"These converts to the new US doctrine of "modern counterinsurgency" are reading Victorian era guidebooks, consulting "battlefield anthropologists"
(aka Human Terrain Specialists !), and striving to achieve the "developmental asymptote".
What they seem to ignore is that the Afghans (really the Pakhtuns) have been
dealing with invaders for thousands of years. They ambush and kill them when
they can; they make nice and take their money when they must; then turn around and slit their throats when they can again. What they never do is adopt the "civilization" of the invaders, or accept them as masters.
The British ruled (and partly anglicized) the variegated peoples of India, but they failed to overcome the Pakhtuns (in Afghanistan and India’s borderlands). That is why they left them alone, and paid good tribute to ensure reciprocal treatment.
The French commander said it best about using counterinsurgency : It means the entire population become the subject of your war, and you either will have to stay there forever or you have lost. Some US officers in Afghanistan
(and, probably, Iraq, too) seem to be quite prepared to stay there forever.
Instead of reading Victorian guidebooks, perhaps they should read the newspapers from back home."
Brigadier (Ret.) Farrukh B Ali"
Our friend FB Ali has given us this article from the Toronto Globe and Mail. In spite of its formulaic Yankee bashing there are things in the piece that are “food for thought.” pl