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The private intelligence network in Afghanistain and Pakistan is still working……..

The New York Times has been heavy on the case of a US Government program that seems to have been set up by some ex-US government good guys, and a few questionable ones…..

If you read military action novels you are very familiar with the scenario where a President…feed up with the bureaucracy involved with the CIA, Military and other agencies…..turns to a few individuals to get the job done…To find out what’s going on without regard to career building, cover your butt, or what the chief executive wants to hear…..That apperas to have  turned into contract for Lockheed….

They in turn  put together a group of former CIA operators, who hired former US special operators (SEAL’s, Deltas and other CIA special operators and natives of the two countries)

This works since the US wants to say it doesn’t have ground troops operating in Pakistan …..

The operation in Afghanistan and Pakistan seems to have morphed into that same thing…..

The names mentioned in the piece are old CIA operators and high up US Military  who left the service to retire when new improved people were brought on board….

These old hands are now running a private service that is paid by the government in a contract to the Lockheed Corporation…..

And let me mention one thing very clearly ……

THE US MILITARY IS VERY HAPPY WITH THE SET-UP!

The New York Times seems a bit indignant  …

But the Generals that run the war are NOT…

The private contractor provides valuable intel…and the while the word has gone out that the operation will not be renewed…

The US military it appears…

DOES NOT WANT IT STOPPED……THEY WANT IT TO CONTINUE….

The whole op is not under investigation by the government but

, Michael D. Furlong ,  is…….And  if my  mind set  is  right….this was the guy who set up Vice President’s  Cheney’s separate intelligence network…….

The New York Times found that Mr. Furlong’s operatives were still providing information using the same intelligence gathering methods as before and because they are using ex-US military operators…..then natural evolution of the program has occurred and those operator ……who are supervised by military people who just a few years ago ran the Iraq war and still have friends in high places and are trusted…carry out ‘wet’ work if it comes their way….

The whole thing is…..

9/11 has changed things…..

This whole story by the New York Times misses a very basic point….

Remember when  General McChrsytal was faced with a choice of what strategy to use in the war last year?

President Obama, the Commander-in-Chief, went with door ‘B’…..the middle troop choice…The US will reach that strength level in Afghanistan by July….But few remember Vice President Biden’s  choice…..I do…..

‘Hunter…Killer Teams”….

That’s what the Lockheed group is doing….

So…..The Vice President got his choice also….Signed off on in 2009 by General Patreaus….

And the Commander – in Chief….

The Operation isn’t going away anytime soon….

No matter how much sunlight the New York Times* shines on it…..

Earlier this year, government officials admitted that the military had sent a group of former Central Intelligence Agency officers and retired Special Operations troops into the region to collect information — some of which was used to track and kill people suspected of being militants. Many portrayed it as a rogue operation that had been hastily shut down once an investigation began.

But interviews with more than a dozen current and former government officials and businessmen, and an examination of government documents, tell a different a story. Not only are the networks still operating, their detailed reports on subjects like the workings of the Taliban leadership in Pakistan and the movements of enemy fighters in southern Afghanistan are also submitted almost daily to top commanders and have become an important source of intelligence.

The American military is largely prohibited from operating inside Pakistan. And under Pentagon rules, the army is not allowed to hire contractors for spying.

Military officials said that when Gen. David H. Petraeus, the top commander in the region, signed off on the operation in January 2009, there were prohibitions against intelligence gathering, including hiring agents to provide information about enemy positions in Pakistan. The contractors were supposed to provide only broad information about the political and tribal dynamics in the region, and information that could be used for “force protection,” they said.

Some Pentagon officials said that over time the operation appeared to morph into traditional spying activities. And they pointed out that the supervisor who set up the contractor network, Michael D. Furlongwas now under investigation.

But a review of the program by The New York Times found that Mr. Furlong’s operatives were still providing information using the same intelligence gathering methods as before. The contractors were still being paid under a $22 million contract, the review shows, managed by Lockheed Martin and supervised by the Pentagon office in charge of special operations policy.

Geoff Morrell, the Pentagon press secretary, said that the program “remains under investigation by multiple offices within the Defense Department,” so it would be inappropriate to answer specific questions about who approved the operation or why it continues.

“I assure you we are committed to determining if any laws were broken or policies violated,” he said. Spokesmen for General Petraeus and Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal, the top American commander in Afghanistan, declined to comment. Mr. Furlong remains at his job, working as a senior civilian Air Force official.

A senior defense official said that the Pentagon decided just recently not to renew the contract, which expires at the end of May. While the Pentagon declined to discuss the program, it appears that commanders in the field are in no rush to shut it down because some of the information has been highly valuable, particularly in protecting troops against enemy attacks.

With the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the expanded role of contractors on the battlefield — from interrogating prisoners to hunting terrorism suspects — has raised questions about whether the United States has outsourced some of its most secretive and important operations to a private army many fear is largely unaccountable. The C.I.A. has relied extensively on contractors in recent years to carry out missions in war zones…….

………………………………

The exposure of the spying network also reveals tensions between the Pentagon and the C.I.A., which itself is running a covert war across the border in Pakistan. In December, a cable from the C.I.A.’s station chief in Kabul, Afghanistan, to the Pentagon argued that the military’s hiring of its own spies could have disastrous consequences, with various networks possibly colliding with one another.

The memo also said that Mr. Furlong had a history of delving into outlandish intelligence schemes, including an episode in 2008, when American officials expelled him from Prague for trying to clandestinely set up computer servers for propaganda operations. Some officials say they believe that the C.I.A. is trying to scuttle the operation to protect its own turf, and that the spy agency has been embarrassed because the contractors are outperforming C.I.A. operatives.……….

More…….

Note …….One could get the idea that this piece was written by someone who set out to ‘out the operation’  from a ‘turf’ war point of view……

The author has held back sensitive information he says about the operation…..

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May 16, 2010 Posted by | Aircraft, Breaking News, Counterpoints, Government, Law, Media, Men, Military, PoliticalDog Calls, Politics, September 11, Updates | , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Afghanistan Update……

Stanley McChrystal

Hamid Karzai flew into Washington today with US ambassador Karl Elkenberry and General Stanley McChrystal…

When they got into Washington…they statred the ball rolling on reporting the progress in that countries fight to regain its independence from

The Taliban…..

And trying to make Karzai look like a player…not a hindrance to the process…

McChrystal is giving himself and his boss …….

President Obama plenty of wiggle room…..

In a White House briefing, neither McChrystal nor retired Gen. Karl Eikenberry, now the U.S. ambassador to Afghanistan, would say whether they believe enough military progress and political reform will take place by next summer to enable U.S. troops to “begin to transfer” back home from Afghanistan, as President Obama has promised.

“Much work lies ahead” before that can happen, said McChrystal, who commands all U.S. and allied troops fighting the Taliban and other extremists in Afghanistan. The months ahead “will demand courage and resilience,” he said, adding that violence against Americans will continue to increase.

Karzai’s visit comes at a time of increasing pessimism about the war in Afghanistan, now in its eighth year. A new Washington Post-ABC News pollthis week showed that a majority of Americans, 52 percent of those surveyed, believe the war is not worth the costs.The poll came on the heels of a new Pentagon assessment that held little good news. It reported that violence in Afghanistan is up 87 percent over a year ago, and that there are still too few U.S. and allied advisers to accelerate the training of Afghan soldiers and police – the heart of Obama’s strategy.Currently there are 87,000 American troops in Afghanistan, with roughly 13,000 more slated to arrive over the next few months. Since 2001, when U.S. forces struck back in retaliation for the 9/11 terrorist attacks, 1,044 Americans have been killed in action in Afghanistan, and 5,730 wounded, according to the Pentagon……

More……

May 10, 2010 Posted by | Aircraft, Blogs, Breaking News, Counterpoints, Government, Media, Men, Military, Other Things, PoliticalDog Calls, Politics, Travel, Updates | , , , | Leave a comment

The irony of command…Gen. McChrystal…a 'Snake Eater' has joined the regular Army and is reigning in Special Forces Operators……

It’s one thing to be an operator…it’s another to be the boss…..

This piece in the New York Times caught my eye and made chuckle…..(it’s not funny, just ironic)

General Stanley McChrsytal is the in country boss for ALL American and NATO troops in Afghanistan…..

He came from a Special Operations commad…….and he now finds it necessary to issue orders unifying Special Forces Operators under his command…..something he would have  not been happy about before assuming this command…..a lot of  regular Army bosses are going to be smiling……

McChystal is pursuing a policy of antiseptic war fighting…trying to get rid of collateral civilian death’s…..while this admirable….it is the antithesis of war it self…which,is brutal, randon….and uncertain…..

But in this age of instant communication’s and embeded reporters and asymmetrical war…civilian deaths have become a huge factor for an emeny to use against a larger foe…..

War is hell…and shit happens…..

But now McChrstal is the boss so he has been forced to deal with the aftermath of mistakes in the field …..instead of just getting a mission done….

Life is full of changes……

McChrstal see’s them everyday……

Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal, the top American commander in Afghanistan, has brought most American Special Operations forces under his direct control for the first time, out of concern over continued civilian casualties and disorganization among units in the field.

“What happens is, sometimes at cross-purposes, you got one hand doing one thing and one hand doing the other, both trying to do the right thing but working without a good outcome,” General McChrystal said in an interview.

Critics, including Afghan officials, human rights workers and some field commanders of conventional American forces, say that Special Operations forces have been responsible for a large number of the civilian casualties in Afghanistan and operate by their own rules.

Maj. Gen. Zahir Azimi, the chief spokesman for the Afghan Ministry of Defense, said that General McChrystal had told Afghan officials he was taking the action because of concern that some American units were not following his orders to make limiting civilian casualties a paramount objective.

“These special forces were not accountable to anyone in the country, but General McChrystal and we carried the burden of the guilt for the mistakes they committed,” he said. “Whenever there was some problem with the special forces we didn’t know who to go to, it was muddled and unclear who was in charge.”

General McChrystal has made reducing civilian casualties a cornerstone of his new counterinsurgency strategy, and his campaign has had some success: last year, civilian deaths attributed to the United States military were cut by 28 percent, although there were 596 civilian deaths attributed to coalition forces, according to United Nations figures. Afghan and United Nations officials blame Special Operations troops for most of those deaths.

“In most of the cases of civilian casualties, special forces are involved,” said Mohammed Iqbal Safi, head of the defense committee in the Afghan Parliament, who participated in joint United States-Afghan investigations of civilian casualties last year. “We’re always finding out they are not obeying the rules that other forces have to in Afghanistan.”

The Special Operational Forces units have traditionally be under the command of their superiors back in the states…not the regular Army command structure in the theatre of operations…..The Dog reported on the same problem of unified command with the Marines in afatgahanistan…..and the top special operators ….Navy SEALS and Army Delta’s will still work outside the in-country chain of command…..

He [ Rear Adm. Gregory J. Smith, General McChrystal’s deputy chief of staff for communications ] depicted General McChrystal’s new policy as a natural outgrowth of the general’s plans all along to unify his command; when he first took charge, he brought together under his controlwhat had been separate NATO and American command structures in Afghanistan.

The NATO official said that the unified command initiative would be obeyed, though it was not universally popular. “They may not like it, they may not want to follow it, but they are going to follow it,” the official said.

Aides to General McChrystal say he has been deeply troubled by the continuing episodes of civilian casualties, including the three major ones still under investigation. “You won’t believe how focused on these issues this command is, almost more than anything else,” the NATO official said.

Mr. Safi, the Parliament member, expressed concern that with the continued exemption of some Special Operations units from the directive, the problem of civilian casualties would continue. “If they are excluded, naturally it means the same thing will happen,” he said. “If there are individuals who do not obey McChrystal, then what are they doing in this country?”

General McChrystal addressed that concern in the interview. “There are no operators in this country that I am not absolutely comfortable do exactly what I want them to do,” he said. “So I don’t have any complaints about that, particularly after the latest change.”

Tension between Special Operations and conventional commanders has often surfaced in the American military, but General McChrystal himself has a great deal of credibility in the black operations world. Before he became the top commander in Afghanistan, he was in charge of the Joint Special Operations Command in Iraq and Afghanistan, which ran elite, secretive counterterrorism units, believed to include Delta Force and the Seals, hunting high-value targets.

March 15, 2010 Posted by | Breaking News, Government, Media, Men, Military, Other Things, PoliticalDog Calls, Politics, Updates | , , , , | Leave a comment

The irony of command…Gen. McChrystal…a ‘Snake Eater’ has joined the regular Army and is reigning in Special Forces Operators……

It’s one thing to be an operator…it’s another to be the boss…..

This piece in the New York Times caught my eye and made chuckle…..(it’s not funny, just ironic)

General Stanley McChrsytal is the in country boss for ALL American and NATO troops in Afghanistan…..

He came from a Special Operations commad…….and he now finds it necessary to issue orders unifying Special Forces Operators under his command…..something he would have  not been happy about before assuming this command…..a lot of  regular Army bosses are going to be smiling……

McChystal is pursuing a policy of antiseptic war fighting…trying to get rid of collateral civilian death’s…..while this admirable….it is the antithesis of war it self…which,is brutal, randon….and uncertain…..

But in this age of instant communication’s and embeded reporters and asymmetrical war…civilian deaths have become a huge factor for an emeny to use against a larger foe…..

War is hell…and shit happens…..

But now McChrstal is the boss so he has been forced to deal with the aftermath of mistakes in the field …..instead of just getting a mission done….

Life is full of changes……

McChrstal see’s them everyday……

Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal, the top American commander in Afghanistan, has brought most American Special Operations forces under his direct control for the first time, out of concern over continued civilian casualties and disorganization among units in the field.

“What happens is, sometimes at cross-purposes, you got one hand doing one thing and one hand doing the other, both trying to do the right thing but working without a good outcome,” General McChrystal said in an interview.

Critics, including Afghan officials, human rights workers and some field commanders of conventional American forces, say that Special Operations forces have been responsible for a large number of the civilian casualties in Afghanistan and operate by their own rules.

Maj. Gen. Zahir Azimi, the chief spokesman for the Afghan Ministry of Defense, said that General McChrystal had told Afghan officials he was taking the action because of concern that some American units were not following his orders to make limiting civilian casualties a paramount objective.

“These special forces were not accountable to anyone in the country, but General McChrystal and we carried the burden of the guilt for the mistakes they committed,” he said. “Whenever there was some problem with the special forces we didn’t know who to go to, it was muddled and unclear who was in charge.”

General McChrystal has made reducing civilian casualties a cornerstone of his new counterinsurgency strategy, and his campaign has had some success: last year, civilian deaths attributed to the United States military were cut by 28 percent, although there were 596 civilian deaths attributed to coalition forces, according to United Nations figures. Afghan and United Nations officials blame Special Operations troops for most of those deaths.

“In most of the cases of civilian casualties, special forces are involved,” said Mohammed Iqbal Safi, head of the defense committee in the Afghan Parliament, who participated in joint United States-Afghan investigations of civilian casualties last year. “We’re always finding out they are not obeying the rules that other forces have to in Afghanistan.”

The Special Operational Forces units have traditionally be under the command of their superiors back in the states…not the regular Army command structure in the theatre of operations…..The Dog reported on the same problem of unified command with the Marines in afatgahanistan…..and the top special operators ….Navy SEALS and Army Delta’s will still work outside the in-country chain of command…..

He [ Rear Adm. Gregory J. Smith, General McChrystal’s deputy chief of staff for communications ] depicted General McChrystal’s new policy as a natural outgrowth of the general’s plans all along to unify his command; when he first took charge, he brought together under his controlwhat had been separate NATO and American command structures in Afghanistan.

The NATO official said that the unified command initiative would be obeyed, though it was not universally popular. “They may not like it, they may not want to follow it, but they are going to follow it,” the official said.

Aides to General McChrystal say he has been deeply troubled by the continuing episodes of civilian casualties, including the three major ones still under investigation. “You won’t believe how focused on these issues this command is, almost more than anything else,” the NATO official said.

Mr. Safi, the Parliament member, expressed concern that with the continued exemption of some Special Operations units from the directive, the problem of civilian casualties would continue. “If they are excluded, naturally it means the same thing will happen,” he said. “If there are individuals who do not obey McChrystal, then what are they doing in this country?”

General McChrystal addressed that concern in the interview. “There are no operators in this country that I am not absolutely comfortable do exactly what I want them to do,” he said. “So I don’t have any complaints about that, particularly after the latest change.”

Tension between Special Operations and conventional commanders has often surfaced in the American military, but General McChrystal himself has a great deal of credibility in the black operations world. Before he became the top commander in Afghanistan, he was in charge of the Joint Special Operations Command in Iraq and Afghanistan, which ran elite, secretive counterterrorism units, believed to include Delta Force and the Seals, hunting high-value targets.

March 15, 2010 Posted by | Breaking News, Government, Media, Men, Military, Other Things, PoliticalDog Calls, Politics, Updates | , , , , | Leave a comment

The Marines in Afghanistan are doing it 'Their' way…..

A Marine operation began last month to flush the Taliban out of Marja in central Helmand. Some U.S. officials question whether the operation is the best use of Marine resources.

[ A Marine operation began last month to flush the Taliban out of Marja in central Helmand. Some U.S. officials question whether the operation is the best use of Marine resources. ]

Everyone from the White House down was happy to get the Marines in on the surge in Afghanistan….

Because they are self-contained they were able to deploy to Afghanistan in a hurry and have been the spearhead of the operation to take back the Taliban infested Marja region…..

Everyone is happy right?

Nope…..

Not the Army bosses that have the responsibility of running the war in that country…..

In fact…they have run into a roadblock…..

The Marines…...

Because the Marines have done their own thing..taking everything with them….and operating with mostly their own…..they have put General McChystal in a bit of a jam…..

He wants to move the Marines around in separate units wherever he needs them and that has not happened….The Marines..(who thru some technical means don’t report up the chain to McChyrstal the theatre commander.. )

So a lot of people are scratching their heads…and  the Marines just keep doing their thing….

Now this story is in the Washington Post…

……so lets see if someone doesn’t get the horn and issues some new orders?

Or do they get the go ahead to continue to do their thing?

Here’s the piece…….

U.S. Marine commanders have a different view of the dusty, desolate landscape that surrounds Delaram. They see controlling this corner of remote Nimruz province as essential to promoting economic development and defending the more populated parts of southern Afghanistan.

The Marines are constructing a vast base on the outskirts of town that will have two airstrips, an advanced combat hospital, a post office, a large convenience store and rows of housing trailers stretching as far as the eye can see. By this summer, more than 3,000 Marines — one-tenth of the additional troops authorized by President Obama in December — will be based here.

With Obama’s July 2011 deadline to begin reducing U.S. forces looming over the horizon, the Marines have opted to wage the war in their own way.

“If we’re going to succeed here, we have to experiment and take risks,” said Brig. Gen. Lawrence D. Nicholson, the top Marine commander in Afghanistan. “Just doing what everyone else is doing isn’t going to cut it.”

The Marines are pushing into previously ignored Taliban enclaves. They have set up a first-of-its-kind school to train police officers. They have brought in a Muslim chaplain to pray with local mullahs and deployed teams of female Marines to reach out to Afghan women.

The Marine approach — creative, aggressive and, at times, unorthodox — has won many admirers within the military. The Marine emphasis on patrolling by foot and interacting with the population, which has helped to turn former insurgent strongholds along the Helmand River valley into reasonably stable communities with thriving bazaars and functioning schools, is hailed as a model of how U.S. forces should implement counterinsurgency strategy.

But the Marines’ methods, and their insistence that they be given a degree of autonomy not afforded to U.S. Army units, also have riled many up the chain of command in Kabul and Washington, prompting some to refer to their area of operations in the south as “Marineistan.” They regard the expansion in Delaram and beyond as contrary to the population-centric approach embraced by Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal, the U.S. and NATO commander in Afghanistan, and they are seeking to impose more control over the Marines.

The U.S. ambassador in Kabul, Karl W. Eikenberry, recently noted that the international security force in Afghanistan feels as if it comprises 42 nations instead of 41 because the Marines act so independently from other U.S. forces.

“We have better operational coherence with virtually all of our NATO allies than we have with the U.S. Marine Corps,” said a senior Obama administration official involved in Afghanistan policy.

Some senior officials at the White House, at the Pentagon and in McChrystal’s headquarters would rather have many of the 20,000 Marines who will be in Afghanistan by summer deploy around Kandahar, the country’s second-largest city, to assist in a U.S. campaign to wrest the area from Taliban control instead of concentrating in neighboring Helmand province and points west. According to an analysis conducted by the National Security Council, fewer than 1 percent of the country’s population lives in the Marine area of operations.

They question whether a large operation that began last month to flush the Taliban out of Marja, a poor farming community in central Helmand, is the best use of Marine resources. Although it has unfolded with fewer than expected casualties and helped to generate a perception of momentum in the U.S.-led military campaign, the mission probably will tie up two Marine battalions and hundreds of Afghan security forces until the summer.

More…….

March 14, 2010 Posted by | Breaking News, Counterpoints, Government, Media, Men, Military, Other Things, Politics, Updates, Women | , , , , , | 1 Comment

The Marines in Afghanistan are doing it ‘Their’ way…..

A Marine operation began last month to flush the Taliban out of Marja in central Helmand. Some U.S. officials question whether the operation is the best use of Marine resources.

[ A Marine operation began last month to flush the Taliban out of Marja in central Helmand. Some U.S. officials question whether the operation is the best use of Marine resources. ]

Everyone from the White House down was happy to get the Marines in on the surge in Afghanistan….

Because they are self-contained they were able to deploy to Afghanistan in a hurry and have been the spearhead of the operation to take back the Taliban infested Marja region…..

Everyone is happy right?

Nope…..

Not the Army bosses that have the responsibility of running the war in that country…..

In fact…they have run into a roadblock…..

The Marines…...

Because the Marines have done their own thing..taking everything with them….and operating with mostly their own…..they have put General McChystal in a bit of a jam…..

He wants to move the Marines around in separate units wherever he needs them and that has not happened….The Marines..(who thru some technical means don’t report up the chain to McChyrstal the theatre commander.. )

So a lot of people are scratching their heads…and  the Marines just keep doing their thing….

Now this story is in the Washington Post…

……so lets see if someone doesn’t get the horn and issues some new orders?

Or do they get the go ahead to continue to do their thing?

Here’s the piece…….

U.S. Marine commanders have a different view of the dusty, desolate landscape that surrounds Delaram. They see controlling this corner of remote Nimruz province as essential to promoting economic development and defending the more populated parts of southern Afghanistan.

The Marines are constructing a vast base on the outskirts of town that will have two airstrips, an advanced combat hospital, a post office, a large convenience store and rows of housing trailers stretching as far as the eye can see. By this summer, more than 3,000 Marines — one-tenth of the additional troops authorized by President Obama in December — will be based here.

With Obama’s July 2011 deadline to begin reducing U.S. forces looming over the horizon, the Marines have opted to wage the war in their own way.

“If we’re going to succeed here, we have to experiment and take risks,” said Brig. Gen. Lawrence D. Nicholson, the top Marine commander in Afghanistan. “Just doing what everyone else is doing isn’t going to cut it.”

The Marines are pushing into previously ignored Taliban enclaves. They have set up a first-of-its-kind school to train police officers. They have brought in a Muslim chaplain to pray with local mullahs and deployed teams of female Marines to reach out to Afghan women.

The Marine approach — creative, aggressive and, at times, unorthodox — has won many admirers within the military. The Marine emphasis on patrolling by foot and interacting with the population, which has helped to turn former insurgent strongholds along the Helmand River valley into reasonably stable communities with thriving bazaars and functioning schools, is hailed as a model of how U.S. forces should implement counterinsurgency strategy.

But the Marines’ methods, and their insistence that they be given a degree of autonomy not afforded to U.S. Army units, also have riled many up the chain of command in Kabul and Washington, prompting some to refer to their area of operations in the south as “Marineistan.” They regard the expansion in Delaram and beyond as contrary to the population-centric approach embraced by Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal, the U.S. and NATO commander in Afghanistan, and they are seeking to impose more control over the Marines.

The U.S. ambassador in Kabul, Karl W. Eikenberry, recently noted that the international security force in Afghanistan feels as if it comprises 42 nations instead of 41 because the Marines act so independently from other U.S. forces.

“We have better operational coherence with virtually all of our NATO allies than we have with the U.S. Marine Corps,” said a senior Obama administration official involved in Afghanistan policy.

Some senior officials at the White House, at the Pentagon and in McChrystal’s headquarters would rather have many of the 20,000 Marines who will be in Afghanistan by summer deploy around Kandahar, the country’s second-largest city, to assist in a U.S. campaign to wrest the area from Taliban control instead of concentrating in neighboring Helmand province and points west. According to an analysis conducted by the National Security Council, fewer than 1 percent of the country’s population lives in the Marine area of operations.

They question whether a large operation that began last month to flush the Taliban out of Marja, a poor farming community in central Helmand, is the best use of Marine resources. Although it has unfolded with fewer than expected casualties and helped to generate a perception of momentum in the U.S.-led military campaign, the mission probably will tie up two Marine battalions and hundreds of Afghan security forces until the summer.

More…….

March 14, 2010 Posted by | Breaking News, Counterpoints, Government, Media, Men, Military, Other Things, Politics, Updates, Women | , , , , , | 1 Comment

General McChystal to open up another ground offensive in Afghanistan…..

Seeking to strike at the largest area’s of resisitance…..The U.S. Military along with NATO and Aftghan troops are preparing to to lay siege on Kanadar in the second large scale milittary operation in Afghanstan using the extra ‘surge’ troops the Commander- in- Chief sent to the country…….

General McChrstal…..formerly the head of the Special Operators in the Middle East is striking at the heart of the Taliban strongholds……..

Here’s the piece from the Washington Post……

Even as Marines in Afghanistan continued to fight for control of the Taliban stronghold of Marja, senior Obama administration officials said Friday that the United States has begun initial planning for a bigger, more complex offensive in Kandahar later this year.

The assault on Marja, the largest U.S.-NATO military operation since 2001, is a “prelude to larger, more comprehensive operations,” senior Obama officials said Friday. Administration officials declined to say when the Kandahar offensive will begin, but military officials have said that it probably will kick off in late spring or early summer after additional U.S. forces have moved into the area.

“Bringing comprehensive population security to Kandahar City is really the centerpiece of operations this year, and, therefore, Marja is the prelude. It’s sort of a preparatory action,” said one senior official, speaking on the condition of anonymity.

U.S. officials telegraphed the Marja offensive for many weeks before it began, and they appear to be laying the same kind of groundwork before moving into Kandahar,Afghanistan’s second largest city and the original base of Taliban leader Mohammad Omar. The drives into Marja and Kandahar come as part of the administration’s decision to deploy 30,000 additional troops in the country, a final push to secure major population centers almost nine years after the Sept. 11 attacks.

Any military operation to drive the Taliban from Kandahar will probably play out very differently than the battle taking place in Marja, which is a tenth the size. About 11,000 U.S. and Afghan troops pushed into Marja and within the first 13 days of the operation raised the Afghan flag over the district’s government center. Afghan officials also quickly selected a new district governor to oversee reconstruction efforts.

In Kandahar, U.S. forces are unlikely to move into the city in large numbers and instead will probably attempt to drive Taliban fighters from towns and villages surrounding the main city, military officials said. Local politics in Kandahar, where the Taliban movement first secured its foothold in Afghanistan, are also far more tangled than in Marja.

More………

February 27, 2010 Posted by | Breaking News, Government, Media, Men, Military, Other Things, PoliticalDog Calls, Politics, Updates | , , | Leave a comment

The Washington and Media power games begin on the 'surge' decision…….

I did a long post yesterday on the process pieces that came out in all the major media outlets on late Saturday…there must have been an off the record briefing …because right after all these people posted their stories……now the garbage part is playing out…..

Anyone who is tuned into this stuff (I am, because I write this blog) immediately picks up on the trail laid in this morning…..that is the President Obama ….the Commander-in-Chief gave General Stanley McCrystal essentially what he asked for in the summer for as his tolls to do the job in Afghanistan……

SO WHAT?

The General has been doing what he does for decades…he IS the expert.….

As I write in my post…all the heavies told him not to ask for troops….he did

The heavies….. Once  they knew he wasn’t going to back off backed up and let him walk the tight rope by himself…..

Obama sent for the General when he was in England during the summer and had a face to face sit down aboard Air Force One…..the heavies where not there

McCrystal is a warrior…not a big time politician…although, by getting to be general you do have top play politics….

In the end…Obama really had no choice….McChrystal was just showing his boss the right path once President Obama decided wasn’t going to be the guy to lose Afghanistan without a fight…

Really people….everyday bosses all over the plant get great idea’s from the people working below them……

And the President is the Commander-in-Chief.….Only he can sign off on the moves…..

For Obama to have somehow pulled this strategy out from under a rock is preposterous……

Give both of theses men credit for not letting their ego’s get the way of solving a problem….there are too many lives involved to do it any other way……

December 7, 2009 Posted by | Breaking News, Government, Men, Military, Politics, Updates | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Washington and Media power games begin on the ‘surge’ decision…….

I did a long post yesterday on the process pieces that came out in all the major media outlets on late Saturday…there must have been an off the record briefing …because right after all these people posted their stories……now the garbage part is playing out…..

Anyone who is tuned into this stuff (I am, because I write this blog) immediately picks up on the trail laid in this morning…..that is the President Obama ….the Commander-in-Chief gave General Stanley McCrystal essentially what he asked for in the summer for as his tolls to do the job in Afghanistan……

SO WHAT?

The General has been doing what he does for decades…he IS the expert.….

As I write in my post…all the heavies told him not to ask for troops….he did

The heavies….. Once  they knew he wasn’t going to back off backed up and let him walk the tight rope by himself…..

Obama sent for the General when he was in England during the summer and had a face to face sit down aboard Air Force One…..the heavies where not there

McCrystal is a warrior…not a big time politician…although, by getting to be general you do have top play politics….

In the end…Obama really had no choice….McChrystal was just showing his boss the right path once President Obama decided wasn’t going to be the guy to lose Afghanistan without a fight…

Really people….everyday bosses all over the plant get great idea’s from the people working below them……

And the President is the Commander-in-Chief.….Only he can sign off on the moves…..

For Obama to have somehow pulled this strategy out from under a rock is preposterous……

Give both of theses men credit for not letting their ego’s get the way of solving a problem….there are too many lives involved to do it any other way……

December 7, 2009 Posted by | Breaking News, Government, Men, Military, Politics, Updates | , , , , , , | Leave a comment