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U.S. Afghanistan General: Russia Helping Taliban ‘to Undermine United States and NATO”

U.S. Afghanistan General: Russia Helping Taliban ‘to Undermine United States and NATO”

He also needs more soldiers.

Yesterday, during the Senate’s debate on Attorney General Jeff Sessions’s confirmation, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) mentioned he wouldn’t be surprised if Russia made a move to help the Taliban against us and NATO. It appears he was onto something because Gen. John Nicholson, the top U.S. general in Afghanistan, told the Senate Armed Services Committee that Russia wants to “legitimize the Taliban” in Afghanistan as a way “to undermine the United States and NATO. From The Hill:

“The Russian involvement this year has become more difficult,” Gen. John Nicholson told the Senate Armed Services Committee. “First, they have begun to publicly legitimize the Taliban. This narrative that they promote is that the Taliban are fighting Islamic State and the Afghan government is not fighting Islamic State and that therefore there could be spillover of this group into the region. This is a false narrative.”

“I believe its intent is to undermine the United States and NATO,” he later added.

Nicholson stated Russia started to interfere in 2016 and their involvement “continues to increase.” He continued:

“The Russian involvement, this year, has become more difficult,” Army Gen. John Nicholson told the Senate Armed Services Committee.

“First, they have begun to publicly legitimize the Taliban,” he continued. “This narrative that they promote is that the Taliban are fighting Islamic State and the Afghan government is not fighting Islamic State and that therefore there could be spillover of this group into the region. This is a false narrative.”

Nicholson could not provide classified information to the senators at the hearing, but reports from January back up his accusations. The Wall Street Journal published a report that Moscow “disclosed details of contacts with the Taliban.” In December, Russian officials hosted officials from China and Pakistan about combatting the terrorist threats within Afghanistan. Yes, they did that without Afghanistan or U.S. officials.

The Kremlin also did not approve removing “Gulbuddin Hekmatyar from a United Nations sanctions list, a crucial condition of an Afghan government peace deal with the warlord’s al Qaeda-linked insurgent group.” The U.S. and its allies immediately saw this as a sign that Russia wants to use Hekmatyar, an Afghan politician and warlord, “as a template for future talks with the Taliban.”

Sen. Bill Nelson (D-FL) said they need to inform President Donald Trump of these revelations and Nicholson quickly agreed.

Nicholson also acknowledged a stalemate in Afghanistan and that he has “a shortfall of a few thousand” soldiers. But it’s not necessarily to fight. Instead, he needs “troops to train and advise the Afghans.” The advisors in Afghanistan work “at the command level of army corps.” Nicholson wants more advisors “at lower levels in the chain of command, specifically Afghan brigades.”

From The New York Times:

As a general rule, the use of military advisers is more effective if it is not limited to advising foreign armies in their military headquarters, but also extends to units in the field. The Obama administration’s decision last summer to provide air support for Afghan forces fighting the Taliban also increased the need for advisers below the level of Afghan army corps, General Nicholson said.

General Nicholson said that the thousands of additional advisers he was seeking could come from allied armies and did not all need to be American. But there appears to be little appetite among NATO nations to send more troops to Afghanistan.

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Comments

Wasn’t the Taliban formed to fight against the Soviet attempt to secularize Afghanistan?

    RSConsulting in reply to rabidfox. | February 9, 2017 at 4:52 pm

    I was just about to say this. Both the Tali and OBL, were formed from the mujahadeen fighters WE SUPPORTED in order to bog the Soviet Union down in Afghan.

    By the very nature of them – Islamic Holy Warriors, was it any surprise at all, how they turned out after the Russians were gone. ESPECIALLY since we failed to provide the promised post-war support.

    For better or worse – the only reason for our incursion there was (tacitly) to get OBL, since they wouldn’t hand him over. Would we have STILL GONE IN, had they hog-tied him and handed him off?

    Maybe – maybe not.

    We are now mired in the same no-win battle we placed the Russians in – with the same enemy WE SUPPORTED against Moscow.

    Turnabout is fair play. Much as we dislike strict Sharia states – our biggest allie (Saudi’s) are no better in their practices – just have a little more money, cleaner clothes and better haircuts.

    While BHO seemed ready to capitulate and negotiate – we are faced with two choices. Spending money and resources (and lives) to try and win a war that really can’t be won – as long as we are the INFIDEL INVADERS?

    Time to either commit to the atrocity of killing every last one of them – or admit the initial motives may have been good – but the ENDGAME SUCKED.

    Rick

    Ragspierre in reply to rabidfox. | February 9, 2017 at 5:32 pm

    No. The mujahedin is what you’re thinking about.

    The Taliban came after.

Strange, under Bush, Russians helped Americans to undermine the Taliban. Everything changed with the attempted elective regime change in Syria and the coup leading to a refugee crisis in Ukraine. The extrajudicial trial that sentenced the repentant dictator Gaddafi to sodomy and abortion was likely a first-order cause of catastrophic anthropogenic global climate change. Leaving our ambassador and fellow Americans to suffer the same fate did not dispel fears of social justice adventurists run amuck.

    Turtler in reply to n.n. | February 9, 2017 at 10:23 pm

    “Strange, under Bush, Russians helped Americans to undermine the Taliban. ”

    Periodically, and very briefly.

    “Everything changed with the attempted elective regime change in Syria and the coup leading to a refugee crisis in Ukraine. ”

    BULL$HAT.

    Firstly: No Syrian Regime in the History of the World can be called “elective.”

    And secondly: are you forgetting the entire second half of Bush’s Presidency, when the Kremlin desperately tried to get us out of Manas Air Transit Base (a place mostly dedicated to getting wounded soldiers back to Europe and healthy ones in) just because they viewed Central Europe as their private fief?

    Have you forgotten about the invasion of Georgia, a conflict that started when the cream of the Georgian Army was fighting alongside us against the Jihadis in Iraq and the world was distracted by the Beijing Olympics, leaving the door open for Ossetian and Abkhazian irregulars to step up raiding of the border in the hopes of provoking an attack?

    And finally: What happened in Kyiv was not a “Coup” you stupid git. Contrary to the usual meme peddled by Kremlin apologists, Yanukovych was not removed by Right Sector or angry people in the streets, but by HIS OWN RADA in the process of impeachment.

    “The extrajudicial trial that sentenced the repentant dictator Gaddafi to sodomy and abortion ”

    Gaddafi was never repentant. EVER. He merely figured it was better to avoid getting squashed, and when he faced what started as peaceful protests even that went out the window. Have you EVER FREAKING LISTENED TO HIS SPEECHES?

    He continued to earnestly hope that Islam would conquer the World, starting with Europe.

    “was likely a first-order cause of catastrophic anthropogenic global climate change.”

    Hardly.

    ” Leaving our ambassador and fellow Americans to suffer the same fate did not dispel fears of social justice adventurists run amuck.”

    Agreed there.

    However, for as bad as SJW Adventurists are- and they are quite bad- Putin and co are worse. And I know this because I had the misfortune of trying to help them with charity at the grassroots level way back when.

    Personally? I find these claims very weak sauce. Not because I have even the slightest doubt that Putin is ruthless, cruel, and perfidious enough to do so. After all, he has been the single greatest backer of the Mullahcracy in Iran, and he did undermine the Coalition effort in Afghanistan both needlessly and frankly not pragmatic.

    But simply because I’ve heard a lot of sensationalist bullocks about what the Kremlin is doing lately, and not a lot of evidence to support it.

I thought there might possibly be something to this, until this clanger—

Sen. Bill Nelson (D-FL) said they need to inform President Donald Trump of these revelations and Nicholson quickly agreed.

Right, a Dem Senator had a breakthrough idea—somebody should tell the Commander-in-Chief about this!!!!! Gosh, why didn’t anybody think of that before!

Sure looks like theater for a Press which is so stupid somebody not only has to pitch it softballs, but then has to show it which direction to run. And the direction it has to run is … ooh! ooh! Maybe those sneaky Russians got the sneaky Taliban to “hack” the election! No, no “maybe” about it! So obviously the President is not only going to suck up to the Russians, but to the Taliban too. Ipso facto, Q.E.D. Set it to music, and maybe they’ll have a hit.

Give them a couple of days to elaborate the fantasy; maybe they’ll have it ready by tomorrow, so we can stew about it all weekend. They may be stupid, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t pros at the “fake news” game.

This is all old news. And, it is really unimportant. A few facts might help put this into perspective.

First, Russia is not a friend of the US. These two countries are in competition for leadership positions in the global community. They may ally, occasionally, when their interests coincide. But, they are largely competitors.

Second, Afghanistan is of almost no importance in the world, except as a produced of heroin. Otherwise, it has nothing that anyone else wants or needs.

Third, even in its heyday, the Taliban only controlled a small part of Afghanistan. Its control was largely restricted to the more developed areas. Tribal warlords controlled most of the countryside, as they do today. Afghanistan is really a collection of tribal fiefdoms which are all clustered inside a border which was drawn far from the area it defines.

The US entered Afghanistan to apprehend OBL, after the Taliban, which we supplied and supported during the Soviet occupation, refused to turn him over. When it was determined that OBL was no longer in the country, the US should have withdrawn. However, we saw it as an opportunity to establish a friendly government there, while keeping a large military force in the eastern border of Iran. This was never going to produce the results that the Bush administration hoped for. That we are still there is ridiculous.

So, now the Russians are assisting the Taliban. It might be nice to have some idea as to what form and what extent this “support” takes. As the Afghan government is totally ineffective at leading the country and has been nothing but a monumental embarrassment to the US, I can readily see why the Russians, who could really care less who runs the country might prefer the Taliban which is far more capable of imposing order and control.

But, it needs to be remembered that General Nichols is trying to drum up support for his mission, in Afghanistan. And he wants the US to provide additional manpower to do this. It will fail, as did the ISAF, even though the US provides over half of the troops for the Resolute Support [RS] mission.

Well, half our elected officials (most all democrats) are supporting groups who are supporting Hamas, who is now allied with Isis.
http://thefederalist.com/2016/06/23/hamas-is-isiss-deadly-new-best-friend/

Let Nordstroms go fight the Taliban.

Isn’t trying to change Afghanistan something akin to changing the climate?

It is no surprise that sometimes we work with Russia and sometimes we work against them. The way it’s always been. Not the only country like this. Foreign policy isn’t black and white. MSM is clueless about foreign issues because they don’t want to understand. they simply want to report anything that supports their own agenda which they’re convinced will create a utopia. Well, at least get rid of mean, horrible, racist USA.

Same with Germany, it would seem. But I can’t recall being allied with Germany in a war against Russia. Especially when Germany is busy finding solutions to its ethnic minority problem.

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