The afghan strategy is a United States’ strategy of sending American troops to fight the Taliban and al-Qaeda in order to make a safer world. Obama has started implementing the Afghan strategy by ordering 30000 troops to be sent to there, because America’s security is at stake.
He has promised that the troops will take 18 months there. The first year of this exercise will cost $ billion. The strategy’s aim is to enable Afghan to develop security forces, fight graft and enact reforms. The invasion is also meant to bring an end to al-Qaida’s safe heaven in Afghanistan.
This strategy crafted by Obama is said to be similar to the one of formers US president George W. Bush. The similarities are like those in Iraq’s invasion under Bush. These are fast push into Afghanistan, training local forces, same number of troops and to flip insurgents. By December this year the number of U.S. troops will be 68000 (Maher, 2010, Para. 10).
The differences according to experts are the terrain and nature of insurgency. Senator McCain has warned about stating a time table about the invasion because the Taliban would go underground and emerge after the troops have gone back to America.
The Iran people have lost hope in the war against Taliban. This group is beyond the government’s control. The president out of frustration once threatened to join them. The people mockingly refer to their president as “Mayor of Kabul” because he has no control outside this city (Hubbard, 2010 Para. 7).
Pervez Musharraf (Former Pakistani President) supports the US move and calls for a 3 pronged strategy which include political, socio-economic and military efforts in reforming Afghanistan. He told a London audience that there is a need to defeat al-Qaeda and dominate Taliban (Glasse, 2010, Para. 5).
Iran is skeptical on whether the strategy will work. However, it supports America’s aim of the strategy which is to end activities of al-Qaeda, neutralization of the Taliban, fight narcotics and reconstruction of Afghanistan. US intend to use Special Forces to eliminate al-Qaeda’s safe heaven.
It also wants to form alliances with local leaders such as tribal leaders and power brokers so that they help us fight Taliban. Though US and Iran have similar goals about Afghanistan there are obstacles that are making it difficult for them to work together. Iranian leaders believe that the disrupted nuclear plans and political crisis since June, 2009 was fanned by US.
They also have different ideas on how to handle Afghanistan. They are competing over influence in Afghanistan each wishing to further their ideologies (Famik, 2010, Para. 3). Iran argues that US policies will not be successful since the narcotic volume has increased eight fold. The Taliban and al-Qaeda are stronger.
There are people opposed to the Afghan strategy. Chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus’s Afghanistan Taskforce, is one of them. He opposes the sending of 30000 troops to Afghanistan and war tax. He opposes military solutions claiming this will not help the people.
He instead calls for need to pay attention to political, social and economic solutions in order to make Afghanistan secure. He argues that force or hard cannot stop and ideological enemy. He stresses for a need to enforce justice in Kabul by dealing with corrupt officials otherwise the efforts would be hollow (Honda, 2010 Para. 2).
In conclusion, there seems to be a world wide agreement that a peaceful Afghanistan without al-Qaeda or the Taliban will make the world a safer place. This however does not seem to happen any time soon. This may take more than a decade. America should learn from the timeline it took in Iraq to understand that this is a long process and a re-evaluation of this strategy is needed for it to work.
Famik, M. (2010, April 15). Iran skeptical of US’s Afghan strategy. Asia Times.
Glasse, J. (2010, February 26). Analysts uncertain on outcome of NATO’s Afghanistan Strategy.
Honda, M. (2010, April 15). Current Afghanistan strategy falls short. The Hill.
Maher, H. (2010, April 15). Pentagon defend Afghan Strategy as public support for war ebbs.
Zachary Hubbard, Z. (2010, April 14). Administration’s Afghanistan strategy still Cloudy. The tribune.