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Meanwhile In Afghanistan


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6 minutes ago, Simon Tan said:

The nomenklatura regard the proles who go to church and believe to be idiots. They worship at the teat of fortune and fame. 

That happens in some, pink-ish, circles of the Roman Catholic Church, even.

Edited by sunday
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For me, the miracle that needs to be explained is how the US manages to seem always on the edge of total disaster, but somehow avoids it.

I get the impression that to a large extent a total breakdown is avoided only by the effort of a relatively small number of virtuous 'true believers' who somehow manage to moderate the most venal elements and often through heroic individual sacrifice manage to keep things together. The other mechanism is some sort of cobbled together band-aid crisis management.

And so then if you look at a a whole series of problems, they are really quite bad and there is no serious push to resolve them, but they are kept at a level of 'moderated badness' that does not generate a generalised social instability.

The risk is that either the 'true believers' start to throw in the towel, and then cease patching the holes, or if the tolerance for various badness decreases (or the badness gets worse) enough to create some sort of instability. Arguably Trumpism was some evidence that the latter condition is starting to hold - the biggest swings to Trump were in regions with the highest density of deaths of despair.

In the military I also tend to think that 'true believers' play a huge role in making it sort of work as something more than just a vehicle for getting juicy contracts and doing political theatrics.  

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There's a core of high functioning Americans that prop it all up into semi-acceptable functioning.  Think of it like PH buffering.  But what this also means is that when it goes off the rails it's going to be bad.  S/F....Ken M

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3 minutes ago, EchoFiveMike said:

There's a core of high functioning Americans that prop it all up into semi-acceptable functioning.  Think of it like PH buffering.  But what this also means is that when it goes off the rails it's going to be bad.  S/F....Ken M

Bad as in Spanish-Civil-War-bad, for instance*, I suppose, and that was a very close call. In the USA Anti-American forces had been at work for a much longer time, however.

* Finnish Civil War, Germany's November Revolution, Greek Civil War also come to mind. Even the Paris Commune.

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Yes but it isn't just an issue of 'high functioning' - there are high functioning psychopaths and narcissists who put their IQ to work inventing various venal scams, and also a lot of 'naive rubes' who turn up and try to do their best even as they reliably get shafted or undermined by those who have worked out how to game the system.

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6 minutes ago, KV7 said:

Yes but it isn't just an issue of 'high functioning' - there are high functioning psychopaths and narcissists who put their IQ to work inventing various venal scams, and also a lot of 'naive rubes' who turn up and try to do their best even as they reliably get shafted or undermined by those who have worked out how to game the system.

Well, you could assume that E5M understand as "high functioning" the quality of people that are both competent and ethical, not only competent. There are lots of those in Samland, even among voters* of the Democrat party.

*Alive voters, of course.

Edited by sunday
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2 hours ago, sunday said:

Shush kid, grownups are talking.

Ok, well be sure to let me know when they turn up then.

Afghanistan thread, you want to talk the hind legs off an ox about Chinas peaceful rise, go and screw up Jason thread instead please.

Edited by Stuart Galbraith
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https://inews.co.uk/news/world/afghanistan-latest-news-kabul-airport-rockets-us-withdrawal-end-1174451

 

A US anti-missile system intercepted five rockets fired at Kabul’s international airport on Monday morning, as the evacuation effort enters its final 48 hours. 

The rockets were shot out of a car being used as a makeshift platform, but were blocked by an automated US defence system called C-RAM. There are currently no reports of deaths or injuries caused by the rockets. 

A US official told CNN that ISIS in Khorasan, known as ISIS-K or ISKP, is likely responsible for the attack, but are not certain. ISIS-K claimed responsibility for the deadly suicide bombings on the airport last week that killed at least 90 Afghan civilians and 13 US troops, as well as three British passport holders including a child.

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'Corruption from day one': Afghan colonel now in hiding on who he blames for return of the Taliban (msn.com)

"I want to make it clear that the Afghan security forces fought a hard fight. They really stood for what they were doing. It was the politicians who lost this battle, not the army or the police."

Colonel Hanif Rezai was the spokesman for the 209th Shaheen corps, an Afghan army division based in the northern city of Mazar-i-Sharif.

Now he speaks to Sky News by phone from an undisclosed location outside of Afghanistan, where he and his family are in hiding. He says that even there he does not feel safe.

On 16 August, US President Joe Biden placed the blame for the Taliban's terrifying advance squarely on the shoulders of the Afghan security forces.

"How many more generations of America's daughters and sons would you have me send to fight Afghanistan's civil war, when Afghan troops will not?," he said after the fall of Kabul.

Given the deaths of 66,000 Afghan troops over 20 years of war and the speed of the Taliban's final onslaught, Colonel Rezai believes that is deeply unfair and an abrogation of US responsibility.

He paints a picture instead of a rapid deterioration in morale among armed forces in the north, partly the result of the withdrawal of international forces and the aerial and reconnaissance support they provided but mostly because of the weakness of the Afghan leadership, set against the pervasive corruption which existed throughout the army's ranks.

On that day, in nearby Kunduz, hundreds of soldiers had surrendered to the Taliban.

In Mazar-i-Sharif, Mr Ghani held a meeting with local strongmen Ata Mohammad Noor and Abdul Rashid Dostum and promised 15 million Afghanis (£130,000) as support for the extra men who had offered to fight alongside the army.

"This sum was hardly enough to equip these people, to pay for their expenses. It weakened the resolve of those who'd risen up to defend the area and the country," he said.

Three days later, Mazar-i-Sharif, the last urban hold-out in northern Afghanistan, fell to the Taliban.

The next day the capital Kabul did, too - and Ashraf Ghani fled the country.

The former president has denied reports he left with huge amounts of cash, but Colonel Rezai does not believe it.

"Ashraf Ghani from day one had no interest in the people of Afghanistan or the country," he said. "It was corruption from day one that he was bent on."

US intelligence reports had long warned that endemic corruption both on a political and military level would be a crucial if not key contributor to mission failure in Afghanistan.

Colonel Rezai details how even after the withdrawal of international forces, the contents they left behind were systematically sold and distributed, with just a few individuals pocketing the proceeds.

"There was a very comprehensive corruption throughout the ranks, and throughout the army," he said. If I were to sit and give you examples, there will be many, many examples, I could quote things about fuel, food, salaries.

"Any area you can mention, there was corruption there - and this was at all levels.

But he believes that the spirit of the Afghan people is so deeply opposed to the Taliban's rule that the present make-up of power may not last long.

"If the Taliban do not bring about a government that is all-inclusive, I could see very soon and very quickly something stronger than the Northern Alliance that we used to know."

In Afghanistan's mountainous Panjshir Valley to the northeast of Kabul, Ahmad Massoud, the son of Afghanistan's famous resistance leader Ahmad Shah Massoud, is promising a new Mujahideen onslaught on the Taliban.

He is in need of supplies, though, and so far there has been no open admission of external support for his National Resistance Front.

Colonel Rezai believes that it will come.

"I cannot mention any particular sources right now as we speak, but I am quite certain that the northern front is already receiving a lot of support in terms of very modern weapons, equipment, and it will continue to come from various places."

If it does, though, he will not be going back to fight.

He hopes one day to return with his family as a civilian, but he is bleak about his country's future and the assortment of terror groups Afghan and NATO forces fought for 20 years to try to snuff out.

"I can confidently say the word as a whole is not going to be peaceful. From 2001 to 2021, it was the sacrifices of the Afghan forces that brought relative peace in the region.

"But from now on, especially after the corrupt regime of Ashraf Ghani, things have changed, and I cannot see any peace after what has happened."

 

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And an interesting idea out of left field to turn Afghan Commando's that have left Afghanistan into something akin to the Gurkha's.

Afghan commandos could fight for British Army like Gurkhas (msn.com)

fghan special forces personnel could become a new regiment of the Army akin to the Gurkhas under proposals put forward to ministers, The Telegraph understands.

Hundreds of commandos from Afghanistan have arrived in the UK this month after training and serving with British troops for more than a decade.

A former head of the Army, former ministers and Tory select committee chairmen are backing calls for the Government to incorporate the specialist soldiers into the British Armed Forces.

The Telegraph understands that ministers are aware of the proposals and are expected to study them in detail as attention turns to the resettlement of thousands of Afghans who have arrived in Britain in the past fortnight.

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Pros:

It would put hundreds of recently arrived Afghan commandos(?) to useful work, instead of immediately into the UK equivalent of welfare/unemployment

Instant mountain infantry

 

Cons:

Such a unit might have issues deployed anywhere else but Afghanistan

The absence of an Afghan Bose to lead it

Gurkha anger

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3 hours ago, Stuart Galbraith said:

And an interesting idea out of left field to turn Afghan Commando's that have left Afghanistan into something akin to the Gurkha's.

Afghan commandos could fight for British Army like Gurkhas (msn.com)

fghan special forces personnel could become a new regiment of the Army akin to the Gurkhas under proposals put forward to ministers, The Telegraph understands.

Hundreds of commandos from Afghanistan have arrived in the UK this month after training and serving with British troops for more than a decade.

A former head of the Army, former ministers and Tory select committee chairmen are backing calls for the Government to incorporate the specialist soldiers into the British Armed Forces.

The Telegraph understands that ministers are aware of the proposals and are expected to study them in detail as attention turns to the resettlement of thousands of Afghans who have arrived in Britain in the past fortnight.

HAHAHAHAHA! Tell them to go fight for Afghanistan. Given the speed of collapse the UK can have them. They might be good soldiers or not. I tend towards not, given the apparent poor performance of the ANA generally without extensive NATO support.

 I've heard of ANA performance through news reports only, typically in glowing terms. I no longer trust the reports as they have been glowing for years. The meaning of "commandos" and "special forces" and "elite" is Orwellian today and doesn't describe effectively. 

However, it would be a great way to achieve asylum, "Yeah, yeah! I'm special forces, I killed hundreds of Taliban!"

I read an article recently in which the journalist wrote that in 2006 40% of the ANA graduates deserted and went to their home provinces. In 2006. 

A commenter to the above article noted that in virtually all the recent pics of the Taliban, they all index outside the trigger guard. He surmised that was what they learned from NATO trainers. You can do the math. 

The problem I am seeing with the west is that we believe everyone believes as we do deep down inside. All it takes is a little scratching at the surface and western ideals will spring forth. Secondly, we see people fleeing our former enemies (the Taliban) and assume they are fleeing for the same the same reasons we gave out. We then take them all in. It was amazing looking at most of the photographs of the filled planes how they were mostly fighting age men.

Again, the UK can have them.

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