US Army researchers: Why the Kandahar offensive could backfire

At Wired, Nathan Hodge reports:

The southern Afghan province of Kandahar trusts the Taliban more than the government. And that’s according to a survey commissioned by the U.S. Army.

Kandahar is expected to be the focal point of operations for U.S. and NATO troops this summer, but a poll recently conducted by the Army’s controversial social science program, the Human Terrain System (HTS), is warning that rampant local corruption, and a lack of security, could undermine coalition efforts to win the support of the local population.

Among other things, the survey’s authors warned that a lack of confidence in the Afghan government “sets conditions for a disenfranchised population to respond either by not supporting the government due to its inability to deliver improvements in the quality of life or, worse yet, by supporting the Taliban.”

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1 thought on “US Army researchers: Why the Kandahar offensive could backfire

  1. DE Teodoru

    Pashtun Afghanistan went for Taliban in 1997 because of the warlords. The Karzai regime is a gathering of the warlords. Therefore, the McChrystal “gov in a box” is nothing but same old warlords. Afghanistan is Petraeus’s 2012 Republican Presidential electoral campaign and McChrystal– the maker of the Jessica Lynch and Pat Tillman myths to cover-up friendly-fire snafus– is his campaign manager; that’s why Petraeus had McKiernnan replaced with McChrystal! But we may be out of Iraq early enough so that it will become known that Petraeus’s Iraq “surge victory” was a victory only for Bush in that he could pass his Iraq policy failure to fail under his successor. Does that mean that our mom&dad soldiers have to die so that Petraeus can try for another such “surge victory” in Afghnaistan to cover up the last phony one? If yes, then Kandahar makes POLITICAL sense. But it will never make US security sense to use the world as America’s political football– it’s not the right shape for that!

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