Posts Tagged ‘ us military ’

Bush Administration Reviews Its Afghanistan Policy, Exposing Points of Contention

Sep 23rd, 2008 | By David Harper | Category: United States

The most ambitious of the assessments, run by the White House, begins in earnest this week with a series of high-level meetings, administration officials said. Officials have been directed to produce detailed recommendations within about two weeks for President Bush’s most senior advisers on a broad range of security, counterterrorism, political and development issues.

Bush Said to Give Orders Allowing Raids in Pakistan

Sep 11th, 2008 | By David Harper | Category: United States

The classified orders signal a watershed for the Bush administration after nearly seven years of trying to work with Pakistan to combat the Taliban and Al Qaeda, and after months of high-level stalemate about how to challenge the militants’ increasingly secure base in Pakistan’s tribal areas.

Infantry could help SAS in Afghanistan

Sep 8th, 2008 | By David Harper | Category: Australia

In the wake of a warning from NATO’s new top commander in Afghanistan that the international coalition is “struggling to win” and about 15,000 more troops are needed, Defence Minister Joel Fitzgibbon said he would not be increasing troop numbers in the region. However, he would not rule out using infantry in combat roles.

Labor’s big sore point

Sep 7th, 2008 | By David Harper | Category: Opinion

Labor’s policy on Afghanistan has consistently been that Australia’s presence there, rather than Iraq, represents our commitment to fighting al-Qaeda and the Taliban at “the coalface”. But the promises Labor made while in Opposition are forcing our troops into a long fight that will test even the might of the United States.

Australian defence budget surges to world’s 13th largest

Sep 4th, 2008 | By David Harper | Category: Australia

Canberra’s defence spending has leapt by about 56 per cent in the past seven years to $25.66 billion, meaning it now spends more than some European Union countries. However, Australia is still dwarfed by the US, which has set aside $US696.30 billion ($832.7 billion) for its armed forces this year.

Battered Baghdad being transformed

Sep 3rd, 2008 | By David Harper | Category: Opinion

Baghdad in 2008 is a city tantalisingly close to a genuine transformation. The first impression after an absence of two years is the stunning reduction in the appalling level of violence that had torn the city’s suburbs apart over the past four years. A relative calm has now descended. On the day I arrived, there was not a single serious security incident across the whole of Baghdad.

Petraeus sees huge progress in Iraq

Sep 3rd, 2008 | By David Harper | Category: Lead Stories, United States

General Petraeus, the principal architect of the successful 2007-08 surge of US troops that restored security across Baghdad, says the signs of positive change are everywhere. “We have gone from a situation where 14-15 months ago there were 180 attacks a day in Iraq. Now there are on average about 25 attacks a day,” he said.

US troops ‘to quit Iraq by 2011′

Aug 23rd, 2008 | By David Harper | Category: United States

US combat troops could leave Iraq by 2011 under the terms of a deal awaiting approval by Iraq’s parliament and presidency, an Iraqi official has said. The draft security agreement also calls for US forces to withdraw from all Iraqi urban areas by June 2009, and includes a compromise allowing US soldiers some immunity under Iraqi law.

Afghanistan on Fire

Aug 21st, 2008 | By David Harper | Category: Opinion

The number of United States and NATO casualties is mounting so quickly, that unless something happens soon this could be the deadliest year of the Afghan war. Kabul, the seat of Afghanistan’s pro-Western government, is increasingly besieged. And Taliban and foreign Qaeda fighters are consolidating control over an expanding swath of territory sprawling across both sides of the porous Afghanistan-Pakistan border.

Experts see trouble in Afghanistan, Pakistan: survey

Aug 19th, 2008 | By David Harper | Category: World

Among the findings of the survey: 69 per cent surveyed said the United States should shift its forces from Iraq to Afghanistan and the Gulf region, with 80 per cent believing that the United States has focused too much on Iraq and not enough on Afghanistan.