Sunday, October 03, 2010

First Pakistan, Now Afghanistan

Afghanistan has banned eight private security firms, including the company formerly known as Blackwater, a spokesman for President Hamid Karzai told reporters Sunday.

Among the companies whose operations are being dissolved are Xe (formerly known as Blackwater), NCL, FHI, White Eagles and other small companies, spokesman Waheed Omer said. Both international and domestic companies were affected.

Weapons and ammunition belonging to these companies has been seized, he said.

Karzai finding his cajones.

A vital border crossing remained closed to U.S. and NATO supply trucks for a third day Saturday, a sign that Islamabad's desire to avoid a domestic backlash over a NATO incursion that killed three Pakistani troops outweighs - for now - its desire to stay on good terms with America.

Two U.S. missile strikes that killed 16 people in a northwest Pakistani tribal region, meanwhile, showed that America has no intention of sidelining a tactic it considers highly successful, even if the strikes could add to tensions.

The closing of the Torkham border to NATO trucks has exposed the struggles and contradictions at the heart of the U.S.-Pakistan alliance against Islamist militancy.

Nice work, U.S.A. How are those drones working for you? Got any tips on more diplomacy?

Afghanistan and Pakistan (with WMD, cough, cough) on the one side of Iran, while we are still occupying Iraq, on the other side of Iran.

Is it just me, or does this position look a little troubled for the warmongering U.S. and those supporters? Does anyone with a grain of salt for a brain see how invading Iran, or bombing anything in Iran, will have disastrous results for the U.S.?

We really aren't wanted in Iraq. We really aren't wanted in Afghanistan. And we clearly are not wanted in Pakistan.

Great Middle East policy, guys.

UPDATE: HT to Rachel Maddow Tweet

The U.S. military is secretly diverting aerial drones and weaponry from the Afghan battlefront to significantly expand the CIA's campaign against militants in their Pakistani havens.

The shift in strategic focus reflects the U.S. view that, with Pakistan's military unable or unwilling to do the job, more U.S. force against terrorist sanctuaries in Pakistan is now needed to turn around the struggling Afghan war effort across the border.

In recent months, the military has loaned Predator and Reaper drones to the Central Intelligence Agency to give the agency more firepower to target and bombard militants on the Afghan border.

It appears that the U.S. is hell bent on taking over the Middle East. After that, what's next? Personally, I would not be antagonizing a country that has nukes. Just saying.

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