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‌By: Bruce G. Richardson - Historical Briefs: November, 2012
Wednesday, 11.07.2012, 08:18pm (GMT+1)

Historical Briefs:

November, 2012

 

The costs of failing to heed the lessons of history:

Bruce G. Richardson   

 

Former British Ambassador to Afghanistan, Sherard Cowper-Coles wrote in his recent (2011) book Cables from Kabul, The Inside Story of the West’s Afghanistan Campaign that America’s politically expedient, anti-insurgency ally and current Chief of Army Staff, Abdur Rashid Dostum, is known to be complicit in illicit arms smuggling to the Taliban, narcotics-trafficking, and… as a certifiable war criminal and Soviet collaborator “has much blood on his hands.” (pp. 188-189).

The source of much of America’s so-called actionable intelligence is from remnants of the nefarious Northern Alliance, a collection of Communists and pro-Soviet collaborators who currently serve the U.S. occupational forces in a combat-support role…and also dominate the Afghan Government intelligence service drawn from the old Soviet-created KhAD intelligence agency.  As a result, casualties mount due solely to their Pashtun ethnicity while being falsely accused of engaging in terrorism as Taliban-militants by ethno-centric members of the minority dominated intelligence agency, a timeless enemy who seek their political and economic disenfranchisement.

A study published by the Open Society Foundation says the U.S. drawing intelligence from former KhAD operatives have increased their night-time raids in Afghanistan aimed at non-combatants in order to exploit their possible intelligence value. (See: Gareth Porter, Inter-Press-Service, Minority Retribution Stirs Unease in Afghanistan, 8/19/11)  The author concludes that deliberately targeting and rounding-up civilians who are not suspected of being insurgents merely to exploit possible intelligence value “may constitute an arbitrary deprivation of liberty and thus ‘inhuman treatment’ in violation of Article 3 of the Geneva Conventions”. Night raids prompted by the desire for intelligence can often result in the death of civilians. Furthermore, intelligence obtained from former KhAD sources who now serve in the current government intelligence agency, are members of the minority Northern Alliance…is found to be without foundation, merit, ethnically-retributive in nature and totally unreliable.

Again, failing to heed the lessons of history, the Afghan Government continues to officially-commemorate the exploits of a fictitious guerrilla-legend, the late Ahmad Shah Massoud during the Cold-War, and though inexplicable to a growing number of researchers, a not too surprising eventuality considering and given the fact that his former colleagues-cum-loyalists dominate the partisan, minority narrative within the media, parliamentary discourse, control the highest political offices in the land while enjoying the full-support of the U.S. military contingent.   Yet, from the historical archives… a differing historical perspective resides as an extemporaneous interview with a Soviet veteran of the Afghan war; Ivan Shumelyov’s testimony (below) signifies and postulates the factual as opposed to the mythical in ‘The Soldiers Story: Soviet Veterans remember the Afghan War’, Anna Heinamaa, Maija Leppanen and Yuri Yurchenko, 1994, pp. 113-122).

Shumelyov:

               Before the Soviet troops were withdrawn from Afghanistan our company worked with the 201st Division area, which was situated near Samangan and Baghlan. Ahmad Shah Massoud was their commander of the guerrilla troops in that area. He had studied at the Moscow Military Academy at the same time as General Varennikov. It was said that when Varennikov celebrated his birthday, Ahmad Shah went to visit him and took presents.

Our relationship with the guerrillas took quite a peculiar form. For example, peace prevailed between us in Samangan. We could sit around on top of armored vehicles, and Massoud’s guerrillas would come to us to peddle tobacco. It happened that Massoud’s guerrillas left us in peace, but they would tease the Afghan Army soldiers. There were two pipelines beside the road leading from the Soviet Union to Kabul. Diesel oil was carried along one and kerosene along the other. We agreed with Massoud’s guerrillas that we would guard the pipes in the easy terrain and they would guard them in the mountains. We paid them several tons of flour and a container of fuel per month.

 As I recall, it was the division commander who made the agreement for our side and Massoud, commander of the guerrilla troops, for their side. Our relationship with Massoud’s guerrillas became so warm that the guerrilla leaders came in a group to visit us at our regiment. A fine reception was arranged for them. The guerrilla leader, Massoud, and our commander agreed that neither side would harm the other. (Quoted in internationally acclaimed, The Soldiers Story: Soviet Veterans Remember the Afghan War, Anna Heinamaa, Maija Leppanen and Yuri Yurchenko, 1994, pp. 113-122).

 

The foregoing testimony of an apolitical Soviet veteran reflects a brief and as yet unassailable fact as corroborated by just one of a growing number of non-partisan, engaged authors and researchers as in the following internationally acclaimed book (See: American Raj, Liberation or Domination, Resolving the Conflict between the West and the Muslim World, Eric S. Margolis, 2008, p 196).

On the economic front, a recent scandal at Kabul Bank which involves some $900-million to 1.8 billion in missing funds raises additional, pertinent questions about invaluable lessons extant in recorded history that are premeditatedly exorcised or go unheeded.  Named as complicit in the scandal is Mohammad Fahim, First Vice President, and Mahmoud Karzai, brother to the president. Both are alleged to have been granted unsecured loans amounting in the many-millions-of- dollars.  The late Burhannudin Rabbani, for example, was himself alleged to have acquired millions in unsecured loans from which it was said he had acquired title to a string of McDonald’s fast-food restaurants. Rabbani,  was yet another Western-acolyte, embellished by the Clinton, Bush and Obama administrations as a utopian, all-inclusive representative of the Afghan political spectrum while in reality serving as agent provocateur for Iran, Russia, India and the United States.

Following a well-established pattern of extortion, the unaccounted-for funds have allegedly been invested in real estate and other financial or investment instruments in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Initial investigation indicates that the accused participants belong to the minority-factional Northern Alliance who either hold high office and or enjoy unfettered access to the highest portfolios in the land. As a result of these political, requited connections, and as serving as allies to the American war machine… the accused have been able to forestall and or homogenize any meaningful investigation.

The historical template is unassailable, drawn from the centuries-old evolution of the history of war. Political malpractice is not exclusive or unique to Afghanistan, but exists wherever dishonest public servants abound, which is to say around the world, and throughout history. One day, the Afghan people, drawing from the unassailable historical record will investigate, deliberate, elect and appoint their chosen, elected and truly-representative leaders.  And, with an eye to history…jettison self-serving politicians who have sold their country for personal, political and or financial gain.

Bruce G. Richardson   

 

 


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. By: Bruce G. Richardson - Afghanistan…Scribes, Spies and Profiteers…Questions for Consideration (10.10.2012)



 
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