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American Afghan Escalation–Russia’s Mistake

Published: July 26, 2008, Author: MHirch

The American Democratic Party presidential nominee Barak Obama urges increasing US troop deployments in Afghanistan by two or three divisions. US Pentagon officials also suggest such an escalation. Such an increased commitment will be a serious mistake. Just as the US occupation in Iraq is primarily a political problem and not a military problem, so is the instability and violence in Afghanistan a political problem and not a military problem. If the US increases its forces, it will find itself in precisely the same situation the Russians found themselves in during Russia’s ten year Afghanistan intervention.

The political solution must rest on carrying out a sophisticated plan to break-up the failed state of Afghanistan, distribute its parts into the existing states of Tadjikistan, Uzbekistan and a new state of Pashtunistan. Cooperation between the region’s states will be necessary to achieve this monumental change, but the change will respond to historic needs and realities of separate nations.

The Taliban? The violent actions of the Taliban are more a problem of retributions for past offenses against Pashtu people than a potentially successful takeover of the Afghan government. Social, economic, cultural and political skills will be needed instead of guns and steel.

If the US government escalates the violence, it will beome a greater part of the problems in the “stans” instead of becoming a part of the solution. Russia thought its military could control Afganistan to serve Russian interests. Russian mothers bemoaned the loss of their sons as Russian military forces took successive pounding before eventually withdrawing. There is no military solution to be had in Afganistan. Seven years of war, bombing of Pastu, Tadjik, Uzbek and other lands have produced nothing but enemies and more violence. More military action will produce more violence and no solutions.

(c) 2008 Center for World Indigenous Studies

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