Friday, May 06, 2005

Piling up the corpses 

This is how some in the mainstream media continue to cover Afghanistan - here's the latest from "The New York Times":

Afghan Rebels Step Up Attacks, Killing 9 Near Pakistani Border
The first paragraph reads:

Nine Afghan soldiers were killed and three were wounded in an ambush Thursday in southern Afghanistan, in the most deadly single attack by rebels against the newly trained Afghan National Army, a military spokesman said.
There is no mention in the story of what has been covered by many other newspapers and news-wire services, mainly that the ambush misfired on the Taliban, attracting a swift response from the Coalition air force, which killed twenty rebels.

We have to go past the analysis that "the attack, along with heavy fighting in the neighboring province of Zabul on Tuesday, provided further evidence that American military predictions that the insurgency was declining might have been overconfident", before we get to paragraph six, which quotes Afghan official that 100 Taliban were killed throughout the country in April, and paragraph eight, which mentions that 40 Taliban were killed in the said fighting in the Zabul province.

So the news can indeed be that the Afghan Army has suffered large casualties in an ambush, or that the Taliban are mounting fresh attacks in the spring - but it could also be that when they do, they get absolute hell trashed out of them by the American and Afghan security forces. Insurgents who don't enjoy outside support (unlike, say, the Viet Cong) cannot sustain these levels of casualties - their effectiveness depends on the ratio being actually reverse. So "Afghan Rebels" do indeed "speed up" their own extermination.


This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?