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Magda Hassan
12-05-2009, 07:17 AM
The Audacity of Ethnic CleansingObama's plan for Afghanistan

By Mike Whitney

"Today, we Afghans remain trapped between two enemies: the Taliban on one side and US/NATO forces and their warlord hirelings on the other." Malalai Joya "A Woman Among the Warlords" Scribner Publishing, New York
December 04, 2009 "Information Clearing House (http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/)" -- The Bush administration never had any intention of liberating Afghanistan or establishing democracy. The real aim was to remove the politically-intractable Taliban and replace them with a puppet regime run by a former-CIA asset. The rest of Afghanistan would be parceled-off to the warlords who assisted in the invasion and who had agreed to do much of the United States dirty-work on the ground. In the eight years of military occupation which followed, that basic strategy has never changed. The U.S. is just as committed now as it was at the war's inception to establish a beachhead in Central Asia to oversee the growth of China, to execute disruptive/covert operations against Russia, to control vital pipeline routes from the Caspian Basin, and to maintain a heavy military presence in the most critical geopolitical area in the world today.

The objectives were briefly stated in a recent counterpunch article by Tariq Ali:

"It’s now obvious to everyone that this is not a ‘good’ war designed to eliminate the opium trade, discrimination against women and everything bad – apart from poverty, of course. So what is Nato doing in Afghanistan? Has this become a war to save Nato as an institution? Or is it more strategic, as was suggested in the spring 2005 issue of Nato Review:

The centre of gravity of power on this planet is moving inexorably eastward … The Asia-Pacific region brings much that is dynamic and positive to this world, but as yet the rapid change therein is neither stable nor embedded in stable institutions. Until this is achieved, it is the strategic responsibility of Europeans and North Americans, and the institutions they have built, to lead the way … security effectiveness in such a world is impossible without both legitimacy and capability." ("Short Cuts in Afghanistan", Tariq Ali, counterpunch)

President Barak Obama's speech at West Point was merely a reiteration of US original commitment to strengthen the loose confederation of warlords--many of who are either in the Afghan Parliament or hold high political office--to pacify nationalist elements, and to expand the war into Pakistan. Obama is just a cog in a much larger imperial wheel which moves forward with or without his impressive oratory skills. So far, he has been much more successful in concealing the real motives behind military escalation than his predecessor George W. Bush. It's doubtful that Obama could stop current operations even if he wanted to, and there is no evidence that he wants to.

The Pentagon has settled on a new counterinsurgency doctrine (COIN) which it intends to implement in Afghanistan. The program will integrate psyops, special forces, NGOs, psychologists, media, anthropologists, humanitarian agencies, public relations, reconstruction, and conventional forces to rout the Taliban, assert control over the South and the tribal areas, and to quash any indigenous resistance. Clandestine activity and unmanned drone attacks will increase, while a "civilian surge" will be launched to try to win hearts and minds in the densely populated areas. Militarily, the goal is to pit one ethnicity against the other, to incite civil war, and to split the country in smaller units that can be controlled by warlords working with Washington. Where agricultural specialists, educators, engineers, lawyers, relief agencies and NGOs can be used, they will be. Where results depend on the application of extreme violence; it will also be...unsparingly. This is the plan going forward, a plan designed for conquest, subjugation and resource-stripping. Here is an excerpt from Zoltan Grossman's article in counterpunch "Afghanistan: The Roach Motel of Empires" which details the balkenization strategy:

"We are arming and financing the same vicious men (the Northern Alliance) who brought fundamentalism to Kabul in the first place....Like the Soviets, the Americans do not understand that the insurgency is driven not only by Islamist fundamentalism, but also by ethnic nationalism. In the case of the Taliban, they are representing the grievances of the Pashtuns who have seen the artificial colonial “Durand Line” divide their homeland between Afghanistan and Pakistan. The best way to defuse the Taliban is to recognize the legitimacy of this historical grievance, and incorporate Pashtun civil society into both governments.

But instead of unifying the different ethnic regions of Afghanistan, the NATO occupation seems headed more toward a de facto partition of these regions. The foreign policy team that President Obama has assembled includes some of the same figures who advocated the ethnic-sectarian partition of Yugoslavia and Iraq. Obama’s Special Envoy to Af-Pak, Richard Holbrooke, authored the agreement that partioned Bosnia into Serb and Muslim-Croat republics in 1995, in effect rubberstamping the ethnic cleansing that had forcibly removed populations during a three-year civil war. He also turned a blind eye when Serb civilians were expelled from Croatia the same year, and from Kosovo in 1999.

President Karzai recently instituted a series of laws on women in Shia communities, causing an outcry from women’s rights groups. Hardly unnoticed was his application of different legal standards to different sectarian territories—a sign of de facto (informal) partition. Various “peace” proposals have advocated ceding control of some Pashtun provinces to the Taliban. Far from bringing peace, such an ethnic-sectarian partition would exacerbate the violent “cleansing” of mixed territories to drive out those civilians who are not of the dominant group—the process that brought the “peace of the graveyard” to Bosnia, Kosovo, and much of Iraq." ( Zoltan Grossman, "Afghanistan: The Roach Motel of Empires" counterpunch)

If Grossman is correct, than Obama's professed commitment to Afghan liberation merely masks a vicious counterinsurgency strategy that will ethnically cleanse areas in the south while driving tens of thousands of innocent people from their homes. This is essentially what took place in Baghdad during the so-called "surge"; over a million Sunnis were forced from the city by death squads and Shia militia under the watchful eye of US troops. US counterinsurgency wunderkind Gen Stanley McChrystal played a pivotal role in pacifying Iraq, which is why he was chosen by Obama to oversee military operations in Afghanistan. Here's a clip from an article by Ulrich Rippert "Europe backs Afghanistan strategy aimed at “regionalization”' on the World Socialist Web Site which provides more details on the plan to Balkenize Afghanistan:

"During his inaugural visit to Washington, new German defense secretary, Karl Theodor zu Guttenberg said it was necessary to put aside “the romantic idea of democratization of the whole country along the lines of the western model” and instead “transfer control of individual provinces step by step to the Afghan security forces.”

The new strategy of “regionalization” is aimed at dividing Afghanistan into individual cantons—in a similar manner to what took place in Lebanon and the former Yugoslavia. Up to now the US-NATO occupation supported the government of Hamid Karzai and sold the process to the public as “democratization”. However, occupation forces are moving increasingly to hand over power directly to regional warlords and their militias—on the assumption that such regional forces will follow the orders of their imperial masters. As soon as there is no more danger in a specific province, Guttenberg declared, then the international troops should be withdrawn from that area." (Ulrich Rippert "Europe backs Afghanistan strategy aimed at “regionalization”', World Socialist Web Site)

Obama's escalation is not aimed at strengthening democracy, liberating women or bringing an end to the brutal, misogynist rule of religious fanatics. It is pure, unalloyed imperial politics, the rearranging of the map and its people to serve Washington's interests. As journalist Alex Lantier notes on the World Socialist Web Site, the plan does not end with Afghanistan, but stretches across the globe. The hard-right policymakers behind Obama, still have not abandoned their dream of global rule. Here's an excerpt:

"As Obama indicated elsewhere in his speech, this escalation is one step in plans for even broader wars. “The struggle against violent extremism will not be finished quickly,” he said, “and it extends well beyond Afghanistan and Pakistan.” Mentioning Somalia and Yemen as potential targets, he added, “our effort will involve disorderly regions and diffuse enemies.”

The inclusion of this passage made clear that Obama was basing his Afghan policy on a report issued last month by Anthony Cordesman of the influential Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS). Cordesman wrote: “The President must be frank about the fact that any form of victory in Afghanistan and Pakistan will be part of a much wider and longer struggle. He must make it clear that the ideological, demographic, governance, economic, and other pressures that divide the Islamic world mean the world will face threats in many other nations that will endure indefinitely into the future. He should mention the risks in Yemen and Somalia, make it clear that the Iraq war is not over, and warn that we will still face both a domestic threat and a combination of insurgency and terrorism that will continue to extend from Morocco to the Philippines, and from Central Asia deep into Africa, regardless of how well we do in Afghanistan and Pakistan.”

He added: “…the present level of US, allied, Afghan and Pakistani casualties will almost certainly double and probably more than triple before something approaching victory is won.” (Alex Lantier "Obama’s speech on Afghanistan: A compendium of lies" World Socialist web Site)

In the years ahead, we can expect to see relief and reconstruction efforts stepped up to provide security in the heavily-populated areas while the war in the south is expanded and intensified. Tajiks and Uzbeks, in the Afghan military will be enlisted to fight or expel their Pashtun countrymen, while warlords, druglords and human rights abusers are handed over large swathes of the countryside. 30,000 more troops is not enough to lock-down all of Afghanistan, but it may be enough to force hundreds of thousands of people into regional bantustans where they can be controlled by bloodthirsty chieftains, the very same men who leveled Kabul on April 28, 1992, killing 80,000 Afghan civilians. This is Obama's plan for Afghanistan, a carbon-copy of George Bush's.
http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article24121.htm

Jan Klimkowski
12-05-2009, 11:33 AM
Yup.

http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=10284


The Destabilization of Bolivia and the "Kosovo Option"

by Michel Chossudovsky

The secession of Bolivia's Eastern provinces is part of a US sponsored covert operation, coordinated out of the US State Department, in liaison with US intelligence.

The death squads armed with automatic weapons responsible for killing supporters of Evo Morales in El Porvenir are supported covertly by the US. According to one report, "USAID has an "Office of Transition Initiatives" operating in Bolivia, funneling millions of dollars of training and support to right-wing opposition regional governments and movements."(The Center for Economic and Policy Research, September 2008). The US also provides support to various opposition groups through the National Endowment for Democracy (NED).

The expelled US Ambassador Philip S. Goldberg worked under the helm of Deputy Secretary of State John Negroponte, who directly oversees the various "activities" of US embassies around the World. In this regard Negroponte plays a far more important role, acting behind the scenes, than Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice. He is also known as one of the main architects of regime change and covert support to paramilitary death squads both in Central America and Iraq.

Philip S. Goldberg's mandate as ambassador to Bolivia was to trigger the fracture of Bolivia as a country. Prior to his appointment as ambassador in early 2007, he served as US Chief of Mission in Pristina, Kosovo (2004-2006) and was in permanent liaison with the leaders of the KLA paramilitary, who had integrated civilian politics, following the NATO occupation of Kosovo in 1999.

Supported by the CIA, the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA), whose leaders now head the Kosovar government, was known for its extensive links to organized crime and the trade in narcotics. In Kosovo, Goldberg was involved in setting the stage for the subsequent secession of Kosovo from Serbia, leading to the installation of an "independent" Kosovar government.

In the course of the 1990s, Goldberg had played an active role in the break up of Yugoslavia. From 1994-1996 he was responsible for the Bosnia Desk at the State Department. He worked closely with Washington's Special Envoy Richard Holbrooke and played a central role as Chief of Staff of the US negotiating team at Dayton, leading up to the signing of the Dayton Accords in 1995. These accords were conducive to the carving up of Bosnia-Herzegovina. More generally they triggered the destruction and destabilization of Yugoslavia as country. In 1996, Goldberg worked directly as Special Assistant to the Deputy Secretary of State Strobe Talbott (1994-2000), who together with Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, played a key role in launching the war on Yugoslavia in 1999.

The Central Role of John Negroponte

Deputy Secretary of State John Negroponte plays a central role in the conduct of covert operations. He served as US ambassador to Honduras from 1981 to 1985. As Ambassador in Tegucigalpa, he played a key role in supporting and supervising the Nicaraguan Contra mercenaries who were based in Honduras. The cross border Contra attacks into Nicaragua claimed some 50 000 civilian lives. During the same period, Negroponte was instrumental in setting up the Honduran military death squads, "operating with Washington support's, [they] assassinated hundreds of opponents of the US-backed regime." (See Bill Venn, Bush Nominee linked to Latin American Terrorism, Global Research, November 2001)

"Under the rule of General Gustavo Alvarez Martnez, Honduras's military government was both a close ally of the Reagan administration and was "disappearing" dozens of political opponents in classic death squad fashion.

(See Peter Roff and James Chapin, Face-off: Bush's Foreign Policy Warriors , Global Research, July 2001)

This did not prevent his nomination to the position of US Permanent Representative to the UN under the Clinton administration.

The Salvador Option

Negroponte became Ambassador to Iraq in 2004, where he set up a "security framework" for the US occupation, largely modeled on the Central American death squads. This project was referred to by several writers as the "Salvador Option".

While in Baghdad, Negroponte hired as his Counselor on security issues, a former head of special operations in El Salvador. The two men were close colleagues going back to the 1980s in Central America. While Negroponte was busy setting up the death squads in Honduras, Colonel Steele had been in charge of the US Military Advisory Group in El Salvador, (1984-86) "where he was responsible for developing special operating forces at brigade level during the height of the conflict.":

"These forces, composed of the most brutal soldiers available, replicated the kind of small-unit operations with which Steele was familiar from his service in Vietnam. Rather than focusing on seizing terrain, their role was to attack ‘insurgent’ leadership, their supporters, sources of supply and base camps." (Max Fuller, For Iraq, "The Salvador Option" Becomes Reality, Global Research, June 2005)

In Iraq, Steele was "assigned to work with a new elite Iraqi counter-insurgency unit known as the Special Police Commandos". In this context, Negroponte's objective was to encourage ethnic divisions and factional strife, by triggering covert terrorist attacks directed against the Iraqi civilian population.

Negroponte was appointed as the Head of the Directorate of National Intelligence in 2005, and subsequently in 2007 came to occupy the Number Two position in the State Department.

The Kosovo Option: Haiti

This is not the first time that the "Kosovo model" of supporting terrorist paramilitaries has been applied in Latin America.

In February 2003, Washington announced the appointment of James Foley as Ambassador to Haiti. Ambassadors Goldberg and Foley are part of the same "diplomatic stable". Foley had been a State Department spokesman under the Clinton administration during the war on Kosovo. He was involved at an earlier period in channeling support to the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA).

Amply documented, the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) was financed by drug money and supported by the CIA. ( See Michel Chossudovsky, Kosovo Freedom Fighters Financed by Organized Crime, Covert Action Quarterly, 1999 )

At the time of the Kosovo war, the then ambassador to Haiti James Foley had been in charge of State Department briefings, working closely with his NATO counterpart in Brussels, Jamie Shea. Barely two months before the onslaught of the NATO led war on 24 March 1999, James Foley, had called for the "transformation" of the KLA into a respectable political organization:

"We want to develop a good relationship with them [the KLA] as they transform themselves into a politically-oriented organization,' ..`[W]e believe that we have a lot of advice and a lot of help that we can provide to them if they become precisely the kind of political actor we would like to see them become... "If we can help them and they want us to help them in that effort of transformation, I think it's nothing that anybody can argue with..' (quoted in the New York Times, 2 February 1999)

In other words, Washington's design was "regime change": topple the Lavalas administration and install a compliant US puppet regime, integrated by the "Democratic Platform" and the self-proclaimed Front pour la libération et la reconstruction nationale (FLRN), whose leaders are former FRAPH and Tonton Macoute terrorists. (For further details see Michel Chossudovsky, The Destabilization of Haiti, Global Research, February 2004)

Following the 2004 coup d'Etat which led to the downfall of the Aristide government, KLA advisers were brought into Haiti by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) to assist in the country's reconstruction. (See Anthony Fenton, Kosovo Liberation Army helps establish "Protectorate" in Haiti, Global Research, November 2004)

Specifically, the KLA consultants were to assist in restructuring the Haitian police force, bringing into its ranks, former members of FRAPH and the Tonton Macout.

[In support of] the "Office of Transition Initiatives," (OTI) ... USAID is paying three consultants to help consult for the integration of the former brutal military into the current Haitian police force. And who are those three consultants? Those three consultants are members of the Kosovo Liberation Army." (Flashpoints interview, November 19, 2004, www.flashpoints.net )

USAID's "Office of Transition Initiatives" (OTI)

The Salvador/ Kosovo option is part of a US strategy to fracture and destabilize countries. The USAID sponsored OTI in Bolivia performs much the same function as a similar OTI in Haiti.

It is also worth noting that there was an Office of Transition Initiatives (OTI) in Venezuela, where a plot, according to reports, was recently uncovered to allegedly assassinate President Hugo Chavez. The role of the OTI office in Venezuela is discussed in Eva Golinger's recent book "Bush vs. Chavez."

The stated purpose of US covert operations is to provide support as well as as training to "Liberation Armies" ultimately with a view to destabilizing sovereign governments. In Kosovo, the training of the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) in the 1990s had been entrusted to a private mercenary company, Military Professional Resources Inc (MPRI), on contract to the Pentagon.

Pakistan and the "Kosovo Option"

It is worth noting that in Pakistan, recent developments point towards direct forms of US military intervention, in violation of Pakistani sovereignty.

Already in 2005, a report by the US National Intelligence Council and the CIA forecast a "Yugoslav-like fate" for Pakistan "in a decade with the country riven by civil war, bloodshed and inter-provincial rivalries, as seen recently in Balochistan." (Energy Compass, 2 March 2005).

According to a 2006 report of Pakistan's Senate Committee on Defence, British intelligence was involved in supporting the Balochistan separatist movement. (Press Trust of India, 9 August 2006). The Bolochistan Liberation Army (BLA) bears a canny resemblance to Kosovo's KLA, financed by the drug trade and supported by the CIA.

Washington favors the creation of a "Greater Balochistan" [similar to a Greater Albania] which would integrate the Baloch areas of Pakistan with those of Iran and possibly the Southern tip of Afghanistan, thereby leading to a process of political fracturing in both Iran and Pakistan. (Michel Chossudovsky, The Destabilization of Pakistan, December 30, 2007)

Helen Reyes
12-05-2009, 01:50 PM
The Game is concerned with Turkestan (not Turkmenistan), specifically Eastern Turkestan. Most of the Central Asian nations are locked into China and the ex-USSR and have been subject to multiple pacifications, domestications and cleansings so that almost nothing of the former civilization(s) remain. The strategy is to stir the suppressed nations to engender instability in the former USSR and China, so that Turkestan represents a kind of policy daggar aimed at the cleavage between the two remaining competitors to US hegemony/superpowerhood.

According to professor of Central Eurasian Studies at Indiana University Chris Beckwith, Afghanistan represents the last unconquered area of Central Asia. (The Silk Road on Australia's ABC Radio National program Counterpoint, November 30, 2009 (http://www.abc.net.au/rn/counterpoint/stories/2009/2757690.htm), direct audio link (http://mpegmedia.abc.net.au/rn/podcast/2009/11/cpt_20091130_1644.mp3).

Greater Pashtunistan represents the Afghan slice of the Kashmir mincemeat pie.