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December 09, 2008


Reading Nato officials said yesterday that the organisation is negotiating with Ukraine and Belarus for a land route which, though long, would avoid Pakistan and the pirates of the Gulf of Aden. made me do a double take. Is this the Guardian...or Kipling?

Is this the Guardian...or Kipling?

And a jolly good thing that teh Taliban will never be clever enough to figure out where our alternative landlocked supply lines are and attack them too.

I'm sure that none of the issues which are causing us headaches in Pakistan will be found in Central Asia. Nope, no ethnic tensions, religious factionalism, corruption, banditry, etc. We'll just load up those tanker trucks with Caspian gas and drive them all the way to Kabul with nary a problem.

After all, it makes perfect sense for a maritime power like the US to set up supply lines running right across the largest landmass on Earth.

Attacks on U.S. supply lines have been foretold for many months.

From the drive-the-foreigners-out perspective, it makes sense for the attacks to intensify during the seemingly-endless Bush-to-Obama transition, Gates holdover or no.

In another sense, the U.S. fate was sealed years and years ago. November-December 2001; 1991; 1979...

Sun Tzu is doing 360s in his grave.

Afghanistan is not 'the good war'. It's the foreign policy crisis waiting to sink Obama. He should withdraw in two years, regardless of conditions. It is unwinnable.

We've got maybe one more slash and burn attack before the raiders figure out that it's a lot more profitable to steal this stuff than it is to burn it up.

@ ThatLeftTurnInABQ --- raiding the northern routes would be significantly more difficult as they are not in Pashtun territory and the Taliban is overwhelmingly Pashtun. This means the number of people with social ties to the raiders decrease which decreases the support base and also increases the number of people (Tajiks for instance) who may actually remember seeing something and reporting that a large band of armed foreigners is moving through the area to either their local warlords or to governmental forces.

Doable, just a whole lot harder.

Completely OT Eric, but I was just listening to Enter the Wu-Tang on my way to work this morning. 15 years later, it's still amazing.

One of the best ever kris.

@Daniel: The links in my comment document that the blowing-up has been going on for quite some time. What would encourage those doing the blowing-up now, particularly as fuel prices are much lower than they were six or twelve months ago?

Oops, meant to write 'what would encourage those doing the blowing-up to move to theft now'.

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