Monday, April 16, 2012

Quick Thoughts on Spring Offensive 2012

So, what can we learn from yesterday's attacks in Kabul and around the country?
  • Karzai is still an ass.  He blames NATO for intel failure.  We should not be surprised that after ten years, he still refuses to take any ownership of this war.  He should have been focusing on how well the Afghan security forces [ANSF] responded, whether such reports are completely accurate.  These are his forces--take credit and responsibility.  Or not.
  • Ok, NATO is looking at this as a success as the focal point of transition--getting the ANSF to be functional--seemed to do ok.  But, guys, it looks like spin when you have the capital attacked.
  • But media folks, attacks on the biggest city should be expected.  The question is not whether Kabul gets attacked but how the ANSF respond and how the insurgents were able to get heaps of ammo into the city without anyone in town tipping off the government/ISAF.
    • That is the intel failure and that is the troubling bit of reality for NATO--that the Afghans in the city didn't report or that the reporting chain is broken.
  • What is it with the jails in this region?  Pakistan had a jail break where nearly 400 folks escaped. If failing to keep guys in jail is an indicator of anything, this means that Pakistan and Afghanistan are far closer together in terms of state failure than the Pakistanis should feel comfortable with.

On the bright side, the attacks and the responses give me material for my very last day  of teaching at McGill.

For some clear thinking on the attacks, see here.

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