Posts Tagged ‘Afghanistan’

Who Clogged the Afghan Refugee Pipeline? Stephen Miller.

August 25, 2021

Who Clogged the Afghan Refugee Pipeline? Stephen Miller.

The airlift of endangered Afghan refugees from Taliban-controlled Kabul is hampered by a lengthy and convoluted visa process, which had a backlog of 20,000 applicants before the fall of the corrupt Karzai government. In 2018 the Pentagon urged the Trump administration to expedite Special Immigrant Visas for Afghan nationals who had assisted US and NATO forces, but this was denied.

Olivia Troye, homeland security and counterterrorism advisor to former Vice President Mike Pence, says all efforts to fast-track Afghan visas were sabotaged by Stephen Miller, racist and Islamophobe-In-Residence at the Trump White House. This was confirmed by Elizabeth Neumann, a former senior DNS official. Matt Zeller, Afghanistan combat veteran and former CIA officer, says Stephen Miller “should be held accountable for war crimes” for his refugee visa obstruction.

More:

“Pence aide blames Stephen Miller for ‘devastating’ visa system for Afghans,” Maureen Groppe, USA Today

“Stephen Miller peddled ‘racist hysteria about Afghanistan’ and gummed up refugee process: Ex-Pence adviser,” Raw Story

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Who to Blame for the Afghanistan Fiasco

August 23, 2021

Who should be blamed for the collapse of the corrupt Afghanistan govenment, and the ensuing fiasco? Every U.S. president for the past 20 years. A Politico video.

Related:

“Only Trump, Mike Pence, and Mike Pompeo seem to be defending Trump’s 2020 Taliban peace deal,” Peter Weber, The Week

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The US failed to rebuild Afghanistan

November 28, 2019

For 18 years, the U.S. spent billions of dollars and hundreds of lives to build Afghanistan’s infrastructure. It failed. A Vox video by Sam Ellis.

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How the US failed to rebuild Afghanistan

April 11, 2018

“Where the road ends in Afghanistan, the Taliban begin.”
The U.S. has been in Afghanistan since 2001, and US strategy has centered on rebuilding Afghanistan’s crumbling infrastructure, mostly to expedite military logistics and maneuvers. Over $3 billion has been spent on a single project, the Ring Road. It was never completed.This Vox video explains.

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A Child’s Garden of Drones

June 7, 2012

A Child's Garden of Drones

“I can feel it in the air tonight, oh Lord” — Phil Collins

“Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Drones,” Cora Currier, Pro Publica

Almost 1 in 3 U.S. Warplanes is a Robot,” Spencer Ackerman and Noah Schachtman, Wired Danger Room

“Rise of the drone: From Calif. garage to multibillion-dollar defense industry,” Peter Finn, Washington Post

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Army Mules for Afghanistan?

June 6, 2011

The U.S. Army might send pack mules to Afghanistan. The logistics of supplying patrols in that rugged terrain are complex and costly, and new experimental cargo robots aren’t working out.

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Pentagon Observes Banned Books Week?

September 28, 2010

Pentagon Observes Banned Books Week?

In recognition of Banned Book Week, the Defense Department bought up nearly 10,000 copies of a memoir and destroyed them. The book, Operation Dark Heart, was written by former Defense Intelligence Agency officer Anthony A. Shaffer and covers his special operations experience in Afghanistan.

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U.S. Funds Afghan Warlords

June 22, 2010

U.S. Funds Afghan Warlords
A new Congressional report outlines U.S. protection payoffs to Afghan warlords. Warlord, Inc.: Extortion and Corruption Along the U.S. Supply Chain in Afghanistan was just issued by the House Subcommittee on National Security and Foreign Affairs, chaired by Rep. John Tierney (D, MA-6). The subcommittee will hold hearings on the topic today.

Truck convoys supply Forward Operating Bases throughout Afghanistan under DOD’s $2 billion Host Nation Trucking (HNT) program, and the contractors are responsible for providing their own security. They end up “hiring” the warlords and insurgents who would be prone to attacking them.

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Anthropologists in Afghanistan

April 11, 2010

Anthropologists in Afghanistan

The U.S. Army’s Human Terrain System (HTS) program surfaced on Bob Edwards’ radio program this weekend. The HTS sends anthropologists to Afghanistan in order to minimize cultural misunderstandings between the U.S. military and Afghanis. Three social scientists have died in the effort.

While it sounds noble and straightforward, the program is controversial within academia for ethical reasons, and questions have been raised concerning the capabilities of the HTS leadership. 

The Marines also utilize HTS scientists, and there is a film about the program.  Vanessa M. Gezari  reported on the Human Terrain System last summer (more here).

 

Image by Mike Licht.

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.