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And, yes, I DO take it personally: The last time there was a troop surge in Afghanistan, 3M people fled to Pakistan
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Thursday, December 03, 2009

The last time there was a troop surge in Afghanistan, 3M people fled to Pakistan

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juan cole...
The last time a foreign military staged a 'surge,' i.e. the Soviets in the early 1980s, it produced so much violence that 3 million Afghans were forced to flee to northern Pakistan. Islamabad is wary lest that patter be repeated.

which would explain why pakistan has more than a few concerns about obama's proposed escalation in afghanistan... i know quite a few afghans who had to beat feet across the khyber pass to peshawar and beyond to save their skins when things got too hot in kabul... the refugee existence was unimaginably miserable for most of them, one which nobody i know desires to repeat any time soon...

al jazeera...

Pakistani government officials have expressed concern about President Barack Obama's new Afghan strategy, which calls for Pakistan to step up its co-operation against the Taliban in exchange for a pledge of a long-term partnership.

In an address to unveil a new strategy for the eight-year conflict in Afghanistan, Obama said on Tuesday a cancer had taken root in Pakistan's border region with Afghanistan and promised US help to end it.

The Pakistani Foreign Affairs Ministry issued a cautious response that stressed the "need for clarity" in the new US policy.

"Pakistan looks forward to engaging closely with [the] US in understanding the full importance of the new strategy and to ensure that there would be no adverse fallout on Pakistan," the ministry said in a statement on Wednesday.

"Pakistan and the US need to closely co-ordinate their efforts to achieve shared objectives. There is certainly the need for clarity and co-ordination on all aspects of the implementation of the strategy."

what puzzles me the most is that job creation and poverty alleviation, two critical elements that almost every afghan i talk with says could significantly reduce the level of violence, were nowhere to be found in obama's speech ... it was only two weeks ago that i posted (here) on a poll taken by oxfam in afghanistan that unequivocally said this...
Poverty and unemployment are overwhelmingly seen as the main reasons behind conflict in Afghanistan, according to a survey in that country.


Oxfam said the survey showed that the country needed more than military solutions.

so, who the hell is obama listening to anyway...? oh, never mind... silly me... it must be the defense contractors...

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