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George Osborne’s Afghan letter from America

13 October 2012

10:50 AM

13 October 2012

10:50 AM

George Osborne is a keen observer of American politics, so perhaps it is little surprise to read in the Telegraph that the chancellor is arguing for faster withdrawal from Afghanistan. The American presidential race has confronted national war-weariness. The Obama camp has long held that the 2014 drawdown date is firm; that is when the troops will come hom. It is even thought that US training and logistical support to Kabul will be curtailed together with combat operations. The Romney camp’s view has been less clear, which suggests that it has not wanted to leave itself exposed during the campaign by committing to anything from a position of comparative ignorance next to Obama. In fact, there seems to be next to nothing between the two camps on this question: Paul Ryan said during Thursday’s debate that he and Romney ‘agree’ with the ‘timeline and transition’, which leaves very little room for manoeuvre on the specifics and pace of withdrawal.

Osborne, then, appears to think that 2014 is an immovable mark in the ground. He will appreciate the politics of this: once ISAF has made such a mark, its commitment to the cause (such as it is) is necessarily diluted and Kabul’s is increased; therefore, ISAF members will not lose face by downscaling their operations earlier than might have been the case had there been flexibility of over where and when the mark would be made. I expect that Osborne’s political instincts are such he thinks there is capital to be won by this approach, to say nothing of the savings in blood and treasure.

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  • yourconscience

    I only ever read the last lines of these idiotic pieces ~ ‘political instincts’, ‘capital to be won by this apporach’, ‘blood and treasure’.
    What colonial cloud cuckoo land do you people live in, think of the deaths and destruction you have wrought on innocents, war crimes and sin. Yes SIN pray and have the balls to ask for forgiveness you are all complicit, don’t just blame your ‘leaders’.

  • AY

    just look at this sentence:

    “.. commitment to the cause (such as it is) is necessarily diluted and
    Kabul’s is increased; therefore, ISAF members will not lose face by
    downscaling their operations earlier than might have been the case had
    there been flexibility of over where and when the mark would be made.”

    what a gibberish, are the author sure he understands what he’s writing?
    honestly.

    • telemachus

      seems logical to me
      Means we can get out early and hold our heads high

  • Daniel Maris

    Osborne has political instincts in the same way Katy Price has natural beauty – once maybe, when she was 17…before she turned herself into a plasticated simulacrum of female pulchritude.

    The guy is a complete political nonentity. The fact that he’s Chancellor is completely coincidental. All he will be remembered for is taking the Tories out of government again, in an act of supreme egotism – refusing to change economic policy, lest he lose personal credibility.

    • telemachus

      Yes but the service to our country is that he will make way for a charismatic genius

      • Daniel Maris

        You’re applying for the job, are you Telemachus?

        • telemachus

          There is only one charismatic genius
          He who had the courage to raise the call
          Build for growth

          • Hexhamgeezer

            T i t

    • rubyduck

      Indeed. He might have done better to impose an immediate 20% cut in public sector salaries in 2010.

  • bloughmee

    You’re acting like anybody would actually listen to what George Osborne has to say about this, or much else for that matter.

    • telemachus

      Just so
      Now if it were his charismatic genius counterpart

      • bloughmee

        Yes, listening to them is almost as bad as listening to you.

  • Austin Barry

    It is ironic that as the West tries, idiotically, to bring some order to Islamic dystopias, the death cult is bringing disorder to the West’s cities by slow demographic conquest.

    • telemachus

      Oh so we are back to immigration.
      Well now we need to rehearse the benefits to our culture well being and economics down the ages
      Life would be immeasurably poorer left to the little englanders

      • Austin Barry

        Unsympathetic immigration is cultural suicide.

        • telemachus

          Evidence?

      • anyfool

        Another unanswered question by you,
        I previously asked you, what does a uneducated dirt farmer from Pakistan bring to the United Kingdom, will i ever get a straight answer from you.

      • Hexhamgeezer

        TIT

  • anyfool

    It should have nothing to do with saving money, it should be because the Governments in Afghanistan and also Pakistan are not worth a single life, the people in these countries will never change because their religion precludes all modern thinking, put a fence around these type of countries and they would revert from the Middle Ages where they are now to the Stone Age where they belong.

    • telemachus

      I find the reduction of this to religious bigotry offensive
      Did you support our efforts in Bosnia?

      • Guest

        Is it difficult being so stupid?

      • anyfool

        When has the truth become bigotry, i might have been wrong about The Stone Age i should have said Neolithic.
        You have still not answered my previous question, would you like these people in control of your family.
        You seem to find a lot of things offensive are you a man or politician.

      • http://profile.yahoo.com/NHCPI2N7JUTCI5JAKQJXQHHWP4 roger

        One of the first sayings I heard in a Bosnian bar was ‘ half the people said you came too late, the other half said you shouldn’t have come at all’. Supporting the breakup of Jugoslavia was a typical result of the Western cold war mindset, NATO looking for a new role. To support the carve-up of a multi-ethnic state is usually a mistake (viz Austro-Hungarian empire), Bosnia-Hercegovina, two regions divided by clear mountain ranges, used to be called Croazia Turska and Dalmazia Turska. Bosnia was Turkish Croatia, Hercegovina is Turkish Dalmatia.
        At least the Czechs and Slovenes managed their divorce peacefully., if we disregard the prior murder and expulsion of the Germans.

        • telemachus

          You sound like an apologist for Radovan Karadvcik
          Me be we should have left them to it
          The Dutch did

          • Hexhamgeezer

            Tit

    • Dimoto

      You assume it’s about money.
      It might be about freeing up resources for an attack on Iran.
      The US has tired of the war on Al Qaeda (otherwise it would be more concerned about Mali). Doing Netanyahu’s bidding seems to be the new US imperative.

      • anyfool

        to say nothing of the savings in blood and treasure,
        My comment was a reflection on the last line of the article, i did not assume anything unlike you.

    • rubyduck

      I suspect people in the stone age were pretty much as they are now, but possibly more pleasant and easygoing, generally speaking, as there was less competition for resources.

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