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Joe Biden gives up on the war in Afghanistan, leaving a weak ally

medic5

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It ain't over till it's over....


As the Taliban advances, Afghan military overhauls its war strategy

Reeling from a surge in battlefield losses, Afghanistan's military is overhauling its war strategy against the Taliban to concentrate forces around the most critical areas like Kabul and other cities, border crossings and vital infrastructure, so both Afghan and US officials say. The politically perilous strategy will inevitably cede territory to Taliban insurgents, but officials say it appears to be a military necessity as over-stretched Afghan troops try to prevent the loss of provincial capitals, which could deeply fracture the country. The consolidation of forces, which has been publicly acknowledged but not reported in such detail before, coincides with the US military withdrawal ahead of a formal end to the military mission on the 31st August, on orders from President Joe Biden.

Taliban insurgents are gaining control of more and more territory, which the Pentagon estimated on Wednesday the 21st July now extends to over half of half Afghanistan's District Centres. The Taliban also are putting pressure on the outskirts of half of the provincial capitals, trying to isolate them. US intelligence assessments have warned that the Afghan government could fall in as little as six months, so US officials told Reuters.

One Afghan official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the "re-orientation" of troops would help Kabul hold strategic territory, and defend infrastructure, including a dam built with India's assistance, and major highways. However, consolidating troops also means leaving other areas unguarded ,which is a `hard sell’ to Afghan communities or ethnic groups who will feel they are being abandoned to the Taliban. "How do you communicate this to a public that has been jittery, and understandably so over the past few weeks in which the Taliban have been taking over districts?" the Afghan official. "Because a major part of this re-orientation would entail, at least in the short term, the Taliban filling in the vacuum that we are leaving behind." The US Army General, Mark Milley, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said the strategy would involve "giving up District Centres" to protect larger population centres, like the capital Kabul. He said the Taliban appeared to have "strategic momentum." "There is a possibility of a complete Taliban takeover or a possibility of any number of other scenarios," Milley told a news conference on Wednesday, adding: "I do not think that the endgame is yet written."

US Marine General, Kenneth McKenzie, Commander of US Central Command, which oversees US Forces in Afghanistan and support to Afghan troops, said after being briefed on the plan this month the Afghans knew that they had to pick their battles. "You can't defend everything. If you defend everywhere, you defend nowhere. So I think the Afghans realise they need to consolidate," McKenzie said, without offering details.

He noted years-old US concerns about how Afghan forces were manning checkpoints, including in remote or hostile areas that are particularly vulnerable or serve little strategic value. "So, I think now they are now in the process of recognising that sometimes you have got to pull back, you have got to consolidate, you have got to defend those areas that are absolutely critical," McKenzie said. The Afghan Ministry of Defence did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The Taliban's swift territorial gains are rattling Afghans just as the United States withdraws from a war that succeeded in punishing al Qaeda following its 11th September 2001 attacks on New York and Washington but failed to deliver anything close to peace for Afghanistan. Biden has promised to provide financial assistance to Afghan forces and to redouble diplomatic efforts to revive stalled peace talks; but the Taliban have not responded to calls from 15 diplomatic missions and the NATO Representative in Afghanistan on Monday the 19th July to halt their military offensives. The insurgents and the Afghan government also failed to agree on a ceasefire at talks in Doha for this week's Eid holidays. In the past, the Taliban have called short cease-fires for Eid, saying they wanted to let Afghans spend them in peace. US military officials believe the Taliban are seeking to end the war with a battlefield victory, instead of at the negotiating table.

`Not sustainable’

For years, the US military has been trying to get Afghan troops off of far-flung checkpoints, those static positions that can easily be over-run by Taliban forces. "Maintaining this spread out, every district is sacred mindset, is simply only going to lead to more losses," said Jason Campbell, a former Pentagon official now at RAND Corporation. "It's just not sustainable."

The troop reorganisation will require, in some cases, building new fortifications and creating new combinations of forces, the Afghan official said, but it will also demand that Afghans must shift their thinking about how much they can do to respond to Taliban attacks and skirmishes, as their Air Force gets stretched, and US support wanes. Equally tricky for Kabul is explaining battlefield strategy in a way that does not offend any of Afghanistan's ethnic groups, which include Pashtuns, Tajiks, Hazaras and Uzbeks because not all areas will receive the same level of protection. More than a quarter-million Afghans have been forced from their homes this year, according to the United Nations.

This sounds a lot like Nationalist strategy in the Chinese Civil War to me. Give up the rural areas to the enemy, hold onto cities and other strategic locations to maintain "power". I'm guessing the result will be the same, the Taliban swiftly occupies uncontested areas, before slowly taking over cities and gaining more power.

Is there any medium-sized island nearby?
 

Jarnhamar

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At one tipping point, probably quite soon, the Afghan army will simply cease to exist and the Taliban will get complete access to all the 21st-century military hardware and technology we supplied the ANA with. Along with a bunch of new recruits with previous military experience.
 

Altair

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This sounds a lot like Nationalist strategy in the Chinese Civil War to me. Give up the rural areas to the enemy, hold onto cities and other strategic locations to maintain "power". I'm guessing the result will be the same, the Taliban swiftly occupies uncontested areas, before slowly taking over cities and gaining more power.

Is there any medium-sized island nearby?
Or the south Vietnamese withdrawal from the highlands following the loss of Buon Ma Thuot, a retreat that turned into a rout.

I'm pretty sure this is all over but the crying and the fat lady is warming up her vocal cords.
 

medic5

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At one tipping point, probably quite soon, the Afghan army will simply cease to exist and the Taliban will get complete access to all the 21st-century military hardware and technology we supplied the ANA with. Along with a bunch of new recruits with previous military experience.
The good news is that modern military equipment requires lots of spare parts and skilled personnel to maintain, eg F-14 Tomcats after the Iranian Revolution.

The bad news is that the Taliban really doesn't need anything other than small arms and pickup trucks, which they now have plenty of.
 

Jarnhamar

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How Did Taliban Fighters Get Their Hands On US Special Operations Gear?​


image-placeholder-title-145.jpg


SCAR-H in .308
Elcan SPectreDR 1.5x/6x (with a price tag of $2900 alone)
PEQ 5 (compared to the giant 20+ year old monstrosities we're still using)
Harris bipod.


 

SeaKingTacco

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At one tipping point, probably quite soon, the Afghan army will simply cease to exist and the Taliban will get complete access to all the 21st-century military hardware and technology we supplied the ANA with. Along with a bunch of new recruits with previous military experience.
I would imagine any high tech stuff they capture will just end up in China.
 

Good2Golf

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I would imagine any high tech stuff they capture will just end up in China.
Why?

To confirm what likely has already been acquired by the Chinese through physical and digital espionage? 😉
 

daftandbarmy

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How Did Taliban Fighters Get Their Hands On US Special Operations Gear?​


View attachment 65860


SCAR-H in .308
Elcan SPectreDR 1.5x/6x (with a price tag of $2900 alone)
PEQ 5 (compared to the giant 20+ year old monstrosities we're still using)
Harris bipod.



It would seem that the 'arithmetic' was always on their side:

Arithmetic on the Frontier

A GREAT and glorious thing it is
To learn, for seven years or so,
The Lord knows what of that and this,
Ere reckoned fit to face the foe -
The flying bullet down the Pass,
That whistles clear: "All flesh is grass."

Three hundred pounds per annum spent
On making brain and body meeter
For all the murderous intent
Comprised in "villainous saltpetre".
And after?- Ask the Yusufzaies
What comes of all our 'ologies.

A scrimmage in a Border Station-
A canter down some dark defile
Two thousand pounds of education
Drops to a ten-rupee jezail.
The Crammer's boast, the Squadron's pride,
Shot like a rabbit in a ride!

No proposition Euclid wrote
No formulae the text-books know,
Will turn the bullet from your coat,
Or ward the tulwar's downward blow.
Strike hard who cares - shoot straight who can
The odds are on the cheaper man.

One sword-knot stolen from the camp
Will pay for all the school expenses
Of any Kurrum Valley scamp
Who knows no word of moods and tenses,
But, being blessed with perfect sight,
Picks off our messmates left and right.

With home-bred hordes the hillsides teem.
The troopships bring us one by oe,
At vast expense of time and steam,
To slay Afridis where they run.
The "captives of our bow and spear"
Are cheap, alas! as we are dear.

- Rudyard Kipling
 

SeaKingTacco

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It would seem that the 'arithmetic' was always on their side:

Arithmetic on the Frontier

A GREAT and glorious thing it is
To learn, for seven years or so,
The Lord knows what of that and this,
Ere reckoned fit to face the foe -
The flying bullet down the Pass,
That whistles clear: "All flesh is grass."

Three hundred pounds per annum spent
On making brain and body meeter
For all the murderous intent
Comprised in "villainous saltpetre".
And after?- Ask the Yusufzaies
What comes of all our 'ologies.

A scrimmage in a Border Station-
A canter down some dark defile
Two thousand pounds of education
Drops to a ten-rupee jezail.
The Crammer's boast, the Squadron's pride,
Shot like a rabbit in a ride!

No proposition Euclid wrote
No formulae the text-books know,
Will turn the bullet from your coat,
Or ward the tulwar's downward blow.
Strike hard who cares - shoot straight who can
The odds are on the cheaper man.

One sword-knot stolen from the camp
Will pay for all the school expenses
Of any Kurrum Valley scamp
Who knows no word of moods and tenses,
But, being blessed with perfect sight,
Picks off our messmates left and right.

With home-bred hordes the hillsides teem.
The troopships bring us one by oe,
At vast expense of time and steam,
To slay Afridis where they run.
The "captives of our bow and spear"
Are cheap, alas! as we are dear.

- Rudyard Kipling
It is almost like Kipling had a crystal ball…
 

OldSolduer

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How Did Taliban Fighters Get Their Hands On US Special Operations Gear?​


View attachment 65860


SCAR-H in .308
Elcan SPectreDR 1.5x/6x (with a price tag of $2900 alone)
PEQ 5 (compared to the giant 20+ year old monstrosities we're still using)
Harris bipod.


The underground market. There is always someone willing to sell if the price is right
 

Fishbone Jones

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The good news is that modern military equipment requires lots of spare parts and skilled personnel to maintain, eg F-14 Tomcats after the Iranian Revolution.

The bad news is that the Taliban really doesn't need anything other than small arms and pickup trucks, which they now have plenty of.
You're talking about people, that sit cross legged in the dirt, with a file, a hammer and a pile of scrap metal. Within a couple of days, they'll hand you an AK-47. Maybe not so good with modern electronics and such, but if it's mechanical, they can make it or fix it.
 

Fishbone Jones

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There…the Government is still waiting for the survey results to see if it thinks that Canadians care enough for them to actually do something…otherwise, back to prepping for the election.
The trudeau liberals have given them 72 hours to apply online, in English to get in line for a possible, maybe, might work, we shake the trees and see what falls out kinda rescue attempt. The whole government initiative for this is unnecessary, unfair, uncaring and unadulterated bullshit. It's too bad we don't apply the same criteria, to trudeau's illegal aliens sauntering across the Roxham Road crossing. Or apply the Roxham rules to the Afghans. Like Biden on Cuba. Open Borders for all. Except if your coming from Cuba, because they recognise communism, will fight against it and will likely vote conservative. So no, you can't come in. Open Borders for me, but not for thee.
 

CBH99

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How Did Taliban Fighters Get Their Hands On US Special Operations Gear?​


View attachment 65860


SCAR-H in .308
Elcan SPectreDR 1.5x/6x (with a price tag of $2900 alone)
PEQ 5 (compared to the giant 20+ year old monstrosities we're still using)
Harris bipod.


In a few media releases I watched when the resurgence really started to gain momentum, the reporters & camera crews were granted access to newly acquired Taliban positions. Several of these positions were former ANA bases - some were abandoned after a brief yet decent firefight, and others were abandoned when the Taliban arrived. (According to them, anyway.)

At most of these locations, there were several large shipping containers FULL of brand new weaponry, intended for use by the ANA. Hundreds of rifles, RPG's, grenades, bipod-equipped machine guns, body armour, etc etc - and plenty of ammo for each. It wouldn't surprise me if the Taliban acquired the SCAR-H and other fancy kit from one of those shipping containers that conveniently happened to be there.
 

Colin Parkinson

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Turkey appears to want to keep their own blood from being spilt. We see how well this works out



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.

Read more: Will Turkey use Syrian mercenaries in Kabul?
 

Colin Parkinson

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Pakistan barely controls the NWF, the Taliban could possibly grow into a threat to them as well.


While Afghanistan and Pakistan have always had strains in their bilateral relationship, Pashtun nationalism and the Pashtunistan movement became a big thing in the early 1970s. The rump Pakistan was still coming to terms with the separation of its eastern wing, when Pashtun nationalist movement started gaining strength. Around the same time, Baloch nationalists managed to form a government in Balochistan. It was at that stage that the Pakistanis started flirting with Islamists in Afghanistan. Islamism was seen as an antidote or an effective ideology to counter ethnic nationalism.
 

OldSolduer

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Pakistan barely controls the NWF, the Taliban could possibly grow into a threat to them as well.


While Afghanistan and Pakistan have always had strains in their bilateral relationship, Pashtun nationalism and the Pashtunistan movement became a big thing in the early 1970s. The rump Pakistan was still coming to terms with the separation of its eastern wing, when Pashtun nationalist movement started gaining strength. Around the same time, Baloch nationalists managed to form a government in Balochistan. It was at that stage that the Pakistanis started flirting with Islamists in Afghanistan. Islamism was seen as an antidote or an effective ideology to counter ethnic nationalism.
From what I've read in various publications Pakistan doesn't control it at all. It tolerates the bandit country. IIRXC the Haqqani clan controls the border area.
 
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