When it emerged in mid-March that the perpetrator of a deadly suicide attack on American troops in Afghanistan had come from Germany, the American media showed remarkably little interest. On March 3, 28-year-old Cüneyt Ciftci from Ansbach in Bavaria drove a pick-up loaded with several tons of explosives into a guard post in Khost province in southeastern Afghanistan and then detonated his payload while still inside the truck. According to U.S. Army and Afghan sources, two American soldiers and two Afghans were killed in the attack and another seven persons, including four soldiers, were wounded. The Islamic Jihad Union (IJU), [...]
The reviews from NATO’s Bucharest summit are all in, and they generally conclude that the United States — and more specifically, President George W. Bush — failed. For instance, Bloomberg News headlined the summit this way: “NATO Snubs Ukraine, Georgia, Macedonia; Blow to Bush.” The New York Times declared, “NATO Allies Oppose Bush on Georgia and Ukraine.” And the Boston Globe reported, “Allies Reject Bush’s Call for NATO Role for Ukraine, Georgia.” It is true that Bush pressed NATO to issue membership action plans (MAP) to these former Soviet republics, but it is just as true that he wanted other [...]
Last June, local “auxiliary” police in southern Afghanistan, fighting alongside Dutch troops, helped repel a major Taliban assault on the lush Chora Valley. In the aftermath of the fighting, the Dutch commander singled out the local cops for praise. “Their morale is very high,” said Lt. Col. Gino Van Der Voet. But now NATO commanders in Afghanistan have decided to end local police training, fearing that cops in remote areas — most of whom once fought for tribal warlords — might one day turn their weapons against Kabul and the U.S.-led coalition. The change in policy perhaps signals a shift [...]
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