Showing posts with label opinion. Show all posts
Showing posts with label opinion. Show all posts

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

A VIP View of Afghanistan (as Viewed by an On-the-Ground Reporter)

"Whenever Kandahar Air Field officers are briefed on an upcoming visit by politicians or dignitaries, they sigh and map out a coddled tour that diverts valuable personnel away from the military purpose of the mission.
There are superior accommodations to arrange, scarce helicopters to round up, suitable officers to assign as tour guides, forward operating bases to spruce up and schools, preferably filled with Afghan schoolgirls, to book for photo-ops. Senior brass repeatedly confided to me they dread the arrival of most VIPs and cheer their speedy departure."
Read the rest of the article in "Coddled VIPs don't see real Afghanistan", National Post, November 27, 2010.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Are We Winning or Losing in Afghanistan?

An opinion piece by a Canadian columnist who says we are not winning in Afghanistan.
"The few Taliban fighters who are able to read would find your assertion that they will be hard pressed to wait out NATO laughable. While NATO looks for nice tidy end dates, Afghanistan is steeped in a tribal culture where time is irrelevant. The defending of honour or exacting of revenge could happen today, four years from now or a generation from now. The West has poured billions of dollars into the fight. We have jet fighters, helicopter gunships, tanks, artillery, unmanned drones and the best trained and equipped soldiers in the history of warfare. The mostly illiterate Taliban have AK 47s, Soviet era RPGs, opium to finance their battle and a few goats. Still they fight."
See "West losing an unwinnable war", The Star, November 27, 2010.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Should the U.S. Leave Afghanistan? - An Opinion by USA Today

There are many critics of the Afghan war that make comparisons to Vietnam.  USA Today has run an editorial stating that this is not the case in some aspects and takes the position that we do need to be in Afghanistan.  Read more in "Our view on defeating al-Qaeda: Afghanistan echoes Vietnam, but the stakes are higher", USA Today, October 4, 2010.

Friday, September 24, 2010

"Afghanistan is not Switzerland"

Whenever someone has to make excuses about how things in Afghanistan are not going so well - as in election fraud, government corruption, ineffective army, etc. - the stock answer used by some is "Afghanistan is not Switzerland".  Read an interesting article that explores this phrase.  See "All together now: Afghanistan is not Switzerland", The AFPAK Channel, September 17, 2010.