Saturday, February 24, 2007


Britain is deploying another 1,500 troops to Afghanistan after pleas for more combat soldiers made by the NATO commander to the other European members of NATO fell upon deaf ears.

“Those [extra] troops should be coming from countries such as Germany, France, Italy and Spain who have so far not shown the adequate resolve to be part of a full Nato complement in Afghanistan,” he told Today on BBC Radio 4.

Nato is running the International Security Assistance Force (Isaf) in Afghanistan with a total complement of about 35,000 troops, but most of the contributions from Nato members are small. The United States has provided the biggest force —27,000, of whom 15,500 serve under Nato — followed by Britain.

“Too many of our European partners are now pocketing the Nato security guarantee but leaving UK taxpayers and the UK military to carry the cost,” Dr Fox said.

Read the whole story.

I could not agree more with Dr. Fox on this one, though I would add the U.S. taxpayers and military to his last statement. The showing of Germany, France, Italy and Spain has been disgraceful. And the problem of Afghanistan is not going to go away anytime soon. Allowing an enemy a power base that is untouchable is a sure recipe for a long, and possibly losing war. That was the true lesson of Vietnam. And now we are seeing it repeated again as the Talian has a secure base in Pakistan's Fronteir Provinces, protected from attack by NATO because it is nominally a part of Pakistan. And now protected from the Pakistani military as a result of Musharraf's treaty with the provinces. Both the NATO problems and Taliban safe havens will have to be addressed as the war in Afghanistan progresses.

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