For those who can think out of the mould there are signs that the Americans might just win the war in Afghanistan. The fact that a large part of the Taliban are prepared and are negotiating with the Karzai government, with the apparent consensus of General Petraeus, is indicative that the Taliban are undergoing unsustainable loses in their confrontation with the allied forces. Moreover, that these negotiations are taking place with the full knowledge by the Taliban of Obama’s commitment to withdraw all American fighting forces from Afghanistan by July 2011 shows clearly that the Taliban are debilitated militarily and are therefore forced to enter negotiations with their enemy from a position of weakness. Otherwise if their strength was still intact why shouldn’t they wait the US withdrawal and hence their chance to topple the Karzai regime?
A short reply to: The Limits of Replicating the “Anbar Awakening”
Published on the Washington Note, June 04, 2009
There is a great possibility of replicating the strategy of the Surge in Afghanistan with the following economic-political-military strategy: To shift the estuary of the stream of revenue from narcotics from the Taliban’s and narco-lords’ mouths to the government mouth with the aim to feed the hungry mouths of the tribal chiefs of Afghanistan. That is, to nationalize the poppy industry and make the tribal chiefs of Afghanistan the direct equity holders of the income that accrues from the production of opium. Such a policy will create a powerful self-interest and lead to a Tribal Chief’s Awakening that will be more widespread and potent than the Iraqi one, since it will mobilize the whole country, through its tribal chiefs, against the Taliban and the narco-lords.
Thus U.S. forces will not have to go to a wild goose chase of serendipity to get “their lucky break” in Afghanistan, as some liberals in America place their hope for the ending of the conflict on the casting of the dice.
This idea was floated by me in a paper of mine on October 2008. The link below will take you to it.