For the past several months now, a chorus of voices, including mine have been trying to draw attention to the one great failure in the prosecution of the war(s) in Afghanistan and in Iraq. That failure has been and continues to be an inaccurate assessment of the enemy. In the beginning, it was an annoyance but as time has marched on and as ISAF has continued to pursue one misadventure after another, it has become more than apparent that the annoyance is in fact a sickness. Specifically a Mental and Spiritual malady. An unwillingness to accept the fact that 1400 years of terror, subjugation, forced conversions, murder, plunder, deception, demonic worship, cultural depravity, the de-humanizing of women, random beheadings for the sake of propaganda and propagation and complete lack of tolerance for any other religion defines the enemy, is the manifestation of this Mental and Spiritual sickness.
Under Barrack Obama's 'leadership' which has mandated force projection by Counter Insurgency, we have seen failure after failure to control the battle space, not due to any failure by our Marines and Soldiers, but exclusively through a failed CIC vision, a failed CIC understanding of the enemy, a failed willingness to call Islam what it is and the consequential strategy our military is forced to perform within.
We have been consistently saying for months that COIN cannot possibly succeed in this ideologically monolithic society. Trying to drive a wedge, in essence, between the 'Insurgency' and the 'innocent population' has been and will continue to be as successful as convincing a wife and children in Boston, that the overbearing Police that have broken down their door to arrest the husband/father for parking tickets is in their best interest.
Again; there is no substantial difference between the government in Kabul, the civilian population and the Taliban in Afghanistan. Not only is their religious ideology monolithic (shared and all encompassing), but they all share familial ties, tribal ties and a shared hatred of all things not Islamic. In Hershel Smith's new piece, he quotes the AP and their story on the shoveling-against-the-tide strategy about to be launched in Kandahar and the view of the people there versus our pie-in-the-sky understanding of them. From the story:
Haji Raaz Mohammad, a 48-year-old farmer from Kandahar, said he has never understood why the U.S. is trying to drive out the militants.
"I don't know why they are doing it," he said. "The Taliban are not outsiders. They are our own people."
So one more time; can anyone tell me why we still can't understand why trying to impress who we want to believe the enemy to be on them isn't going to change who they understand themselves to be? This is the very definition of insanity not the unbridled perseverance that the current administration and the collective would have you believe it is. Even General McChrystal himself admitted that the strategy wasn't going so well in a statement he now regrets, saying that Marjah was a 'bleeding ulcer'. The truth of the matter is that the Counter Insurgency Strategy continuing - apparently unabated in Afghanistan is the acid, eroding the war effort that is now the cause of the nationwide 'bleeding ulcer'.
The fact is, just listening to the Afghan people should have been enough to tell the planners and strategists (much less the administration), that conducting this war through the prism of COIN doctrine was doomed to fail. THERE ARE NO 'GOOD GUYS' WHOSE HEARTS YOU NEED TO WIN. They-are-all-the-same!!! They are all Islamic, they all hate and distrust all who are not and they all understand the Koranic mandate to force the world to submit to Islam. In addition; the murderers we continue to refer to as Insurgents are bona fide family members of the very people whose hearts and minds ISAF is claiming to try to win. They are in fact Afghan citizens. They are in fact Pakistani citizens which is made moot due to their unwillingness to accept the Durrand Line as a legitimate border.
ISAF points to minor successes in tribes and smaller regions where they have had a 'meeting of the minds'. The fact is, those are also regions where we have dumped money and resources in an effort to 'buy' those hearts and minds they are trying to 'win'. As long as there is gain, the Islamic understands it to be in his best interest and that of Allah's to take from the Infidel that which he can. When the flow of goodies stops; so does the 'cooperation' and so evaporates the 'won heart'.
So as we sit and watch the unfolding of yet another half-hearted attempt to root out the enemy from a region of the country 'we don't want them in', it is again fitting to ask if the planners and strategists and the Commander in Chief truly have any understanding of this enemy. So one more time, I will lay it out for them;
I have seen the enemy and he is Islam!