Thursday, October 29, 2009
# Posted 9:04 AM by Ariel David Adesnik
From the beginning of 2007 to March 2008, the 82nd Airborne Division's strategy in Khost proved that 250 paratroopers could secure a province of a million people in the Pashtun belt. The key to success in Khost—which shares a 184 kilometer-long border with Pakistan's lawless Federally Administered Tribal Areas—was working within the Afghan system. By partnering with closely supervised Afghan National Security Forces and a competent governor and subgovernors, U.S. forces were able to win the support of Khost's 13 tribes.A lot more dangerous, actually. Is our initial success in Khost an indication that a small number of troops doing the right things is all we really need? I don't know enough about the province to have an opinion one way or the other.
Now that the province is in trouble, can it be brought back under control with only a small contingent of troops? I don't know.
Was our initial success in Khost something of an illusion, similar to the relative peace throughout Afghanistan during the first years after 9/11? Again, I don't know.
Although skeptical, I'm more open to arguments like Adams and Marlowe's because it's based on evidence from the battlefield, not spurious analogies between the Taliban and our Founding Fathers.
Cross-posted at Conventional Folly (0) opinions -- Add your opinion
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