2011: U.S. And NATO To Extend And Expand Afghan War

by Rick Rozoff
Published: Dec. 25, 2010 – Global Research

The war being waged by the United States and the Western military alliance it controls, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, is well into its tenth year and is already the longest war in the history of the U.S., Afghanistan and NATO alike. In fact it is NATO’s first ground war and its first armed conflict in Asia.

It has now graduated into a broader war, having engulfed neighboring Pakistan with a population of 170 million and a nuclear arsenal.

The U.S. has suffered reverses in the past week and half with the death of Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan Richard Holbrooke on December 13 and the recall of the Central Intelligence Agency station chief in Pakistan, Jonathan Banks, on December 16, the day the White House issued its annual policy review on the protracted and increasingly deadly war in Afghanistan.

As of December 23, American and NATO military fatalities for this year are at 705, almost a third of the total 2,275 killed since the war was launched on October 7, 2001.

The Afghan National Army created from scratch by the Pentagon and NATO acknowledged this month that it has lost 806 soldiers so far this year, an increase of 25 percent over 2009.

Earlier this month a report by the United Nations General Assembly documented that Afghan civilian casualties had risen by 20 percent in the first ten months of this year over all of last to a total of 5,480 killed and wounded.

In the past few days Western military forces have intensified lethal air strikes against Afghan civilians and troops, killing four Afghan soldiers in the south of the country in an air attack in the middle of the month, killing a civilian and wounding two children in another air strike in Helmand province during the same time period, and most recently killing a policeman and the brother of a legislator in a helicopter attack in northern Afghanistan on December 23.

The day before the last incident an Afghan provincial governor called on the North Atlantic military bloc “to pay attention to civilian casualities during operations and prevent civilian casualities. ” [1] The two deaths on the following day indicate that such appeals fall on deaf ears.

On the other side of the Afghan-Pakistani border, on December 16 three U.S. missile attacks killed an estimated 54 people in Pakistan’s Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, all identified as “militants” in the Western press. The overwhelming majority of deadly CIA-directed drone attacks have occurred in North Waziristan in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas. The attack in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa signals the expansion of the war deeper into the country – “a possible expansion of the CIA-led covert campaign of drone strikes inside Pakistani territory” [2] – as does a recent NATO helicopter gunship raid into Balochistan province.

Days later NATO oil tankers came under rocket attack in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas and “The Pakistan-Afghanista n highway was temporarily blocked and NATO supplies suspended following the attack.” [3]

As in Afghanistan, the killing has increased substantially this year.

In the past year there have been at least 115 U.S. drone attacks in the tribal areas, more than double the amount in 2009, which itself represented a dramatic increase over previous years. In 2009 and 2010 there have been approximately 170 missile strikes in North and South Waziristan, a 300 percent increase over the last four years of the George W. Bush administration. The cumulative death toll is in the neighborhood of 2,000, with close to half of those deaths occurring this year.

The CIA’s Jonathan Banks was whisked home from Pakistan after his identity was revealed in a legal action initiated by surviving victims of the drone attacks and their families. The suit also named CIA Director Leon Panetta and Defense Secretary Robert Gates.

Nothing daunted, the special assistant to the commanding general of U.S. Army Special Operations stated that the current demand for more drones (unmanned aerial vehicles) is “insatiable. ”

“It’s like crack, and everyone wants more,” Brigadier General Kevin Mangum recently announced. [4]

The U.S. is pressuring the Pakistani government to launch a military operation in North Waziristan in tandem with the marked escalation of drone attacks there, something paralleling the Pakistani army offensive in the Swat Valley in May of last year that led to the displacement of three million civilians.

In addition, the Pentagon has recently announced that U.S. and NATO forces will be stationed at a military base in the capital of Pakistan’s Balochistan province. [5]

Washington is now pushing to expand special forces operations in Pakistan’s tribal areas, supplementing CIA drone strikes and NATO helicopter attacks in the region.

Until now, “The main role in a secret war on Pakistan territory has belonged to the Central Intelligence Agency. The CIA has operated armed drones to hunt down insurgent leaders and also organized a number of secret missions carried out by Afghan operatives, known as Counterterrorism Pursuit Teams.”

The introduction of American ground forces – in the words of an American official, “We’ve never been as close as we are now to getting the go-ahead to go across” – would “open a new front in the war that is becoming more and more unpopular in America.

“It also could ruin relations with…Pakistan, especially considering the risk of civilian casualties.” [6]

However, civilian deaths on both sides of the Khyber Pass and the destabilization of nuclear Pakistan are matters of small importance to American and NATO geostrategists, who nurture grand designs for Central and South Asia.

A recent Chinese analysis put the matter this way:

“Though it started long ago, the game is still on. There are only more players with more pieces moving and moved on a bigger board, all for a newer rendition of the Great Game.

“Whichever way people prefer to describe the game – geostrategy or geopolitics – there has been a center-piece: interest in a geography that is important to world powers, past and present; that is, in whatever way these powers deem it as important.

“Sitting at one end of the board is the same old player, known as the Russian Empire, while at the other end now is an alliance orchestrated not any more by the British Empire but rather by the Americans and the military coalition they dominate, known as NATO.” [7]

Indian analyst and former diplomat M. K. Bhadrakumar stated in a recent article entitled “NATO weaves South Asian web” that after its summit in Lisbon, Portugal last month NATO “is well on the way to transforming into a global political-military role” and “is by far today the most powerful military and political alliance in the world.”

Speaking about long-term U.S. and NATO strategy in Asia, he added:

“It is within the realm of possibility that NATO would at a future date deploy components of the US missile defense system in Afghanistan. Ostensibly directed against nearby ‘rogue states’, the missile defense system will challenge the Chinese strategic capability.” [8]

Regarding the long-planned agreement on constructing a Turkmenistan- Afghanistan- Pakistan- India (TAPI) natural gas pipeline concluded earlier this month [9], the author said:

“TAPI is the finished product of the US invasion of Afghanistan. It consolidates NATO’s political and military presence in the strategic high plateau that overlooks Russia, Iran, India, Pakistan and China. TAPI provides a perfect setting for the alliance’s future projection of military power for ‘crisis management’ in Central Asia.

“The pipeline signifies a breakthrough in the longstanding Western efforts to access the fabulous mineral wealth of the Caspian and Central Asian region. Washington has been the patron saint of the TAPI concept since the early 1990s when the Taliban was conceived as its Afghan charioteer. The concept became moribund when the Taliban regime was driven out of power from Kabul.

“Now the wheel has come full circle with the project’s incremental resuscitation since 2005, running parallel with the Taliban’s fantastic return to the Afghan chessboard. TAPI’s proposed commissioning coincides with the 2014 timeline for ending the NATO ‘combat mission’ in Afghanistan. The US ‘surge’ is concentrating on Helmand and Kandahar provinces through which the TAPI pipeline will eventually run. What an amazing string of coincidences! ” [10]

Last week NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen affirmed that “as the long-term partnership that President Karzai and I signed at Lisbon demonstrates, our commitment to Afghanistan will continue well beyond 2014.” [11]

On December 22 U.S. ambassador to Afghanistan Karl Eikenberry confirmed that the Pentagon “will retain a ‘sizable mission’ in Afghanistan beyond 2014” and that a troop withdrawal, if it ever occurs, would be “conditions- based; not calendar-based. ” American troops “could also stay on to carry out counter-terrorism operations,” added the retired general and former deputy chairman of the NATO Military Committee. [12]

In a recent interview, American analyst Gareth Porter asserted that NATO troops are killing and dying in Afghanistan “because bureaucrats in Brussels, in the NATO headquarters, wanted more responsibility, [they] wanted a job for NATO to be able to take on in order to justify the continued existence of that organization. ” [13]

The U.S. and NATO require and are exploiting the endless war in Afghanistan and Pakistan for more reasons than simply to justify the continued existence, even the global expansion, of the world’s only military bloc.

As Bhadrakumar has pointed out, far more is at stake: The military encirclement of Russia, China and Iran and control of Eurasia’s strategic energy resources.

1) Associated Press, December 22, 2010
2) Associated Press, December 17, 2010
3) Xinhua News Agency, December 20, 2010
4) U.S. Army: ‘Insatiable Demand’ for UAVs in War Zone
Defense News, December 16, 2010
5) Report on Progress Toward Security and Stability in Afghanistan
November 2010
http://www.defense. gov/pubs/ November_ 1230_Report_ FINAL.pdf
6) US plans to expand raids in Pakistan
Voice of Russia, December 21, 2010
http://english. ruvr.ru/2010/ 12/21/37384229. html
7) Gaochao Yi, More players and more pieces in the New Great Game
Xinhua News Agency, December 19, 2010
http://news. xinhuanet. com/english2010/ indepth/2010- 12/19/c_13655299 .htm
8) Asia Times, December 23, 2010
http://www.atimes. com/atimes/ South_Asia/ LL23Df05. html
9) NATO Trains Afghan Army To Guard Asian Pipeline
Stop NATO, December 19, 2010
http://rickrozoff. wordpress. com/2010/ 12/19/nato- trains-afghan- army-to-guard- asian-pipeline
10) Asia Times, December 23, 2010
11) North Atlantic Treaty Organization, December 16, 2010
12) Pajhwok Afghan News, December 23, 2010
http://www.pajhwok. com/en/2010/ 12/23/eikenberry -sees-continued- role-us-beyond- 2014
13) US-led Afghan war serves NATO’s existence
Press TV, December 20, 2010
http://www.presstv. ir/detail/ 156276.html

Rick Rozoff is a frequent contributor to Global Research. Global Research Articles by Rick Rozoff

Source: http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=22504


Read more by Rick Rozoff:

The US-NATO Conquest of Africa

America’s Undeclared War: Deadly Drone Attacks In Pakistan Reach Record High

US-NATO Using Military Might To Control World Energy Resources

Escalation of the Afghan War? US-NATO Target Russia, China and Iran

Expanding the Afghan War: The West’s insatiable appetite for Global Military Domination

Pentagon Plans For Global Military Supremacy

Global Warfare USA: The World is the Pentagon’s Oyster

The Great Game: U.S., NATO War In Afghanistan

The “Obama Doctrine”: Eternal War For Imperfect Mankind

Decade Of The Drone: America’s Aerial Assassins

7 Comments on “2011: U.S. And NATO To Extend And Expand Afghan War”

  1. captain says:

    perpetual war was the original aim from day one.War is the biggest cash cow for the elite families who profit most from misery throughout history as long as the good people don’t identify the true puppet masters and make a move on them,nothing ever will change.the middle east was not only singled out for its resources but also coz it’s a soft target with minimal military resistance.the problem with NATO soldiers is that they can only wage war against civilians,nomadic herdsmen,women&children,journalists etc if they had to engage true soldiers,well equipped highly trained,motivated highly agressive metal heads like the former ss stormtroopers there would all be massacred.look at the us/uk,the government wages a 24hr bio-chemical&psychological war against its own citizens doesn’t that tell you all you ever need to know? im just glad to have met high ranking us officers who are sick of this charade and are prepared to take drastic action to purge the pentagon of its criminal elements.

  2. Annie Ladysmith says:

    As the Yid leaders of the US bootlicks it’s Mossad handlers and extends itself even more to this trumped war that is butchering millions of innocents for the sake of the Talmudiacs dream, or nightmare, of a greater Israhell and world control, we are left with little ground forces, other than ourselves, to defend our country against the coming Chinese invasion of our West Coast. Canada has dismantled it’s coast guard on the West Coast, and at least one high ranking admiral in the US was shot in the head after he left the Pentagon, when he dissagreed with the top brass over giving ships to China for this purpose. US troops come home! If you don’t they will never let you live, you will all die invading Iran for Israhell. GET OUT NOW! Pilots bring our troops home now, We, the American people are giving you these orders! COME OUT OF THERE NOW! Bring all our equipment back, bring all our planes back, leave the commanders there for the “Taliban”, unless they are patriotic Americans ready to bring us the “CHANGE” we are all ready to fight for. Come to the West, we’ll leave New York for the Russians, and fight them in the Rockies. Come home and defend your countrymen and women against the Yid Tyrants in DC. PLEASE save your home now, our liberty is running through our fingers, we are ready to fight for it! Nothing else will work!

  3. captain says:

    dear anne, so glad to see you back here,i totally agree unless the us/uk troops come home and start fighting for the people which they have sworn to protect and start recognising and identifying the real enemy who will only engage in warfare through deception we will be in deep shit, all is not lost , there is a mini revolution gaining momentum within the pentagon and other military hirachies many good,decent officers have realised that high command was taken over by treasonous business men and inbred fools.i have endured endless criticism for supporting the decent elements in the us/uk military who my social circle view as murdering pigs but they fail to see it from the inside, the true enemy has infiltrated every section of the decision making apparatus,military and civilian and is in control of the hearts and minds of the fighting soldier and the taxpaying,voting civilian alike,it’s not easy to comprehend for them that the ficticious enemy they fight has been empowered by their own intelligence services.

  4. […] The main motive of 1998 nuclear tests by India was to completely push Pakistan to back foot. India was all set to give a clear message to the world that it has achieved complete supremacy in the South Asian region due to its Military might and with a stockpile of effective Nuclear Weapons. A huge country with enormous economic growth and unmatchable power of Conventional and Nuclear weapons could have brought great influence to India in this region and probably a confirmed permanent seat in the UN Security Council. There were also false claims made by RAW and Military High ups of India which led the then Prime Minister Mr. Atal Bihari Vajpayee to had been completely convinced that Pakistan was unable to initiate its own nuclear test in fear of International reaction. But, the most hyped tests were not only proved to be failed but subsequent tests by Pakistan on 28thMay 1998 completely shut the beak of the Indian ostrich. India still curses the loss of huge edge it got before Pokhran tests in 1998 which not only changed the power scene of this region but also threw India into many doubts about its own nuclear capabilities. Intelligence inputs suggest that India is facing another blow due to its failed Missile program which is also creating big head ache for the Military high ups. India is now on an emergency plan with the help of Israel to restructure its Missile program which was previously based on Russian technology. The Missile program now needs a serious upgrading and revamping because of growing challenges in the region. It is also widely believed that among many factors which are believed to be like American pressure and the fear of lack of International support, the possible attack on Pakistan after 26/11 Mumbai terrorism were backed off only due to sorry report of Indian Nuclear capabilities and spineless Missile system. It is also believed that it was after 26/11 when the reports of failed tests of Pokhran came into Anyone can also check out this related post: https://nwoobserver.wordpress.com/2010/12/27/2011-u-s-and-nato-to-extend-and-expand-afghan-war/ […]

  5. […] 2011: U.S. And NATO To Extend And Expand Afghan War Possibly related posts: (automatically generated)Tony Blair: A Bright Shining LieThe Collapse of Western MoralityUMNO’S MANUAL OF TRICKERY AND DECEPTION ARE FACTUALLY IN CORRECTUMNO’S MANUAL OF TRICKERY AND DECEPTION ARE FACTUALLY IN CORRECT […]

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