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28 November 2012


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You are spot-on regarding the SOFA (Status of Forces Agreement); the Afghans will not agree to a SOFA that offers the minimum that a U.S. military force would require. Too many of those who advocate saying in Afghanistan are oblivious of that important detail.

Babak Makkinejad

You are being too soft on the foolish notion of women in combat.

Do those who support this position have fantasies of gang rape and having female soldiers giving birth to enemy soldiers' children?

And then there is the very high probability of the enemy using female soldiers to break the male soldiers.

In WWII, Germans ganag-raped Russian female soldiers and then shot them in the morning.

This is plain madness.

r whitman

PL-can the US buy enough Afgan politicians to approve a SOFA agreement? If corruption is as bad as it is said to be, this should be possible.


r whitman

IMO. no. This is too visceral an issue for that. pl

Medicine Man

"The Palestinians will win the vote in the General assembly and then prefer charges against such as Natanyahu, Barak and Avigdor Lieberman. This will expose these Israelis to extradition action by various member states. Then Israel can be a prison for them in much the same way that Gaza is for the Palestinians."

Poetic justice?


Colonel, what are the opposition's prospects in Egypt? Mursi has vowed not to back down, but if the military stays out of it I don't see what power he has to enforce his decrees.

Your predictions regarding the Muslim Brotherhood's commitment to representative government are being borne out with dizzying speed.

Charles I

Poetic justice? . . . probably Pyrrhic victory in the short term.

I read a report and heard others that as Canadian PM Little Stevie Harper was snubbing the U.N. whilst collecting his Statesman of the Year Award from some vanity press type outfit, he did take time to attend to the important matter of meeting Abbass face to face to deliver the threats of punitive aid suspension, closure of diplomatic premises in Canada, the wrath of God etc. etc, should the motion not be abandoned.

Word is the buffoon Currently Known as our Minister of Foreign Affairs will attend in person for the vote and obligatory indignant harangue.

Charles I

If its a bad as its said to be, the people required to suborn have long considered the long announced denouement of their career opportunity and prepared accordingly. It only awaits us to see what initial configuration with overt and domestically legitimate Taliban participation will be. As well as who gets paper to escape to the West.


I would say the ones we already 'bought' won't stay bought. And why should they when they can just take the money and not do what they said they would. It's not like there have been any repercussions to them for doing so.


"... the Muslim Brotherhood's commitment to representative government..."

Yes indeed, they public got on man, one vote - one time.

The Moar You Know

"The Afghans are not going to agree to a SOFA that gives US forces legal immunity in their country and that will be the end of it. The Pentagon should start preparing for that event."

For this and other reasons I'm sure the Pentagon has already got plans in place.

Medicine Man

And yet he's probably quite secure as PM. Our populace either doesn't notice or doesn't care. Probably both. On the bright side, I'm sure Abbass was trembling from that tongue-lashing. The horror.

Charles I

Hey I just noticed this claim of Russian intention in Gaza.

Russia Sends Warships To Gaza Coast:

Russian warships anchored off the eastern coast of the Mediterranean Sea will be put on military alertness should the conflict in Gaza escalate and brought in proximity, according Russian Navy Command source on Friday.

Sure enough, there is a diplomatic reason for the escalation: evacuation preparedness. To wit: "The detachment of combat ships of the Black Sea Fleet, including the Guards missile cruiser Moskva, the patrol ship Smetliviy, large landing ships Novocherkassk and Saratov, the sea tug MB-304 and the big sea tanker Ivan Bubnov, got the order to remain in the designated area of the Eastern part of the Mediterranean Sea for a possible evacuation of Russian citizens from the area of the Gaza strip in case of escalation of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict”, the spokesperson said. He added that ship crew members will continue routine combat training, maintenance of equipment and weapons along with other military services.

A missile cruiser, which just happens to be the flag ship of the Russian Black Sea naval fleet, and whose purpose is "to destroy hostile surface ships" in order to aid evacuation? Odd...



FB Ali


"....... who gets paper to escape to the West".

Dubai makes for a convenient (and, for the wealthy, enjoyable) stop on the way. A lot of them have already bought palatial properties there and probably intend to enjoy the fruits of their labours (and of American largesse) there permanently.

It is also a safe place -- unless you happen to be on the Mossad's hit list!


Re Afghanistan

This is not just a fantasy world but a fantasy world whose inhabitants are incapable of following the logic of their own illusions. If the fear is of an al-Qaida recrudescence, then there should be no limit on the American partial occupation so long as Afghanistan's domestic civil order does not match Denmark's. Two, why the priority to Afghanistan when operative al-Qaidi franchises are located elsewhere? Is it inertia and domestic political convenience? Three, the Obama people continue to cloud the distinction between al-Qaidi and the Taliban. Is the latter itself a threat or just a potential re-enabler of -al-Qaidi? Four, what of the Taliban in Pakistan - how does this apply?

Panetta is probably the last person from whom to expect clarity on this. He has no need to feign ignorance of nuance and subtleties that complicate the exposition of policy- he is obviously ignorant. That that doesn't bother him can be taken as evidence of other mental deficiences.


MM: Maybe Abbas "suspects" that Harper, like Blair, like Obama, will never (be able to) deliver a Palestinian state.

Harper is merely threating the privileges of Fayyad Clique. How many Palestinians is that?

FB Ali

Dr Brenner,

You are taking at face value the reasons being advanced for retaining troops in Afghanistan. Instead, it may be more realistic to ascribe such schemes to the old aim of many in the US power structure to establish a military presence in (what I call) Middle Asia -- Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iran and Tajikistan.

The aim of this would be to dominate this region as well as exert power and influence in Central Asia.

The chances of this being achieved are, as Col Lang says, minimal.


I don't know from UN resolutions. Is it possible that Obama will direct Rice to vote for the Palestinan Observer nation request?



IMO, none. pl


FB Ali

"The aim of this would be to dominate this region as well as exert power and influence in Central Asia" If only we were that clever. pl


As a soldier i won't be doing this "gang raping and murder in the morning" behavior.still the question of female soldier remains indeed.


Worth mentioning in light of prior conversation here.

Report: Chuck Hagel being vetted for top State, Defense posts


robt willmann

Regarding the issue of women in combat and possibly lowering the physical standards, I may not be remembering correctly, but I think physical standards were lowered at the service academies and other military-oriented universities such as VMI when women began to be admitted to those schools.

Lowering physical standards to get into school is controversial enough, but in real combat and war of course it can, and probably will, get your own people killed.


robert willman

Yes. Physical standards at the service academies were lowered. So far as I know they were not lowered at VMI but the other VMI people here can sort me out on that. pl

Charles I

No, he's emphasizing acceptance of The Jewish State, - that is Israel the international biblical outlaw as opposed to Legal Israel - as a precondition of any state.

Whatever Abbas suspects, he now has to deal with a legitimated Hamas: he had no alternative but to press on for recognition.


Not all Germans soldier did so. A few million German POW's died in the USSR. Germany also lost the war. The effect of women in combat units is, however, still an open question and should not be one of 'civil rights'.

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