The Partition Option

The corespondent argues that the Taliban are going to maintain their level of influence in the Pashtun speaking areas of Afghanistan come what may so why not return to the lines of demarkation before the Northern Alliance overran the south and east of the country. There are however serious if obvious implications to simply handing back control in this way.

It seems to me that this could be an idea whose time has come, given the statements coming from the governments of USA and UK.

B / Comment / Opinion - America must give the south to the Taliban


Book Reviewer
Partition - well it worked in India/E&W Pakistan, Ireland, Palestine.....

Do be a love, and have a re-think.
I'm getting a strong whiff of Joe "Sykes-Picot II" Biden off this fantasy.

Pindi is never going to tolerate partition, they want their guys in Kabul and trade routes to central Asian markets in their hands all the way up to Tajikistan. Partition would be a staging post to Pastunistan and the last time that sort of secession happened the Pak Army set about killing folk faster than the Waffen SS in Belarus.
Digest from Nightwatch:

Russia and NATO have mutual long-term interests in Afghanistan, Russian Chief of General Staff of the Armed Forces General Nikolai Makarov said following talks with Chairman of NATO's Military Committee Admiral Giampaolo Di Paola, Interfax-AVN reported.

Both commanders are interested in NATO's success in Afghanistan, Makarov said, adding that Russia will provide assistance by ensuring the transit of military property and personnel through Russian territory.

Comment: Makarov's is the latest in at least a half dozen recent comments professing Russian support to the US effort in Afghanistan. The cumulative significance is that they prove that the Russians smell the US end game in Afghanistan and are determined to be a part of it and the new game that begins when the Americans depart.

Diverging from US policy, the Russians do not intend to transfer to Pakistan responsibility for stability in Afghanistan. They do not expect and will not rely on Pakistani good will. They also do not intend to allow US decisions to go unchallenged. The US Secretary of State's public tilt to Pakistan could not have done more to galvanize Russian and Indian interest and opposition to US schemes. An ascendant or even a healthy Pakistan suits no Russian or Indian interests and does not promote stability in South Asia.

Thus the Russians appear to be sincere in offering assistance by providing a secure, northern, railroad route alternative to the porous over-the-road supply route through Pakistani which appears to be a major source of supply for the Taliban. The Russians are sincere in the sense that helping the US serves Russian long term interest in influencing events in northern Afghanistan, if not in Kabul, and keeps the costs low for now. The new railroad bridges across the Oxus River are major assets in the Russian scheme for supporting the northern tribes.

As for Pakistan, the Pakistanis have made it abundantly plain that Afghanistan remains a secondary and minor concern for Pakistani leaders, provided India has no foothold. For Pakistanis, like General Kayani, they have been raised to perceive India is an existential threat to Pakistan. Thus, no matter what they have promised, US aid will be diverted, substituted and repackaged to support the confrontation with India.

When Afghanistan degenerates into its second civil war, Russia and India will again side with the northern Alliance tribes against Pakistan and the Pashtuns. In that scenario, ten years of US investment, deaths and involvement will have counted for little, but history will have resumed a more normal path. The Carter administration discovered that Afghanistan is just two oceans too far to sustain a US commitment. Astonishing how short some memories can be.

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