Afghanistan Weekly Reader: Afghanistan war shipping costs $104 million per month

It’s been almost eight weeks since Pakistan closed its borders to coalition forces in retaliation for a NATO airstrike that killed 24 Pakistani soldiers. With the borders remaining closed the shipping costs for war supplies are adding up. NATO redirected its Pakistan supply routes through Russia and central Asia, at great expense – $104 million per month, according to the AP.  That’s six times more than it would be to utilize the Pakistan supply routes.  We are spending millions in shipping costs for a war that should have ended long ago. And we thought the price of a stamp was exorbitant.

From ASG
$500 billion for a stalemate
Afghanistan Study Group by Mary Kaszynski
Between reports of violence on the one hand, and optimistic assessments of US war efforts on the other, the American public receives contradictory and incomplete assessments on the war in Afghanistan.  Case in point: the classified National Intelligence Estimate on Afghanistan.

Taliban leader’s grip on insurgency weakens
USA Today by Jim Michaels
Taliban leader Mullah Omar’s grip on the insurgency is loosening as coalition battlefield successes in southern Afghanistan help sow discord among the Taliban top ranks and weaken the organization, a top U.S. commander said.

Obama’s only way out of Afghanistan is to talk
The Guardian by Tariq Ali

In essence both sides confront a stalemate. The insurgents cannot win militarily, but they have made a Nato victory impossible. The US could only win the “just war” by destroying the country and wiping out a million or two Afghans – but that is politically unfeasible. Negotiations are the only possible route to a settlement and US withdrawal from the country.

Afghanistan, An Indecent Silence
Huffington Post by Anne Nivat
Enter the discussion, and draw conclusions about this military engagement — it has cost us many lives, and yet it is still neither approved of or understood by the public. After ten years, we still lack clear and convincing answers.

The Afghan War: Cause and Effect
Time’s Battleland by Mark Thompson
Wars are a tough sell to any nation. Long wars are a tougher sell. Long wars in a democracy are tougher still. And long wars with rising casualties in a democracy are the toughest sell of all.

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