The US under Obama is pushing for what they call “A Dual Track Strategy for Afghanistan”. In arguing for their “dual track strategy” the US administration says, “To maintain support for US efforts in Afghanistan, progressives (?) must debunk the prevailing myths about Afghanistan policy: first, that foreign powers cannot succeed militarily in Afghanistan; and second, that a policy focused solely on providing development aid is a viable strategy.” So, the argument is plain. Let’s combine both, military offensives with ‘development’. Or rather “development and diplomacy”. This is how it is worded. “To succeed in Afghanistan, the United States must undertake a dual track strategy that focuses on restoring security while using diplomacy and development aid to create basic stability.”
Its a “new change” for “stability. What is this stability ? This stability will not bring back normal civil administration. This stability means, total control of Afghanistan under a single military power, instead of the Kabul administration and different “armed lords” – call them Taliban – holding onto different patches of land and fighting to encroach into more land.
So this dual track strategy has 02 tracks and the first one has 03 major components in,
01. Secure South with more troop deployment; with Obama administration responding with “an additional 30,000 US troops deploying to Afghanistan with 10,000 NATO or Afghan security forces, so the international mission finally will near the troops-to-population ratio in southern Afghanistan recommended by the US Army Counterinsurgency Manual.”
02. Cut off enemy supply lines; which is basically identified as the poppy trade that provides the Taliban with US $ 300 million annually. This is by way of signing extradition laws the US is now willing to sign – of course with their own puppet regime – to try Afghan ‘drug lords’ in US courts of law and to forcefully eradicate ‘opium crops’.
03. Strengthening the Afghan National Security forces, for which the US says it needs the commitment of the NATO have 400 trainers.
What does all this mean ? The US is going to COMPLETELY MILITARISE the Afghan society without any time frame.
Is there anything new in this “dual track” strategy ? The track two the US is talking of is also a military project that supplements track one. Take a good look.
01. Regional diplomacy to eliminate “terrorists” – this is clearly stated as “All regional powers, including Iran, China and Russia, must be brought together to resolve outstanding disputes…..and negotiations should seek to pressure and reward Pakistan for stabilizing this cancerous region (tribal areas) and rooting out the terrorists.”
02. Rewarding areas where “terrorism” is successfully eliminated; which means all international aid would only go into areas under the control of the US or under NATO forces.
03. Creating an “endowment fund” to help “a small Afghan central government” (mark the word ‘small’) to go about its annual budgeting, “much like endowments do for US universities”. Because, as it assumes, this “small Afghan central government will be unable to provide for its own security forces for decades to come.”
So, for decades to come Obama administration is planning to have the Afghan people looked after with an “endowment fund” run by a management they would be choosing and comfortable with and that would be like looking after a US university.
[All quotes are from The Third Way National Security Program titled the “Dual Track Strategy” for Afghanistan, dated February 4, 2009 and circulated among “interested parties”]
What is the status of this Afghan society these “experts” are talking of ?
There are about 32 million people living in Afghanistan and 51% of them are women. Out of the 51% women, only 15 to 18% can read and write. Sixty percent of girls under 18 years of age are married, either arranged or forced. Apart from this, working opportunities are limited or not permitted at all for women. Beating, rape, dowry violence, servitude and unequal treatments are just few of the inequalities these women have to endure.
Politically, women’s representation is only 25% of Afghanistan’s National Assembly as per constitutional provision.
The National Risk and Vulnerability Assessment (NRVA) 2005 data indicate that 44 % of the Afghan population is perceived to be food insecure, that is about 11.8 million people. Out of this figure, 6.6 million people do not meet their basic daily food and dietary requirement. The 54 % of under-five children are stunted, 39 percent are underweight, about 7 percent are wasted and 21 percent of women of reproductive age are malnourished.
In 2005, in its bid to analyze existing needs of the country for food, the study on “Food Security Situation in Afghanistan.” found that “Food Rights” is a fundamental issue in Afghanistan.
Emerging from almost 30 years of war and destruction and with growing unrest in parts of the country both man-made and natural disasters render the Afghans, especially the poor, the women and children vulnerable to abuse and lack of protection.
Decades of war and conflict has left 3.2 million Afghans as refugees making them the largest refugee group followed by Iraq and Sudan and some few millions internally displaced ones.
Widespread use of mines during more than two decades of conflict has turned Afghanistan into one of the most heavily ‘mine contaminated’ countries in the world.
[from documents – ActionAid Afghanistan]