By Colonel Eugene Khrushchev STAFF WRITER/Editor

The latest international conference in Kabul didn’t have any suspense or surprise, but it came up with different outcomes for different stakeholders in Afghanistan.

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For the international community represented by the UN as a whole, and by NATO-led ISAF in particular, the conference was just a traditional feel-good TV matinee, highlighted by a collective psychedelic trip from rabid reality into La-La Land.

For the US, it was a subtle admission by omission that “out of the box” population-centric COIN-lite has been a monumental hoax, thoroughly tested and regurgitated in Helmand & Kandahar.

 What Madame Secretary tentatively called a “turning point” could signal a beginning of the end for US open-ended Valhalla-building to be followed by an incremental shift toward a counter-terrorism light footprint residual task force in an integrated AfPak battle space.

For Russia, the conference was a non-starter that has predictably filibustered a motion to qualify narco-terrorism in Afghanistan as a clear and present danger to global peace and security.
At this Afghanfest, it was Karzai who hit the jackpot. Again he:

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• mesmerized the international community of patsies and ripped them off for another 3 years of unconditional sponsorship and boosted his stake in donor’s aid up to half the pie;

• secured immunity and protection for the war, land and drug lords, allegedly led by his Kandahar kingpin kin, under the CIA “asset protection program” – against DEA and FBI multiple indictments in drug manufacturing and trafficking, corruption and graft, war profiteering, money laundering and racketeering;

• Completely legitimized the election fraud and utterly discredited imported democracy;

• Unabashedly expanded the export of cash in Dubai and opium to Russia.

On the positive side, if the White House can’t make up its mind on what exactly it takes to avoid defeat and/or claim victory in Afghanistan, at least the US ambassador in Kabul figured out a long time ago what kind of partner he would be better off without.


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