The assassination of Burhanuddin Rabbani, a former Afghan president, who was trying to woo the Taliban makes peace talks even less likely … Rabbani's assassination is so dangerous precisely because it sharpens these fears of minority communities. The northern forces never disarmed, and they've probably begun rebuilding their strength to prepare for the worst-case scenario. They would find willing sponsors … In short, a civil war is a distinct possibility. It would further destabilise Pakistan's fragile borderlands, and extinguish all hope of nation-building in Afghanistan. – UK Telegraph
Dominant Social Theme: Despite the West's best efforts, time is running out for peace in Afghanistan.
Free-Market Analysis: In numerous articles over the past year-and-a-half, we've written that the end-game for the Afghanistan war – as cynical as it may be – is civil war. Western leaders will deny this, but what is obviously being planned is a de facto portioning of Afghanistan.
This is exactly how the war the British waged against the Afghan Pashtuns finished 100 years ago. The British ended up with the Northern half of Afghanistan and effectively ceded the rest to the "stiff-necked" Pashtun tribe (which today numbers some 25 million). History, as usual, repeats itself.
In this article, we'll review why the cynical civil war solution is being implemented by NATO and the Americans and also how it is being engineered within the context of maximum deniability. There are several subdominant social themes at play here.
It won't do for the US to be seen as fomenting civil war in Afghanistan, but the writer of this article, Shashank Joshi – an associate fellow at the Royal United Services Institute in London – is willing to provide us with more clarity than the American press. He doesn't offer a historical background, it's true, but he does end up at the obvious conclusion. Here's some more from the article:
Afghanistan is lurching towards a civil war … If Nato's strategy in Afghanistan seems familiar, that may be because it increasingly seems borrowed from the Black Knight of Monty Python fame, who, after losing both arms, insists that "it's just a flesh wound".
When Afghan insurgents laid waste to government buildings in Kabul last week, the US ambassador explained, perhaps in case we'd misunderstood the 24-hour siege, that "this really is not a very big deal". A day earlier he'd lamented that "the biggest problem in Kabul is traffic". Apparently not. A week on, someone has blown up Afghanistan's former president, Burhanuddin Rabbani, in the heart of the capital. This is a big deal. It shatters the idea that our enemies are on the ropes, and pushes the country closer to civil war …
If the Afghan government fails to reform itself, and negotiations lead nowhere, then the alternative is a gradual disintegration of the country. When Monty Python's Black Knight is altogether limbless, he concedes to Arthur, "we'll call it a draw". An Afghan draw would suit us. But our failure to lay the groundwork for this means that we're just as likely to wind up in stalemate.
Good, Joshi. You have the reportorial courage to mention the "C" word – as in civil war. Articles in the US are filled with explanations about how the US and NATO are withdrawing in an orderly fashion from Afghanistan and leaving behind military and civilian security forces to fill the power vacuum. We've never understood how that would work. The same approach was tried in Viet Nam, with disastrous results.
Joshi provides us with a reality check that moves well beyond the mainstream Afghan meme as normally enunciated by the controlled press of the Anglosphere. Of course, Joshi's article is appearing in a mainstream publication. But perhaps events are getting so far out of hand that the Anglosphere powers-that-be, which have waged this genocidal war, have decided to open up the controlled media to a certain amount of plain speaking.
The shooting of Rabbani is indeed a big deal. As Joshi reports, he chaired the High Peace Council that was supposed to negotiate a peace deal directly with senior Taliban figures. We also learn from Joshi that Rabbani was an odd choice for his position, "a blood-soaked Tajik warlord, who, alongside Afghanistan's other minorities, had spent the 1990s battling the mostly Pashtun Taliban in a brutal civil war. Rabbani eventually led this Northern Alliance to victory in 2001, helped along by the US Air Force and CIA paramilitaries on horseback."
Rabbani's appointment was obviously based on pragmatism. America's puppet president, Hamid Karzai, has limited options when it comes to a peace deal. The Northern Alliance he depends on (even though he himself is Pashtun) is not much more keen on peace talks than the Taliban.
In order to initiate the talks, Karzai eventually fired spy chief Amrullah Saleh who, Joshi reports, continues to insist that "there must not be a deal with the Taliban. Ever." Along with some others based in Panjshir Valley in northern Afghanistan, Saleh has emerged as a "political force against reconciliation, drawing crowds of thousands with his denunciations of the Taliban as Pakistani stooges."
Lines are being drawn. Those non-Pashtun ethnic tribes that make up about half of the population of Afghanistan will remain armed and reluctant to conclude any kind of "peace" with the Pashtun Taliban. The Taliban themselves, convinced they are on the verge of victory, want little to do with a peace treaty either.
To his credit, Joshi sums up the situation bluntly and succinctly: "We have a self-serving oligarchy in Kabul, a jihad-addicted Pakistani military across the border, and a political strategy that shows no understanding of our terrible bargaining position …"
Both the US and the Taliban have opted for killing each other's interlocutors, hardly a sound basis for diplomacy. The Americans argue that an aggressive campaign of night raids and assassinations allows us to negotiate from strength. In reality, it means that pragmatic older insurgents are replaced by ever-more radical diehards – those who may well have killed Rabbani.
The Northern Alliance has no illusions that it can topple the Taliban or conquer the Pashtuns that have been living in the same place for thousands of years. At the same time, the Pashtuns shall not again – as they did in the late 1990s – take over all of Afghanistan. Historically, there has been an uneasy balance of power between these two forces.
Unfortunately, the Anglosphere power elite that has sponsored various wars against the Pashtuns has no vested interest in leaving Afghanistan alone. The war, in our view, was started to pacify the Pashtuns and thus extend dominance over Afghanistan preparatory to initiating one-world government.
Having been thwarted once again in their efforts to conquer Afghanistan, the great banking families of the City of London will settle for a corrosive civil war that they hope will weaken the Pashtuns and further erode their culture of civility and their reflexive militarism.
To this end, the Anglosphere intends to put maximum pressure on Pakistan as well, hoping to sow discord between the Punjabi sponsors of the war and their Pashtun/Taliban troops. Western powers-that-be also intend to drag India and Russia directly into the conflict, hoping that these two nation-states will further confuse the issue and limit the resurgence of Pashtun/Taliban power and Punjabi/Pakistani influence.
NATO allies and the Pentagon will continue to insist that the plan to create a military and civilian security force from Northern Alliance ethnicities will allow Afghanistan to continue to function as one logistical entity. Nothing could be further from the truth; Afghanistan has already been partitioned and it is only a matter of time until the reality corresponds to the "facts on the ground."
It would be most surprising if the current Afghan war does not resolve itself with a further, bloody civil war that pits the Northern Alliance and the remnants of NATO against the Pashtuns and an increasingly destabilized Pakistan. It is a most cynical and even genocidal outcome. But then again, despite protests otherwise, the Afghan war was never about revenge for 9/11 or even about nation-building. It was a war to advance the one-world ambitions of the Anglosphere power elite.
Having been thwarted again, the City of London will be merciless in defeat. The Afghans will pay. That bloody, tortured, irradiated land will not receive a moment's peace. This is the fate that the Anglosphere elites have in mind for the Pashtuns, to punish them for their continued resistance. The Pashtuns have doubtless slowed the rush to one-world government but the price, apparently, shall be one of continued death and despair.