The #War In Afghanistan is in the news, it is America’s longest war, a war which is now at a #Critical Stage. At a recent meeting, #trump castigated the generals and called for the sacking of the local commander General Nicholson for "losing" the war. The Americans had 100,000 troops in Afghanistan in 2011 and then Obama decided to withdraw. It was a momentous decision as it in effect meant throwing in the towel. Now the troop strength is down to 8,000 and as any strategist will tell you that you can’t win a war with just 8,000 troops. The US think-tank has two solutions; an augmentation of troops by 5,000, or a complete withdrawal and handing over the fight to private contractors.

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Sensing the Americans are wavering, the Afghan Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid has sent a 1,600-word open letter to U.S. President Donald Trump with the "friendly" advice that he should change America’s Afghan policy and withdraw troops from Afghanistan. The letter reminded him that it would be foolhardy to send a paltry 5,000 more into a losing war. The Taliban claims that the American troops and Kabul have already lost control over half of 407 Afghan districts and the end is near.

Blunders of US administration

One of the biggest blunders the US administration took was to allow Pakistan to carry out its policy of supporting the Haqqani faction of the Taliban. The Haqqani is Afghanistan’s most experienced and sophisticated insurgent organisations, the network maintains a safe haven in North Waziristan, Pakistan.

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Maybe the past record that Pakistan was an ally against the Soviet Union had something to do with it. Even when news surfaced that dreaded terrorists like Osama bin Laden and Mullah Omar were given refuge by the Pakistan government the US did nothing. It continued to think of Pakistan as an ally and the result is that America has lost its longest war away from home and it will rankle.

One wonders why the repeated pleas of the Kabul government and New Delhi that Pakistan was a sponsor of terror did not prod the US administration to act. The US has declared many states as a sponsor of terrorism for far less than Pakistan.

Trump and future

The matter is now in Trump's hands. He is right that a mere 5,000 additional troops are not going to win the war in Afghanistan. The only solution is to corner Pak as a sponsor of terrorism and strike the Pak sanctuaries and training camps. The CIA has documented these camps and it's incumbent on the USA to act. A US withdrawal and handing the fight to private contractors, like Black Water Security is the sign that the US is slipping as a world power. It may well be the beginning of the end of the American role as the world's greatest power as a loss in Afghanistan is going to have repercussions all over the globe.