"....Unfortunately, a number of journalist friends of mine who were in Georgia report that Russia's adversary, the Georgian Army, is about as brave and competent as the March 14th 'gunmen' here in Beirut were last May. Now there's no actual non-Seymour-Hersh-related evidence to suggest March 14th received U.S. training and equipment. (Although the ISF here certainly does.) So that's not where I'm going with this. I do wonder, though, why groups which receive U.S. training and equipment tend to suck at actual fighting. Why do they have this nasty habit of abandoning their equipment on the field of battle, allowing their victorious enemy to brandish it like so many trophies? Do we Americans just stink at advising? Is that it? Or do we suffer from what I call 'the Elliott Abrams Syndrome', whereby we couldn't pick a winner in a two-horse race if our lives depended on it?
....and more here below:
"....Unfortunately, Fisk is very much right that the U.S. and its NATO allies – it’s not just us plucky Yanks – are losing in Afghanistan. Nir Rosen gave me a sneak peak at his new article (which will be coming out in Rolling Stone soon) in which he embeds with the Taliban. It’s amazing. And very depressing. But just because we’re losing (badly) in Afghanistan doesn’t mean we’re going to lose in the end. Fisk’s gleeful predictions of catastrophic U.S. defeat in Iraq have turned out to be false so far. Let’s hope he’s similarly wrong about Afghanistan and can go back to his self-righteous crusade against war criminals. (Unless those self-confessed war criminals happen to be named Walid Jumblatt. On whom Mister Robert has a fairly obvious and hilarious man crush.)"