6 September, 2009 — stop NATO
After NATO pledged 5,000 more troops for the war in Afghanistan at its sixtieth anniversary summit In Strasbourg, France and Kehl, Germany this April, U.S. President Barack Obama hailed the commitment as representing ‘a strong down payment on the future of our mission in Afghanistan and on the future of NATO.’
The Alliance offer was in addition to Obama’s own vow to deploy 21,000 more American forces to the war-wracked nation where the U.S. is waging its longest war since that in Vietnam and NATO is fighting the first ground and first Asian war in its history. A conflict that will enter its ninth calendar year next month.
Not, never, willing to acknowledge that the Afghan war is in fact a war, Washington and Brussels from the time of the summit until now have attempted to justify their troop buildups in South Asia as motivated primarily by insuring that the second presidential election in Afghanistan since the joint U.S.-NATO invasion of 2001 proceeded uninterrupted. A ruthless counterinsurgency and bombing campaign was thus portrayed as another war for democracy.
The election occurred on August 20, seventeen days ago, and the results are to date inconclusive, with incumbent president Hamid Karzai in the lead with less than 50% of the vote and former foreign minister Abdullah Abdullah with enough votes to force a run-off election.
A second round of elections will provide the pretext for NATO and the Pentagon to maintain current inflated troop numbers in the country, deployments that were announced by the contributing nations’ governments as short-term ones specifically designated for August’s election.
All that has occurred in the past two and a half weeks, however, belies claims by the U.S. and its NATO allies that anything other than an escalating, expanding and protracted war in South Asia is intended.