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22 December 2011


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William R. Cumming

I could be wrong but I believe by the end of the next year the foreign policy of the USA could be dramatically impacted by events elsewhere than Afghanistan. Like PL is prefer that some capability CT wise exist there for a long long time.

Wondering what we know about US military ops along the Iranian/Afghanistan border--open source of course?

RAISER William

I think, hope, you are right about the eventual pull-out of US forces from Afghanistan. I am one of those who believe we should have been out of Afghanistan long ago.

This might be as good a place as any to say, for the record, that you were right about the US "completely" withdrawing from Iraq, and I was wrong (believing that the US would find some way to remain in force on at least some of the super bases built there). I hope you are just as right this time. I don't mind at all being wrong on Iraq. Would that I were in a similar fashion more often.

I am now watching with horror the lead up to war with Iran. I would LOVE to be wrong on that one.


Elsewhere than Afghanistan, me wonders if Gen. Allen (and those with like-minded pigeon holed mindset) doesn't understand the latest from the CSTO crowd -- no support or basing of U.S. Forces on CSTO member soils.
Gone are the 'stans' for basing. We have left a bad taste in the mouths of the Uzbeks with our airbase setup. If anger could tie a knot, what the Uzbeks could tie would fill a room, literally with their anger. D.C. has squandered and thrown away the good will that was handed our way after 911, with their errant 'we've-got-to-support-Israel-at-all-costs' mantra ahead of what is good for U.S. and with the nations whom we have relations with. D.C. really has pissed off the ME crowd.

Lilly pond approach as our next basing option?


The article states: "One boon for the Taliban is that governance is very poor in most parts of Afghanistan. That's the weakest link of the U.S. strategy -- and a problem even the optimists don't contest."

After a decade the Afghan's still don't trust Karzai and his government. Neither do I and I don't think he's worth a dollar of my money or the life of another American. Let David Ignatius give up his tax cuts and go enlist if he thinks supporting the current Afghan government is worth it.

The Moar You Know

"Somehow the present generation of general officers think they are in charge of geopolitics and national policy."

Clinton was the first president that I can recall where quite a few folks questioned his legitimacy - legitimacy for the office, legitimacy for the CinC position, the whole 9 yards. You had guys refusing to salute him, taking down his portrait, etc.

Opening that Pandora's box was a disaster. 8 years of delegitimizing horseshit from the right, and then another 8 years of the same from the left, and now another 3 years from the right.

When half the electorate sincerely believes what they've been told, that the President is not a legitimate holder of that office, you end up with officers who believe it as well and act accordingly. Which is what we've been seeing now for quite some time.

A yearly refresher course on the chain of command might be appropriate.

Getting us the hell out of Afghanistan would also be appropriate.



The process of sending "hot-running" officers to civilian graduate schools well precedes the Clinton era which was a "marker" that showed how far outside their "lane"some officers had strayed. I dislike Clinton as a draft dodger, a political version of Jane Fonda but there was a limit. The army sent me to a civilian graduate school fully funded as a major, so this is not "sour grapes." They also sent me to the War College in residence. pl

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