By Colonel Eugene Khrushchev,
From plight to blight
The US has launched a surreptitious germ warfare against the hard-working drug-farmers – or so claimed the narco-jihadist propaganda when a “mysterious” blight had suddenly struck the “good” part of the opium poppy fields on the eve of the harvest.
A shot in the foot
It doesn’t matter whether it was true or false – the claim opened up a unique opportunity for USACAPOC(A), US Army Civil Affairs & Psychological Operations Command (Airborne), to prove its mettle against the mujaheddin rumor mill – but the Pentagon top brass has jumped the gun and spoiled the party, once again.
US Navy in Afghan Gulf
Capt. John Kirby of the Navy, a spokesman for Adm. Mike Mullen, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff had sailed to NYT to share his empathy and to confirm NATO addiction to narco-jihadists:
“Would we like to see the poppy trade go away eventually – yes. Would we do it this way? Absolutely not. This crop loss is a natural occurrence and absolutely in no way connected to the United States or NATO militaries.”
When a flag officer outlines the battle plan against the Somali pirates he commands nothing but full attention and respect, but when a Navy Captain opines about Opium Ocean in landlocked Afghanistan, he reaps off applauds and a Comedy Central nomination as the top Dress White joker.
The target audience for the quoted message is the narco-farmer community in Southern Afghanistan, which has voted for Karzai but has never trusted NATO from the outset, and hardly will.
Unlike their land drug lords in the UK and the US, those guys are not on a subscription list of the New York Times, or any other global or national newspapers.
Trouble is, even if Admiral Smith personally delivered a copy of the interview with a concerned Captain to every door in Marja, it wouldn’t help because locals don’t read English and many of them even don’t read Farsi or Dari.
Last time I checked, the NYT hasn’t published or posted on the web anything in Pashtu, yet.
The eradication & elimination of American goodwill in Afghanistan by “surgical strikes” followed by ISAF numbing apologies, has robbed US Forces any credibility to deny any transgression, even the most obvious and outrageous claims, deftly exploited by narco-terrorist propaganda in a perception warfare.
The emphatic and profuse denial of NATO involvement in opium germ warfare was doomed to backfire as PR FUBAR, perceived as a declaration of unconditional surrender of the United States in the undeclared Drug War in Afghanistan.
The disconnect between the message, the messenger and the media has deprived the Pentagon the plausible deniability it had aspired for and further fueled anti-American sentiments in Afghanistan and beyond.
Colonel Evgeny Khrushchev is the military analyst at RT. (Russia Television) Contrary to the family tradition, he didn’t apply to Vladivostok Navy Academy to join the Pacific Fleet but enrolled in the Red Banner Institute specializing in Central Asian affairs. Experience Afghanistan PSYOPS officer of the 56th Airborne Assault Brigade in Gardez, Paktia, Democratic Republic of Afghanistan First Secretary of the Russian Embassy in the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan. Yugoslavia The Russian Airborne peace-keeping mission under the aegis of UNPROFOR. The United States The main mission: to promote rapport & rapprochement between Russian & American veterans, in close cohesion with US military attaché General Reppert and Special Forces General Metaxis. * Led the 1st delegation of Soviet Afghan Vets to the US at the invitation of VVA & VVC * Addressed SOLIC Command and JFK Special Warfare School * Consulted CBS 60 Minutes on the Soviet campaign in Afghanistan * Interviewed by ABC 20/20 and Discovery Channel * Featured by France Press, Boston Globe and USN& WR during the 1st Moscow putsch. Inspired by Chinese strategy, Persian Sufi poetry and British cats; addicted to Country & Blues and muscle cars. Favorite personal/personnel carrier – KA-50 Black Shark, due to financial & social constraints, settled for KTM 950 SM.
His website: http://www.rttv.ru