Sunday, February 26, 2012

Out of Afghanistan

It's now clear to all but the most obtuse and myopic commentators, aka the US press, that not only is the war in Afghanistan lost (that's been obvious for years), but that the risks of it degenerating into a catastrophe are becoming more than possible.

'Training' the Afghan army has been very expensive, lots of contractors feeding at the trough, but the whole charade is now assuming a more sinister light, having to be close to the trainees is getting more deadly for the trainers, and there is no solution but that of the hapless General John Allen, who has removed all troops from ministries in Kabul.

President Drone has played the tough guy for his domestic audience, but now he faces a situation that can't be glossed over with Hellfire missiles. Political failure looms, and it would be ironic if his administration fell over burning Korans, rather than the economy.

Friday, February 24, 2012


Now that Greece has surrendered the last vestiges of national sovereignty to banks and EU bureaucrats:

1. If and when will protest pass into revolt?

2. If the revolt cannot be contained by Greek troops (see Syria), will outside intervention help those revolting, or their unelected rulers?

3. Who, internationally, will protest when they start 'killing their own people', and who will demand the need for law and order and the suppression of  terrorists?

4. When will drones be used to kill the terrorists?

Monday, February 20, 2012

Phase 3

Andrew Bacevich describes the three phases of post 9/11 US policy towards the Muslim world with some interesting commentary. Here are the three phases with commentary of my own:

1. Shock and Awe. The invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq. Iraq was the real target, and was to be the springboard, both financial and logistical, for full domination of the oil regions. 'Masterminded' by Cheney and Rumsfeld, it had failed by 2006, leading to Rumsfeld's departure and Cheney's marginalization.

2. COIN. Petraeus and his surges in both Iraq and Afghanistan paid lip service to victory, but it depended on playing up sectarian divisions, hardly the basis for a stable client state. In Iraq the Shiites were able to secure the capital, keep the Sunnis at bay and force the US to leave. Afghanistan is ticking down to the end. A central government that controls most of the country will only be possible with the Taliban accommodated or triumphant.

3. Assassination. President Drone's shift to remote controlled murder lacks any clear goal, declared or undeclared. Since only failed or failing states such as Pakistan, Somalia, and Yemen can tolerate such actions, failed and failing states are necessary. Libya and Syria have now joined there ranks. What the eventual results can be other than growing chaos, and how that can benefit anyone but arms manufacturers and Obama's domestic political considerations, is a question that is unanswered, and probably unanswerable.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

President Drone strikes again

Chris Floyd links to and comments on the NTY article that shows the error of 8 young Afghan's ways, and the price it incurs:
8 Young Afghans Killed in Strike, NATO Acknowledges

... Afghan relatives of those who died and Mohammed Tahir Safi, an adviser to President Hamid Karzai and the leader of the Afghan investigation team, said that those killed were young boys who had taken their sheep and goats to graze outside the village. They were cold and gathered under a rock and lighted a small fire to warm themselves. That was the place where they were struck by bombs. Photographs of the dead shown by Mr. Safi at a news conference this week included some of badly bloodied young boys and a couple of young men who might have been older. The father of one of the boys who was killed said that his son was 12 and that two nephews who were killed were younger. ...
Clearly the Nobel Peace Prize winner's reputation will remain intact. Not too many civilians are killed by his bombing and drone attacks, as he has make clear. Just the right amount.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Who's on first?

There is no way for Blog Simple to evaluate the actual goings on in Syria, except to discount the propaganda that blares from the 'news' outlets.

But this report from a source previously unknown to us, is saying that Russia's veto and intervention has essentially ended the revolt.

Time will tell, but it is interesting that today most of the media seem to have pulled back from their 24/7 coverage of fake bombardments and other supposed crimes of the Assad regime.


Only the US and European press is able to accept at face value that the Iranians have suddenly gone insane and launched clumsy terrorist attacks against Israeli targets.

To think that the Iranians would sacrifice their relations with India, who has been standing up to US pressure on sanctions, depends on the collective blindness that rules pundits and reporters. Since that attack was clearly timed with the other attacks, Iranian involvement in any of the attacks seems ridiculous.

True, ridiculousness is never an obstacle when a press campaign is underway. All that matters is the volume and repetition of the theme.

The torture never stops

Greece's latest jumping through hoops act, the passage of more austerity to please their bankster masters, while the street action raged outside, seems to have been deemed inadequate by their overlords.

Penury seems not to be enough, malnutrition seems to be next, with starvation waiting in the wings. How that will allow Greece's economy to revive seems that last thing anyone worries about, pain is the objective, not the means.

Until Greece gets rid of their unelected officials and just says no to Germany and the banks the pressure and the pain will not let up. The question is, how much is enough?

Thursday, February 09, 2012


What is US policy in the Middle East? Beyond the talk of 'democracy' and 'protection', which is nothing but lies, the policy towards all but the most subservient dictatorships (Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Bahrain, Kuwait)  is to promote chaos, with the accompanying division into armed groups, misery and death.

A look at the results of Libyan 'liberation' confirms this. This is usually ignored, but the NYT actually has a article about Libya:
As the militiamen saw it, they had the best of intentions. They assaulted another militia at a seaside base here this week to rescue a woman who had been abducted. When the guns fell silent, briefly, the scene that unfolded felt as chaotic as Libya’s revolution these days — a government whose authority extends no further than its offices, militias whose swagger comes from guns far too plentiful and residents whose patience fades with every volley of gunfire that cracks at night.
The relentless propaganda war that preceded the attack in Libya is now being directed towards Syria. If successful, the outcome will be the same, the country divided by militia groups and plunged into a chaos that will surpass anything we've seen so far.

The policy is not to encourage anything resembling 'democracy', but rather to avoid it at all costs.

Wednesday, February 08, 2012


From the Guardian:
The Pentagon is drawing up contingency plans for intervention in Syria that include military action, as the Obama administration casts around for a more effective strategy to stop the regime in Damascus carrying out violence its own people.
Because violence practiced against other people, such as Libyans, Iraqis, Afghans, Somalis, Yemenis, etc. is OK, especially when practiced by the US, so killing thousands in Syria and Iran is also A-OK.

Manufacturing a civil war and intervening on 'humanitarian' grounds, rather than the old Bush line of 'defeating terrorism', is the Obama tactic for manipulating the press and public. Judging by the resulting lockstep to war in the media today, it has to be considered a success.