Lifting the veil on conflict, culture and politics
from Tales from the Trail:
In many ways the documents released by WikiLeaks last night merely underscored the bleak assessment of the Afghan war which General Stanley McChrystal issued last August.
At the time McChrystal warned the overall situation was “deteriorating”, complained of “under-resourcing” and called for not just more resources but a “fundamentally new approach” from NATO forces if failure were to be avoided.
McChrystal, who had access to a whole lot more information than WikiLeaks, said the Taliban were aided by “elements of some intelligence agencies” -- meaning the Pakistanis -- something US officials have been saying for years. He talked of a popular “crisis of confidence” with the government of Afghanistan and warned that the steady stream of civilian casualties had to be stemmed.
The administration is arguing these documents, which date until December 2009, are merely an account of the failures of former President George W. Bush’s policy, and in many ways they have a point.