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File 911: The Afghan Campaign
Note: The World Wide Web is, like the web of a spider, ephemeral. Links shown below may have blown away, but, before giving up on them, be sure to check whether the articles can be located elsewhere via Google or have been preserved in the amber of the Internet Wayback Machine.
Richard Kidd, "Know Your Enemy" (10/3/01). One of the last American citizens to spend time in Afghanistan before the war writes about al-Qaeda's takeover via Talibin puppets and the Afghans' overrated reputation as unconquerable warriors.
William R. Hawkins, "Time on Our Side" (11/7/01). More reasons why Afghanistan isn't a "quagmire".
Daily Telegraph Afghanistan situation map, 11/14/01.
Daily Telegraph Afghanistan situation map, 11/15/01.
Thomas J. Bray, "What Do Women Want?" (11/27/01). Are we fighting to bring feminism to Afghanistan?
Daily Telegraph, "Bin Laden's Mountain Tunnel Complex" (11/29/01). Map and schematic of the fortified Tora Bora cave complex, believed to be Osama bin Laden's equivalent of Hitler's "Alpine Redoubt".
Wendy McElroy, "Call Me 'Anti-Woman'" (12/3/01). Feminist extremists are too busy exploiting Afghan women to pay attention to their views.
Jim Werbaneth, "Afghanistan Post-Mortem" (1/1/02). A detailed summary of the military lessons of the war's opening campaign.
Wall Street Journal, "The Human Rights Fraud" (1/21/02). A left-eyed watchdog sees only gloom in the ouster of the Taliban.
Laura King, "Review: Afghan Civilian Deaths Lower" (2/11/02). A debunking of claims that the Afghanistan campaign resulted in thousands of civilian deaths.
Doug Struck, "Taliban's Enemies Emerge from the Shadows" (2/12/02). Tales of Afghan underground resistance to the Taliban regime.
Ann Marlowe, "'Warlords' and 'Leaders'" (2/18/02). The challenge of telling the good guys from the bad in a turbulent country.
Michael Fumento, "No Straight Shooters: The Washington Post's Questionable Afghanistan Reporting" (2/22/02). Grim stories about the impact of the war on civilians don't check out.
James Taranto, "A Murder in Pakistan" (2/22/02); Brian Cabell, "Obituary: Daniel Pearl, 38, Reporter, Expectant Father" (2/22/02); Dave Shiflett, "Brother Pearl" (2/22/02); Mark Steyn, "He Was an American, a Jew - a Trophy" (2/25/02). Reflections of the murder of Wall Street Journal reporter Danny Pearl.
Mackubin Thomas Owens, "It's Not Over Until It's Over" (3/4/02). The problems involved in "cleaning up" in Afghanistan.
Ralph Peters, "In War, Soldiers Die" (3/5/02). The U.S. military has been doing an excellent job of getting over the malaise of the Clinton years.
Jonathan Foreman, "Al Qaeda's Safe Haven" (3/18/02). Finishing the Afghan campaign requires cleaning out Pakistan's ungoverned frontier region.
Shaheen Sehbai, "Peril in Pakistan" (3/23/02). A prominent Pakistani journalist, forced into exile just weeks ago, warns against placing too much faith in the Musharraf regime.
Mackubin Thomas Owens, "Body Counting" (3/25/02). In a strange fit of Vietnam nostalgia, the media are unhappy that the U.S. hasn't shown much interest in quantifying casualties.
Ted Galen Carpenter, "Head Straight for Pakistan" (4/4/02). To finish off the Taliban, the U.S. military needs to deny it sanctuary across the border.
Marin J. Strmecki, "Winning, Truly, in Afghanistan" (5/9/02). The U.S. needs to move with care in picking its friends in Afghanistan. The enemy of my enemy may still be my enemy.
David Zucchino, “In the Taliban’s Eyes, Bad News Was Good” (6/3/02). How Taliban propagandists manufactured reports of civilian casualties from U.S. bombing.
Associated Press, “Top Taliban Sought U.S. Help in 1999" (6/9/02). Interesting though unverified: "A senior Taliban official said he approached U.S. representatives three years ago for help in replacing the hard-line Islamic leadership but was told Washington was leery of becoming involved in internal Afghan politics."
Peter Baker and Susan B. Glasser, “Miles to Go Before Kabul Can Be Left Behind” (6/9/02). A good account of how much needs to be done in post-war Afghanistan, though naive and heavy-handed in its emphasis on Western cash as the magical cure-all.
Philip Smucker, "Al Qaeda Thriving in Pakistani Kashmir" (7/2/02). A first hand report on the complicity of renegade Pakistani officials in protecting terrorists.
Rod Nordland, Sami Yousafzai and Babak Dehghanpisheh, "How Al Qaeda Slipped Away" (8/11/02). An account, plausible but based on vague sources, of the exodus of al-Qaeda troops from Afghanistan, including supposed eyewitness evidence that Osama bin Laden got out alive.
Joshua Muravchik, "The Prof Who Can't Count Straight" (8/17/02). A leftist professor keeps on peddling the Taliban's inflated Afghan casualty figures - or sometimes higher numbers - to gullible news media.
Ralph Peters, "Hamlet of the Indus" (1/19/03). "At present, Washington has no choice but to work--carefully--with Gen. Musharraf, a head of state who insists on a sovereignty he cannot enforce over territory that continues to harbor both international terrorists and Afghan renegades."
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