Webster G. Tarpley
June 19, 2010
The hearings held this past week by the Senate Armed Services Committee have established that the Obama Afghanistan policy is in ruins. Obama had always profiled himself as the most extreme warmonger when it came to Afghanistan – more aggressive than Hillary, more aggressive than McCain, and more aggressive than Bush. Now, the casualty lists are getting tragically longer, and the ground offensives touted by neocon favorite son Petraeus and McChrystal are turning out to be abortive. Defense Secretary Gates sounds more and more like McNamara during Vietnam or Rumsfeld during the Iraq debacle at when he assures the Senators that much progress is being made. The resulting crisis will be revealed no later than the November NATO summit by an increased rate of defection from the invasion coalition by various NATO states and other supporters of the US-led coalition. Most of all, there is also an immediate need for an antiwar challenger to run against Obama in the Democratic primary campaigns which began about a year from now with the Iowa straw poll.
The fatal weakness of Obamas approach to the Afghanistan military adventure was the contradiction between the announced purpose – the need to defeat Al Qaeda, in reality the CIA’s own Arab Legion – and the real purpose, which has always been to export the civil war from Afghanistan into Pakistan to break up the Pakistan energy corridor between Iran and China and to make sure that the “Pipelinestan” perspective for that country’s economic development will never come to fruition. The populations of Pushtunistan and Baluchistan are targeted in order to spread rebellion and civil war into Pakistan.
In the wake of the extremely fishy Times Square car bomb incident, a new dimension has been added to the US attack on Pakistan. It should be noted in passing that the Times Square car bomber had been subject to intensive surveillance by members of the US Joint Terrorism Task Force going back half a dozen years, suggesting that we are dealing with the umpteenth patsy of the current series. Since the US accuses of the Pakistani Taliban of being responsible for this alleged car bomb, a pretext for a direct bombing attack or special forces incursion targeting Pakistan is now available. As the Washington Post wrote on May 29, 2010:
“The U.S. military is reviewing options for a unilateral strike in Pakistan in the event that a successful attack on American soil is traced to the country’s tribal areas, according to senior military officials…. Obama dispatched his national security adviser, James L. Jones, and CIA Director Leon Panetta to Islamabad this month to deliver a similar message to Pakistani officials, including President Asif Ali Zardari and the military chief, Gen. Ashfaq Kiyani. Jones and Panetta presented evidence gathered by U.S. law enforcement and intelligence agencies that [accused Times Square car bomber] Shahzad received significant support from the Pakistani Taliban.”
As long as the US pursues the absurd and hopeless invasion of Afghanistan, the danger will increase that defeated US generals will seek career or political salvation through the flight forward of further escalating the wider war with Pakistan, leading towards world tragedy on an even vaster scale.
President Karzai of Afghanistan has learned that the United States cannot be trusted under any circumstances. Over the past several months, he has been seeking to play the China card and the Iranian card as a means of lessening his dependence on the fickle invaders from the other side of the world. He has also been trying to secure his own arrangement with the Taliban. Any attempt by the United States to remove Karzai from power would quickly make the US military predicament even more hopeless than it is already. The only answer is a speedy withdrawal of all US and NATO forces from Afghanistan before the end of this year.
At the NATO meeting scheduled for Lisbon in November, the Netherlands and Canada will reassert their current plans to withdraw their contingents from this graveyard of empires. The new Tory Prime Minister of Great Britain is also signaling his desire to find a path to the exit. Poland has demanded the presentation of an exit scenario at that Lisbon meeting. Given the insolent and shabby treatment that the US has been meting out to Turkey recently over issues like Ankara’s attempt to mediate the Iranian nuclear dispute, and then the Israeli attack on the Turkish-sponsored Gaza aid flotilla, it would not be surprising for the Turks announce that they will be leaving soon as well.
Obama’s Afghanistan strategy as announced in last December’s West Point speech is of course a masterpiece of political cynicism and hypocrisy. He promises that the withdrawal of the US forces will begin in July 2011, which by some strange coincidence happens to coincide with the beginning of the primary election campaign in Iowa and also in New Hampshire. Obama knows how vulnerable he is among Democratic voters to a primary challenge from his left. This is the lesson learned by Lyndon B. Johnson when Eugene McCarthy and then Robert Kennedy entered the field against him in 1968 – the last time that a warmongering Democratic president has faced the primary voters. Having learned from this, Jimmy Carter carefully avoided foreign military adventures for the first three years of his presidential term. Nevertheless, Carter’s economic failure and general administrative fecklessness were so severe that he was challenged by Senator Edward Kennedy.
Obama, as we have noted before, combines the economic failures of Carter with the militaristic bungling of Johnson, plus the domestic police state oppression and scandals of Nixon. Somebody in the Democratic Party needs to enter the lists against Obama, or this social formation will soon have to be pronounced moribund. Veneration of Obama is in sharp decline. In addition to the failure of the Afghanistan war, there is also the White House’s catastrophic mismanagement of the Gulf oil spill. Unemployment remains near 10%, and might soon start going higher as a result of the hedge fund-induced collapse of Europe. And then, summer is a great time for scandals in Washington, DC. The trial of former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich threatens to expose Obama’s corrupt origins in the Illinois Bipartisan Combine.
During the 1922 Teapot Dome scandal of the Harding administration, much attention was focused on the green stone house controlled by Attorney General Harry Daugherty and located at 1625 K St. NW. This time around, events may hinge on the mysterious apartment owned by Democratic pollster and reported BP consultant Stan Greenberg and his wife, Democratic Connecticut Congresswoman Rosa Delauro. Rahm Emanuel, the political manager of the current regime, is said to have lived in this apartment for several years, and there is much curiosity about his activities there during that time. This could all prove extremely embarrassing for Obama.
The necessary challenger to Obama would have to be antiwar, anti-Wall Street, ant-Federal Reserve, and anti-police state. Any takers?