Having lost its military campaign in Afghanistan, Washington tries to put on the best front possible
Yesterday, Russia celebrated a sad date: August 8, 1988, Mikhail Gorbachev made first steps to withdraw Soviet troops from Afghanistan. This act of good will marked the start of the end of Afghan war in which more than 15 thousands Soviet citizens died and 330 thousands of Afghans. Soviet troops entered Afghan territory December 27, 1979 and stood there till February 15, 1989.
Soviet government took on itself the role of les miserables protector and resolutely threw young internationalists to hot spots. The same was in Korea, Vietnam, Angola, Egypt, and, finally, in Afghanistan. Yes, the Soviet Union could have won in that war, though there was no order. As well as there was no order to win in Chechnya, when Russian army drove the bandits in mountains and waited only for the last order. Though, the order did not followed, and later there was the shame of Khasavyurt, whose consequences Russians still feel.
But, this was a digression. Let us return to Afghanistan. The United States, when it took on itself so-called liberation mission, faced the same troubles the Soviet Union faced in the 1980s.
American guys die and are missing in Afghanistan. “Afghan Vietnam” is being spoken about to often lately, and any censorship cannot stop it. Almost daily, information penetrates to mass media about losses of the US and its allies. This signifies that battle activities in Afghanistan are becoming lingering. The Taliban and terrorists intend to actively resist the foreign troops.
Moreover, ethnic and territorial conflicts between the tribes of Afghanistan, the lack of good supply of the United Anti-Taliban Front forces, marauding, drug trade etc. cause instability in Afghan society. As a result of these factors, dissatisfaction with foreign presence in Afghanistan becomes more obvious. US military and its allies become targets not only of the Taliban and terrorists, but also of embittered tribes, too.
Blitzkrieg was not a success. The White House officials tried to neglect this fact and state everything would be finished soon. Though, only Washington was so optimistic, while there was no sign of optimism in Afghanistan itself.
US Armed Force is afraid of recommencement of military actions in Afghanistan because of Al-Qaida and the Taliban having become more active. This statement was made by Chief US spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Roger King at a press conference which took place in the military airport near Kabul. According to King, last time soldiers of the coalition forces were attacked August 7, 2002, near to the Afghan city of Khosta. As a result, a US military was wounded at his chest. The wounded will be soon transported to Germany. According to the US official, the soldier belonged to the military patrol which patrolled the area of Khosta. This attack was the third within last four days.
Washington puts a good face on the matter, however without a success. Task number one for Washington is to withdraw troops from Afghanistan with the least losses, in other words, to put on the best front possible.
Dmitry Litvinovich PRAVDA.Ru
Translated by Vera Solovieva
Read the original in Russian: http://pravda.ru/main/2002/08/09/45469.html