Thursday, July 29, 2010

Karzai Has a Point

I haven't exactly been a big fan of Afghan President Hamid Karzai, but today he raised a valid point regarding the conduct of the war.
"The war against terrorism is not in the villages or houses of Afghanistan... but in the sanctuaries, sources of funding and training (of terrorism), and they lie outside Afghanistan," ... "It is a different question whether Afghanistan has the ability to tackle this," he said in response to a question about Pakistan support for the Taliban and why the conflict was dragging on. "... but our allies have this capability. The question now is ‘why they are not taking action’?"
It is extremely difficult to defeat an insurgency if the insurgents have safe havens and support outside the country where they are fighting. We are hitting them with the drone assassination program, but although a deadly form of harassment and disruption, that alone isn't going to eliminate their Pakistani bases. It is arguable that the Taliban can never be defeated until and unless Pakistan fully joins the fight on their side of the border. Half-measures against some Taliban elements are just not going to get it done. There are many problems with Karzai, but he's put his finger on one of the main issues.

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