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ISAF mission in Afghanistan anything but successful

December 09, 2014, 16:06 UTC+3 Zamyatina Tamara

MOSCOW, December 9. /TASS/. NATO’s Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg, who told the UN Security Council last Friday the operation by the alliance and its partners in Afghanistan had been a success, clearly set a fresh example of wishful thinking, the deputy director of the Institute of US and Canada Studies, Major-General Pavel Zolotaryov, told TASS.

“Even if one admits that the International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan performed well enough at first by ousting the Taliban movement from power in Kabul, it must be remembered that the United States owed that success largely to Russia. After the 9/11 attacks on New York, when the United States was about to launch its anti-terrorist operation in Afghanistan, NATO’s alliance was still “slumbering in peace,” and it was Moscow that had managed to come to terms with Afghan field commander Ahmad Shah Massoud and arm his supporters, thus contributing to the victory over the Taliban,” Zolotaryov said.

“Now the main contingent of NATO and the United States is leaving, while the Taliban is stepping up its offensive. Over the past year alone the Afghan army and police have lost about 5,000 men. To the great annoyance of Afghanistan’s authorities the Americans are forced to contact the Taliban in search of a compromise. During the years-long anti-terrorist operation the Americans have lost over two thousand men. The military operation and the thirteen-year ISAF mission are convincing proof the problem of Afghanistan can have no military solution. Economic and political measures are required for creating conditions for a peaceful life. Otherwise Kabul will remain the capital of Central Asia’s drug businesses further on.

“NATO and its partners have not achieved not a single aim of those the United Nations identified in the ISAF mandate. Moreover, at a time when the operation is about to be brought to an end the United States has been urging the authorities in Kabul to come to the negotiating table with the Taliban and Al-Qaeda. In fact, this is tantamount to the recognition the enemy has not been defeated,” a leading research fellow at the Institute of the US and Canada Studies, Yuri Morozov, has told TASS. In 2010 Morozov led a joint Russian-Danish peace project in Afghanistan.

“The West had promised Kabul its economic assistance for creating modern industries. Instead Afghanistan has turned into a global leader in the production of narcotic drugs. The United States and its allies had hoped to plant their ideology of ‘democratic values’ on Afghan soil. The country’s population has rejected it,” Morozov said. “Instead of the original ISAF force of 130,000 only a tiny contingent of 11,000-12,000 will be left in Afghanistan. And NATO is now desperate in its attempts to persuade Uzbekistan to allow this moderate group to be stationed in its territory, and not in unsafe Afghanistan.”

“The ISAF success, achieved by ousting the Taliban from power in Afghanistan in 2001 vanished with the 2003 US invasion of Iraq, which caused the Islamic radicals to rally together and eventually resulted in the expansion of the Islamic State in the Middle East. From the day of the United States’ invasion of Iraq the situation in Afghanistan started going out of control. The abortive intervention produced a stalemate in the entire region of the Middle East and Southwest Asia and resulted in a grave defeat of the United States,” the director of the Russian Academy of Sciences’ Centre for International Security, Aleksey Arbatov, told TASS.


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