January 12, 2011
Surging Tit for Tat in Afghanistan
By FRANKLIN C. SPINNEY, Counterpunch
President Obama’s ballyhooed surge of US forces in Afghanistan added 17,000 troops in early 2009 plus an additional 30,000 by 2010, in effect doubling the number of troops in Afghanistan (not to mention the concomitant surge in the camp-follower contractor force). The Taliban may not have doubled its troop strength, but as Tom Vanden Brook reports in the 10 January issue of USA Today, the insurgents have doubled the the total number of casualties inflicted by mines in just the last two years of the nine year war. [See graphic]
Phi Beta Iota: In the balance of his analytic piece Chuck questions the “rationalizations” being used to “explain away” both the fact of this Taliban success and its likely persistence until the US runs out of money or public support or both. We are reminded of Viet-Nam–and the general irrelevance of US intelligence to any decision, strategic, operational, tactical, or technical.