Archive for Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Security questions complicate withdrawal from Afghanistan

April 25, 2012


The planned 2014 withdrawal from Afghanistan of most U.S. military and NATO forces doesn’t come without huge questions that will affect regional and global security, experts at a Kansas University conference said Wednesday.

Graeme Herd, head of the International Security Program at the Geneva Centre for Security Policy, speaks on “After Afghanistan: Implications and Emerging Paradigms after Withdrawal” during a conference Wednesday at Kansas University.

Graeme Herd, head of the International Security Program at the Geneva Centre for Security Policy, speaks on “After Afghanistan: Implications and Emerging Paradigms after Withdrawal” during a conference Wednesday at Kansas University.

“Everybody in the region wants a long-term and stable Afghanistan,” said Marlene Laruelle, a research professor at George Washington University’s Institute for European, Russian and Eurasian Studies.

But among nations there are different concepts of stability, said Laruelle in her keynote address at the Kansas Union to the third annual KU-Fort Leavenworth Security Conference.

Since the war began in 2001, the country has undergone positive changes in education, political reforms, health and some women’s issues, but many challenges remain, said Laruelle and Ahmad Majidyar, a senior research associate at the American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research.

“These gains and achievements are reversible and fragile,” Majidyar said.

Corruption remains a problem in Hamid Karzai’s government, and Majidyar said he worried about funding cuts to Afghan security forces and police as American and NATO military members leave the country.

Also the Taliban insurgency remains a threat, he said.

“They have a mantra: You have the watches, but we have the time, so we can wait you out,” he said.

States in the region — Russia, Iran, China, Pakistan, India, Turkey and others — also have a vested interest in what happens in Afghanistan for both political and economic reasons, the speakers said.

Some Russian leaders are skeptical and think the United States is in Afghanistan to create “an infrastructure for countering and restraining” China and Iran, said Vadim Kozyulin, director of the Conventional Arms Program at the Center for Policy Studies in Moscow.

And Iran and China both are looking to natural resources in Afghanistan, said Graeme Herd, head of the International Security Program at the Geneva Centre for Security Policy.

“We really can see how Afghanistan,” Laruelle said, “is in fact a catalyst of a lot of other issues that cannot be solved easily.”

The Center for Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies and the Center for Global and International Studies, together with the Foreign Military Studies Office at Fort Leavenworth organized the conference.


Robert Rauktis 5 years, 11 months ago

If it's that complicated, why the insistence to do anything ham-handed except to keep monitoring it. Wouldn't that put the time on our side? Or do we need another President on an aircraft carrier celebrating victory?

James Findley 5 years, 11 months ago

Eff that crazy neanderthal country.. People have no backbone, people in power are cave men, people that want to be in power are even worse.

Jeremiah Jefferson 5 years, 11 months ago

I would pack up and leave yesterday. You can leave today or 20 years from now and the end result will be the same so just get it over with and get our servicemen and women back home to their families.

Paul R Getto 5 years, 10 months ago

No kidding? Everyone back to Alexander the Great has figured this out. We will too, but many more will probably die before we do. Get out now!

irvan moore 5 years, 10 months ago

this is nuts, leave this afternoon and that's way to late, more lives wasted, more money wasted

tbaker 5 years, 10 months ago

Countries behave in their national interest.

The “war” is quite literally in Pakistan, not Afghanistan. A peaceful and prosperous Afghanistan is not now, and never will be in Pakistan’s national interest because most Afghans (non-Pashtun) don’t much like Pakistan which would create a second hostile country Pakistan has to share a border with.

The Pakistani government created, and now funds and supports the Taliban, some of it coming from money we give them. The Taliban is a big threat to the internal sovereignty of Pakistan, so it is in Pakistan’s interest to get them out of the country.

The war ever “ending” is not in best interests of several key players. Afghanistan, Pakistan, the otherwise bankrupt militaries from numerous NATO countries who depend on NATO funding to survive, and of course the US military industrial complex who stands to lose a lot of revenue.

If the war is a public failure, NATO would be seriously discredited. Its worth noting NATO is an abject failure as a military organization and has no business running a war, but it still has value as a diplomatic / political organization.

No sitting US president wants to see video coming out of Afghanistan that looks like Saigon, circa 1974 as the Taliban over-run some big US base recently handed over to the Afghan Army. Mark my words dear readers, that is exactly what is going to happen.

Crazy_Larry 5 years, 10 months ago

The 9/11 Commission Report: Omissions and Distortions by David Ray Griffin (Olive Branch Press, 2005) Page 104/105, Chapter 9 - Pakistan and its ISI.

"One of those reports was that an ISI agent, Saeed Sheikh, had wired $100,000 to Mohammed Atta, considered the ringleader of the 9/11 hijackers. That report by itself, if it had become widely known, would have had explosive implications for the prospect of positive relations between Pakistan and the United States after 9/11. But even more potentially explosive was the report that Saeed Sheikh had wired this money at the instruction of none other than ISI chief Mahmoud Ahmad. This “damning link”, as Agence France Presse called it, had explosive implications not only for US-Pakistani relations but also--given the close relations between the CIA and the ISI--for the question of possible CIA involvement in the attacks."

onceajhawkalwaysajhawk 5 years, 10 months ago

War against a enemy that sees death as the ultimate victory can't be won.

Crazy_Larry 5 years, 10 months ago

Truth, lies and Afghanistan: How military leaders have let us down. By Lt. Col. Daniel L. Davis

"How many more men must die in support of a mission that is not succeeding and behind an array of more than seven years of optimistic statements by U.S. senior leaders in Afghanistan? No one expects our leaders to always have a successful plan. But we do expect — and the men who do the living, fighting and dying deserve — to have our leaders tell us the truth about what’s going on."

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