Wednesday, July 30, 2008


DoD Can't Find Troops for Afghanistan; Institutes Catch-22 as Official TACSOP

Posted: 29 Jul 2008 10:07 PM CDT

It seems as though the situation in Afghanistan might be a little hairy:

BAGHDAD - Nearly twice as many U.S. troops have been killed in Afghanistan than in Iraq so far this month, marking the lowest death toll of any month since the U.S. invaded Iraq and putting July on course to be the first month in which the American military suffered more casualties in Afghanistan than in Iraq.

Who knew?

It'd be nice if we could send a few boots towards Afghanistan. You know, maybe keep more American soldiers from dying and secure a country from a third-world shadow government that gave sanctuary to terrorists who killed a few thousand people on American soil. Unfortunately, America officially
has no troops left:

WASHINGTON, July 29, 2008 - Defense Department planners continue to look for capabilities to send to Afghanistan, a senior Pentagon spokesman said today. ... ?Efforts to identify additional assets for Afghanistan continue, Morrell said. "Progress is being made toward that end, but I don't have anything definitive to stand here before you today and relay," he said.

First of all, I have an idea where they could find a few thousand troops to commit to a fight that, you know... actually matters.

Second, the DoD press release linked above mentioned a specific unit that is available for just this kind of mission (that is, handling shit going wrong because our national security priorities make no fucking sense). The 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit is CENTCOM's strategic reserve and stands ready in Kuwait to deploy within the Area of Responsibility when extra forces are needed. However, DoD has other plans for the 15th MEU:

[The Pentagon Press Secretary] did say that for the time being, U.S. Central Command's strategic reserve -- 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit -- will not deploy to Afghanistan. The 2,200 Marines of the unit now are training in Kuwait. ??Military commanders said that as much as troops are needed in Afghanistan, the strategic reserve is an insurance policy in a dangerous part of the world. Morrell wouldn't discuss possible scenarios. ??

"If we were to commit these resources to Afghanistan now, we would be hamstrung in responding to future threats," he said.

So in short, CENTCOM has a brigade-sized unit of ground troops ready to deploy in response to escalated threats. That unit, however, can not respond to an escalated threat in Afghanistan, as it would hamper its ability to respond to escalated threats.

Didn't someone write a book about this once?


Anonymous said...

Not enough troops in Afghanistan? BRING 'EM HOME; THAT'd reduce or end the troops dying. When you see a whole bunch of people in quicksand and they're worth rescuing, you try to get 'em out, NOT send more folks into it. ALL a draft will do will allow the sip's (scumbags in power) an unlimited source of bullet catchers. Hell, The British didn't win in Afghanistan, the Russians found out that it was THEIR Vietnam (they claimed to be fighting for "internationalism"' WE claim to be fighting there for "freedom and democracy" and fighting "terrorism"---both claims are bullshit), so what makes people think that the US'll "win" there? Hell, even Genghis Khan had sense enough to stay out of Afghanistan. I say again it's a waste THERE as well as Iraq. The concept of shared sacrifice is all right, but why sacrifice AT ALL in endless wars of empire?? Don't make sense to me, Cork. We as a country would do well by taking care of things HERE, instead of trying to own the world. And I still say it--how can you have a war on terror when war IS terror?

Anonymous said...

And Cork, Catch-22 is right!

Bill Corcoran said...

Anonymous: Thanks for the comment, however as long as we have leaders like Bush and now possibly McCain who want to go to war with almost everyone, we are going to need more troops and we don't have more troops without a draft.

I agree with your comment, but I'm afraid you are overlooking that Republicans LOVE wars and if McCain gets in we are in for years and years of more wars.

Anonymous said...

No Cork, I ain't overlooking it ATALL. I see it only too clearly. That's why I think the people AND the GI's oughta resist. The more wars, sooner or later we'll run out of money (wait a minute-ain't we ALREADY in the hole to China?).

Bill Corcoran said...

Anonymous: In a perfect world, your scenario would work but we don't live in a perfect world and as long as people in position of power and their corporate friends who can make money off a war, there will be wars.