Wednesday, November 17, 2010

We Had To Destroy The Village In Order To Save It

NATO is demolishing entire Afghan villages because some houses have been booby-trapped by the Taliban:

"While it has widespread support among Afghan officials and even some residents, and has been accompanied by an equally determined effort to hand out cash compensation to homeowners, other local people have complained that the demolitions have gone far beyond what is necessary.

It would also seem to run counter to Gen. David H. Petraeus’s counterinsurgency strategy, which calls for respecting property as well as lives, and to run up against recent calls by President Hamid Karzai for foreign forces to lower their profile and avoid tactics that alienate Afghan civilians. There have been no reports of civilians casualties from the demolitions."

Counterinsurgency is about protecting and winning the support of the population. Wonder how well home demolitions will achieve that goal?

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