The Pentagon’s military machine is working in full swing in Afghanistan; one military operation after another with a really exotic name. The number of soldiers involved in each new operation is ever increasing. Hundreds of US soldiers took part in the Tora Bora operation, but now they are counted by thousands. This is evidence that the USA is expanding its presence in Afghanistan.
US special troops have not been afoot for a long time already, and they use Afghanistan as a polygon. This is going to be a very long operation, as the Pentagon wants to test new armament samples.
US President George W. Bush said that American servicemen were in for large-scale work in Afghanistan. At his appearance in Saint Louis, George W.Bush said that a great number of Taliban and al Qaeda militants were still on Afghanistan’s territory and probably in Pakistan as well. It was also stressed that attempts to deliver reinforcements to the enemy were made during the recent clashes in eastern Afghanistan. Yesterday, the US command announced the end of Operation Anaconda, which has lasted for several weeks already. About five hundred US soldiers are still searching for militants in the Shakh-e-Kot Valley in eastern Afghanistan.
America's closest ally, Great Britain, will contribute to the offensive: British infantry will be sent to the area, and this will become Britain’s largest contingent in battle since the Persian Gulf War. The USA asked Britain for an increase in troops.
Britain will send 1,700 more soldiers and three Chinook helicopters in addition to the 4,500 British servicemen already present in Afghanistan.
It has been reported that British servicemen together with US troops will search for Taliban and al Qaeda militants and destroy them. It is not clear at present what will be done next, when the militants are taken prisoners or killed. Will the US and British troops leave the country? Since the appointment of Hamid Karzai to head of Afghanistan’s provisional administration, he has been insisting that the world community is to increase the military presence in Afghanistan to avoid clashes between rival field commanders.
A large, well-equipped military contingent can destroy the current balance of the power in the country. Hamid Karzai and his followers expect to profit from this. The support of his followers and western allies will help crush the Pustuns, who are still vague about their political views. It will allow also communicate with NATO in a different way.
All in all, it is clear that the conflict in Afghanistan will not end soon.
Dmitry Litvinovich PRAVDA.Ru
Translated by Maria Gousseva
Read the original in Russian: http://www.pravda.ru/main/2002/03/19/38438.html
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