Monday, May 17, 2010

from Offensive to very offensive

Readin' on there ol' ICoS's report on "lessons learned" from the Pentagon publicity stunt loudly and widely broadcast as Operation Moshtarak -- oh, so marvelously native sounding!

I'll spare you the think tanky verbiage and fill it all in with one word: Failure. Or, if you do care to read 29 fuckin' pages of drab, militarese discourse on that failure, you can do that here. And, they appear to have learned nothing.

Bottom line the dumbasses in Washington require study to figure out: people don't like being invaded and occupied. You can feel the astonishment, even in the pallid prose of an ICoS report.
Alarmingly, 67% did not support a strong NATO-ISAF presence in their province and 71% stated they wanted the NATO forces to leave.
Refund! Refund! Those blighted, ungrateful bastards.

And perfectly in keeping with what ungrateful bastards who don't know freedom's glory would do, droves of Afghans are fleeing the freedom agenda of General Stanley McChrystal. In the short term, the Marjah offensive has been wasted as,
Taliban fighters have found a way to resume their insurgency, three months after thousands of troops invaded this Taliban stronghold in the opening foray of a campaign to take control of southern Afghanistan. Militants have been infiltrating back into the area and the prospect of months of more fighting is undermining public morale, residents and officials said.
So, the offensive as designed, produced the expected though largely unconsidered outcome: a standoff with civilians fleeing the area. The design, of course, was a slice a pie for American and British public consumption, with all the goodies on the pointy end, the crust of the lingering stalemate doomed to the refuse of hindsight. Who fails to recall the days of front page coverage of the looming, massive operation, the largest since the invasion, we were told repeatedly, as though what a great and grand thing this would be, this massive military operation? Operation Moshtarak was the most trumped up military-media construct seen since the orchestration of the invasion of Iraq . Marjah was to be, as we would learn in due course, the gimme, an easy op that would convince the American public that victory in Afghanistan was at hand. Ha, ha, ha! An easy tap-in, that Marjah.

But, it didn't turn out that way. At all. Dozens of families daily fleeing the grinding stalemate fighting. Taliban are moving back in, as other emerge, once hiding as local farmers -- well, not so much hiding as doing what they would be doing if they weren't the local insurgency fighting an invading force! And now McChrystal wants to double down on this sterling effort in Kandahar.

The media swarm in the lead up to Operation Moshtarak was proof of establishment pudding. By which it would seem unlikely that due attention will be paid to the actual outcome of the much touted operation. No matter the death, the mayhem, the uproot, the constant grinding fear that thousands are subject to, the American public had to be convinced that the effort in Afghanistan was a positive force that happened to have on hand a "government in a box," ready to roll out at a moment's notice.

Turns out, nobody has ever heard of this amazing new device. And the other easy part? That didn't happen either.

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