Fighting for Afghanistan

Here’s a sneak preview of tomorrow’s Newshour, when Lyse Doucet will be looking at the battle to win hearts and minds in Afghanistan. Here she is talking to ISAF’s deputy commander, Nick Parker (who speaks first in this clip), and to NATO’s Senior Civilian Representative, Mark Sedwill. Listen in at 1200, 2000 and 2100GMT on Saturday for a longer radio version of this interview, and for a fascinating in-depth discussion with a panel of international and Afghan experts on what the future holds for Afghanistan. Can there be stability and even democracy — or is violence and division the most likely scenario?

5 Responses to “Fighting for Afghanistan”

  1. 1 T
    March 12, 2010 at 16:56

    “Can there be stability and even democracy in Afghanistan”?

    Define “democracy.” The Western view of it? Or, what the Afghan people want? Even though EVERY Western invasion/occupation of Afghnaistan has failed, nobody cares about that. It’s literally telling the population, you will learn to love our democracy. Even if it literally kills you.

  2. March 12, 2010 at 18:57

    The erroneous policy concerning Afghanistan is obvious. There is a proverb, that having lost the way the person comes back to an old place, whence has lost the way

  3. 4 Dinesh
    March 12, 2010 at 19:44

    Even if coalition forces achieve temporary relief by chasing Taliban out of Afghanistan, Taliban has a safe haven in Pakistan to regroup again and again. So there is no solution to Afghanistan antd it will be a total waste of international funds and fire power if the coalition forces have no courage or intension to tackle Pakistan which is actually the source of all terrorist problems globally – but the Govt of Pakistan is totally in denial mood of its army someway isupporting Taliban. So fighting for Afghanistan is all meaningless until Pakistan is tackled. If it true, the Pakistan army is extending a moral support to Taliban its destroying its own civic society and this is regretted by its own people who have now relocated elsewhere as they see their own country being gradually torn apart by daily bomb blast and terrorist acts.

  4. 5 Bonita Evans
    March 13, 2010 at 16:33

    When will the Western world learn that you cannot resolve Middle East problems using Western methods? The Western modus operandi is either: pay off or slay off. The so-called new initiative for hearts and minds appears to use both. It is as misguided as the “Trickle Down Theory” expounded by Western economists in respect of the development in African countries in the 1960s. As we are well aware, nothing ever trickled down. One of the most obvious reasons for this perpetual error is that Americans have stopped studying history in school. Student noses are planted in books relating to America’s own wonderous exploits–most of which denies its blood thirsty history and theft of land. After the eighth grade all that is tucked away. The average student arrives at college not knowing where he is on the map of the world and cannot name one capital of any country in the world or any capital outside of that of his own state.

    I’ve lived in the Middle East and known many people from these countries. They do not think the way Westerners do. Strange as it may seem, beside corrupt politicians, the average Joe cannot be bought off. Oh he’ll take the money, but where is it going?

    Secondly Western political systems do not work for these people. They are tribalistic, which means their government must be represented by all major tribal/ethnicities who have to have equal say. Any so called ‘head of state’ can only be a moderator You cannot just shove in some hand-picked slickster and say, “This is going to be your leader.” As for the hearts and minds part, well Middle Eastern people can watch you for years before they even decide they like you. When they do they will tell you and it won’t be infront of a camera. Until then they can smile in your face, treat you politely and kill you. Even if they like you they can kill you with tears in their eyes if they believe it is of benefit to the majority of their people. Learn to think like a Middle Easterner and then you will l know what is the appropriate action to take. At the moment you are way off-kilter. The”Hi Ho Silver approach” only works in your history books.

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