Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Timeline: The Afghan war--Beginning and the end

911: World Trade Centers attacked: Amidst the 1600 degree Fahrenheit flames of plane crash, the death of more than 3000 Americans (including 300 Muslims), and total destruction of several blocks of the Financial district of New York, the US authorities were able to retrieve the only surviving artifact out of the debris—the passport of one of the culprits. This document was retrieved within minutes of the crash and set the stage.

2001: OBL denies any responsibility of the attack. Several tapes later appear that show OBL acknowledging the attacks. Michael Sheuer of the CIA OBL Analysis cell in Afghanistan discusses these at length. Pictures of OBL widely differ in the tapes leading to conspiracy theories and suspicions that some of the tapes might have been engineered by agencies.

2002: Various players of the Bush Administration including Richard Armitage threaten Pakistan “of being bombed into the stone age”. When reminded of the long history of US-Pakistani relations since the 50s, Armitage responds “History begins today”.  

US invades Afghanistan to avenge the attack, and eliminate all enemies: Pakistan advised the US, not to attack the country, and had offered 5000 marines to nab the evil guys. Pakistan also advised the US to negotiate with the moderate elements of the “T” and bring about a regime change. The Bush Administration ignores sanity and uses 20,000 pounder Daisy Cutters (one step below a nuclear bomb).

2002: As a result of carpet bombing the entire country a stream of refugees head to Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and Pakistan. The very same thin g happened during the Russian invasion of Afghanistan. Instead of understanding the consequences of terrorizing the Afghan population with bombs, the US accuses Pakistan of “harboring” terrorists.

2002: The US attacks Iraq allegedly to find WMDs. None are found but 1 million Iraqis die and 20 million are rendered homeless.

2003: Ralph Peter’s egregious map truncating Pakistan, Afghanistan and Iran to create new smaller states is published by a defense department journal give rise to conspiracy theories about US intentions about West Asia in general and Pakistan in particular.

2003: A drumbeat of Indian propaganda against Pakistan accuses it of interference. The US is fed the WMD type of information from three main spy agnecies, RAW and Mossad and Afghan KHAD.

In 2004, the US begins bombing Pakistani territory-either with the connivance or the knowledge of the compliant Pakistani president. The bombings create a

2005: There is a litany of US demands “to do more”. In response to these incessant demands, the Pakistani military launches several attacks into FATA.

2006: President Hamid Karzai directly threatens Pakistan. More than a dozen “Indian Consulates” are allowed on Afghan soil. The Afghan intelligence agency is patterned on RAW and ominously renamed RAMA.

2007: Reports emerge of massive Indian infiltration into the ranks of the insurgents.

In 2008 a spate of foreign sponsored “reprisal attacks” from foreign armed, foreign trained mercenaries begin in Pakistan.

2008: Benazir Bhutto is assassinated in Liaqat bagh—the 2nd Pakistani leader to be murdered on the same spot. The world suspects Mr. Zardari who in turn blames the TTP for the murder of the politician.

2008: President Musharraf is accused of duplicity by the Americans. US seeks more compliant leadership in Pakistan. Missteps by President Musharraf lead to his resignation and eventual self-exile in London.

2009: Pakistan attacks and successfully retakes Swat which had become a hotbed of Indian sponsored militants. Pictures of uncircumcised men with long beard raise speculation of Indian agents working as mercenaries to destabilize Pakistan.

2009: Pakistan eliminates vestiges of the so called TTP in South Waziristan. The TTP funded and armed from Afghanistan increase their waves of attacks on innocent Pakistani civilians in all areas of Pakistani territory.

November 2009: The language used, restrictions imposed, the tiny amount of “aid” ($6.5 Billion for Pakistan vs. $143 Billion for Afghanistan vs $605 Billion for Iraq) and the accusation listed in the Kerry Lugar Bill “Aid to Pakistan” are severely criticized in Pakistan.

November 2009: Hillary Clinton faces a barrage of belligerent accusations in Pakistan and a lukewarm welcome.

November 2009: The corruption charges against President Asif Zardari stand resurrected as the National Assembly fails to pass the NRO (amnesty for the misdeeds of politicians)

November 2009: US National Security Advisor James Jones tries to smooth over ruffled feathers of Pakistani civilian and military government. He delivers a personal message to President Zardari asking him to continue his offensive against the “Taliban”. Pakistanis suspect, it is part of a US Exit strategy.

November 2009: According to the New York Times “the latest internal government estimates place the cost of adding 40,000 American troops and sharply expanding the Afghan security forces, as favored by Gen. Stanley McChrystal, the top American and allied commander in Afghanistan, at $40 billion to $54 billion a year, the officials said”. In a front page story, the paper essentially says that the US can no longer afford the war in Afghanistan

Even if fewer troops are sent, or their mission is modified, the rough formula used by the White House, of about $1 million per soldier a year, appears almost constant.

November 2009: Media reports emerge about how the US can no longer afford the 40,000 additional troops request by General McChrystal.

November 2009: A new drumbeat of media and US administration pressure wants Pakistan to invade North Waziristan, which the US claims in the home of the Haqqani Network—much hated by US generals. Will the Pakistani army once again buckle to American pressure, attack North Waziristan and then face more domestic attacks. Pakistani Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi says his country will decide on its own, according to its priorities and resources, on how to fight militants. He says the international community recognizes Pakistan's sacrifices and unity in the face of Islamist extremists. He says his country does not need to do more or less because someone is saying so.

November 2009: The TTP denies role in many of the bombings in Pakistan. Indian arms are discovered in Waziristan. The presence of Blackwater/Xe and Dynacorp, the uniquely unprecedented expansion of the  US Embassy, the maniacal statements of Admiral Mullen about “existential threats to Pakistan”, and Hillary Clinton’s strange rhetoric about Pakistan’s real enemies (India is not an enemy) fuel conspiracy theories about US intentions in Pakistan—and increase Anti-Americanism.

November 2009: Obama Administration announced another new Afghan policy (part of about a dozen re-assessments). A slight troop surge and plans to evacuate most of the country to garrisons seems to be the plan. This is exactly what happened to the British when they were thrown out of Afghanistan and the Russians. The sitting targets will be relentlessly attacked by the insurgents ‘till they eventually evacuate back to the States.

Rupee News has been predicting for about two years that inevitability of a US withdrawal and an end to the Afghan war in 2011, when some of the coalition partners will leave Kabul. More than 70% of the US public now opposes continued occupation of Afghanistan, and this number will grow when the Republicans begin hammering the Dems before the 2012 elections.

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