“It’s near-impossible to find anyone in Afghanistan who doesn’t believe the US are funding the Taliban: and it’s the highly educated Afghan professionals, those employed by ISAF, USAID, international media organisations â€“ and even advising US diplomats â€“ who seem the most convinced….
…“Even a child of five knows this,” one Kabuli radio journalist tells me, holding his hand a couple of feet from the ground in illustration. Look at Helmand, he says; how could 15,000 international and Afghan troops fail to crush a couple of thousand of badly equipped Taliban?
…This isn’t just some vague prejudice or the wildly conspiratorial theories so prevalent in the Middle East. There is a highly structured if convoluted analysis behind this. If the US really wanted to defeat the Taliban, person after person asks me, why don’t they tackle them in Pakistan? The reason is simple, one friend tells me. “As long as you don’t get rid of the nest, the problem will continue. If they eliminate the Taliban, the US will have no reason to stay here.”
The proof is manifold, they say (although it does tend to include the phrase guaranteed to dismay every journalist: “everybody knows that â€¦”).
Among the things everybody knows are that Afghan national army troops report taking over Taliban bases to find identical rations and weapons to their own US-supplied equipment. The US funds the madrasas both in Afghanistan and in Pakistan, which produce the young Talibs. US army helicopters regularly deliver supplies behind Taliban lines. The aid organisations are nothing more than intelligence-collecting agencies, going into regions the army cannot easily reach to obtain facts on the ground. Even the humblest midwife-training project is a spying outfit…."
2010-05-28 20:49:18 UTC