NYT: MLRS/GPS prove deadly effective in afghanistan

Discussion in 'World Armed Forces' started by challenge, Oct 21, 2010.

  1. plawolf
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    plawolf Brigadier

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    The main reason the US and NATO has been able to avoid heavy losses is as much down to the political work the US states department has done behind the scenes as it is in weapons and tactics innovation by the pentagon.

    The Taliban and iraqi insurgents has basically had no supply of advanced and heavy weapons beyond what had been available in the country before the wars started. Even much of those weapons were not in working order or secretly bought up by the US or its agents.

    US and NATO air power has faced almost no real SAM threat beyond a few isolated incidents, which only goes it illustrate how much different things would be if the Taliban had a continuous supply of advanced SAMs and training to use them.

    Its a similar thing regarding ATGMs, AAA, mortars and pretty much all weapons heavier than an AK47 or RPG.

    In all previous cases where an insurgent force has been able to deal heavy losses on a technologically superior enemy, the insurgent forces' always had access to relatively modern medium to heavy weapons, and more importantly, a continuous supply of munitions.

    The technological difference in weapons is simply far too vast for the Taliban to be able to effectively counter the US and NATO forces. Their only really effective weapons of attack has been IEDs and suicide bombs, and suicide bombs are becoming far less dangerous to military forces as training and equipment improves.

    Take nothing away from the troops fighting on the front line, but things could have been a lot harder for them had the diplomats not done a good job ensuring the really dangerous stuff were kept out of the reach of insurgents.
     
  2. challenge
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    challenge Banned Idiot

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    there's no equivalent of ho chi minh trail ,according to ex soviet agfan war veteran, there is 50~50 chance US could win.
    real problem may be pakistan ISI and army,taliban can not survive without massive arm supply from pakistan,
     
  3. MwRYum
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    MwRYum Captain

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    While said the North Vietnam was supported by the USSR and China, as well as the worldwide swept of communism fever on a global scale (foolish youth in the west play Red Guard, remember?), Taliban isn't without substantial support as well - Pakistan gave birth to the Taliban and still support them (though not officially) to this day; Afghan-Pakistani borders aren't in the government hands but the local tribes who have ties with Taliban controls them.

    In terms of terrain, the mountainous terrain and caverns are still effective smuggling routes today as they were back in the Soviet occupation.
     
  4. Finn McCool
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    Finn McCool Captain
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    Petraeus understands how to fight the war in Afghanistan and is having some success. But that's not the issue. The issue is whether the war is winnable. I don't have an answer to that question. Certainly the US can achieve some sort of peace settlement that allows NATO to leave the country with it's honor more or less intact, but in Afghanistan, war is eternal. There are only ceasefires. I find it hard to see how the current government can survive for long once the various warlords that de facto rule large parts of the country and factions of the Taliban have geared up for the next round, a few years down the road, and NATO is out of the picture.
     
  5. plawolf
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    plawolf Brigadier

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    The main point I was trying to make in my last post is that there are is no actual state support for the insurgency, as such, modern weapon systems that would post a real threat to US and NATO forces are simply not available to the Taliban.

    They can smuggle all the heroine they want out of Afghanistan (implying the Taliban can smuggle any quantity of material into Afghanistan just as easily) but there is simply nothing they can smuggle in that they don't have already.

    That is why the US is so keen to keen Israel on a tight leash and vetos any Israeli plans to bomb Iranian reactors. In this regard, it is interesting to consider whether the US and other western powers might have over-stated the Iranian nuclear threat as a means of creating leverage over Iran.

    They could have had the Israelis playing the war hound with Washington playing the peace broker and offering to keep Israel in check if Iran does not support the insurgencies in Iraq or Afghanistan. Quite clever ploy which appears to be paying dividends if it is indeed the case.
     
  6. Scratch
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    Scratch Captain

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    Trying to resume some discussion of the topic.
    The surge of US troops inthe Afghan southern provinces seems to have a real impact. After intensiveb battles, US troops have regained controll over many key areas in these provinces. The Taliban have in retreated / vanished in many areas under immense pressure. And life there slowly normalizes. The big task now is to remain in these areas and consolidate the progress. The spring will probably show if the allied forces can hold of the traditional Taliban spring offensive and defend their gains.
    Other areas of the country, namely the east and north are not doing that well. Maybe coalition forces can spread their gains from the south later next year.
    Another new development has to do with a apparent shift in strategy.
    It seems coalition forces have gone from Counter Insurgency to a more Counter Terrorism oriented strategy. This year they seriously started to actively hunt down Taliban & Qaida leaders throughout the country. With ANA training being ahead of schedule, maybe more troops can be freed up for that.
    The point is that many Taliban (leaders) are demoralized by the impact coalition operations have on them. The leaders fled to Pakistan to rest, fearful for their lives, and without being able to find new recruits willing to fight. That is really good news.

    The north is a different problems, were a lot of local warlords also play into the equiation, it will be more difficult to get rid of them as well. But again, locals are organized into some kind of a neighbourhood force to defend their villages.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/16/world/asia/16south.html?ref=afghanistan

    http://www.longwarjournal.org/archives/2010/12/special_operations_f.php

     
  7. IronsightSniper
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    IronsightSniper Junior Member

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    If only those MLRS were Thermobaric :D
     

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