February 13th, 2010
03:41 PM ET

From the Afghan media

Take a look at some of the top stories and editorials in Afghan media related to Operation Moshtarak in Marjah. Excerpts are compiled from a U.N. Assistance Mission in Afghanistan report.

SUNDAY

Weesa Daily (private media editorial): The United States and United Kingdom want to establish their military bases in Helmand, Nimroz, Herat and some other important places in Afghanistan so that they can have control of Helmand with its rich petroleum resources. They also want to control Guada Port in Pakistan and Bandar-e Abbas in Iran. (Guadar is a port that links Pakistan to China). The offensive launched in the name of Marjah is nothing but hiding their intensions about oil wells in Helmand and the strategic importance of the ports mentioned. Therefore, both the public as well as the authorities ought to pay attention to the sensitivity of the issue.

Hasht-e-Subh Daily (private media editorial): The Taliban will not attend the peace talks unless they feel they are weak, whereas the ongoing military operations in Marja will probably not deal such a serious blow to the Taliban to make it attend peace talks.

Outlook Afghanistan (private media editorial): Taliban militants, both Pakistani and Afghan, will show resilience if they are not squeezed from the border areas between Pakistan and Afghanistan.

Ariana TV: Military authorities in Helmand say roadside mines and the use of human shields by Taliban has slowed the pace of operations. Afghan's Ministry of Defence says security forces will, by tomorrow, liberate all the areas under Taliban domination in Marjah.

Outlook Afghanistan newspaper: Karzai warns against civilian casualties in Marjah. Meanwhile, Helmand Governor Gulab Mangal has accused the Taliban of intending to use civilians as human shields by not allowing them to leave their houses. The Afghanistan Council of Clerics wants Karzai to invite representatives of the Taliban to the upcoming Peace Jirga in Kabul.

SATURDAY

Outlook Afghanistan newspaper: Afghan Interior Minister Mohammad Hanif Atmar called Thursday on Taliban militants to give up militancy and join the peace process in the country. Meanwhile, Zalmay Khalilzad - the former U.S. ambassador to Afghanistan, Iraq and the U.N. - said he's not confident of the success of the reconciliation approach with the Taliban that the Karzai government is proposing.

Weesa Daily (private media editorial): If the Afghan government doesn't make sure Marjah civilians are safe during the operations, the government will be held responsible and the ongoing reconciliation process will be damaged.

Kabul Times (state media editorial): The ongoing military operations in the Marjah district of Helmand will destroy and affect poppy cultivation in the country

Rah-e-Nejat Daily (private media editorial): The Afghan government needs to regulate the presence of foreign forces in Afghanistan or it will just create more problems in the future.

Mandegar Daily (private media editorial): The operation in Marjah will not help in the ongoing reintegration and reconciliation process in the country.


Filed under: Marjah • Operation Moshtarak • Voices
soundoff (8 Responses)
  1. typee123@gmail.com

    As far as the war goes, I think your assessment is correct. Unfortunately, we have neo-cons whose collective ego is satanic in its exceptionalism. Where do they go to die? It is certainly not the battlefield that supplies their their ranks or their graves. Their graves will be some place without honor...

    February 14, 2010 at 10:16 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Nick

    The unfortunate truth of the matter is that a lasting peace in Afghanistan is hopeless. I keep hearing comparisons to the end of World War 2 when the United States helped the Japanese and Germans rebuild. This is a false comparison, as the Germans and Japanese were a united people prior to the war. Afghanistan is a mixture of ethnic, tribal, and religious groups that really have no intention or inclination to have a united government and a united nation state. No foriegn power has ever been able to overcome this. In military terms, this is an unwinable war. I am in the service, I have been for nearly 20 years, and I can see the folly in this endeavor. From Alexander the Great, the Mongols, the British, the Russians, and now the United States. Afghanistan is where empires go to die. I only pray for the safety and welfare of the Unites States Military and the Nato allies, and that civilian Afghan casualties will be kept at a minimum.

    February 14, 2010 at 1:02 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Steve

    The two pronged approach seems militarily sound. We cannot wait for civilian approval of the operation, nor can we depend on political support from the many splinter groups who are mostly concerned with advancing their own stature. The objective should be (and is) to advance and inflict large numbers of casualties, establish a perimeter, and begin building services and community resources and housing, then protect the ground and use it as a model of our intent. This will win the people as much as possible, since they are traditionally allied with their own kind, no matter what injuries are inflicted.

    And, yes, we are after the oil. We are always after the oil..... but we will develop and share.

    February 14, 2010 at 11:56 am | Report abuse |
  4. Jay

    My future husband is out there,honestly i don't agree with this war...its hard on the soldiers and its hard on their families.I actually forgot why they are there fighting ,for what?There's more than we iniatially been told there and for sure its not all about free the afghans from what they think its normal.Its ridiculous and the only ones that suffer is us.I pray to God that HE'll bring my loved one home in one piece,tahnk you all for your dedication.May God keep everybody safe!

    February 14, 2010 at 11:40 am | Report abuse |
  5. linda in AR

    I so luv hearing from Zalmay. Isn't he just another protege of Wolfowitz and Cheney? Maybe we can get a second opinion from John Bolton.

    If it weren't for all the neo-con "Global Empire" strategists, would we have been out of there after Tora Bora failed?

    Thanks for the links.

    February 14, 2010 at 11:29 am | Report abuse |
  6. Gurbir Bhullar

    Need to gauge the civilians mood if they support the operation or not. If yes, Nato troops should attack the rogue elements with full force and make sure the services are restored in the region as soon as the operation is over. Moreover, they should handover the responsibility to Afghan forces to hold the region after operation Moshtarak ends with support from NATO troops at backend to win the confidence of the civilians.

    February 14, 2010 at 2:12 am | Report abuse |
  7. christine

    what I think about this whole situation is that we are fighting a loosing battle. We've been in Afganistan for what 9 years now. They are animals and were born that way and will always be. Pull the troops and them blow themselves up. This is ridiculous that we are still there trying to turn animals into humans! they are not human. They all sicken me and even though we tried you can't teach animals to be humans, sorry but this is not getting anywhere. Now the suicide bombers are dressing up in Afgan border poiice uniforms. They are in kahootz with each other. Pull the troops already!

    February 14, 2010 at 2:05 am | Report abuse |
  8. Dan Nelson Lafayette,IN

    To me it sounds like the Afghan media does not think that taking out the largest Taliban stronghold will help in bringing in peace to Afghanistan. Well I would tell them the more we kill them the closer we will be for the Afghan army to take control. So I say kill as many Taliban and foreign fighters as we can. GO NATO! Lord be with our coalition as they take on the Taliban.

    February 13, 2010 at 8:15 pm | Report abuse |