PACKED UP AND TOOK THEIR SHOW "ON THE ROAD"

"AL QAEDA HAS LEFT THE BUILDING"

Our intelligence estimates that Al Qaeda is no longer a threat in Afghanistan and Pakistan.  They are gone.  There are no terrorists for the Taliban to protect, no threat to America from the region and no reason for us to be fighting.  It is all a lie, we know it is a lie and we admit it is a lie.  Tuesday, Secretary of State Clinton told Congress how money the US pays the Taliban to protect our supply lines is one of their major sources of funding:

"You know, when we are so dependent upon long supply lines … where everything has to be imported … much of the corruption is fueled by the money that has poured into that country over the last eight years.  You offload a ship in Karachi, muffins for our soldiers’ breakfast or anti-IED equipment — gets to where we’re headed, it goes through a lot of hands….one of the major sources of funding for the Taliban is the protection money."

The "surge" and the massive supply increase to support it can only make this worse, give more funding to the Taliban, help it grow, recruit and spread.  More than that, we were never in Afghanistan to fight the Taliban, we were there to stop Al Qaeda and to play "Where’s Waldo" with Osama bin Laden.

 Former CIA and Defense analyst, Dr. Philip Giraldi sums up the situation best:

"Monday’s revelation from Defense Secretary Robert Gates that "I think it has been years" since the US government has had any solid information about Osama bin Laden.   Many analysts both inside and outside of the government have become convinced that Osama bin Laden is dead and has been so for quite some time. 

 They base this perception on the same non-evidence that Gates cites, i.e. that there has been no solid information on bin Laden or his whereabouts since late 2001.  It is widely believed that videos and recordings featuring his image and voice could well be clever composites. 

Even the redoubtable General Stanley McChrystal, relying on the paucity of al-Qaeda sightings and the intelligence void, has estimated that there are likely fewer than 100 al-Qaeda in Afghanistan.  Pakistani intelligence sources, who are almost certainly better informed than their American counterparts, believe that there is only a tiny al-Qaeda presence inside their own country

If bin Laden is dead and al-Qaeda is shadow of what it once was then the whole justification for maintaining 100,000 soldiers and a nearly equal number of contractors in Afghanistan at ruinous expense becomes a fiction. 

Most intelligence analysts who follow terrorism issues seriously would admit that the terrorism issue has been consistently overhyped and that it is also receding due to concerted action by a number of governments since 2001 combined with diminishing appeal among young Muslims. 

So Secretary Gates has inadvertently let the cat out of the bag even though the mainstream media apparently has not yet figured it out.  He has revealed that the war on terror is dead, or at least it should be.  But rather than breathe a sigh of relief, rest assured that the word "terrorism" will be trotted out periodically to scare the public and keep the long war going."

If this analysis, not only by the CIA and Department of Defense, but Pakistani Intelligence is correct, and the observations by Secretary of State Clinton as reported to Congress are also correct, then every aspect of US policy is not only irrational but destructive and even delusional.

With the only possible scenario resulting from the "surge" to be strengthening the Taliban and simultaneously creating a 20 year war, as stated by President Karzai, with an 18 month "exit timetable" as stated by President Obama, it is obvious that an agenda neither tied to regional stabilization or defeat of terrorist forces is at the heart of US policymaking.

An analysis of our "nation building" projects under the USAID has proven efforts to have been, not only flawed and self defeating but, in fact, hopeless.  An article in the Washington Post states:

In hearings before the Senate Armed Services Committee, Clinton said that there has been a 10-month investigation of what USAID was doing on the ground in Afghanistan, and that "we didn’t particularly come away impressed." Many of the 300 civilians there were on six-month rotations and did not have well-defined missions, and many spent time out of the country, she said. More important, Clinton added, "most of our civilian aid going into Afghanistan had been contracted out without adequate oversight or accountability."

With bin Laden long dead, Al Qaeda no longer in the region and the Taliban dependent on the US presence for recruiting and US funding for operations and funds earmarked for "nation building" being misused and falling into the hands of, not only corrupt officials but the Taliban itself, the rationale for, not only our proposed "surge" but our continued presence in the region is in question.

Nearly all terrorism experts agree that any effort to stem the growth of current threats requires a refocus on North Africa, not Afghanistan or Pakistan.  Our failure to adequately address real threats based on slavish adherence to failed policy, misinformation and a possible agenda involving a long term plan to support regional destabilization of, not only Iran but Pakistan as well, is believed by many to be more at the root of American interests in the region.

Baluchistan, a separatist region of Pakistan, now heavily involved in the Afghan insurgency along with attacks into Iran lies directly in the path of America‘s proposed military operations. 

This region, rich in natural gas, coal, copper, uranium and believed to contain massive oil reserves, was originally intended to receive its independence in 1947.  Since that time, numerous separatist groups, aided by the CIA, MI-6, the RAW (India‘s "CIA") and, perhaps even the Mossad, have been active there.

Pakistani military analyst, General Asif Haroon Raja believes the US is planning cross border incursions intended to put this region of Pakistan located along the Iranian border under American domination

General Raja has indicated that many of the Predator drone attacks launched by US forces operating from airfields in this region are intended to inflame increased insurgency and are not targeted at either Taliban or terrorist groups.

"Areas in Waziristan which are presently quiet and neutral are being provoked through drone attacks to make them restive. The US is pressing Pakistan to shift more troops from its eastern border and to start operations in North and South Waziristan where it alleges most insurgents have fled.
 
It is trying to create conditions wherein Pakistan Army is compelled to fight the combined force of Maulvi Nazir, Hakimullah Mehsud and Gul Bahadur, thus creating a united front would ease up pressure on Hakimullah led TTP, which is in disarray, a disaster for both Pakistan and the US.
 
The US also wants the Pakistani Army in Baluchistan to shift its focus from Baluch held areas where RAW-CIA-MI-6 backed separatist movement is raging and to concentrate towards peaceful Pashtun areas including Quetta where it suspects Afghan Shura (Tribal council) is hiding.
 
The US-NATO forces after their failed operation in Helmand are expected to launch another operation in that province once additional US troops arrive so as to force the militants to flee to neighbouring Pashtun belt of Baluchistan and make it volatile."
 
The gist of this is that the US and "friends" are believed to have designs on this area that can only be realized by gutting Pakistan.  Credible sources within Pakistan claim that Blackwater, along with other groups have been tied to terrorist operations against military, intelligence and civilian targets inside Pakistan as part of an operation meant to destabilize Pakistan.  Major groups within, not only the military and intelligence community but the current civilian government who normally attribute the daily terrorist acts occurring across Pakistan to India are now reassessing their positions.
 
One thing is clear.  The Bush era policies that appear to be continued, to some degree by the Obama administration, not only under the guise of counter-terrorism but purported to support regional stability and promotion of democracy are now exposed for what they are, serving an agenda of no clear advantage to America or her allies.  Thus, we await the real players to show their faces.
 
 

  Pakistan launches crackdown on Isis

 

 

 


Senior Editor Gordon Duff is a Marine combat veteran and regular contributor on political and social issues. This paper is published under bilateral arrangements between Opinion Maker and Veterans Today.

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