JD Johannes in Samarra
Habu the Pit Viper is not your friend

Tribes fighting Taliban in Afghanistan

Is it an Awakening a la Anbar? Maybe, we'll have to see. But it is certainly good news.

ACHIN, Afghanistan — American and Afghan officials have begun helping a number of anti-Taliban militias that have independently taken up arms against insurgents in several parts of Afghanistan, prompting hopes of a large-scale tribal rebellion against the Taliban.

The emergence of the militias, which took some leaders in Kabul by surprise, has so encouraged the American and Afghan officials that they are planning to spur the growth of similar armed groups across the Taliban heartland in the southern and eastern parts of the country.

The American and Afghan officials say they are hoping the plan, called the Community Defense Initiative, will bring together thousands of gunmen to protect their neighborhoods from Taliban insurgents. Already there are hundreds of Afghans who are acting on their own against the Taliban, officials say.

It will take something just like this across much of the country, but it is exactly what Gen. McChrystal's plan calls for facilitating. What these tribes need now is our help ensuring they do not get rolled over by a Taliban push back. We need to give them air support, weapons, and yes satchels of cash to use as they see fit. We must tread lightly so as not to upset the local nature of these uprisings, but we must cover their backs. Then as we talk to tribal leaders in other areas we can point to these successes and give them some motivation.

It will be a delicate ballet as there are many different tribes who have as many beefs with each other as they do w/ the Talibs, but we can handle that. We need to take advantage of this and get the push back against the enemy going. Our troops deserve a decision. Make the call sir!