Kabul

Obama says Daesh is contained, ineffective…nek minit

You simply can’t believe a word Barack Hussein Obama says these days.

He recently declared that through his hands-off approach to Daesh they were contained and ineffective.

Meanwhile they have expanded their activities in Afghanistan.

Islamic State fighters have captured swathes of eastern Afghanistan in a drive to establish a new province of the group?s self-styled caliphate on territory straddling the border with Pakistan.

Up to 1600 fighters pledging allegiance to Isis are ruling much of four districts south of Jalalabad with the same ruthlessness that characterises the group?s regime in Syria and Iraq: public beheadings, strict adherence to Koranic teachings foreign to Afghanistan, and extortion. Some of the worst atrocities have been filmed and posted online.

Tens of thousands of villagers have fled the jihadists and the Afghan army is engaged in a daily battle to prevent the group spreading further. The already stretched security forces are losing 500 men across the country every month. ? Read more »

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And we still want Islamic immigrants?

When you read the article at the NZ Herald about the 11 year old rape victim in Afghanistan being disowned by her family for dishonouring them then you really do have to wonder why we entertain letting Islamic immigrants into NZ.

All around the world we see the perils of such immigration where enclaves and no-go zones are formed and shariah law imposed.

We do not tolerate the subjucation of women in New Zealand yet we remain silent with increasing numbers of burqa clad females strolling our cities, subjugated by stone age belief systems….in New Zealand.

This wouldn’t be an issue but for the fact that Islamic migrants in particular tend to not want to integrate into our society, instead they want to apply their belief systems upon us.

It is time to have a re-think….otherwise we will be importing beliefs like this into NZ…at least if we did continue down this path then Tania Billingsley would actually have a real rape culture to deal with…unfortunately for her though they will simply tell her to shut up and put her burqa back on or face stoning.

An Afghan cleric has been jailed for 20 years for raping an 11-year old girl, after the child confronted her attacker in court despite fierce family opposition.

Activists said the girl appeared in court after being taken to a women’s shelter for safety from some members of her own family, who had threatened to kill her for bringing “dishonour” on them.

The sentence, passed by a court in Kabul on Saturday, came just weeks after five men were hanged for the gang-rape of four adult women and was hailed as a victory by activists. ? Read more »

Photo Of The Day

Women browse in a Kabul record store

Women browse in a Kabul record store

Afghan Women?

Read more »

Photo Of The Day

? Abbas/Magnum Photos

? Abbas/Magnum Photos

?Marriage by Proxy

Read more »

Thanks and Well Done

Our NZDF boys and girls have completed their mission in Bamiyan and are returning home.

Photo: NZDF

Photo: NZDF

The?New Zealand?flag has been lowered for the final time at Kiwibase in Bamiyan marking the official close of the Provincial Reconstruction Team and this country’s 10-year involvement with it.

The?United States?and Malaysian flag, representing other nations in the PRT, were also lowered leaving the Afghan flag flying alone.? Read more »

Don’t tell these women nothing’s changed in Afghanistan

The left likes to exclaim that nothing has changed in Afghanistan.

Foreign Policy magazine has a photo essay on women in Afghanistan that disproves that….but it is all at risk if the Taliban return:

Afghan girls attend class at a camp for the displaced in Kabul in October 2011.

Afghan girls attend class at a camp for the displaced in Kabul in October 2011.

Since the fall of the Taliban in 2001, Afghan women have gained the rights to vote, work, and pursue an education. They’re?running?for president, they’ve?claimed?seats in parliament, and they’ve even?competed?in the Olympics. But international troops are due to withdraw from Afghanistan by the end of 2014, and the Taliban threatens to step into the vacuum they’ll leave behind. Already, writes Amie Ferris-Rotman in an?FP?dispatch from Kabul, many of the women who’ve come so far — journalists, politicians, and rights workers, among others — have begun to retreat from public life out of fear for their safety. “Once the Americans go we’ll have to sit at home again, bored,” First Lieutenant Zakiya Mohammadi tells Ferris-Rotman.

The “last decade produced a league of knowledgeable, determined young women for whom the Taliban’s return is anathema,” Ferris-Rotman writes. Here’s a look at women across post-Taliban Afghanistan — from the campaign trail to the basketball court to the operating room.

Taliban doing Muzza’s job

? NZ Herald

The Taliban appear to be doing the bidding of Murray McCully and helping close down an embassy:

The New Zealand Embassy was among the sites hit in a series of attacks in Afghanistan.

Taliban insurgents yesterday launched violent attacks on several locations across the country’s capital, Kabul, as well as in three eastern cities, firing grenades and automatic weapons in what has been described as one of the most serious assaults in years.

A guard tower at the British embassy compound, which also houses New Zealand’s embassy, was hit by two rockets and remained locked down this afternoon.

Prime Minister John Key, who is in Indonesia, told reporters that the two New Zealanders attached to the embassy had not been involved in the incident and were safe.

Meanwhile, a spokesman for the New Zealand Defence Force confirmed that Afghanistan-based personnel were all safe and accounted for following the attacks.

Oh really Murray?

Murray McCully, fresh from bollocksing up the Rugby World Cup with his inept micro-management, plus his great policy victory in Fiji with them joining the Non-Aligned movement has now told us all that Bamiyan Province will be ready for hand over by 2014.

Foreign Minister Murray McCully says Bamiyan Province in Afghanistan where New Zealand troops have been working since 2003 will be ready to stand on its own before the 2014 deadline set by the troubled country’s President, Hamid Karzai.

At a conference yesterday in the capital Kabul, Mr Karzai reaffirmed his commitment for Afghan police and soldiers to take charge of security nationwide by 2014.

The one-day international conference on Afghanistan’s future was held during a crunch period where Nato and Afghan forces are attacking Taleban strongholds and the insurgents are pushing back. Rockets fired at the Kabul airport on Tuesday forced the diversion of a plane carrying UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and Sweden’s foreign minister.

Mr McCully told NZPA the mere fact the conference where about 70 countries were represented was held was a small victory.

He welcomed President Karzai’s 2014 goal.

New Zealand has about 140 Defence Force personnel in Afghanistan. They run a provincial reconstruction team (PRT) operating in Bamiyan province, and have been there since 2003.

If he bothered to read a bit more widely than the reports from spotty teenagers in Foreign Affairs then he might just have considered answering a bit differently. I prefer to take stock of the situation Afghanistan by reading reports from people actually in-country at the pointy end of the problem.

Bloggers like Tim Lynch at Free Range International. this is a post about how PRT’s are going in Afghanistan.

Last night Captain America (regional manager for Team Canada ? 2 years on the ground with the US Army as a CA officer and four more as a contractor) rucked up to the Taj for our Thursday happy hour and we talked for a long time with the Skipper about why we are always fighting to maintain program funding, keep our safe-houses, keep our mobility and freedom to maneuver despite consistently exceeding program goals. ?No reason to hash over the details of our incredibly interesting conversation but there was a portion worthy of mention. ?CPT?A asked if we could do vertical structures, I said we could, to which he said, ?you know if we could just knock out ?250 schools we?re done?. ?CPT?A is taking his cash for work money and refurbishing district irrigation systems. ?He does about three districts at a time, employs around 5,000 laborers and is building proper intakes and installing concrete in main canals and karez systems so that they last. ?The roads into the Nangarhar districts are done, once we finish all the irrigation systems if we knock out 250 schools we can say ?dudes we did what we said we were going to do and we?re taking off?.good luck.?

This is what I mean about wasting money.  We have spent billions building new regional ANP training centers and running new ANP officers through them yet still we get IED's planted right outside a Provincial Governors compound and nobody knows just how they got there.  This is what I mean about wasting money. We have spent millions and millions of dollars building new regional ANP training centers and running new ANP officers through them yet still we get an IED planted right outside a Provincial Governors compound.

CPT A was understating what needs to be done but not by much. ?He wrote the Provincial reconstruction plan back when he was in Jalalabad with the Army and knows more about it than anyone else on planet earth. ?But the chances that we would recognize a successful template and slim down our efforts to switch up on the hold and build game are zero. ?The reason it is zero is that doing reconstruction is irrelevant for the thousands of military staff, civilian governmental agency personnel, and their contractors who have deployed to Afghanistan. ?All of them have high level security clearances, they spend their days in ?inter-agency working groups designed to trim the bureaucratic red tape for efficiency and speed while reducing ?stove pipes.? ?These people are all highly?paid professional decision makers but they spend their time flying between FOB?s to brief each other and to participate in ?fusion cells? designed to provide the battle commanders with useful information. ? The goal of our efforts has turned inward so that participating in the closed loop is now the job for most of the mid to senior ranked civilians and military personnel.

An incident like the attack on the DAI office in Kunduz last month gives this Classified Class weeks of work. ?Guys like the Skipper or CPT America, guys who get the job done day after day without any problems or hiccups ? the Classified Class doesn?t even know they exist. ?There is no reason to track people doing their jobs as promised and without fanfare because they are not going to pop up on the classified nets. ?A gigantic Poppy Palace full of western aid workers getting attacked ? that generates all kinds of classified message traffic and will require lots of flying around to other FOB?s to brief and participate in more emergency inter agency meetings and catch up with good friends. ? Want the truth? ?The Classified Class is spending millions of OPM to accomplish not one damn thing other than to feel good about how they spent their year in Afghanistan.

That was just about Provincial Reconstruction. Out and finished by 2014, I don’t think so. Our guys are doing a great job, but McCully is dreaming if he thinks our job will be done by 2014.