Journal: Taliban Ramps Up North, Holds South + RECAP

04 Inter-State Conflict, 05 Civil War, 07 Other Atrocities, 08 Wild Cards, 09 Terrorism, 10 Security, 11 Society, Military, Officers Call, Peace Intelligence, Strategy
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Taliban Influence Grows in North

Insurgents Attack, Recruit, Adjudicate, Countering NATO’s Advance in South

By YAROSLAV TROFIMOV

PUL-E-KHUMRI, Afghanistan—The Taliban’s influence in northern Afghanistan has expanded in recent months from a few hotspots to much of the region, as insurgents respond to the U.S.-led coalition’s surge in the south by seizing new ground in areas once considered secure.

Taliban militants stop traffic nightly at checkpoints on the road from Kabul to Uzbekistan, just outside Baghlan province’s capital city of Pul-e-Khumri, frequently blowing up fuel convoys and seizing travelers who work with the government or the international community.

Deja Vu Back Centuries

In many areas here and the rest of the north, the Taliban have effectively supplanted the official authorities, running local administrations and courts, and conscripting recruits.

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The Taliban have consolidated their war gains by tapping into broad disillusionment with the incompetence and venality of Afghan government officials.

“People don’t love the Taliban—but if they compare them to the government, they see the Taliban as the lesser evil,” said Baghlan Gov. Munshi Abdul Majid, an appointee of President Hamid Karzai.

Full Story Online…

Phi Beta Iota: Based on what we now know about Viet-Nam, we predict that the military-industrial complex will declare victory in November 2012, and inform the new President that the US military has been entirely “used up” in Afghanistan and Iraq, and therefore we need to increase the Pentagon budget to rebuy the military from scratch.

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