Afghanistan: Ten Years of War

source: Corbett Report     Oct 9, 2011

October 7th marks the ten year anniversary of the commencement of NATO operations in Afghanistan. Although the impending illegal invasion of Iraq in 2003 was enough to drive millions of people worldwide into the streets in protest, there has never been the same widespread resistance to the Afghan war.

This war has been deemed the “right war” and given a broad measure of support from across the political spectrum because it is still linked in the popular imagination with the events of 9/11. Even a cursory interrogation of these assumptions, however, reveals the absurd nature of this pretext for what has been all along an illegal invasion and occupation of a sovereign nation.

On the evening of 9/11, the North Atlantic Council issued a statement offering the assistance of all 18 NATO member states to the United States, calling the attacks “without precedent in the modern era.”

The next day the Council met again, making the extraordinary decision to invoke Article 5 of the Washington Treaty for the first time in NATO’s history. The carefully worded statement contained the important stipulation that Article 5 would only apply if it could be determined that the attacks were directed from abroad, something that NATO Secretary General Robertson noted had not been determined.

On October 2nd, the Council met again to announce that they had dropped the word “if” from their previous declaration on the basis of a report issued by a US State Department official named Frank Taylor. To this day, the evidence presented in Frank Taylor’s briefing is still classified, and the information that Secretary General Robertson called “clear and compelling” information pointing “conclusively” to an al-Qaida role in 9/11 has never been made public. Nor was this evidence ever presented to the FBI, who told investigative journalist Ed Haas in 2006 that there was “no hard evidence” linking Osama to 9/11.

As the documentary record shows, the lip service paid to “finding Osama” was never more than a convenient excuse for the Afghan invasion.

In February of 2001, the Taliban offered to turn bin Laden over to the United States, but the US refused. The offer was repeated in October of 2001, shortly after the bombing started, but again the US rejected it. Bin Laden himself was not even in Afghanistan at the time of the 9/11 attacks, a point later confirmed by CBS News.

Eventually, all pretence was dropped that the invasion of Afghanistan had anything to do with finding Osama bin Laden.

The mystery of this non-pretext for the Afghan invasion, however, makes perfect sense, not if one sees the invasion as retaliation for 9/11, but, exactly the opposite, if one understands 9/11 as in fact the pretext for a previously planned military operation to fulfill previoiusly acknowledged Western geostrategic imperatives.

As National Security Advisor to Carter, Zbigniew Brzezinski oversaw “Operation Cyclone,” a covert US plan for luring the Soviet Union into an unwinnable war in Afghanistan by first fomenting and then actively supporting Islamic fundamentalists in the country. This became the basis for the eventual takeover of the country by the Taliban with active CIA support through their front in the Pakistani Intelligence Services.

In 1997, just four years before the NATO invasion, Brzezinski wrote that “For America, the chief geopolitical prize is Eurasia[…]Now a non-Eurasian power is preeminent in Eurasia — and America’s global primacy is directly dependent on how long and how effectively its preponderance on the Eurasian continent is sustained.”

He pinpointed what he called the “Eurasian balkans,” an area encompassing Afghanistan and its neighbours, as the most geopolitically significant region to control for its gas and oil reserves and mineral deposits. He argued that some form of extended American military intervention in the region would be necessary, warning that a global consensus on its foreign policy imperatives would be impossible “…except in the circumstance of a truly massive and widely perceived direct external threat.”

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