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Thursday, October 26, 2006

Media Whore: The BBC Embeds with the Taliban 
The little-girl-stoning, raping, school-burning murderous bastards in the Taliban couldn't buy better PR than they're getting for free from the BBC: Witness this fellative dispatch from from the obsequeous little tool, David Loyn.


There is no army on earth as mobile as the Taleban.


Oh, the brave little darlings!

There's only one little problem with that pretty-sounding lede: It's false! The U.S. military has superior mobility at nearly every level. The proof is in the killing: We've managed to airlift a (small) Army to the most isolated plots of real estate in the world, build or convert airfields, and then airlift our platoons and companies out there into the Taliban's faces and kill them in their own back yards. We can laterally reinforce over dozens of miles within minutes, and over hundreds of miles within hours.

Those precious little underdogs in the Taliban have us on stealth. But not on mobility. Loyn is a fool. Worse than that - he's a credulous fool.

They have surprised the British by the ferocity of their fighting and their willingness to take casualties.


This is a surprise? Only to the naive. Taliban fighters have always been ferocious and brave. Especially when shooting women and children in the back. I don't think anyone was more surprised than the Taliban when the U.S. showed up in their world and made a pink, lathery foam out of thousands of them.

They demand and get food and shelter from places where they stop, but it is impossible to say how enthusiastic the villagers really are.


What happens if the villagers refuse? Do the Taliban plan to simply shake the dust off their sandals and move on?

No.

The Taliban would stage a massacre, as a warning to the next village. Why can't the BBC be honest about this?

Answer: Loyn is a tool, that's why.

The food we shared was just a bowl of rice, a vegetable stew made only of okra, and flat roughly-ground country bread.

The failure of aid policies to make a difference in southern Afghanistan and increasing corruption in the government and the national army, are spreading the power base of the Taleban.


Riiiiiiight. Because the Taliban isn't corrupt. Just murderous. And it's all the fault of ineffective aid policies.

No it isn't. It's because we haven't amassed the right combination of actionable intelligence and firepower to exterminate these rats like the vermin they are.

This time the checkpoints are manned by Afghan government soldiers, who demand money at gunpoint from every driver.


Yes. And the Taliban never raise funds by force, huh? You damn fool...have you no clue how insurgent movements raise taxes from the populace? (Hint: it doesn't involve a polite fundraising letter, you moron!)

The failure of the international community to stop this makes the military task of the British-led Nato force in the south much harder


It's not the responsibility of the international community to stop it, fool. Afghanistan has a sovereign government now. You may have heard of it. It is the responsibility of Afghanistan to police its own, not that of the "international community." It's not even the job of the British welfare state to reach out that far.

The Taleban official spokesman, Mohammed Anif, explained: "When the Islamic movement of the Taleban started in the first place, the main reason was because of concern among people about corruption.

"People were fed up with having to bribe governors, and other authorities.


I guess people were also fed up with those uppity women showing their faces in public without having to worry about getting gang-raped and then stoned to death under the benevolent rule of the tribal elders, too. Or people being beaten half to death for the crime of playing music. Funny. Loyn's memory seems to be a little fuzzy about those particular quirks of Taliban rule. Good thing we have the BBC's editors to put that into context. Except wait - they don't.

"We rose up and saved almost the whole country from the evils of corruption and corrupt commanders. That's why people are supporting the Taleban again now."


What is this? PR Web?

The intensifying conflict itself also plays into their hands. It is hard for Nato to promote its mission as humanitarian given the inevitable civilian casualties of conflict.

The Taleban deny British claims that hundreds of their soldiers have been killed.


Sher and Nur Ahmad were orphaned when a bomb fell on their home

They say that since they wear only the loose long cotton shirts and trousers - shalwar kameez - of any local villager, then the British cannot easily tell them apart.


Well, there's also the small matter of the fact that the Taliban deliberately obscures the difference between their fighters and the local civilian populace - in direct violation of the laws of land warfare- with the express purpose of maximizing the civilian casualties, and then parading them in front of useful idiots like Loyn. Or as members of a profession apparently more honorable than journalism would call them, "Johns."

Of course, Loyn's perception is a little weak on this point, too. Good thing he's got sharp editors who can cover for his biases and the difficulties involved in embedding with the enemy by providing adequate context here.

Except they don't.

In a village damaged by a British attack on the night of 7 October, some people were too angry to talk to me because I was British.

One merely pointed to the torn and bloody women's clothing left in the ruins of the house and said bitterly, "Are these the kind of houses they have come to build - the kind where clothing is cut to pieces?".


Hey, Loyn...you might want to lick around Taliban "spokesman" Mohammad Anif's head a bit more. You might have missed a drop.

Wouldn't want to leave a paying customer disappointed, eh, "Scoop?"

British soldiers landed in helicopters, arrested a suspect and flew away.

But they left six dead in one family, including three young girls, and partially demolished the mosque.


Did they? You can rule out the Taliban as being complicit in their deaths? How? Did the Taliban use them as human shields? (Nod your head "yes," Loyn. I know you can't talk when your mouth is full.)

Were any weapons captured? Loyn doesn't see fit to tell us.

They fear for the homes and farms they have left behind, and while not active Taleban supporters, it is clear that most blame Nato more for the worsening violence.


Yep. Ask anyone the Taliban lets you talk to, Loyn. Especially when they're standing right there with you while you conduct the interviews. By the way - do you take credit cards? Or do you just send your Johns to the ATM machine at the Pilot station?

"It's very obvious. Right now we see foreigners with tanks driving through our vineyards. They destroy people's orchards.

"They break through the walls and just drive across. When they take up positions in the village like this, nobody can cooperate with them."


"Tanks," huh? And you believe him? How many tank battalions do you think NATO has over there?

Engraved in their collective folk memory of Afghanistan's warrior history are tales of the defeat of the British in 1842 and 1880 along with the defeat of the Russians in the 1980s.


Pardon me if I don't quake in my boots, Mr. Loyn. Then again, if more Brits are like you, that does give one cause for concern.

Do let us know what your future career plans are. You have a bright future in public relations and marketing.

You've left the ranks of journalism.

Splash, out

Jason

Comments:
During the Vietnam War one of the ways that you could tell (in general) how much time a man had in the field was by how much respect he had for the enemy.
http://abcnews.go.com/International/wireStory?id=2542382
Things are not going well in Afghanistan
Firepower is not the way to end an insurgencey
 
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