador) Ryan Crocker'
US ambassadors are not just empty suits but agents of coup d'etats..Theres nothing amusing about these people. Its thru them that we have these destabilisations from venezula to Syria. US embassies need to be closed down. Until they are people can expect more chaos to erupt in target countries around the world
Posted by: brian | Apr 15, 2012 5:43:33 PM | 10
amspirnational @ 2
'There is a prominent right-wing blogger in America, once said by Limbaugh to be in his top ten reading list, whose son is serving in the Mideast, who said that the Taliban were cornered in a small corner in Afghanistan ripe for the total kill. it wasn't close to true then....circa 2007...and it's much less true now.'
what right have americans to go into other peoples countries and kill anyone????. esp the taliban, who at one stage were feted in washington.
Posted by: brian | Apr 15, 2012 5:45:29 PM | 11
what right have americans to go into other peoples countries and kill anyone????
What right have muslim clerics to go into people's homes and tell women they have to wear veils?
Posted by: Sultanist | Apr 15, 2012 6:02:39 PM | 12
@Brian #8 -- true, in Libya they were rebels, and in Syria they are "activists".
Posted by: Maxcrat | Apr 15, 2012 6:02:52 PM | 13
What right have muslim clerics to go into people's homes and tell women they have to wear veils?
bit of a difference between telling people to wear veils and bombing the shit out of Lybia or syria.
For example, your average Muslim cleric does not have access to a "Hundreds of Billion Dollars"-worth of a War Machine
Posted by: Hu Bris | Apr 15, 2012 6:24:25 PM | 14
"What right have muslim clerics to go into people's homes and tell women they have to wear veils?"
Are you always such a jackass? What, you're gonna convert Afghanistan into a Christian nation?
What the fuck is a matter with you blithering idiots? You think killing Muslims is gonna turn them away from Islam?
Get back under your rock.
Posted by: PissedOffAmerican | Apr 15, 2012 6:24:58 PM | 15
The aim was not to take over or occupy the country. It was to secure the towns and the roads between them, and to withdraw as soon as the Afghan government and its armed forces were in a state to take over the responsibility for themselves. This may have looked like a strategy, but it turned out to be little more than an impractical aspiration. …
And so the Russians discovered, as other armies have discovered in Afghanistan before and since, that once you have taken the ground you need troops to hold it. They might dominate the towns and the villages by day. But the mujahedin would rule them by night. They never broke the rebels’ grip on the countryside or closed the frontier through which the rebels received their supplies.
In the end the Russians had good tactics but no workable strategy. They could win their fights, but they could not convincingly win the war. Their best efforts, military and political, went for nothing. They eventually had no choice but to disentangle themselves as best they could. …
The foreigners had the watches, but the locals had the time.
Afgantsy: The Russians in Afghanistan 1979-89, by Rodric Braithwaite
Posted by: Watson | Apr 15, 2012 6:47:31 PM | 16
US ambassadors are not just empty suits but agents of coup d'etats. Theres nothing amusing about these people. Its thru them that we have these destabilisations from venezula to Syria.
You're right they are dangerous. Look at Negroponte running death squads in Iraq and Nicaragua as Ambassador. Or Stephen Ford in Syria conducting PR for the Free Syrian Army. Or Philip Goldberg being declared "person non grata" in Bolivia for meeting members of "Autonomy for Bolivia" a group of wealthy businessmen looking to unseat Morales.
@ Hoarsewhisper & Blowback
Yeah the XM-25 is a nice (German made) grenade launcher. It's major selling point is that when you aim it locks onto an enemy and adjusts if off course. But really not all that different from Stinger Missiles or FN-19's for helicopters. Of course the real goal is to create not a grenade launcher that does it but an assault rifle that has a bullet that can adjust course as the target moves.
As for it being something which will make guerilla war harder? Hell a grenade launcher, no matter how fancy, is no good when fancing an invisible army that lays roadside bombs.
Posted by: Colm O' Toole | Apr 15, 2012 7:45:00 PM | 17
@14 - the point is not moral equivalency but rather the pointlessness of the word "right."
Posted by: Sultanist | Apr 15, 2012 10:36:19 PM | 18
@ Blowback & Colme.
The XM25 is a mini grenade launcher. The grenades have timers which allows the time (and thus the place) of the detonation to be timed with great precision, they say. The idea is that it can kill people hiding behind walls, rocks, etc.
The logic is completely and totally insane.
Only morons and mass murderers would build a weapon for the express purpose of killing targets which haven't been clearly identified.
So-called game-hunting accidents are mostly the result of redneck morons shooting at a moving bush, or a 'looks like' semi-obscured shape. The first rule of humane game hunting is to only shoot clearly identifiable animals close enough to make a clean kill with your first shot.
Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Apr 15, 2012 10:42:52 PM | 19
'The XM25 is a mini grenade launcher. The grenades have timers which allows the time (and thus the place) of the detonation to be timed with great precision, they say. The idea is that it can kill people hiding behind walls, rocks, etc.'
what clever fellow invented this fiendish device? and did he think it might be used against civilians?
Posted by: brian | Apr 15, 2012 11:01:43 PM | 20
There is nothing for the US to win in Afghanistan.
The war cannot be won, it is not a war.
The US tax payer is being fleeced to pay for huge-give aways to all kinds of shady bodies - army, contractors, bombers, re-builders - drug runners - corporations - food producers - even women’s associations who survive on running seminars to tell Afghan ladies that if they throw off the veil they can be pop stars or rich by running a biz. etc.
Plenty in Afgh. have collaborated, to live in a big villa with barbed wire and guards, and send their kids to private school.
It is a scam on a country scale.
When the scammers don’t pull in the dollaris anymore they will leave. Poof, just like that. Nothing to do with winning wars, the Taliban, etc.
Posted by: Noirette | Apr 16, 2012 11:39:03 AM | 21
israeli america winns in afghanistan as long at it's depriving china of pipeline to persian gulf oil.
Posted by: retreatingbladestall | Apr 16, 2012 11:47:20 AM | 22
Posts 21-24 are all interrelated. Funneling trillions to that area of the globe is necessary, in the strategy envisioned by certain global elites, to ensure dominance in the resource rich parts of the globe. With the financial sector, and the U.S. military running interference for the goals of western globalists, the battle lines are drawn between the BRIC nations, and the WEST/NATO/PNAC crowd. Sounds too simplistic, but, the goals are real. What's global dominance worth? Millions have died throughout history for much less. Who in the end, will pay the price of this struggle? Those who always pay, the working class.
Posted by: ben | Apr 16, 2012 12:48:32 PM | 25
Veils;Maybe the Muslims look at all the sluts running around America,unveiled and undressed and used as prostitutes of misinformation,and want to save their women from such liberation,as it aint liberation but codification as sex objects,or all the presstitutes would be unattractive or at least some,like Walter Cronkite in drag.ooh.
Posted by: dahoit | Apr 16, 2012 1:00:13 PM | 26
PS;Just make sure you hang all the neoLIBcons also,as its a bipartisan war of error.
It aint just Republicans.
Posted by: dahoit | Apr 16, 2012 1:02:03 PM | 27
Sami Yousafazai and Ron Moreau have got a piece on the Daily Beast about the "Inside Story" on the Kabul attacks.
A senior Taliban commander in Kabul boasts to The Daily Beast that Sunday’s strikes against military and diplomatic targets in the Afghan capital and three eastern provinces were just a preview of the fighting season to come. “These are coordinated attacks that went just as we planned,” says Qari Talha, “This is only the start of what’s in store this year and next for the Americans and [Afghan President Hamid] Karzai. We will show them our ability.” Talha says the mastermind of the operation was Hajji Lala, the insurgency’s shadow governor of Kabul and its eastern-front military chief.
The Kabul government’s security forces now number more than 300,000, and uniformed Afghans seem to be on duty everywhere you go. Nevertheless, Talha brags, the bigger the Afghan police, army, and intelligence service grow, the less effective they become, “Kabul’s intelligence and police are weaker than ever, allowing us to carry out these stunning episodes,” he claims. He’s not alone in that assessment. A senior Kabul-government official in eastern Paktia province tells The Daily Beast he agrees. “I fear our intelligence and security forces are becoming less coordinated while the Taliban’s coordination is getting better,” says the official
Posted by: Colm O' Toole | Apr 16, 2012 1:39:00 PM | 28
Well, Karzai doesn't agree with NATO. Karzai: Afghan attacks a ‘failure’ for NATO (Apr. 16, 2012):
Afghanistan president Hamid Karzai said NATO was “especially” to blame for the intelligence failures that allowed insurgents to launch attacks in Kabul and other areas of Afghanistan on Sunday.
In a statement Monday, Karzai said the infiltration of suicide bombers and other militants into Kabul was an “intelligence failure for us and especially NATO,” and he called for a full investigation.
Posted by: lysias | Apr 16, 2012 4:51:19 PM | 29