Nato has lost its way in Afghanistan, Army chief tells Musli

From The Times
November 28, 2009
Nato has lost its way in Afghanistan, Army chief tells Muslims
Michael Evans, Defence Editor

Nato has lost its way in Afghanistan and needs to rediscover the conviction to succeed against the Taleban, the head of the Army has admitted.

In a frank interview with a Muslim newspaper, General Sir David Richards, the Chief of the General Staff, compared the success of the initial operation to topple the Taleban in 2001 with the present counter-insurgency campaign that has led to thousands of casualties among Nato troops over the past eight years.

Speaking to Muslim News, General Richards said: “Look at the huge popularity of the Nato intervention in 2001. What we’ve done is lost our way a bit and need to find it again and have the moral and physical conviction that we can do these things.”

General Richards has acknowledged previously that the strategy had failed in Afghanistan and needed to be revitalised to ensure victory.
Britain must continue Afghanistan mission
By Julian Glover /London
There is a low shelf deep in the stacks of the London Library that holds the sad story of Britain’s engagement with Afghanistan. Its dusty contents come alive in the claims of those who say the British campaign in Helmand was doomed by history from the start: just another imperial expedition in a place we do not understand and in which we are always defeated. Pull out now, this argument runs; Britain comes to no good here. The records of Victorian campaigners show it.
Browsing the library’s shelves last week in search of something to read on a flight to Kabul, I pulled down a red volume, published by John Murray in 1843. The Military Operations at Cabul, Which Ended in the Retreat and Destruction of the British Army tells at first hand the story of one of the great national disasters of the 19th century.
In January 1842 the British garrison in Kabul, under siege, decided to retreat. Of the 16,000 men and women who fled, only one, a surgeon named William Brydon, made it alive to Jellalabad to tell the tale.
In the cavernous hold of an RAF C17 jet last week, I showed the book to the UK’s foreign secretary, perched nearby on a ministerial red box - the crimson briefcases for official papers - on the aircraft’s steel floor. I spared David Miliband the page that records “the treacherous assassination of Sir William Macnaughten, our envoy and minister”, but my implication was obvious.
More than a century and a half after that terrible retreat, an army of similar size is again looking for a way out of Afghanistan. The parallels are easy; unfold a faded map from the book and you see that the boundaries of the British cantonment in Kabul in 1842 match quite neatly the site of today’s Nato ISAF headquarters in the city.
“Our troops had now lost all confidence; and even such of the officers as had hitherto indulged the hope of a favourable turn of events began at last reluctantly to entertain gloomy forebodings as to our future fate,” the book records. The modern British army is more upbeat than that; its fear is of a collapse of support at home, more than some military catastrophe in Afghanistan that makes its presence unsustainable.
But the feeling, among both British military and civilian forces in the country, is of a mission heading for the end. The question is not whether to get out, but how and when.
Afghan mission in doubt as air raid lies force German minister to resign
Dilemma for Merkel over extra troops as cover-up of civilian deaths claims third high-profile figure

Kate Connolly in Berlin, Friday 27 November 2009 22.42 GMT

Afghan security forces guard a burned out fuel tanker in Kunduz, north of Kabul, after a Nato air strike killed an unknown number of civilians in September. Photograph: AP

The future of Germany's mission in Afghanistan was thrown into doubt today after a government minister resigned under growing pressure to admit his involvement in a campaign of misinformation over an air raid in which civilians were killed.

Franz Josef Jung, defence minister at the time, quit as labour minister a day after the army's chief of staff, Wolfgang Schneiderhan, resigned over the incident with the deputy defence minister, Peter Wichert.

Jung said his decision followed "detailed consideration" and that he accepted "political responsibility for the internal information policy" in his ministry.

With an estimated two-thirds of the German public already against involvement, the defence ministry's admission that it effectively lied by initially denying there were civilian casualties when two petrol tankers were bombed in September has left Angela Merkel's recently re-elected centre-right government in a state of uncertainty over how to proceed in the region.


What do you mean, lost it's funking way??
Adolf would be turning in his grave if he read this shite!! :wink:
"Nato has lost its way" - presumably it put an officer in charge of the map reading....

I'll get my coat.
I'm getting tired of this stale bollocks about AQ.
“If we gave up Afghanistan tomorrow, I absolutely guarantee that if you are an AQ [al-Qaeda] member or Taleban, they will pour back into southern Afghanistan and they will have the freedom to plan and train and conduct operations which now they don’t have,” he said.
It's very evident AQ have had a great deal of freedom to train and plan in FATA. Nearly every Tafkiri nutter picked up in Yurp this year has had a little adventure holiday out there. Hopefully now that the TTP have gone rogue on the ISI this no longer the case.
ALVIN said:
What do you mean, lost it's funking way??
The Germans traditionally lose their way in wars: aiming for Paris, go to Mons; aiming for Moscow, go to Stalingrad, etc.

The last Boche bloke to make his RV was Blucher and he managed to be hours late. Must have been to Sandhurst.


Book Reviewer
How many thousands more reporters will write an Af-Pak story with the 1st Afghan war as their lede?


Is a little bit of original writing (I won't even mention thinking) too much to much to ask?

Latest Threads