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Thread: US plan to improve Afghan intelligence operations branded a $457m failure

  1. #376
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oracle View Post
    Pakistan seeks US help to ease tensions with India

    Another lie that PA has mainstreamed -> we need peace on the eastern border to concentrate on the western border. Yeah, keep sending Islamic Jihadis across the border to India and Afghanistan, then beg US to meddle for peace. These buggers don't want to change their decades old policy of supporting terrorism as it brings them big moolahs.
    They're trying to get two for one. In exchange for helping with Afghanistan can the US sort out the troublesome Indians.

  2. #377
    Senior Contributor Oracle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Double Edge View Post
    They're trying to get two for one. In exchange for helping with Afghanistan can the US sort out the troublesome Indians.
    The PA have been at this since the 2001 Parliament attack. Pompeo knows shit like this like he knows the back of his hand.
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  3. #378
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oracle View Post
    Yeah, you're right. But it makes one notice the lengths to which the Paks can go to continue getting their alms. Erdogan's op-ed is written to feel good about himself.
    Erdogan's op-ed is directly talking to the Americans. No intermediaries. I wonder at what point do the Paks replicate that ?

    You can see some rough similarities between the two. Course NATO ally means more than major non-NATO ally but both relations are under stress after being fairly strong in the past.

    Turkey accuses the US of the same thing US is accusing Pakistan : D
    Last edited by Double Edge; 05 Sep 18, at 20:13.

  4. #379
    Senior Contributor Oracle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Double Edge View Post
    Erdogan's op-ed is directly talking to the Americans. No intermediaries. I wonder at what point do the Paks replicate that ?

    You can see some rough similarities between the two. Course NATO ally means more than major non-NATO ally but both relations are under stress after being fairly strong in the past.

    Turkey accuses the US of the same thing US is accusing Pakistan : D
    So, you've just had the Ghazni attack. This is how the PA talks, no intermediaries.

    Yeah, look at Turkey now. Lira is in a free fall. Whatever the coup was (staged or not), if the US administration was involved, then it probably was for the better. Gulen was not the right choice though. US needs to find better alternatives. Oh, Erdogan sympathises with the Paks....what was it.......oh yeah...birds of the same feather......get roasted together. Erdogan is establishing his autocracy using Islam, it won't end well. In all of this, I wonder if the Europeans have been the clever lot, keeping Turkey out of the EU.
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  5. #380
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oracle View Post
    So, you've just had the Ghazni attack. This is how the PA talks, no intermediaries.
    I mean Rosen's article isn't making any head way with US public. Asking why sanctions etc why the hard time. Doesn't help to say that to Koreans.

    Nobody on either side of the US aisle gets written to or asked about it.

    Could it be their lobbyists have already done that to death and the Paks have no credibility left with the US at this point in time.

    Moeed Ysusf said last Dec that there is no track 2 , 1.5 left between the two. There is nothing.

    And then Ghazni happens. If ever you wanted an escalation this would be it.

    The tactic seems to be the same with India, attack then say talks. If no talks, keep attacking, if talks happen and not enough is coming out, stage more attacks.

    There is no give here from them. They don't care what others want only what they want

    They're not hurting yet. More time needed.
    Last edited by Double Edge; 05 Sep 18, at 21:12.

  6. #381
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    The americans are pushing on two fronts that makes it difficult to figure out how things will turn out.

    On the one hand they don't believe in good vs bad taliban, terror is terror and no two ways about it.

    On the other you have secret talks with the Taliban in an attempt to get them to the peace table. They hit the Taliban when they can and depend on the Paks to get these people to reconcile.

    How does the Ghazni attack look then. If the Taliban are losing then this attack is a morale booster for them. If the Paks have to overtly support them as they did.

    There are numerous powers attempting talks with the Taliban in case they are here for the long run or have some say in whatever government comes next.

    The Afghan govt frowns on such talks as they see it as going over their head.

  7. #382
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oracle View Post
    The PA have been at this since the 2001 Parliament attack. Pompeo knows shit like this like he knows the back of his hand.
    By making these gestures at this time means they want Pompeo to push us on it.

  8. #383
    Senior Contributor Oracle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Double Edge View Post
    By making these gestures at this time means they want Pompeo to push us on it.
    Could be. While, what goes on behind the doors is not for public consumption, I believe Pompeo knows better about the converging interests between US and India vis-a-vis Islamic terrorism emancipating from Pakistan, and a rules based global order that China is set to destroy.

    And if Pompeo does say that in private, he will get the royal snub because terrorists are getting killed in Kashmir as we speak. Pak is lucky we haven't invaded the terrorist country yet - this is the message that Pompeo will get to hear. And, Pompeo's retort would be - Oh, well, hold on for some more time, then. About Iran, please decrease imports from them if not immediately stop those imports, and try to think about procuring S400 one more time. We've got some excellent platforms that might interest your forces.

    India, U.S. sign landmark military communications, security agreement COMCASA
    Last edited by Oracle; 07 Sep 18, at 15:03.
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  9. #384
    Senior Contributor Oracle's Avatar
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    2+2 talks | India, US sign key defence pact, ask Pakistan to stop exporting terror

    India and the United States on Thursday signed the landmark Communications Compatibility and Security Agreement (COMCASA), as they held the first edition of the 2+2 talks in New Delhi. COMCASA will enable the Indian military to access critical and encrypted American defence technologies. The two countries also asked Pakistan to ensure that the territory under its control was not used to launch terror attacks on other countries.

    India and the US also decided to set up hotlines between their foreign ministers and defence ministers to enable them to remain in touch regularly. The two countries will for the first time hold a tri-services joint exercise in the eastern coast of India in 2019 to further increase personal exchanges between their military and defence organisations.

    These far-reaching announcements were made by the two countries in a joint statement issued at the end of the first of its kind 2+2 dialogue where External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman hosted US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Defence Secretary Jim Mattis.

    At a joint press interaction, the four leaders read out their respective statements expressing satisfaction over the dialogue and listing out the outcomes of their day-long discussions. They avoided taking any questions from the media apparently in view of differences between the two sides over India’s oil purchases from Iran and its defence relationship with Russia.

    The Indian side is understood to have explained how important Iran was for India for meeting its oil and energy needs and its proposed deal with Russia for purchasing S-400 Triumph missile defence systems that could attract sanctions against Indian entities under the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA). Washington, however, maintained that oil-related sanctions against Iran would come into force on 4 November and hoped oil purchases would go to zero for every country by then. Waivers would be considered where necessary. On the S-400 deal, the two sides are likely to continue their discussions. Washington has been nudging New Delhi to step back from defence purchases.

    Great significance is being attached to the COMCASA agreement that will enable India to access advanced US defence systems and optimally utilise its existing US-origin platforms. The two countries also announced their readiness to begin negotiations on an industrial Security Annex (ISA) that would support closer defence industry.

    Welcoming the expansion of bilateral counter-terrorism cooperation, the two countries announced their intent to increase information-sharing efforts on known or suspect terrorists. Denouncing any use of terrorist proxies in the region, they called upon Pakistan to bring to justice expeditiously the perpetrators of the 26/11 Mumbai, Pathankot, Uri and other terror attacks.

    The two sides also reviewed cooperation in the Indo-Pacific region and agreed to work together toward a free, open and inclusive region, based on recognition of ASEAN centrality and on respect for sovereignty, territorial integrity, rule of law, good governance, free and fair trade and freedom of navigation and overflight.

    In an apparent dig at China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), India and the US emphasised the need to work collectively with other partners to support transparent, responsible and sustainable debt financing practices in infrastructure development.

    The US welcomed India’s accession to three major non-proliferation regimes and reiterated its full support for India’s membership of the Nuclear Suppliers’ Group (NSG). The two sides said they looked forward to full implementation of the civil nuclear energy partnership and collaboration between the Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited (NPCIL) and the Westinghouse electric Company for setting up six nuclear power plants in India.

    On Afghanistan, the two countries supported an Afghan-led, Afghan-owned peace and reconciliation process

    The next 2+2 meeting is to be held in the United States in 2019.
    TheStatesman
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  10. #385
    Senior Contributor Oracle's Avatar
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    2+2 talks: As India and US head for dialogue, China is wooing Delhi

    2+2 talks: As India and US head for dialogue, China is wooing Delhi to exploit an opening in the power game

    The upcoming US-India talks have allowed us to take a peek into the great power game unfolding in the Indo-Pacific. As the incumbent superpower seeks to formalise its alliance with an emerging power, China, the superpower-in-waiting, is engaging in a little gamesmanship. Beijing’s increasingly conciliatory tone towards India is aimed at escalating New Delhi’s diplomatic dilemma. The dialogue has become an inadvertent focal point.

    This might seem a little surprising because in itself, the dialogue process between India and the US isn’t path-breaking. It is a continuation of the annual ‘Strategic Dialogue’ between the two sides since 2010 that has now been cast into a new ‘two-plus-two’ format involving foreign and defence chiefs from both sides. Still, the restructuring of high-level ministerial interaction into an annual discourse (with plans for its augmentation at lower levels of bureaucracy) provides continuity, a platform and an opportunity to engage in diplomatic debates, thrash out thorny issues, take stock of progress and plan ahead for the future.

    In that respect, the talks fill a gap in progressively warmer bilateral ties. As Council on Foreign Relations senior fellow Alyssa Ayres points out in her blog, “The most important contribution (of Thursday’s 2+2 dialogue) lies in keeping a regular cabinet-level meeting on the diplomatic calendar. The intensified US-India relationship does not have the extensive diplomatic interactions that occur with longstanding US allies and partners, where gatherings have continued over decades to build a level of deep understanding.”

    In as much as it symbolises the expanse, depth and scope of the bilateral embrace, the dialogue reflects, writes National University of Singapore director C Raja Mohan in The Indian Express, “the growing convergence of perspectives on regional and international affairs.” China is treating this convergence as a threat and the 2+2 dialogue as a ‘marker’ of that threat. It reads correctly that the US is betting on India’s emergence as the net security provider in Indo-Pacific to protect its domination and ensure the stability of a rules-based order.

    As CFR senior and Tata Chair for Strategic Affairs Ashley Tellis writes on US objective in Asia, “The goal of preserving American primacy (against rising competitors such as China) … necessitates the pursuit of new approaches — primarily balancing — that rely in part on strengthening the capabilities of various Asian powers, such as India, because they happen to be China’s natural rivals.”

    Driven by this strategic calculus, the US has sought to progressively tighten the partnership across a broad front — ranging from making India the focal point of its National Security and National Defence Strategy, working as an enabler for India’s regional leadership role, pursuing a “robust strategic and military engagement with India”, heeding its concerns on terrorism, taking a hard line towards Pakistan’s use of terror, relaxing export control norms, encouraging India to sign foundational agreements to boost transfer and interoperability of sensitive communication equipment, etc.

    In pursue of this policy, the US objectives have sometimes clashed with India’s needs, compulsions and prerogatives. India’s $6 billion deal with Russia to buy five S-400 surface-to-air missile systems or its unwillingness to let go of the energy relationship with Iran present recent examples.

    In most cases, it is the US that has taken an openly conciliatory posture, unlike India. To treat US posture as honest altruism, however, is to miss the underlying strategic calculation.

    Therefore, we find US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo reiterating India’s status as “a true strategic partner”, “only major defense partner… the only designated major defense partner, with whom we have a great relationship and who is very important to our success in our Indo-Pacific strategy” during an interaction on Tuesday with journalists.

    Pompeo, who stopped over in Islamabad for a few hours to meet Pakistan’s newly elected prime minister Imran Khan before flying to India for the 2+2 dialogue, was quick to stress that the US shall try to “find opportunities to continue to expand the relationship not only diplomatic and military-to-military but a good set of business relationships as well.” He refused to attach much importance to the differences with India over S-400 and Iran, clarifying that it won’t be the “primary focus of talks”. Instead, the focus will be on “things that are big and strategic and will go on for 20, 40, 50 years”, according to a US Department of State readout.

    Notably, ‘security’ is the focal point of US engagement, and its effort is concentrated on facilitating India’s power projection into the Indo-Pacific. It is attempting to draw India into a security architecture where New Delhi may have to make a military commitment in the future. This could be a sticking point in partnership because India is unwilling to be drawn into the game just yet. Its calibration over ‘Quad’ — exemplified by its rejection of the military component or Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s speech at the Shangri La dialogue — provides evidence of divergence in objectives.

    Even as officials from both sides are poring over the draft of Indo-Pacific policy during 2+2 talks, The Times of India has reported on Tuesday that “for the present, India looks at the Indo-Pacific in economic and political terms, with a security aspect to be added later in the game.”

    China has seen here an opening, and is wasting no time in exploiting it. It wouldn’t have escaped Chinese attention that India’s rejection of Australia’s request to join the Malabar Exercises coincided with the Wuhan Summit.

    Last week, even as India and the US were gearing up for the 2+2 dialogue, China called India a “natural partner” in the Belt and Road Initiative and stressed that “CPEC does not jeopardise China’s position on Kashmir.” Speaking to the media in Beijing, Zhang Jun, China’s assistant minister of foreign affairs, said Modi and Xi Jinping’s meetings in Wuhan, Qingdao and Johannesburg have “added fresh and strong impetus to our bilateral ties.” He left no space for ambiguity that it is aimed at the US in declaring that “We are neighbours, we are partners…historically we were together and in future I never believe that anybody can separate India and China,” as reported in The Hindu.

    It is a quantum leap from launching a full-blown psy-op war against India during the border standoff at Doka La to homilies on “inseparability” of “natural allies” — all within the space of a year. In a repeat of the playbook that we saw during Doka La, China is not averse to using its state-controlled media in controlling various aspects of its psy-war game. If the minister indulged in homilies, the media came out with a tougher response in a ‘good cop, bad cop’ routine.

    Global Times warned on Tuesday that “US, India not on same page despite dialogue” in continuation of its strategy of discouraging closer ties between India and the US. Back in July, when the 2+2 talks were rescheduled due to Pompeo’s sudden dash to North Korea, the newspaper had cautioned India that getting drawn into US Indo-Pacific Strategy will cost India “development opportunity”.

    “Any benefits from this strategy may be greatly outweighed by the costs to India," advised the newspaper, adding that “India needs to be aware that without paying heed to Indian concerns, the US' strategy is hampering, not aiding, India's domestic development. Rather than falling victim to the US' purpose of containing China's rise, it is better for India to look to China for ways of self-development. What India can learn from China is that its ability to stand on its own feet will determine its place in Asia and the world.”

    Whether or not China’s gamble pays off will become clearer as we move along. India’s broad strategic concerns align with the US but until such time that it gets over its capacity constraints, India might find better logic in taking a cautiously conciliatory position against China.

    To quote from Paul Staniland in War on the Rocks, “India’s rising GDP is not, at least yet, being turned into an equivalently improved balance of forces against China. If anything, the current risk is that the balance will shift against India as it struggles to adequately supply its forces with appropriate equipment. An India in military decline or stasis relative to China would certainly look to the United States for support, but would not be as useful to Washington as an India that can gain ground on its own.”

    Viewed from this lens, China has a point and more than a fair opening. The US would do well to keep this equation in mind.
    Firstpost
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  11. #386
    Senior Contributor Oracle's Avatar
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    How the U.S. Government Misleads the Public on Afghanistan

    $840B.......and still no result in sight........OMFG!
    Politicians are elected to serve...far too many don't see it that way - Albany Rifles!

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  12. #387
    Senior Contributor Oracle's Avatar
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    Politicians are elected to serve...far too many don't see it that way - Albany Rifles!

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  13. #388
    Senior Contributor Oracle's Avatar
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    Suspending military aid to Pakistan not done lightly: US

    It was done knowing full well that Pakistan is a nuclear weapons state, and the risk that the government could fall into the hands of terrorists that would get control of those nuclear weapons was particularly serious.
    Politicians are elected to serve...far too many don't see it that way - Albany Rifles!

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  14. #389
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    Good. I just wanted to actually hear him say it. It was in response to a question


  15. #390
    Senior Contributor Oracle's Avatar
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    Sticks in private, carrots in public.

    I don't think we have now, the Bolton of yester years. Else, we already would have heard a leak about some kind of invasion plan in South-Asia. He's a dangerous hawk even for my liking.
    Politicians are elected to serve...far too many don't see it that way - Albany Rifles!

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