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Subject: The Attitude Problem
SYSOP    12/24/2012 5:51:31 AM
 
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trenchsol       12/25/2012 2:36:32 AM
In order to end the war, or even win it, one must understand the politics behind it.
I don't understand Afghan War. Perhaps someone else does. Why the war keeps
going ?

Those Taliban don't look much different than the government in Kabul.

So is it about power ? Maybe. But, Taliban would gain much if they get
involved in political process and even more if they collaborate with
existing political options.

Religion ? Religion is more often a mean of achieving political goals. A
way to mobilize the masses, rather than goal itself. Afghan government
is pretty much islamic themselves.

Pakistan ? Maybe, but the "brothers" of those who fight in Afghanistan and
enjoy Pakistan support, are fighting against Pakistani goverrnment itself.

Is it about Pushtuns ? Pushtuns are dominant in Afghanistan today, anyway.

Is it the same thing that keeps other old insurgencies going ? The way of life.
Does a teacher at school ask why is he/she doing what he/she does ? Or waiter
at the restaurant ? Perhaps, as long as there is enough support, they just keep
fighting. It is a kind of existence, something that keeps one going. Political
goals may be unclear, but it doesn't have to be the key factor.
 
 
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WarNerd       12/25/2012 9:52:43 AM
In order to end the war, or even win it, one must understand the politics behind it.I don't understand Afghan War. Perhaps someone else does. Why the war keeps going?
 
Those Taliban don't look much different than the government in Kabul.
The Taliban’s refusal to break their alliance with al-Qaeda and insistence on an ultra conservative Islamic state has been the major stumbling blocks.
So is it about power? Maybe. But, Taliban would gain much if they get involved in political process and even more if they collaborate with existing political options.
The Taliban is not interested in some power, they want it all like it was before the invasion.
Religion? Religion is more often a mean of achieving political goals. A way to mobilize the masses, rather than goal itself. Afghan government is pretty much islamic themselves.
The Taliban is ultra-conservative Wahhabi Islam and considers anything practices, and their supporters, that do not comply with their views to be unislamic. Like the liberal government in power.
Pakistan? Maybe, but the "brothers" of those who fight in Afghanistan and enjoy Pakistan support, are fighting against Pakistani goverrnment itself.
The Pakistani military is a ‘state-within-a-state’ and has seen the radical religious groups as a weapon to use against its enemies (mainly India) almost since its founding. Only recently has it become a major problem for the military, which was not concerned much as long as only civilians were targeted. But the military still seem more concerned about keeping the groups as a weapon than protecting Pakistan as a whole, and keep trying to pick up the turd by the clean end.
Is it about Pushtuns? Pushtuns are dominant in Afghanistan today, anyway.
True, but Pushtun is the ethnic group, which is less important in most eastern 3rd world cultures than the tribe/clan. And it has to be the right families (i.e. those of the Taliban leaders) that are in charge and collecting all the take from looting the rest. Family comes before clan.
 
"Me and my country against the world
Me and my clan against my country
Me and my family against my clan
Me and my brother against my family
Me"
Is it the same thing that keeps other old insurgencies going? The way of life. Does a teacher at school ask why is he/she doing what he/she does? Or waiter at the restaurant? Perhaps, as long as there is enough support, they just keep fighting. It is a kind of existence, something that keeps one going. Political goals may be unclear, but it doesn't have to be the key factor. 
Give that the Afghani’s see themselves as a warrior/raider culture, some of this is correct. Much of the Taliban’s combat power comes from what could be considered as temporary workers that sign on for a paycheck and a cut of the loot. However costs have been increasing steadily as potential recruits have recognized the increasing risk involved.
 
But I think most of the confusion comes from concentrating on the country as a whole and ethnic groups, which is not important in that part of the world.
 
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