July 25, 2010

"Americans fighting the war in Afghanistan have long harbored strong suspicions that Pakistan’s military spy service has guided the Afghan insurgency with a hidden hand..."

"... even as Pakistan receives more than $1 billion a year from Washington for its help combating the militants, according to a trove of secret military field reports made public Sunday."

The WikiLeaks document dump. Let's try to understand.

38 comments:

Jim said...

Four words to make war by:
more rubble, less trouble.

edutcher said...

A lot of this isn't exactly a revelation to anyone who has been paying attention. The ISI has been a law unto itself for years and its role in helping form the Taliban is very well known.

Sounds like the beginning of a move to pressure The Zero to bail out.

And this is the Demos' idea of a 'good war'.

For those who distrust the Gray Lady, may I suggest a few hours' digging through strategypage's archives.

EK said...

Duplicity on the part of the Pakistani ISI? That's old news.

Dead Julius said...
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MikeDC said...

Everyone's known this since day one but nobody's figured out what to do about it.

Psota said...

There have been plenty of people out there standing on rooftops, waving their arms, yelling that the ISI and the Taliban are working together. The same people have also been saying the same thing about Iranians killing American troops in Iraq. Sadly, these people were all Dread Neo-cons, so they didn't count.

A lot of America's post-9/11 diplomacy has involved two incompatible goals: (1) building support for the War on Terror and (2) maintaining the fiction that our allies in the region are reliable partners in all things War on Terror-y. The fact is that virtually every Muslim majority government has jihadist elements within it, often at the highests levels of power. The average American knows this, but the American government is wedded to the fiction that it is not so.

I don't like that Wiki-leaks has published the fruits of a traitor's "whistleblowing." But, at least we will be dealing with the world as it is, rather than through our diplomats' pleasant fiction.

Lem said...

Let's try to understand.

Lets try and understand that they shelter an American enemy that managed to hurt us in ways the former Soviet Union never could.

That wound will never heal as long as that thing still crawls and draws a breath.

I want to curse the day he was born.

William said...

If the Taliban can win in Afghanistan, what's to keep them from going on to win in Pakistan. Momentum. A Taliban led state with nuclear arms. There must be some, even on the left, who can see a down side to this scenario.

Revenant said...

I hope we're taking steps to deal with Wikileaks. Publishing American military secrets in wartime isn't something we should let stand.

traditionalguy said...

So why has Obama, who knew these intelligence reports and the troops'real situation sent more of them into this Afghan trap to be IED and ambush slaughtered for the next ten months until his pre-set withdrawal? Obama is pure scum!

David said...

The entire article is a swamp of imprecision masquerading as revelation.

"Americans are concerned . . ." What Americans?

"Pakistan is assisting . . ." Who is "Pakistan?" When the author says, "Pakistan" what does he mean?

There is a shift about a third of the way through the article from the issue of "aid" and "direction" of the Taliban, to that of "militant" groups in Pakistan. Quite different problems, though you have to look hard to see the shift.

It's hardly a surprise that there is not monolithic support in Pakistan, including its intelligence services, for the U.S. efforts.

Who in the American government wants to emphasize this issue? It could be "the beginning of pressure . . . to bail out" or it could be a move from the very top of the American government to justify a bailout. Articles like this don't get written (especially so breathlessly) unless some pretty important Americans have axes to grind.

Obama has done precious little leadership, and virtually no persuasion, to get support for his Afgan policy, which is hard to discern in the first place.

The military's lack of confidence in Obama's leadership already exploded through the McCrystal episode. Now our President is going to have to prove his integrity.

Hard to know where this will end up, but it's not headed in a good direction.

traditionalguy said...

@David...There is no direction worth a damn in an American forces Afghanistan occupation and there has never been one.

Dead Julius said...
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Seven Machos said...

Who is Wikileaks?

Luke Lea said...

If further confirmation were needed, we ought to get out of that part of the world.

Dead Julius said...
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Maguro said...

What MikeDC said. This is the least surprising news on this blog since we learned that Ricky Martin was gay.

paul a'barge said...

Please. We've known all this for years now. We don't need a document dump on this. We already know every bit of this. Already.

Point me to one thing/fact that is new and worthy of more than a snort.

Bomb Pakistan; right after we bomb Iran.

Seven Machos said...

Julius -- Having worked in government, I disagree with that thesis. It could just as plausibly be that some disgruntled workers at State, the Pentagon, or any of several entities are doing the leaking.

I'll take disgruntled bureaucrats over massive conspiracy any day.

The Crack Emcee said...

*Yaaaawwwwwn*

If someone dumps thousands of documents, and they feature what any idiot knew already, does it make a sound?

I hope not, because I'm going back to sleep.

Wake me whenever anybody gets serious about fighting wars again.

Joe said...

A definite no shit Sherlock moment.

Randy said...

Publishing American military secrets in wartime isn't something we should let stand.

True. But we haven't actually legally declared war, have we?

(Not defending Wikileaks by asking the question.)

Revenant said...

True. But we haven't actually legally declared war, have we?

Yes, we did that back in 2001.

Stability of Art in Unstable Times... said...
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Stability of Art in Unstable Times... said...
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Jason said...

Up next, the surprising truth about the Tooth Fairy and the Easter Bunny!

Right after the break.

WV: edumb

GMay said...

"The site also reported that it had "delayed the release of some 15,000 reports" as part of what it called "a harm minimization process demanded by our source," but said it may release the other documents after further review."

Given Wikileaks penchant for distorting the facts with that last big video release, who thinks they'll hold back?

I don't give a fat happy rat's ass if this has the potential to utterly humiliate Obama and Co., releasing data like this is treason. I hope the source is caught and given to Spencer Ackerman for a good roughing up.

Cedarford said...

Lem - Lets try and understand that they shelter an American enemy that managed to hurt us in ways the former Soviet Union never could.
That wound will never heal as long as that thing still crawls and draws a breath.
I want to curse the day he was born.


There is no such thing as a Arch Evildoer. Just an enemy ideology whose most successful attackers - like Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, Sheikh Nasrallah, Major Nassim- are absolutely convinced they are not "criminals" by their laws, nor are millions of direct, active supporters and tens of millions of people behind that with strong sympathy for the enemy Jihadist ideology.

Thinking it is all about one man or is a criminal justice matter is ridiculous. It drives us to futile actions for decades thinking law enforcement and lawyers and juries are the answer..or "high tech superhero soldiers" will find a "Mr Evil" and end it. And pretense that "the vast majority" think of them as criminals and want America to invade and liberate them. (That meant two enternal wars now close to entering their 2nd decade.)

Nope, it is war and Islamism is just an enemy ideology. Like communism, thuggees, fascists, etc.

You don't beat it through fantasies one guy is responsible, nor by "convictions! by Rule of Law!!"
You either quarantine it like we did with commies, and deporting radicals and not admitting others...or you deal with it by massively killing off the population harboring the ideology in total war.

Lem said...

It had to be cedaford to raise in defence of our enemy.

Go pound sand along with the enemies of the USA.

New "Hussein" Ham said...

There's absolutely no way that this sort of a document dump, covering such a wide area of an ongoing war, can occur without the active assistance of the Central Intelligence Agency.

Our own CIA is an enemy of the state. It is operating against our interests. And we should dismantle Democrat Party control of it.

Republicans - when they take over the House and Senate in November - need to defund the CIA. It is too infested with Democrat Party traitors to allow the agency to continue.

Let's replace the CIA with a new spy organization that has - as one of its goals - refusing to hire people who have ever been associated with the Democrat Party.

The only way to secure our government from enemies within and without is to first eliminate all Democrat Party members from it - by whatever means necessary.

LarsPorsena said...

I remember rushing out to get the 'Pentagon Papers' when they were first published. Breathlessly pored through all 1000+ pages to find......nothing.

Randy said...

Yes, we did that back in 2001.

We did? I don't recall Congress approving a declaration of war as required under the constitution.

Joe said...

I don't recall Congress approving a declaration of war as required under the constitution.

Except that's not what the US Constitution actually says. It simply states that Congress shall have the power... To declare War.

That's it; it doesn't specify how that declaration must happen, just that Congress has that power. One could even argue that all the power is is one to Declare War, which doesn't preclude the US from having an armed conflict with another nation.

(The subsequent item states "To raise and support Armies, but no Appropriation of Money to that Use shall be for a longer Term than two Years;" Takes a whole lot longer to develop and build a bomber, fighter jet, submarine or ship--so Congress lives by the letter, but definitely not the spirit of that provision.)

Revenant said...

We did? I don't recall Congress approving a declaration of war as required under the constitution.

I take it you're one of those tiresome individuals who mistakenly believes it doesn't count as a declaration of war unless the words "DECLARATION OF WAR" appear somewhere in the bill?

The AUMF is a legal declaration of war. This isn't news. You should get out more. :)

Gene said...

We already knew this, but the Afghan Papers just show once more that we are involved in a useless war in a corrupt country and the sooner we leave the better it will be for us.

We don't need to have any more more of our troops killed to prop up a corrupt foreign regime. Afghanistan is of no strategic importance to us (and diff1cult to supply in any case). Every time we use a drone to blow up another wedding part, 1,000 new recruits join Al Qaeda.

The war is killing our economy at a time we can't afford to be fighting any wars, let alone two useless ones. The money we spend over there would be much better spent proving jobs and building infrastructure at home.

If we left Afghanistan yesterday, it still wouldn't be soon enough.

Anthony said...

Revenant --

I would add that people who make the usual comment that "Congress did not declare War" even though it is authorized often forget that in 1798, less than a decade after the ratification of the Constitution, authorized President Adams to take military action against France.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Act_Further_to_Protect_the_Commerce_of_the_United_States

The act did not "declare war" but authorized the president to order the seizure of French shipping.

Anthony said...

What exactly NEW has Wikileaks told us?

Before Wikileaks, I knew that:

1. War is bad
2. People die
3. Civilians are geting killed in Afghanistan
4. Elements in Pakistan support the Taliban
5. Iran has a hand in things
6. Special Forces are running around trying to kill Taliban and al Qeada leaders
7. Afghanistan is a screwed up country.

I knew all that. It bothered me, but I knew it. The only new thing I learend so far is that the Taliban got their hands on some anti-aircraft missiles.

Gene said...

Anthony

I agree with your points one through seven. I'd add a couple more too. Every time we fire another bolt-from-the-blue Hellfire missile at a wedding party 100 relatives of the dead and maimed rush off to join the Taliban.

Afghanistan is far more trouble than it's worth. Our economy is collapsing around us. We can't afford to fight any more useless wars on the other side of the world, especially when no matter what we do we apparently can't win.

Americans are far more important to me than Afghanis. I say bring all our troops home, give them jobs building infrastructure and quit wasting money on bombs and countries that either don't want or don't appreciate our help.