Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Ralph Peters - More troops aren't needed (in Afghanistan)

President Obama needs to make a decision: Either give the general the resources he believes he needs, or change the mission.

I can't disagree with that, but I do disagree with most of the rest of this article.

Peter's basic premise is that a classic counter-insurgency can't work, because Afghanistan can't be united , but this is the same argument he advanced against the Iraq troop surge in 2007, and he is wrong. The Taliban was able to take, hold and unite the country and Afghanistan existed as a kingdom from 1919 to 1973.

This isn't to say that the task will be easy but it is doable - If McChrystal gets the support he needs.

I do have a lot of reservations about using troops for nation building rather than combat but regardless of the actors the mission can be accomplished. If I had my way and a foreign service academy was established this would be a perfect mission for it's graduates.

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