February 25, 2011

First the Korengal and now the Pech

From Afghan & Military Blog by Bouhammer -
How does that saying go, “when the going gets tough, the tough pull out and head back to safer areas”. Isn’t that it? I am not sure, but it sure seems to be that way in Afghanistan.

First it was the Korengal Valley (made famous by books by James F. Christ and Sebastian Junger and films like RESTREPO) and now it is the Pech River Valley.
The withdrawal from the Pech Valley, a remote region in Kunar Province, formally began on Feb. 15. The military projects that it will last about two months, part of a shift of Western forces to the province’s more populated areas. Afghan units will remain in the valley, a test of their military readiness.

While American officials say the withdrawal matches the latest counterinsurgency doctrine’s emphasis on protecting Afghan civilians, Afghan officials worry that the shift of troops amounts to an abandonment of territory where multiple insurgent groups are well established, an area that Afghans fear they may not be ready to defend on their own.
There may be a militarily tactical reason for this but I can’t think of what it could possibly be.

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