Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
July 13, 2021

Taliban Reject U.S./Turkish Plans To Keep A Foothold In Kabul

In mid June Turkey floated a plan to occupy the airport of Kabul with Turkish troops to allow for emergency evacuation of 'western' embassies. The plan seems to have originated on the U.S. side. I had speculated on what might be behind it:

One does not protect diplomatic missions by holding the main airport of a foreign country. There must be other reasons why this was put on the table.

The CIA has tried to get drone-bases in countries neighboring Afghanistan to continue its drug smuggling business fight against al-Qaida in Afghanistan. Negotiations were held with Pakistan but Pakistan's Prime Minister Imran Khan publicly rejected the plan.
...
With no other country around Afghanistan willing to support the CIA it needed to find a way to stay in Afghanistan. Turkish control of the airport of Kabul would allow it to keep drones within the country and to stay in contact with its networks on the ground.

A country that has its main international airport controlled by foreign forces is not sovereign. Such a position can thus only be temporary. When the Taliban take Kabul, and there is little that lets me believe that they will have trouble to do so, the airport will come under fire. The Taliban have by now captured enough long range artillery to put it under siege and to bomb it to smithereens. U.S. air support for the Turkish forces would have to come from the wider Middle East and would have to cross through Pakistani airspace. A long term defense of the airport is therefore not possible.

There are well founded rumors that Turkey is hiring 'Syrian rebel' mercenaries to be send to Kabul:

According to the Euphrates Media Center, a Syrian Kurdish news outlet, members of Turkey’s National Intelligence Organization discussed the issue June 24 with representatives of several rebel factions under the banner of the Turkish-backed Syrian National Army, including Suqour al-Sham, Suqour al-Shamal, Faylaq al-Majd, the Samarkand Brigade, the Hamza Division, the Sultan Murad Division and the Suleiman Shah Brigade. The factions were told to start preparations for the deployment of 2,000 fighters to Afghanistan, the report said, adding that the rebel representatives asked for monthly salaries of $3,000 for the mercenaries. Other Syrian Kurdish media outlets reported the meeting took place in Hawar Kilis, a village near the town of Azez, not far from the Turkish border, and the intelligence officials asked for 2,600 mercenaries.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported that unlike the transfer of mercenaries to the Libyan and Nagorno-Karabakh wars, this time Turkey is more image-savvy and will recruit them through official contracts with Turkish private security companies. According to the observatory, the process is to be supervised by Turkish intelligence officers because faction members do not trust their leaders. Under the plan, the mercenaries would be tasked mainly with guarding the Kabul airport and government buildings without any involvement in operations against the Taliban, and would receive monthly salaries of $2,000 to $3,000.

But at the same time Turkey is still negotiating with the U.S. and with NATO. It seems it wants to get paid excessively for the proposed 'service':

Turkey has continued with negotiations on securing and operating Afghanistan’s Kabul airport with both the United States as well as other countries, Defense Minister Hulusi Akar stated on Tuesday.

Speaking to journalists in Ankara, Akar said: “There are some issues on which we have agreed with (U.S. Defense Secretary Llloyd) Mr. Austin as part of the negotiations. Moreover, there are positive developments in NATO with Turkey’s initiatives.”

Akar stated that discussions with the technical delegation of the U.S. on the airport continue in a constructive manner.

Saying that the issue has multiple sides, Akar said: “There are other countries that want to help Afghanistan. We try to pursue the process with our Afghan brothers, NATO, the EU and the international community.”

The Taliban had already warned Turkey to not pursue those plans. Today their spokesman published another statement which makes it absolutely clear that any Turkish troops in Afghanistan will be seen as enemies.


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As AFP summarizes:

The Taliban on Tuesday warned Turkey against extending its troop presence in Afghanistan when US-led forces leave the country, insisting the decision was "reprehensible".

"The decision... is ill-advised, a violation of our sovereignty and territorial integrity and against our national interests," the group said in a statement, days after Turkey promised to provide troops to protect Kabul airport when foreign forces leave next month.

"We consider the stay of foreign forces in our homeland by any country under whatever pretext as occupation," said the Taliban in the statement and added that "invaders" will be dealt with according to the Fatwa (decree) under which they have fought for the last two decades.

The statement urged the Turkish people and politicians to "reverse their decision" as it would detrimental to both countries.

The Taliban statement makes it difficult for the Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to justify a regular troop deployment. His political constituency is in large parts in favor of the Taliban. He can hardly claim to be a 'good Muslim' if he ignores the fatwa that has supported their fight over the last 20 years.

Erdogan may have foreseen that problem. Turkish 'security contractors' under Turkish military or intelligence command and two thousand 'Syrian rebels', including Uighurs, working as 'private security guards' can probably be sold as something other than "invaders". This even while they, as they are used to do, secretly work in support of the CIA.

But the Taliban will not fall for that ruse. It is pretty obvious that the U.S./Turkish plans are not for the benefit of Afghanistan or even for the foreign diplomats hosted in Kabul. For Erdogan the Kabul deployment is a chance to get back into good grace with the U.S. while gaining some extra money from NATO. For the CIA it is a chance to 'stay in business' in Afghanistan and to watch over China while a new round of the Great Game unfolds:

Within the [Shanghai Cooperation Organization], as diplomats told me, there’s ample suspicion that the US deep state agenda is to fuel the flames of imminent civil war in Afghanistan and then extend it to the Central Asian “stans,” complete with shady jihadi commandos mixed with Uighurs also destabilizing Xinjiang.

This being the case, the non-withdrawal withdrawal – what with all those remaining 18,000 Pentagon contractors/mercenaries, plus special forces and CIA black op types – would be a cover, allowing Washington a new narrative spin: the Kabul government has invited us to fight a “terrorist” re-emergence and prevent a spiral towards civil war.

The protracted endgame would read like win-win hybrid war for the deep state and its NATO arm.

Russia, China and Iran all have these suspicions. They all have recently held talks with the Taliban. They will certainly have told them to reject any new or re-deployment of whatever forces to Afghanistan. Today's Taliban statement underlines that it has understood that message.

It will be interesting to see how Erdogan will wiggle himself out of this situation.

Posted by b on July 13, 2021 at 17:36 UTC | Permalink

Comments

Related issue, I'm tired of the U.S. security establishment / Congressman telling CNN/FOX that Biden should have kept a force in Bagram to stop China's OBR and terrorize Iran and destabilize Russia's southern flank. The agreement with the Taliban, signed by Pompeo, required ALL U.S. troops to leave Afghanistan (except for an embassy security force of course).

So if Trump negotiated the agreement that Biden is now implementing, stop lying by telling use that Biden is messing up the Afghanistan withdrawal.

Posted by: Christian J. Chuba | Jul 13 2021 17:43 utc | 1

Great report. Who does not want to see Erdogan fall into an abyss? Empire in its 'cold dead hands' phase is so tiresome. The tragedy is that 20 years on, an invasion based upon lies, as was Iraq, and all victims of the War on Terror, Afghanistan is the desolation they call 'peace.'

Posted by: gottlieb | Jul 13 2021 17:48 utc | 2

I'm surprised you haven't said that the point of putting Sunni Muslim militias into Kabul airport is to hold the airport long enough, when Kabul falls, to allow time for the US diplomats and others who remain to get out loaded into fixed wing planes, as the nearest safe US-supporting country (or fleet) is too far for helicopters.

Posted by: Laguerre | Jul 13 2021 17:52 utc | 3

Sorry forgot to say that whatever the Taliban say, they will not shoot at Sunni Muslims in the same way.

However, if what Erdogan is talking about is Syrian rebel militias and Uyghurs, I would doubt their reliability. They might well change sides.

Posted by: Laguerre | Jul 13 2021 17:56 utc | 4

Thanks for this crucial update on the Taliban's policy toward Turk involvement. The last link is to Pepe Escobar's excellent update that mostly deals with the many negotiations and ways for Afghan economic development to go forward. In it, Pepe links to several other important regional sources. In a few days after this week's numerous meetings have ended, we'll hopefully have a clearer picture. One thing is quite certain, however, and that's the scenario Pepe describes must not be allowed to occur. Furthermore, if Erdogan tires to send terrorists and violate a legitimate fatwa, he may finally be seen by the Umma as the fake Muslim he really is.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jul 13 2021 18:05 utc | 5

The US has relied heavily on the Fethullah Gülen network in Central Asia's Stans as a cover and as a source of intelligence for decades

Apparently Turkey is now kidnapping Gülenist all over Central Asia trying to destroy the CIA controlled Gülen Movement for good.

With Gülen out of the way Erdogan as the only 'protector-of-all-Turks' will be in a strong position in Central Asia. Arguably strong enough to compensate for the debacle in Afghanistan

Posted by: Vincent Tayelrand | Jul 13 2021 18:13 utc | 6

That`s a US strategy that could actually work.

So far the Taliban have been waging an "asymmetrical" war against the US. Many IED`s along the roads, accasional rocket or mortar attacks, things like that. That didn`t defeat the US forces in a strictly military sense but it took a constant toll of casualties until the US government eventually (after 20 years) arrived at the conclusion that the whole situation is untenable.

That won`t work against the mercenaries. They are disposable. Firing some rockets or mortars once in a while guerille-style at Kabul airport, killing some mercenaries, destroying some warehouses or even sometimes some aircraft won`t render Kabul airport inoperable and it won`t lead to the withdrawal of the Turks.

A conventional (non-assymetrical) military siege of Kabul airport is also no option. With an airport the US will have drones and air support which enables them to pulverise the Taliban positions. In particular any heavy weapons that the Taliban might field would be quickly gone.

Furthermore, with Kabul and Kabul airport under indirect US control but with no US targets itself left in Afghanistan it will now be the turn of the US special forces and the SAS to wage an asymmetrical war against Taliban-held Afghanistan.

It looks like the American puppet regime is going to hold out after the US withdrawal as long as the Soviet puppet regime held out after the Soviet withdrawal: Until it`s patron runs out of money.

Posted by: m | Jul 13 2021 18:19 utc | 7

How is it difficult for Erdogan to send Turk troops to Kabul when they have been invited there by the current Afghan government?

To posit the Erdogan must take into account Taliban wishes flies in the face of the reality that US/NATO are still supporting the current government and intend to remain during the continuing civil war as evidenced by the "... remaining 18,000 Pentagon contractors/mercenaries, plus special forces and CIA black op types."

Also, I don't think Erdogan needs to get in the "good graces" of USA/NATO. He's already there. AFAICT the Assad must go! Coalition lives on.

!!

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jul 13 2021 18:21 utc | 8

b... thanks for the update and overview.... on the previous open thread @ karlof1 left a link to the taliban spokespersons words on this matter... i have it cued up for anyone who wants to listen... he was saying the same thing about a week ago for anyone who was listening... it's true what @4 laguerre says... however this seems like a nice way for erdogan to deal with the ongoing problem of his jihadi headchopper cult causing problems for him in turkey...

One on One – Taliban spokesperson Suhail Shaheen cued to 11 minutes exactly where the question of turkeys presence at the airport is asked...

Posted by: james | Jul 13 2021 18:25 utc | 9

Opportunities are plenty but see no traction from India to recalibrate the diplomatic relationship with Taliban as yet. Withdrawing from embassies,keeping mum and hobnobing with UAE/Qatar means serving western interest only. Hopefully they do not lend Kashmir airstrips for drone flyout purpose.God bless.

Posted by: KD | Jul 13 2021 18:30 utc | 10

Posted by: karlof1 | Jul 13 2021 18:05 utc | 5

Never mind Escobar's Great Game article, I don't see the Taliban stopping now, for diplomatic reasons. They're close to victory, and they don't have that much control over their people. Whatever the top Taliban may say, to calm foreigners, the movement will continue until they succeed, or fail because they can't succeed.

The collapse of the Afghan regime has been striking. I don't quite see why Ismail Khan in Herat has lost, nor the Uzbeks in the north, but it seems to be the case.

Posted by: Laguerre | Jul 13 2021 18:38 utc | 11

Erdogan's luck has held up so far. He's slippery enough to 'wiggle' out again.

Posted by: par4 | Jul 13 2021 18:41 utc | 12

Perhaps B posted this B4 but it doesn't hurt to show this again.

The Trumpists on FOX are getting under my skin wailing that Biden undercut Trum's brilliant plan for keeping a presence in Afghanistan, 'Keep Bagram!'
https://www.state.gov/wp-content/uploads/2020/02/Agreement-For-Bringing-Peace-to-Afghanistan-02.29.20.pdf

"The United States is committed to withdraw from Afghanistan all military forces of the United States, its allies, and Coalition partners, including all non-diplomatic civilian personnel, private security contractors, trainers, advisors, and supporting services personnel within fourteen (14) months following announcement of this agreement"

Short of breaking the agreement, something Neocons love to do,
1. How does this leave room for keeping the U.S. base in Kabul?
2. How does this allow us to keep U.S. contractors in Afghanistan to keep their air force operational

Posted by: Christian J. Chuba | Jul 13 2021 18:45 utc | 13

Posted by: m | Jul 13 2021 18:19 utc | 7

>>That didn`t defeat the US forces in a strictly military sense but it took a constant toll of casualties until the US government eventually (after 20 years) arrived at the conclusion that the whole situation is untenable.

In strictly military sense, the US/NATO were losing ground to the Taliban even when they were in the country. It wasn't simply a casualty issue - it is that they were unable to stop the Taliban from expanding and gaining ground, even when they were there. So their position was worse than simply the casualty issue.

>>With an airport the US will have drones and air support which enables them to pulverise the Taliban positions.

Yeah, that worked really well up to now. They failed to "pulverise" the Taliban positions because the population itself and the civilian areas themselves were the Taliban positions.

Moreover, you failed to realise that the US already surrendered in Afghanistan, as per the Doha Agreement. This is the civilian airport that lacks any infrastructure for airforce and military operations, unlike Bagram. Its simply a desperate effort to keep the door open for eventual Embassy evacuations.

>>It looks like the American puppet regime is going to hold out after the US withdrawal as long as the Soviet puppet regime held out after the Soviet withdrawal: Until it`s patron runs out of money.

US intel gives it 6 months, even with US money/supply support.

You are simply a european living in the past of colonialism, who miseed the new military realities and how europeans were kicked out from the colonies.

Things changed a long time ago.

See battle of Battle of Dien Bien Phu, on how a single french base/air port can no longer hold against the "aborigens" and the "savages".

Posted by: Passer by | Jul 13 2021 18:51 utc | 14

There is going to be a 'Saigon' moment, or at least the US is preparing for that. My guess is that it will happen, because I can't see what factors will prevent it.

The Afghan national army has collapsed; soldiers are thinking how to save themselves. I haven't seen anything yet which is likely to reinvigorate them.

Posted by: Laguerre | Jul 13 2021 19:03 utc | 15

Posted by: Laguerre | Jul 13 2021 18:38 utc | 11

>>The collapse of the Afghan regime has been striking

It is, unlike in the past the former Northern Alliance territories in NE Afghanistan are now themselves a Taliban hotbed and fell to Taliban control. So no Northern Alliance this time.

Posted by: Passer by | Jul 13 2021 19:05 utc | 16

Posted by: Passer by | Jul 13 2021 19:05 utc | 16

Nor Ismail Khan in Herat, according to Escobar's article.

Posted by: Laguerre | Jul 13 2021 19:14 utc | 17

IMO, ignoring Escobar is decidedly incorrect. He's 100% correct to point to the fact that today's Taliban are not the same as the 1995-2005 version. PLUS, the real terrorists defined themselves at the outset and continued their terror--NATO--and ALL Afghans were impacted thus alienating all. So, today's Taliban are now superior negotiators with a very well trained military and show great discipline in their actions. They've won over ALL Afghans excepting westernized urbanites who suckle at the tit of corruption.

On abandoning what was once seen as a strategic base: What enabled that thinking was the coercion and control of Pakistan, but that's no longer the case. Same with Central Asia's Stans, but Russia was able to reassert its historical sway over the region. Only Turkmenistan remains a confirmed neutral, although it's leaning to the BRI camp after today's discussions with Wang Yi. Landlocked with no means of reliable supply or reinforcement with the entire world against their continuing presence amidst a completely hostile peoples and with S-500s now being deployed, there's zero strategic or tactical advantage in remaining--only negatives, particularly domestic.

IMO, something happened with the transfer of NATO's Terrorist Foreign Legion to Afghanistan as only a few thousand were moved, for that seemed to be the plan at the end of Obama's term. The sudden emergence on the domestic scene of organized opposition to the Forever Wars by presidential candidates combined with Trump's victory may have had an impact. Or--surprise--maybe the Terrorists didn't want to be used that way and refused to go. Whatever the factor, something demoted Afghanistan's utility in the Anti-Russia and Anti-China Projects.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jul 13 2021 19:17 utc | 18

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jul 13 2021 18:21 utc | 8

>>war as evidenced by the "... remaining 18,000 Pentagon contractors/mercenaries, plus special forces and CIA black op types."

That's very old info, currently only two hundred US contractors remain in Afghanistan.

https://www.nytimes.com/2021/07/08/us/politics/biden-afghanistan-withdrawal.html

The Doha Agreement stipulates all western contractors leaving Afghanistan.

The US dilema is this - it may try to anger the Taliban, but the Taliban is too strong, actually stronger than in the past, has support in former Northern Alliance areas, and is rapidly taking over. It already established relations with Russia, China and Iran. If it tries to anger it, it will only push it towards China and Pakistan. So the Taliban was in strong position during the Doha negotiations and managed to bully the US into a near surrender agreement, with big concessions from the US. (Not even contractors allowed in Afghanistan).

Posted by: Passer by | Jul 13 2021 19:24 utc | 19

Posted by: karlof1 | Jul 13 2021 19:17 utc | 18

Karlof, it's not the Great Game that is going to decide what happens in Afghanistan. The top Taliban don't have much control over their people, and local tendencies will decide. At the moment that means going for victory.

Posted by: Laguerre | Jul 13 2021 19:32 utc | 20

Well, if Erdogan sends jihadi head-choppers to Kabul so that they end up butchered by the Talibans, it's a great outcome, quite a winnning situation for most of the world. It's obvious that even if he sent the bulk of all Idlib rebels, they would be defeated there.

Posted by: Clueless Joe | Jul 13 2021 20:03 utc | 21

Laguerre @20--

Well, The Great Game ended when the British partitioned India and left us with today's mess, and they completely failed in Afghanistan. I'll watch with great interest how events develop there over the rest of my life, of which I hope twenty more years won't be asking too much. As I asked recently, what development path will Afghani's follow? Do they even know? I'm all for Afghanis becoming a Moderately Prosperous Society and hope they have a better time trying than Cubans. Fortunately, it seems all Afghan neighbors want the same thing and are on board with what they believe is the proper vehicle to traverse that path.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jul 13 2021 20:37 utc | 22

Posted by: karlof1 | Jul 13 2021 20:37 utc | 22

"Great Game" was meant to include all the games that foreign powers are supposed to be playing with Afghanistan.

Now that's no longer relevant. The question is entirely local and political: will the Taliban succeed in taking over most or all of Afghanistan or not? It's not a question of what they will do if successful. They haven't thought of that.

Posted by: Laguerre | Jul 13 2021 20:51 utc | 23

After the US has given up directly injecting itself into Afghanistan why would the lessor power Turkey and its jihadis think they would survive? The Taliban will cut them to pieces.

Posted by: AriusArmenian | Jul 13 2021 20:55 utc | 24

Complete faith in the Taliban to do whatever is necessary to send the evil empire back to hell. Same goes for Turkey.

Posted by: so | Jul 13 2021 21:11 utc | 25

AriusArmenian @Jul13 20:55 #24

After the US has given up directly injecting itself into Afghanistan why would the lessor power Turkey and its jihadis think they would survive? The Taliban will cut them to pieces.

Turkey's Jihadis don't worry about bad PR or international condemnation. They are nobody's doing whatever it takes to win.

I think Turkey wants to control the airport so that these "nobodies" can fly in without any border controls. This is how they remain "nobodies" with no accountability. They airport also allows Turkey to provide advanced weapons and other supplies without any oversight.

USA military still believe that they lost the war in Vietnam 50 years ago because their hands were tied by public opinion (the anti-war protests).

As a cynic, I don't share the optimism of those that think USA will accept defeat because the must. IMO they may not be able to WIN but they will not accept a defeat. Especially not during a Cold War.

!!

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Jul 13 2021 21:18 utc | 26

Laguerre @23--

I beg to differ. The Taliban are negotiating directly with those who would enable Afghanistan's future development from a position of strength. They've expressed the desire to conclude the current era via negotiations, not via arms--a very mature view that's impressing all neighbors. They have about 7 weeks until the last NATO merc is supposed to depart and presumably desire to begin governing with a temporary body to secure the peace, prepare for the Winter, draw a new constitution, and arrange for new elections to ratify the constitution and then develop the new institutions it gives birth to. A year hence we can evaluate what's occurred.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jul 13 2021 21:21 utc | 27

Posted by: karlof1 | Jul 13 2021 21:21 utc | 27

You've got the wrong idea. If Great Game politics worked, the Taliban leadership would be able to say stop! Our interests are now different and we will do something else.

It's not like that. The Taliban are a popular movement. Once launched, they can't be diverted. And conquest of Afghanistan is what it's about.

Posted by: Laguerre | Jul 13 2021 21:52 utc | 28

Posted by: Laguerre | Jul 13 2021 17:56 utc | 4
"Sorry forgot to say that whatever the Taliban say, they will not shoot at Sunni Muslims in the same way"

So, base on this analysis all the Afghan Security forces Talebans have so far killed, or were shooting at up to now, were either Shieh muslims or non muslims, wow that's far out

Posted by: kooshy | Jul 13 2021 22:03 utc | 29

Posted by: kooshy | Jul 13 2021 22:03 utc | 29

That was the American thinking.

Posted by: Laguerre | Jul 13 2021 22:09 utc | 30

That Fatwa I am sure is of a "Mharebh" kind challenging(waring)aginst god's authority meaning who ever stands up against gods will is "Mostahag" deserves to be killed regardless of religion, race and sex.

Posted by: kooshy | Jul 13 2021 22:15 utc | 31

I disagree that Erdogan would consider putting Turkish troops in Afghanistan as a favor to the USA.

He seems in no mood to please anyone in America. Whatever his reasons, I take a cynical view and assume some malicious intent to benefit himself.

Without Pakistan's help, I see no viable strategy for reoccupying Afghanistan as some pundits have wished after observing the collapse of US supported Afghan troops.

With or without Turkey's help.

With Pakistan out of the picture, I don't think another invasion could be supported from across the Caspian Sea even if Turkmenistan went along. The Caspian Sea is firmly controlled by Russia and Iran and NATO is not allowed there.

I think the Taliban won. And won big. It is their country now and that is why Russia and China are already negotiating with them.

Posted by: Mar man | Jul 13 2021 22:19 utc | 32

@ Mar man | Jul 13 2021 22:19 utc | 32:

It would be great fun watching the Taliban take care of some terrorists imported by Erdogan from the Syrian war -- and something of a relief for the Syrian government too, I imagine.

Question: Why doesn't Erdo just recruit some Uighur terrorists at the source? Simple geography would seem to make that the more feasible option.

Posted by: corvo | Jul 13 2021 22:25 utc | 33

@corvo

Yes, the Taliban would make short work of any new terrorists invading Afghanistan. Sunni or not.

I believe the Taliban and China are working on the Uighur problem at this very moment. Both sides suspect the US is planning something with them.

Posted by: Mar man | Jul 13 2021 22:32 utc | 34

Posted by: karlof1 | Jul 13 2021 19:17 utc | 18

“Escobar is decidedly incorrect. He's 100% correct to point to the fact that today's Taliban are not the same as the 1995-2005 version.”

IMO. Pepe’s estimate is correct, Talibans are not the same because the region’s geostrategy is not the same, US power will for force is not the same, China, Russia and Iran are much stronger and not at all the same. IMO US will not have or cannot have a line of supply to maintain any meaningful support to any major groups that can challenge Taliban’s authority if Taliban can be sure from her immediate western resistance neighbors. US’s only hope would have been Pakistan which looks that China prevailed there. To me looks that the recent talks with Iran, Russia, and China was as much for Taliban’s border security assurance as was for the three resistance states. Erdo’s insertion here is the usual wishful thinking wanting a piece of the pie.

Posted by: Kooshy | Jul 13 2021 22:37 utc | 35

In recent years Iran has trained and built a strong proxy force among the shieh Hazara minority they are called Liwa Fatemiyoun or Afghan Hezbollah, they are battled trained in Syrian war Taliban are aware this, it would be easy to supply them and run an indefinite proxy war to keep Talebs busy. Umm?

Posted by: kooshy | Jul 13 2021 22:49 utc | 36

That won`t work against the mercenaries. They are disposable. Firing some rockets or mortars once in a while guerille-style at Kabul airport, killing some mercenaries, destroying some warehouses or even sometimes some aircraft won`t render Kabul airport inoperable and it won`t lead to the withdrawal of the Turks.

A conventional (non-assymetrical) military siege of Kabul airport is also no option. With an airport the US will have drones and air support which enables them to pulverise the Taliban positions. In particular any heavy weapons that the Taliban might field would be quickly gone.

Furthermore, with Kabul and Kabul airport under indirect US control but with no US targets itself left in Afghanistan it will now be the turn of the US special forces and the SAS to wage an asymmetrical war against Taliban-held Afghanistan.

Ignored in the favorable analyses, like the one above.... where will the fuel come from...????

With the Taliban in control of the border... in it's entirety.... unauthorized air operations from anywhere within Afghanistan... will soon run "out of gas"... and cease.

Ignored also.... what will those 18,000 operatives eat???

Answer.... nothing....

INDY

Posted by: George W Oprisko | Jul 13 2021 22:54 utc | 37

@ George W Oprisko | Jul 13 2021 22:54 utc | 37

what will those 18,000 operatives eat???

Lead, most likely.

Posted by: corvo | Jul 13 2021 23:05 utc | 38

The Taliban are methodically seizing all of the border crossings. Siege tactics. Actually how does the U.S plan on supporting Kabul for any length of time without a land route, we can do all of that by air?

Maybe the U.S. can do that. Goering wasn't able to do that at Stalingrad and the French weren't able to do that in Dien Bien Phu, but the U.S. is good at logistics. We could probably supply munitions and petrol but food for 10M people?

Posted by: Christian J. Chuba | Jul 13 2021 23:08 utc | 39

@Christian J. Chuba
"The Taliban are methodically seizing all of the border crossings. Siege tactics. Actually how does the U.S plan on supporting Kabul for any length of time without a land route, we can do all of that by air?"

Exactly.

I have seen western media claiming Taliban victories are exaggerated because it is only rural areas surrounding the big provincial capitals.

No one ever asks the pundits what happens when ALL the areas surrounding Kabul and other cities fall.

That is called a siege.

Posted by: Mar man | Jul 13 2021 23:15 utc | 40

Kooshy @35--

You misrepresented what I wrote by misquoting me, and I'm not very happy about that. @18 I wrote:

IMO, ignoring Escobar is decidedly incorrect. He's 100% correct to point to the fact that today's Taliban are not the same as the 1995-2005 version.

And most of your commentary @35 is gobbledygook.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jul 13 2021 23:16 utc | 41

I'm sure I'm not the only one who foresaw on MoA's previous June 2021 article on Turkey's plan to occupy Kabul's airport that this was an escape plan for Turkey to send Uyghur jihadis stuck in Idlib province, other parts of Syria along the Turkish border and any refugee camps in Turkey itself off to Afghanistan to create future trouble for the incoming Taliban government should it agree to integrate more closely with China's Belt Road Initiative. This would dovetail well with US plans to offshore the costs of keeping Afghanistan on a tight leash to other NATO members like Turkey and any allies Turkey chooses.

This was my comment on the June 2021 article:

Those Uyghur jihadists stuck in Idlib province in Syria and in refugee camps in Turkey are bound to get a warm welcome from the Taliban when Ankara finally ships them off to Kabul as part of this proposed "security force" to protect the airport so the CIA can continue to ship out its heroin.
Posted by: Jen | Jun 21 2021 20:17 utc | 17

One objective of Turkey's plan must surely be to get Turkish-trained Uyghur militants to enter China from Afghanistan through the Wakhan Corridor. This would be a convenient entry point also for Uyghur militants to enter Tajikistan on one side and Pakistan on the other to create problems for either of those countries as well. The militants could also carry opium or heroin and ship either out through Tajikistan and into Central Asia and Siberian Russia, through Xinjiang into China or through Pakistan to the Middle East.

Where there is the possibility of killing several birds with the one stone, the CIA is sure to use it.

Posted by: Jen | Jul 13 2021 23:31 utc | 42

18000 contractors?

All of them the left behind canon fodder, the head chopper proxies of imperialism in their failure in Syria. A few thousand of which are Uighars. If I understand correctly.

Well , they have evacuated some to the west. Many were sent to Libya to be obliterated. Now the remainder are being enticed at $3000/month to be fed into the mincing machine in Kabul international airport! What else can be done with them?

Posted by: DG | Jul 13 2021 23:36 utc | 43

You will see a sudden upsurge in the activities of the (mysteriously appeared in Afghanistan) ISIS, just like in Iraq post Obama "withdrawal" in 2011, to justifya reoccupation. ISIS style Salafism isn't even in any way part of the Deobandi Afghan Sunni Islam which the Taliban follow; where did these ISIS come from? Did that drop from CIA aeroplanes heaven?

Posted by: Biswapriya Purkayast | Jul 13 2021 23:49 utc | 44

Am I correct in reading that this military "ownership" of the Kabul airport is going to keep it open for "international" use?

So, its going to be a military airport kept open briefly to pretend like its the Berlin airlift again......

How many global dominoes are tilting seriously now folks?

The shit show continues until it doesn't.....and what a shit show we have going on....step right up and get you tickets now to the Great Game....

It is in Erdogan's best interests to attempt what natocia is asking and not take responsibility if it fails because the skin he has in the game is excess to him now.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Jul 13 2021 23:52 utc | 45

My comment on a Korybko article:

The idea that the Taliban aren't capable of taking cities or Kabul is nonsense. It doesn't have to physically assault them, just cut off roads and communications, besiege them and wait for the local authorities to change sides, just like it did in the smaller towns that are falling every day. Once most of the cities fall, Kabul can either be a starving, isolated island, or surrender. What do you think it'll do?

Apart from which the Taliban are in no mood to reconcile with the puppet child sex slaver Quisling warlord regime which still bombs them, desecrates their corpses, and in any case is the imposition of a foreign invader. If there is to be a settlement, the Ghani regime has to go, and the war criminals like Dostum must face justice. Do you think Ghani, who is even hated by his own fellow puppets like Abdullah Abdullah, can possibly risk ceding power voluntarily? How long would he last?

The idea that ISIS is a "much greater threat" is a polite fiction. Moscow cannot possibly be unaware that, as even Hamid Karzai noted, ISIS appeared magically in Afghanistan under Amerikastani occupation. ISIS is an Amerikastani tool. It appears in countries where the situation has (like Hirohito said in his surrender speech in 1945) "not necessarily developed to (Amerikastani) advantage", and its enemies are always, invariably, Amerikastan's opponents or else governments that do not follow Amerikastani orders. ISIS will do as the Bidet regime tells it to.

The idea that Modi regime India will ever do anything to improve relations with Pakistan to the extent of joining in BRI is as much a laugh as the idea that Modi will ever settle the Kashmir question. Modi needs Pakistan and the Kashmir insurgency to distract attention from his misrule. He would almost certainly have lost the 2019 election but for a (carefully stage managed and mythical) "surgical strike" across the de facto Kashmir border into Pakistani Kashmir. The situation for Modi in 2021 is much worse than in 2019, and even his Bhakts (worshippers), if not daring to criticise him directly, are beginning to bare their fangs at his minions. Modi has lost all but one of the last major state elections. Modi needs a conflict very badly if he is to have any chance of winning the election in 2024.
So, the hopes presented by Russia in this article are just diplomatese. They have no substance, and Russia knows it.

The only prospect for the future is engaging with a Taliban Afghanistan.

https://russiancouncil.ru/en/blogs/andrew-korybko/these-are-russias-three-strategic-goals-in-afghanistan/

Posted by: Biswapriya Purkayast | Jul 13 2021 23:52 utc | 46

The Taliban would have to be the most imbecilic of mankind (and that wouldn't be easy!) to agree to allow any foreign troops on their soil. But then I expect that that's the opinion that NATO has of the Taliban.

Posted by: Barbarossa | Jul 14 2021 0:02 utc | 47

Posted by: karlof1 | Jul 13 2021 23:16 utc | 41

what's the problem?, I agreed with Pepe and what you quoted, read what i wrote again, i didn't even quote you, I wrote IMO "Pepe's estimate is correct" where is the difference with what you wrote?

Posted by: kooshy | Jul 14 2021 0:02 utc | 48

Jen @42--

Did you know that since 2012 Turkey is a member of the SCO with the status of Dialog Partner? Would Erdogan be stupid enough to destroy his links to the most viable economic opportunity Turkey will have since it was denied EU membership and had its negotiations suspended in 2016?

Posted by: karlof1 | Jul 14 2021 0:02 utc | 49

kooshy @48--

Gee, apparently you're incapable of reading what you wrote.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jul 14 2021 0:05 utc | 50

The Taliban will very soon discover the usefulness of drone warfare as a guerrilla tactic.

At that point, any notions of NATO holding airports and embassies become a losing proposition.

Posted by: Arch Bungle | Jul 14 2021 0:05 utc | 51

Posted by: karlof1 | Jul 14 2021 0:05 utc | 50

is getting too hot in the west coast cool off

Posted by: kooshy | Jul 14 2021 0:09 utc | 52

Biswapriya Purkayast @ 46:

The Korybko article starts thus:

"The US military’s symbolic withdrawal from Bagram Air Base, the largest in Afghanistan, shows how committed it is to abiding by President Joe Biden’s pledge to leave the country by September 11th ...

The weaselly wording looks like Korybko's way of tiptoeing around the issue that the US does not really plan to "leave" Afghanistan but instead to offshore the direct costs and responsibilities of the occupation while benefiting from it.

Posted by: Jen | Jul 14 2021 0:11 utc | 53

karlof1 @ 49:

Being a Dialogue Partner of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation since 2012 didn't stop Turkey from shooting down a Russian Sukhoi jet within Syrian airspace near the Turkish border in 2015, causing the deaths of the pilot (shot down by jihadis while trying to parachute to safety) and a member of the Russian rescue team (jihadis shot at their helicopter), for which Moscow walloped the Turkish economy by imposing economic sanctions, cutting flights to Turkey and restricting the movements of workers from Turkey to Russia.

I know Erdogan is wily and, if there's a way, could always deflect responsibility for moving Uyghur militants into Afghanistan onto someone else - preferably someone who might be connected to Fethullah Gulen and his organisation - but if he is desperate (and the current ups and downs of the Turkish economy and lira could make him desperate), who knows what he might decide?

Posted by: Jen | Jul 14 2021 0:25 utc | 54

Kinda weird that Turkey still wants to play the poodle.

Perhaps they really believe in Neo-Ottomanism.

Posted by: Smith | Jul 14 2021 0:26 utc | 55

It appears to me Ergodan is attempting to federalize the portions of the divided Ottoman empire that are now severed nation states.. .. explains on-again off-again independent tight rope behavior. Shoveling non Turk anti Assad Mercenaries into Afghanistan, weakens the remaining non-Turk anti Assad forces in Syria. and that weakens the Kurd resistance some. also, Afghanistan Opium can help fund the federalization process. Absorbing Syria serves what I see as the controlled development of the United States of Ottoman. or something similar.is a necessary step ..Ergodan

Posted by: snake | Jul 14 2021 0:41 utc | 56

Erdogan loves moving his pieces around the board hoping to gain some influence. I can't see this move stopping the Talibz but it removes 2,600 problems from Syria.

Posted by: Ash Naz | Jul 14 2021 0:44 utc | 57

It's still too early to make any kind of satisfactory analysis on short-medium term in Afghanistan. The country is still in a very dynamic flux, there are too many variables to consider and too many possibilities.

Too premature to make any judgments about which power will come out on top, and if the Taliban will be able to nation-build.

Posted by: vk | Jul 14 2021 0:50 utc | 58

@vk
"Too premature to make any judgments about which power will come out on top, and if the Taliban will be able to nation-build."

From my understanding, ever since the agreement was made over a year ago for US forces to leave, the Taliban spent the time during the ceasefire travelling all over the country making diplomatic visits into other regions. I read the Taliban offered certain levels of autonomy to many regions in exchange for peace.

Supposedly, this allowed the Taliban to take northern provinces historically opposed to Taliban rule. Taking northern provinces shocked western analysts who expected years of intra-Afghan struggle to ensue.

So, they may have already built their nation.

Perhaps those readers here far more knowledgeable on Afghan politics can correct me.

Posted by: Mar man | Jul 14 2021 1:07 utc | 59

Speaking of Turkish plans...

"One nation, three states: Turkey, Azerbaijan, Pakistan to hold joint military exercise

Azerbaijani Defense Minister Zakir Hasanov recently announced that his nation, Pakistan and Turkey will hold a trilateral military exercise in September: “According to the order of the President of Azerbaijan, three brother countries will conduct the joint drills. Azerbaijan will host the joint military exercises of the special forces of Azerbaijan, Turkey and Pakistan.

The three fraternal nations have been expanding the consolidation of military ties as well as the integration of geopolitical strategy in recent months to an unprecedented degree.

They recently participated in two, coterminous military exercises in Turkey, Anatolian 21 and Anatolian Eagle 2021. The first was a special operations forces exercise and the second was a series of air combat maneuvers (monitored by NATO). Participants in Anatolian 21 were Turkey, Azerbaijan, Pakistan and six states that are de facto provinces of the neo-Ottoman imperium and adjuncts of the Ankara-Baku-Islamabad axis: Albania, Kazakhstan, Kosovo, Mongolia, Qatar and Uzbekistan. (In February Turkish and Pakistani special forces engaged in the Ataturk XI-2021 exercise in Pakistan.)

In this year’s Anatolian Eagle Azerbaijan provided Sukhoi and MiG fighter aircraft of the sort used by Armenia and India, respectively, and Qatar supplied Rafale multirole fighter jets of the sort recently purchased by India and Greece. Azerbaijan, Pakistan and Turkey support each other’s claims and positions vis-à-vis Nagorno-Karabakh and Armenia, Kashmir and India, and Cyprus and Greek islands in the Aegean. The air exercises prepared the three former nations for future conflicts with the latter ones."
https://antibellum679354512.wordpress.com/2021/07/10/one-nation-three-states-turkey-azerbaijan-pakistan-to-hold-joint-military-exercise/


Posted by: daffyDuct | Jul 14 2021 2:16 utc | 60

The most interesting aspect of the 8-point Taliban statement, for me, is the scrupulously-edited and fine-tuned English Language therein. That unambiguous document is aimed at an English-speaking 'Christian' audience.

If Item 5 wasn't edited in Beijing, I'm a monkey's uncle. It articulates China's attitude to Foreign Interference.
This turn of events puts the 'Christians' on notice that China won't stand idly by if the West's demented daydreamers ignore the warning. And if China is endorsing the Taliban's aims, so is Russia.

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Jul 14 2021 3:00 utc | 61

From my understanding, ever since the agreement was made over a year ago for US forces to leave, the Taliban spent the time during the ceasefire travelling all over the country making diplomatic visits into other regions. I read the Taliban offered certain levels of autonomy to many regions in exchange for peace.

Supposedly, this allowed the Taliban to take northern provinces historically opposed to Taliban rule. Taking northern provinces shocked western analysts who expected years of intra-Afghan struggle to ensue.

So, they may have already built their nation.

Spot on!

Who knows Afghan politics better than the Taliban???

No One!

INDY

Posted by: George W Oprisko | Jul 14 2021 3:06 utc | 62

@59 Mar man (& @62)

Yes, I agree with your take, and your earlier comments in this thread - and also with many other commenters here.

This is not the old Taliban, this is the new leader of the country, and the country acknowledges this. Of course, there are factions and cadres to deal with yet, but the northern warlords were the fulcrum force.

Even 20 years ago, the US never took the land, it merely paid tribute to the warlords who ruled the regions. For these forces to acquiesce now to the Taliban speaks of a new age - perhaps, once again, the US has managed to forge new alliances between formerly estranged forces out of their mutual disgust with the foulness of the US.

When soldiers of the old government simply surrender to the Taliban without fighting, and either join the new force or are allowed to return to their homes, you know the hearts and the minds of a nation are already settled.

The Taliban have said that they're not taking cities for now, because this will involve bloodshed, and the blood of innocent civilians. This is a major act of mature statecraft.

Instead, the Taliban has assured its bordering neighbor states that it will not venture across its borders, and has now assured those countries that it will fortify the border areas so they don't become no-man's-land for jihadis and saboteurs to enter those countries.

The Taliban is doing everything right so far, and the heart of the nation appears to be with them. And why should it not? The Taliban are the only indigenous force that can promise a future for this much-ravaged country. As karlof1 says, a year will show how well this force will have been able to act for the benefit of the "beloved homeland".

Posted by: Grieved | Jul 14 2021 4:52 utc | 63

It appears to me the Turks are more worried about losing what probably is a readily available opium pipeline route through the airport. Time will tell if the Taliban revert to their original policy on opium. Probably not if they want to stitch the various faction in the country together on some agreed on terms. I am sure that subject has come up once or twice in their talks with the various regions

Posted by: circumspect | Jul 14 2021 5:51 utc | 64

@Jackrabbit | Jul 13 2021 21:18 utc | 26

As a cynic, I don't share the optimism of those that think USA will accept defeat because the must. IMO they may not be able to WIN but they will not accept a defeat. Especially not during a Cold War.

It will be the US way: Declare victory and then leave. It is good enough.

Posted by: Norwegian | Jul 14 2021 5:52 utc | 65

UAE are opening their embassy in Israel,
https://english.ahram.org.eg/NewsContent/2/8/417186/World/Region/In-first-for-Gulf,-UAE-opens-embassy-in-Israel,-ha.aspx
Abiy has good friends,
https://www.ohchr.org/EN/HRBodies/HRC/Pages/NewsDetail.aspx?NewsID=27303&LangID=E
13 abstentions from the 13 African states in the council, refusing to condemn the slaughter of Tigray people

Soon a Taliban embassy in Israel? Between millenarist friends...

Posted by: Mina | Jul 14 2021 10:06 utc | 66

Laguerre #23

"Great Game" was meant to include all the games that foreign powers are supposed to be playing with Afghanistan.

Now that's no longer relevant. The question is entirely local and political: will the Taliban succeed in taking over most or all of Afghanistan or not? It's not a question of what they will do if successful. They haven't thought of that.

Methinks you set unhelpful limits on 'the great game'. Certainly the UK set out to assert its global hegemony over the Russian empire of the day back in the 1800's. At that stage the great game was limited to a large extent to the middle east and across to India. Then this was all about Englander global hegemony and today is expanded to UKUSA with its tentacles down into South America where it strangles the life of the people.

The great game to me is the contest between the murderous totalitarianism of the UKUSA vs the rest of the world seeking self determination and civil society and civil diplomatic relations. That is not the way of UKUSA - it is domineering totalitarian and murderous. Perhaps it is private finance capital vs collective commonwealth capital.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Jul 14 2021 10:08 utc | 67

Grieved writes:

As karlof1 says, a year will show how well this force will have been able to act for the benefit of the "beloved homeland"

I'd say the preceding almost two centuries have pretty well established how successfully the Afghanis have acted to benefit their homeland. Empires have met their utter failure time and time again, and now, again. It's hard to say to what degree Pashtunwali will accede to the international fold.

***

Beyond satisfying an interest in US foreign policy, the story of Afghanistan, and of Taliban in it, offers a valuable opportunity for attitude adjustment. You may not think highly of them; in turn, what they think of you is that you should shut up, get out and stay out. You may be tempted to expound to them your tender feelings about freedom, democracy, human rights, social and technological progress, environmentalism, gender equality and the reproductive rights of women. They will simply ignore all of that as idiotic, childish noise.

Chances are, your entire civilization will crumble into dust and nothing will be left of it except some rusty rebar sticking out of cracked concrete and they will still be there, same as ever. Your challenge is to learn to respect them, knowing full well that they will never, ever have any respect for you (Link)

Posted by: john | Jul 14 2021 10:38 utc | 68

circumspect #64

It appears to me the Turks are more worried about losing what probably is a readily available opium pipeline route through the airport. Time will tell if the Taliban revert to their original policy on opium. Probably not if they want to stitch the various faction in the country together on some agreed on terms. I am sure that subject has come up once or twice in their talks with the various regions

I get the impression from their statements that the Taliban will ban opium cultivation as a cash crop. After all what payment does a farmer get for a kilo of opium tar? Not much I would think and when you have the two biggest nations on earth (and neighbors) offering development and reconstruction aid on condition that opium cultivation is suppressed then it is likely the opium is doomed and there will be funds to subsidise a reversion to agriculture for food. Another factor in the Taliban mind will be to even out the power relations between the Afghan regions. Currently most opium is grown in Helmand afaik and that province will not easily be tolerated as one that i filthy rich in the middle of a desert of very poor regions.

I would think the Taliban federation of forces will be very keen to see a power and economic distribution that regenerates a distributed economy and stops the death march of heroin in the region all emanating from one province. Then factor in the endless hysterical shrieking of the USAi that will turn on a dime and now start bad mouthing the new Afghanistan as the heroin hub of the world. They have no shame, they are criminals and destroyers of nations.

The way to add certainty to the defeat of the USAi is to take their heroin away and impoverish the CIA (even if only just a little).

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Jul 14 2021 10:39 utc | 69

Uncle Tungsten
"now start bad mouthing the new Afghanistan as the heroin hub of the world"

Yes, I'll be interested to see what becomes the newest drug epidemic in the US. I'm sure it was a total coincidence that in the '60s and '70s (while US military planes were very busy ferrying caskets from Vietnam) heroin became a huge "problem," actually killing several in the entertainment world. Then in the '80s, as US special forces and their CIA masters became heavily involved in South America, especially Columbia, lo and behold cocaine was suddenly everywhere. And for the last decade or more for some odd reason heroin has made a come-back on the mean streets of the US. Perplexing (although it's true the CIA has had stiff competition from the opioid-oriented Big Pharma). If the CIA is actually forced out of Afghanistan, I suspect we're due for a cocaine revival, and I pity the poor people of South America.

Posted by: J Swift | Jul 14 2021 13:33 utc | 70

the split between turkey and the empire was not syrian war but iraq, remember it was AKP that managed to evade iraq war. the foreign minister was a darling to entire anti-war community, and rightly so. they did the unthinkable, they did what the vast majority wanted. i remember even some of the left opposed this decision, they wanted turkey to do what it usually does, the right thing, execute the orders of the empire. sooner or later erdogan will be replaced either by election or force, but who is going to be the replacement and what difference does it make? turkey no longer have the statesmans of the past, statesmans of lavrov caliber, but mostly horse thieves now. the only change will be the livelihood of turkish people, at best the life will be psychologically bearable for the middle class and hopes and prayers for the lower class, oh, and cheaper alcohol finally.

Posted by: horsethief | Jul 14 2021 14:14 utc | 71

"the split between turkey and the empire was not syrian war but iraq"

Posted by: horsethief | Jul 14 2021 14:14 utc | 71

Yes, people forget that, that was the beginning of our alienation from Turkey, the Iraq war was the beginning of our steep decline too. In year 2000 we looked to be sitting pretty here in USA. Nobody talks about that.

Posted by: john | Jul 14 2021 10:38 utc | 68

Thank you for the Orlov. He does produce a fine rant from time to time, and always chooses a good subject.

Posted by: Bemildred | Jul 14 2021 14:42 utc | 72

UN Resolution – Arms embargo & financial restrictions against Taliban

China and Russia need to push for a UN Resolution that results in arms embargo, end to drug trade and financial restrictions on Taliban & Afghanistan. This way they can size up the real intent of the Financial Empire and ensure Taliban aren’t causing troubles. There are too many spoiler elements in Afghanistan and its neighborhood, with many spillover implications. It is essential for Taliban to be neutralized, so Afghan’s people focus on the nation development and gain their sovereignty.

Posted by: Max | Jul 14 2021 16:42 utc | 73

Well, the narrative on Afghanistan in the world media seems to be taking the usual bifurcation.

All the honest players, led by Russia and China---and all the smart observers, such as this website, Pepe Escobar and others...are projecting a POSITIVE and hopeful scenario with the coming final Taliban takeover [which should be largely peaceful].

On the other side of the narrative divide we have all the imperialist wurlitzers calling for chaos, bloodhsed and doom and gloom---obviously hoping that this will somehow become a self-fulfilling prophecy.

It's pretty obvious that continuing chaos is what the US is trying to achieve with its begging for military and drone bases in the area, plus the idiotic Turkish plan to take the country's airport.

All of these on-the-ground military assets would have one clear purpose: to sabotage a return to peace and a national unity government from emerging.

They would do this by 'asymmetrical' warfare like bringing in ISIS and other Jihadists by means of the control of the airport. And would support these headchoppers by means of drones and aircraft operating from those nearby bases that they are begging for.

This is why the western media is shouting 'doom and gloom,' to lay the psychological and propaganda groundwork for the hoped-for 'eventuality' that Taliban rule will result in catastrophe.

But all the indications are that there is no chance for this 'hybrid' US war to unfold. Nobody in the neighborhood is going to invite them in to put in drone bases, and Turkey's idiotic 'plan' for seizing the airport will be met with a hail of Taliban lead---if they are not first dissuaded from going through with it to begin with.

The latest installment of what the smart people are saying comes from China's Global Times. The article starts by pooh-poohing the doom and gloom scenario, and points out all the diplomatic activity with the Taliban---in Russia a few days ago, and coming up at the SCO meeting in Tajikistan in a couple of days etc.

With the evolving Afghanistan situation, the Taliban is quietly transforming itself to improve its international image, easing the concerns of and befriending neighboring countries.

Chinese observers noted that China and Russia, as the major responsible powers in the region, will cooperate more with all parties in peacefully solving the Afghanistan issue and its reconstruction work...

The piece then goes on to highlight some of the western media scaremongering. It flatly refutes a France 24 'report' that tells its viewers that China is 'very very worried,' lol!

[But how considerate of the French 'friends' to show such 'concern' over China and the threats it might face. 😘]

In an interview with This Week in Asia on Wednesday, Taliban spokesperson Suhail Shaheen said the organization sees China as a 'friend' to Afghanistan and is hoping to talk to Beijing about investing in reconstruction work 'as soon as possible.'

Suhail also said the Taliban would no longer allow Uygur separatists, some of whom had previously sought refuge in Afghanistan, to enter the country.

The Taliban would also prevent al-Qaeda or any other terrorist groups from operating there.

The Chinese expert interviewed on the issue said this:

Meanwhile the Taliban today is totally different to what is was some 20 years ago...

Where have we heard this before?...Oh yeah, all the SMART people are saying this, lol!

How big a security threat does China face as Taliban draws closer to border with Xinjiang?

Posted by: Gordog | Jul 14 2021 17:11 utc | 74

Looks like its started already. US and no doubt the Brits have been shipping in their 'freedom fighters' for a number of years. This is why China is closing its embassy / consulate, though I think that is only temporary. The Taliban like Hezbollah and others will know how to clean up the anglosphere's tame terrorists. Looks like the Taliban will largely unite the country and then no doubt with the full backing of Russia and China will clean up the trash the anglosphere left behind

https://www.globaltimes.cn/page/202107/1228691.shtml
"Accident or terrorist attack? Speculations linger over bus blast in Pakistan
9 Chinese, 3 Pakistanis killed on way to China-invested dam project"

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Jul 14 2021 17:48 utc | 75

Peter AU 1 @75--

I commented about that at Escobar's VK page:

"The Outlaw US Empire's Terrorist Foreign Legion has returned to the offensive within Pakistan with an attack on the Chinese. IMO, the terrorist problem will prove to be bigger in Pakistan than Afghanistan mainly because it's much easier for them to hide and find support there. It will become the biggest challenge for Khan's Premiership to-date. And the overall impact will severely test the SCO as an anti-Terrorist organization."

I then added this:

"Sputnik reports that Taliban have secured the crossing between Spin Boldak and Chaman on the Pakistan border. Also provided was a hint of the problems the SCO will face in its meetings:

"'At a meeting on the sidelines of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) Contact Group for Afghanistan in Tashkent on Tuesday, Afghanistan's foreign minister, Haneef Atmar, urged his opposite number in Pakistan, Shah Mahmood Qureshi, that Islamabad should 'close shelters' and 'cease funding' for the Taliban.'"

Someone mentioned siege. I see very few points of strength the current Afghan government can use in its negotiations. IMO, it's unfortunate there isn't a Taliban representative at the SCO meetings, for how much legitimacy does the current government have within the SCO?

Posted by: karlof1 | Jul 14 2021 18:35 utc | 76

karlof1

China and I think Russia may continue to recognize the official government in Afghanistan until they are no longer in power.
I think generally they both officially recognize governments as listed at the UN. Be interesting to see when the Taliban is the actual government of Afghanistan if they will be recognized as such by the UN.

Pakistan will have a lot of problems re India and Balochistan. India will I think also use Balochistan against China in Afghanistan. India's hatred of China is far more rabid than even current five-eyes.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Jul 14 2021 18:49 utc | 77

Peter AU1 @77--

Thanks for your reply. As for India/China, where in your opinion does the hatred reside? I see it only within the upper caste. I'm quite curious at times to know just how meetings within the RIC go. IMO, India's upper caste are quite fearful of a Chinese-type of revolution that aims at leveling inequality just as much as British elites have always been afraid of their masses.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jul 14 2021 19:03 utc | 78

karlof1

One word - Hindutva. They have an absolute hatred of Chinese and communism, though I suspect the hatred of the Chinese would be the same regardless of form of governance. Perhaps it stems from centuries of back and forth at their joint borders.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Jul 14 2021 19:28 utc | 79

Another thought on the Indian hatred of China among the elite is their class system. So for those that are not Hindutva, abolishing the caste system would be a major threat to their status/positions. Most Indian elite are or were British educated so a hatred of communism would also stem from, or simply reinforce that hatred.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Jul 14 2021 19:38 utc | 80

Max | Jul 14 2021 16:42 utc | 73

financial restrictions on Taliban & Afghanistan

Sanctions by another name won't work either.

If you want to stop the Heroin trade, then the best way is to offer to BUY alternative agricultural products from the Afghan farmers. Introduce alternative cash crops. This was pointed out long ago. Simply putting restrictions on a population just makes life difficult without solving any problems. Cacao and coffee can be used in wetter climates. It is possible that other substitutes could be found.

****

karlof1 | Jul 14 2021 19:03 utc | 78

India's upper caste are quite fearful of a Chinese-type of revolution that aims at leveling inequality just as much as British elites have always been afraid of their masses.

Absolutely agree with you here. The "upper" class still treat the lower ones like sh*t. This is possible THE major reason for the ongoing problems with China.

(An example was the changing of the monetary system to allow Visa and Mastercard to take over the local "ATM systems. They did this by getting rid of the 500 rupee note - the one used and held the most by farmers and the lowest classes. So a few hundred thousand died of starvation, because they either did not know, or found out too late about the change, dying from starvation. Modi and his lot did not care one iota)

Posted by: Stonebird | Jul 14 2021 19:41 utc | 81

@ Stonebird (# 81),

Any ideas on how they plan to use their money supply?

The financial restrictions are to prevent any bad conduct and see Empire’s game plan. Afghanistan and Taliban needs to be motivated to pursue the path of reconciliation, peace and national development. Also, they need to be a good neighbor and not be played by the Financial Empire or anyone else. They shouldn’t become India of the opium wars. China, Russia, Iran, Pakistan, India and the SCO group need to help them in their transition towards a GOOD nation & neighbor.

The financial restrictions are there to prevent them from being a BAD nation and neighbor. They need to create sovereign money and invest it in their people, infrastructure and economic development (agriculture, rare earth, mineral processing, ...). The financial restrictions will prevent Afghanistan from becoming a terrorist training school like in the past and a new battlefield.

Why does the UN have sanctions on Iran, North Korea, ...? How about the extraterritorial sanctions on Cuba, Syria, Russia, Belarus,...? What about people in these sanctioned nations?

When does the UN apply arms embargo, financial restrictions,...? When will the UN stand up against Empires?

Posted by: Max | Jul 14 2021 20:14 utc | 82

Max #82

The financial restrictions will prevent Afghanistan from becoming a terrorist training school like in the past and a new battlefield.

Yeah, that's a good thought. We sure don't want those Pashtuns being given stinger missiles and running around like paid terrorists like when the USSR was there. Plus we sure don't want to see ISIS-like terrorist training schools like the USAi education facility at al-Tanf.

Anyway the focus has shifted to South America, Haiti, Cuba and we can expect to see major influx of bright new graduates from School of Americas.

Here is todays lesson on terrorist training schools:
https://www.mintpressnews.com/the-school-of-the-americas-is-still-exporting-death-squads/204655/
https://www.thenation.com/article/archive/border-patrol-refugees-guatemala-cia-war-crimes/
https://www.nytimes.com/1989/11/17/world/6-priests-killed-in-a-campus-raid-in-san-salvador.html

Next week an excursion to Columbia is scheduled and please remember to pack lots yankee dollars.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Jul 14 2021 21:13 utc | 83

Peter AU1 #80

Another thought on the Indian hatred of China among the elite is their class system. So for those that are not Hindutva, abolishing the caste system would be a major threat to their status/positions. Most Indian elite are or were British educated so a hatred of communism would also stem from, or simply reinforce that hatred.

The Indian ruling class is absolutely intolerant of any competition or, contest of, their monopoly position. Similar, perhaps exactly like, to the UKUSAi ruling class. It was not always so in India. There were long periods of mutual cooperation particularly in the dissemination of Buddhism and no doubt earlier (see The Argumentative Indian by Amartya Sen a free download pdf).

I am fairly certain the 'commies over there' and 'the red menace' is foremost in the minds of the clutching, grasping elite of India.

Arundhati Roy has a good take on these things usually. This link is fine quotes to warm your heart.

In Indonesia 1965 under the guise of hunting communists there was a systematic genocide of the Chinese residents under guise of fear of a communist economy being instituted but also a means to eradicate the Chinese merchant class and steal their businesses to be run by the Islamic elite.

Elitism despises sharing pretty much everywhere.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Jul 15 2021 0:38 utc | 84

"another SCO motto encouraged by Beijing since the early 2000s is the necessity to fight the “three evils”: terrorism, separatism and extremism." Is it me? That only seems like two evils. Actually, that might just be one evil after all. Extremism basically cover the first two.

There is a certain rationality to a state considering the worst evils to be those threatening it in the slightest way. It is "what you would expect them to do.". It is also extremely consistent across the board.

We make societies and civilizations much more complicated and mysterious than they really are. Authority attempts to do that with intent. But its more an inability to accept what we are than some grand mystery we shall never comprehend.

Anyway, I am sure I could come up with a better list of three than that. Hunger? Disease? Violence of all forms? Given my name I should be able to think of four.

Posted by: David G Horsman | Jul 15 2021 0:43 utc | 85

Arundhati Roy bon mot.

“Our strategy should be not only to confront empire, but to lay siege to it. To deprive it of oxygen. To shame it. To mock it. With our art, our music, our literature, our stubbornness, our joy, our brilliance, our sheer relentlessness – and our ability to tell our own stories. Stories that are different from the ones we’re being brainwashed to believe.

The corporate revolution will collapse if we refuse to buy what they are selling – their ideas, their version of history, their wars, their weapons, their notion of inevitability.

Remember this: We be many and they be few. They need us more than we need them.

Another world is not only possible, she is on her way. On a quiet day, I can hear her breathing.”


― Arundhati Roy, War Talk

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Jul 15 2021 0:47 utc | 86

Highly Recommended - Excellent interview with MK Bhadrakumar - nuanced analysis of developments this week.

https://www.newsclick.in/Is-the-Taliban-Likely-to-March-Towards-Kabul%3F

Posted by: DB | Jul 15 2021 3:48 utc | 87

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Jul 14 2021 19:38 utc | 80 and related thread with Karlof1

Indian angst vis-a-vis China is far more deeply rooted in the spanking they got in the 1962 war than anything to do with caste or potential revolutions. That war also left a deep scar on Nehru who until that point had been very favourably inclined towards China (had met Chou En Lai not to long before). While the generally accepted narrative in India and elsewhere is that China waged an unprovoked war, there are differing opinions on the sidelines.

Apart from that, the Indian elite cannot get over the fact that India has been left rather far behind in the race to be the next "super-power"......something they had been convinced of for longer than the current more righting politics of the hindutva/BJP type further reinforced. You have to understand that the elite in India really don't give a shit about the poorer and marginalised parts of the population.......its as if they don't exist and when they do, only as an inconvenience. That China created history by lifting its entire population out of extreme poverty means nothing to them so cannot even begin to register as a requirement of being a great nation, let alone power. An example to emulate? Don't be silly!

The Indian elite are probably busy these days cheering western billionaires (a common passtime and near-obsession) indulging themselves with money-burning fun activities that add no value either to anyone else or to science.

Posted by: DB | Jul 15 2021 4:24 utc | 88

Max | Jul 14 2021 20:14 utc | 82

Any ideas on how they plan to use their money supply?

I am not even sure they have a "money" supply, or one that will stand the test of time.

Portable assets ?; Today the Russians claim to have seized 400kg of Heroin being "saved" from Afghanistan. Before the Taliban stop the traffic.

So who and what will print and issue the "Afghani's" is an open question. At present the rate is 77 to 1$US, and printed in Germany.

I have no real idea why you seem to think that "Financial restrictions" would do some good, when access to a stable currency (even one based on the US dollar) is the basis of a stable society. You did say "They need to create sovereign money and invest it in their people, infrastructure and economic development (agriculture, rare earth, mineral processing, ...)". OK. But is a revolutionary party going to do that when "restrictions" are then imposed on it? (and by who?)

Investments (apart from agriculture) are going to need technicians and basic engineers as well as hardware. Where will they come from?

OK, once a Rothschild said that if "he controlled the money he controls the society". (Paraphrased) Under that logic the US would still control the Taliban.

*****

Of course they could base the new money on the Ruble or Yuan.

Posted by: Stonebird | Jul 15 2021 7:36 utc | 89

The more I think about it the more I arrive at the conclusion that the Americans will try to emulate the Russian success in Syria.

Both the Soviets and the Americans tried to impose their own social development model on Afghanistan in order to "nation build" it into a modern country in their own image. This is a political objective that can`t be achieved by military means and that`s why both the Soviet and the American Afghan war were doomed to fail. (In fact there is no mean whatever - be it military or non-military - at the disposition of a foreign power in order to achieve such a goal. The only force on earth that can transform Afghanistan into a modern, successful country are the Afghans themselves.)

The Russians learned that lesson in Afghanistan and when in 2015 they intervened in Syria they set themselves a modest, realistic goal: Prevention of the complete overthrone of the internationally recognised government of Syria. No "nation building", no social, political or economical development, nothing like that. Just no complete collaps of the government, the rest is up to the Syrians. That`s a goal that can be achieved by military means and it turned out to that it can even be achieved by rather moderate military means.

This is in my opinion what the Americans will try to do in Afghanistan. They can`t defeat the Taliban in a decades-long guerilla war but they can at least prevent the Taliban to take over Kabul and the whole of Afghanistan in a conventional war. That`s at least in principle feasible. With a limited military contingent and no commitment for the well-being of the Afghan civilian population (just like the Russians in Syria) it might even be possible to achieve this at a low cost.

Posted by: m | Jul 15 2021 8:42 utc | 90

Posted by: m | Jul 15 2021 8:42 utc | 90

There is a fundamental difference between Syria and Russia in the scenario you have suggested. The Syrian government had a strong popular base, while the jihadist hordes that tried to topple it were foreign-imported with little traction within the nation even after an unimaginably massive propaganda campaign to manufacture dissent, backed by subversion and sanctions. The Russian intervention, while crucial, aimed at backing a solid national government, beleaguered mostly from outside.

In Afghanistan, the Taliban seem to have very strong connections with the various ethnic groups that comprise the Afghan nation, whereas the US-backed government appears detached from its people and increasingly unable to stop the collapse. The difference, therefore, with the Syrian conflict is staggering. That is the situation for now at least.

Posted by: Constantine | Jul 15 2021 17:08 utc | 91

Last night ABC.net.au broadcast a TV interview from BBC's Deutsche Welle Conflict Zone branch office, conducted on July 14.
https://www.dw.com/en/mircea-geoana-on-conflict-zone/av-58267891
(run time circa 25 minutes. The tone and temperature are established in the first 10 minutes)

It consists of Tim Sebastian interviewing himself and haranguing NATO's Deputy Secretary General, Mircea Geoana, about NATO's non-withdrawal withdrawal from Afghanistan. Drama Queen Tim approached the interview from an "abandoning your Friends in Afghanistan" angle. Geoana approached it from an "It's not as simple as you're depicting it" angle.

I couldn't help wondering if one would need more than one handful of fingers to count the number of friends the Colonial Christians have made in Afghanistan since the Afghanis made thousands of Crusading British Overlords, and their friends and families, disappear in 1842?

Tim, as usual, poses questions then dismissively talks over the answers.

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Jul 17 2021 5:54 utc | 92

Regarding the relations of the Pashtunwalla deceivers of Bani Israil with the so-called People's Republic of China, how can anyone in their right mind think that a group that makes friends with atheists are followers of Islam? In blunt terms, by making friends with the atheist Mongols who oppress Muslims, the Bani Israil known as Taliban reveal themselves as unbelievers. One day the Pashtunwall deceivers will be recognized by everyone as a mafia made up of unbelievers, and true Muslims in Afghanistan and elsewhere will fight the jihad against the Pashtunwalla until they surrender. Those among them who have murdered, maimed, raped, and robbed will be put on trial for their crimes, inshaalah. True Islam will bring peace and justice to Afghanistan in the near future, inshaalah.

Posted by: Karl | Jul 19 2021 14:26 utc | 93

Of course those who suppress my comments which reveal the truth about the Pashtunwalla tribe are exposing the truth about themselves and their website. Allah subhanna wa ta'ala sees all. Reject intoxicating drink, stop deceiving your readers, and turn to Islam. Only then will you find true peace, inshaalah.

Posted by: Karl | Jul 19 2021 14:32 utc | 94

I live in the USA so I can speak freely. Taliban are not Muslims. They have no scholars of Islam. They follow their own religion.

Posted by: Gul | Jul 19 2021 14:42 utc | 95

I read above about fatwah. You do not understand the meaning. I am Muslim who follows Sunnah and I do not follow fatwah issued by fools. Please learn more about Islam before saying things. All Muslims are equal. We have Qur'an and Sunnah to follow. But all humans fight against each other so things are decided by war, not by fatwah or UN.

Posted by: Gul | Jul 19 2021 14:57 utc | 96

The Americans have installed an "anti-missile" system at Kabul airport. Likely a simple C-RAM, actually.
https://sg.news.yahoo.com/air-defences-installed-afghanistans-kabul-090408247.html
Which the Afghan regime admits it is unable to use autonomously. And it is unlikely the Turkish occupants of Kabul airport could, either. Unless some American regime occupants stay behind that Turkish fig leaf...

Meanwhile the Taliban are knocking on the door in Kabul itself, and not hitting randomly either.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6-9HzkhLzHw

We will see if the Afghan regime has a "Baghdad Bob" of its own. For now, Ashraf Ghani is doing the humoring, but that won't last.

Posted by: fx | Jul 20 2021 11:18 utc | 97

Erdoğan sets his conditions for doing the American regime's bidding in protecting Kabul airport. And to think, by now the US is running out of basing options so they might yet bite.

...we want America to meet some conditions,” he said.
“What are they? Firstly, America will stand by us in diplomatic relations. Secondly, they will mobilize their logistical means for us… and the other one is that there will be serious problems on financial and administrative issues, and they will give necessary support to Turkey,” he added.

That last condition looks awfully like the shakedown of the EU over "Syrian" "refugees". Why not, if you pulled this off then?

https://www.turkishminute.com/2021/07/20/erdogan-says-turkey-can-run-kabul-airport-if-us-meets-conditions/

Posted by: fx | Jul 20 2021 23:32 utc | 98

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