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Grey Havoc

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9 October 2009
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On a related note:

It will be interesting to see if the Afghan Air Force can take up the slack now that the USAF in particular is no longer a factor for all intents and purposes. Another question is, will the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces, who are primarily responsible post-retreat for defence of the airbase rather than the Afghan Air Force, be able to actually hold the base for any length of time?
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Thought we were still allowed to post on more narrowly military topics, such as in this case the fate of Bagram as well as the AAF in general?

In that case I will just add this and just leave it at that. :(

You mean like what is going to happen now to the A-29 LAS and MD-530F procurements for example? Around 27 of the former have been delivered to date, with at least one subsequently lost in action last year and 7 (some sources say 10, which would mean the number of deliveries has been instead at least 30) kept stateside at Moody Air Force base for training. With regards as to the latter about 70 out of an order for 150 have been delivered so far, with an unknown number of losses.

We probably should give thanks to all that is holy that the planned F-16 and Predator-B buys (dating back to Rumsfeld's time, when the AAF was still known as the Afghan National Army Air Corps) finally crashed and burned (officially shelved) during the Obama era. More than a bit of money and other resources were squandered first though on those two programs alone.
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Well, seeing as it's newsworthy - could we move it to the Bar?
Well, since there is plenty of juicy hardware material that we could cover such as the UH-60A+ fiasco (which was supposed to be a major cornerstone of the infamous Afghan Aviation Transition Plan), it might as well be left here, IMHO.
At least seven Afghan pilots, including Zamaray, have been assassinated off base in recent months, according to two senior Afghan government officials. This series of targeted killings, which haven’t been previously reported, illustrate what U.S. and Afghan officials believe is a deliberate Taliban effort to destroy one of Afghanistan’s most valuable military assets: its corps of U.S.- and NATO-trained military pilots.
(Via Defense One)


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Today is has been nearly 20 years (August 16, exactly so next week) that Zacarias Moussaoui was arrested. He is presently held at ADX Florence, Colorado, in extremely harsh conditions (don't think please that I'm rooting for that SOB, - he deserves it).

Moussaoui capture could have avoided 9-11 and inturn, 9-11 led to the war in Afghanistan and kicking the Taleban ugly arses.

All this, for what ? 20 years later, the fanatical SOBs are back to near square one - Afghanistan is ready again to fall into their hands. As it fell 25 years ago, in the mid-90's.

Dear God...
The Europeans get the blame for this one. Nation building with the Khazi of Kalibar and his corrupt mates.
The US had the right idea let the Northern Alliance Warlords run the shoot and do what they like to the Taliban.


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Again, the Afghan government should have the advantage in terms of both funding and weapons.
It has received billions of dollars to pay for soldiers' salaries and equipment - mostly by the US. In its July 2021 report, SIGAR said more than $88bn (£64bn) had been spent on Afghanistan's security.
But it ominously added: "The question of whether that money was well spent will ultimately be answered by the outcome of the fighting on the ground."
Afghanistan's Air Force should provide it with a critical edge on the battlefield.
But it has consistently struggled to maintain and crew its 211 aircraft (a problem that's becoming more acute with the Taliban deliberately targeting pilots). Nor is it able to meet the demands from commanders on the ground.
Hence the involvement recently of the US Air Force over cities like Lashkar Gah, which have come under Taliban attack. It's still not clear for how much longer the US is willing to provide that support.

And from late last month:

Regarding the US counterpart to Pitting, Operation Allies Refuge:

President Biden said in a statement Saturday he would send approximately 5,000 U.S. troops to safely evacuate U.S. and allied personnel, a force slightly larger than the 3,000 personnel already in transit back to Afghanistan.

Mr. Biden made the decisions after consultations with top advisers while he was working at Camp David. Mr. Biden also defended his decision to withdraw from Afghanistan, as the Taliban continues to advance in the country.

The steps announced by Mr. Biden don’t represent a major course correction in his decision to withdraw American forces from Afghanistan and largely consist of adjustments to moves already under way as he seeks to disengage from America’s longest war.

“I was the fourth President to preside over an American troop presence in Afghanistan—two Republicans, two Democrats. I would not, and will not, pass this war onto a fifth,” he said in a statement.

The 5,000 troops would include the 3,000 U.S. infantry troops, including one Army and two Marine Corps units, that are being sent to Afghanistan this weekend to carry out the evacuation of diplomatic personnel. The Pentagon said Friday that the first elements of that force had already arrived in Kabul. In addition, the U.S. also has more than 600 troops who have been protecting the U.S. embassy and the airport.

Advance Taliban elements have been elsewhere reported as only being 7 miles from Kabul, and that was some hours ago.
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Britain prepares to end diplomatic mission in Afghanistan as Taliban close on Kabul (The Sunday Times, subscription or registration may be required)

Britain is to abandon its diplomatic presence in Afghanistan as the Taliban surged to within seven miles of Kabul, sparking fears in Whitehall that the capital could be overrun in “a few days”.

Senior government sources said the UK would evacuate its ambassador and staff, and would no longer maintain an embassy outpost there.

The full extent of the British withdrawal became clear amid a swift Taliban advance. The fighters were clashing with the Afghan army just outside the capital, where western forces have set up a defensive perimeter at the airport.
So, are we talking about a new isolationist Afghanistan? They will have quite a large quantity of decent weaponry and could destabilise surrounding nations.
Pakistan is behind all of this.
Better by far if it had been the US behind all of this: the seemingly criminally incompetent decision to announce a quick withdrawl, leaving allies in the lurch *and* a pile of ammo, weapons and supplies behind was actually a devious scheme to bring the Taliban out into the open. Get them to come in... and then spring traps. Bases full of stuff explode. Sudden "accidental" releases of nerve gas and napalm. Ten thousand spider holes spring open and reveal coked-up African mercs.

But that would require not only strategic thinking and bloodthirstiness, it would require a President who was actually *awake.*
Did anyone else notice that the MD is missing rotor blades and that the UH-60 has a broken window?
If I'm not mistaken, Afghan Black Hawks often had that window removed to create an improvised firing port. The other UH-60 seen in the background in the second picture is similarly missing the same window.


Miscalculation? I have no reason to believe that.

As in Vietnam, the goal was to train "South" Vietnamese forces to defend their country from the Communists in the North. That did not happen, so there is precedence for this. I recall the images coming in from Saigon. At the U.S. Embassy, Vietnamese who felt that the U.S. could help them because they helped the U.S., were at the embassy gates. I watched as U.S. military helicopters evacuated embassy staff, and others, in a continuous operation. They landed at waiting aircraft carriers. In some cases, helicopters had to be pushed over the side to make room for others landing.

After Korea was divided into North and South after a successful "police action" led by the U.S., it appears the thinking was to do the same in Vietnam. Now there is Afghanistan. The Russians tried and failed so the U.S. goes in. What? There were no contingency plans? There was no review of the Afghan government's military readiness to repel the so-called Taliban? To keep them in check? I highly doubt that.

As President Kennedy stated in a "rose garden" interview about Vietnam: "It's there war. We can send them equipment and other aid but they have to fight it." If the government does not have popular support then this is what happens.
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