Monday, November 22, 2010

WHAT IF NATO IS DEFEATED IN AFGHANISTAN?

Eric Margolis, ericmargolis.com, November 19, 2010

Amazing as it sounds, NATO, the world’s most powerful military alliance, may be losing the only war the 61-year old pact every fought. All its soldiers, heavy bombers, tanks, helicopter gunships, armies of mercenaries, and electronic gear are being beaten by a bunch of lightly-armed Afghan farmers and mountain tribesmen.

This weekend in Lisbon, NATO’s 28 members face deepening differences over the Afghanistan War as public opinion in the United States, Canada and Europe continue to turn against the conflict.

President Barack Obama again painfully showed he is not fully in charge of US foreign policy.   His pledge to begin withdrawing some US troops from Afghanistan next July has been brazenly – even scornfully –  contradicted by US generals and strongly opposed by resurgent Congressional Republicans.  Hardly anyone believes the president’s withdrawal  date.

Obama is fresh from groveling before Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu.  He pleaded with Israel’s leader to impose a short, token freeze on settlement building in exchange for a multi-billion dollar bribe from Washington of advanced US F-35 stealth warplanes, promises of UN vetoes, and raising the value of US arms stockpiled for Israel’s use to $1 billion. Rarely has a US president crawled so low.

Israel will likely take Obama’s bribe, with more sweeteners,  but not before rubbing his face in the dirt to show who really runs US Mideast policy and as a warning not to mess with Israel. The last US president to challenge Israel’s colonization of the West Bank, George H. W. Bush, was ousted in 1992 after one term.

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