Monday, May 03, 2010

Even We Can See Taliban Winning in Afghanistan

This is a map of Afghanistan prepared by the NATO-led coalition, ISAF, just a couple of months ago. It shows key districts of the country and, by colour, how they're aligned. The red districts are strictly Taliban country. The green districts are the opposite, they support the government. Only no matter how long you look there aren't any green districts. Blue are sympathetic to the government whereas grey are sympathetic to the insurgency. The yellow districts are considered by our commanders neutral at best.

Asia Times Online points out that western forces have played pretty fast and loose with their yellow crayon.
Eight of the "neutral" districts shown on the map are in Helmand province, where it has acknowledged in the past that the population was largely sympathetic to the Taliban.
The districts of Nad Ali, in which Marjah is located, Naw Zad, Lashkar Gah and Sangin are all shown as having "neutral" populations, even though it has been well documented that the populations of those heavily opium poppy-growing districts had turned decisively against the government and foreign troops over government eradication efforts and the abusive behavior of police associated with local warlords.
The population of Nad Ali had been shown in an assessment in late December as being supportive of the Taliban. Naw Zad and Sangin districts, on the other hand, had been assessed as "neutral" in December.
Eight years on and we can't produce a single district where the population supports the government? Really? Not even one? Oh dear, I don't think this is going at all well.


LeDaro said...

MoS, you got it all wrong. Government support is undercover. That is why you don't see it.

ck said...

Something most of us already know, whether we're willing to admit this or not.

It doesn't matter when we pull out of Afghanistan, I always knew the moment we left, the Taliban will resume power. Hell, even Karzai is willing to go to bed with them if he remains with some seblence of power.

I say, forget 2011; I say cut our losses and pull out.