Saturday, May 14, 2011

Taliban 'Tet' a dud; MSM weep!


On May 8 the Taliban attacked the provincial capital of Kandahar in a much anticipated effort to repeat the NVA/ Viet Cong Tet offensive which the US won militarily, utterly destroying the attacking forces, but the press blew into a 'We Cant Win' meme.

Despite their loads of bombs and sniper tactics, the Taliban failed miserably.

But Time Mag and the NYT aren't giving up on their Cronkite-ish theme. 'Analysts', particularly those with facial hair to make them look serious and wise, are free to put any sort of spin on it they can think of:

NYT: Broad Taliban Attack Paralyzes Kandahar

The attack ended as night fell Sunday, when the last two suicide bombers were killed in a hotel near the provincial headquarters of the national intelligence department. Spent casings littered the streets “like hail after a storm,” one Kandahar resident said, and ranks of police officers stood guard at official buildings.

The scale and organization of the attack as well as the targeting of government buildings suggested that the Taliban had been planning it for some time — and that they had relied on support from inside Kandahar.

Among the places singled out were the provincial governor’s palace, the police headquarters, the transportation police headquarters, a police substation and other buildings used by the military, according to a NATO statement.

Those are among the most well-guarded spots in Kandahar, the biggest city in southern Afghanistan and a major base for NATO forces. Still, the 27 insurgent fighters involved in the attacks were able to move in those areas while toting explosive vests or driving vehicles laden with explosives, raising questions about complicity with the attacks.

- summary. None of those targets were captured, let alone occupied. And yet the tone is one of 'woe' with the inevitable negative statements from locals who fit the profile.

Time holds out hope even after the one sided debacle:
Afghanistan: A Taliban Offensive Hopes to Repeat Vietcong's Tet Effect

So much so that Time's bearded wunderkind writer former anti apartheid activist brings up a totally off the wall statement by Gen Westmoreland about the enemy in Nam, months previous to Tet:
{{Tet's} historical impact was to mock the triumphalist claims of General William Westmoreland, who had told Americans months earlier that the Vietcong were on the ropes and unable to mount a major offensive, and that the war would soon be over.

Of course there's no parallel example in the modern military effort, but hey.. that was just too good to pass up. And never mind most of us who were actually voting age adults, and paying attention at the time, thought Westmoreland was an idiot.
Well the writer was alive, too. Maybe ..what.. six years old.

The Washington Times has a different view of the Taliban flop.
...the Taliban launched a major attack on Afghan government targets in the insurgent’s spiritual capital of Kandahar. Press reports called it a “vengeance attack” for the killing of Osama bin Laden a week earlier. Time magazine forebodingly compared it to the 1968 Tet Offensive in the Vietnam War. The general tone of the coverage was thick with knowing dread.

The outcome of the attacks was far from the doom presaged in the press. “All of the Taliban involved in the Kandahar attack were either captured or killed,...”
At a heavy price, no doubt? Well it disrupted everyday life in the city for 30 hours. Does that count.. guess it depends.

The series of attacks in Kandahar reached none of their assumed objectives. No Afghan government public buildings were seized and the insurgents inflicted few casualties. The most underreported good news story was that the defense of the city was conducted by the Afghan National Security Forces. “The ANSF did a really good job,” our source said. “They were calm; they were capable.”

But all that good news didn't change the theme for the IDIOT Leftist press. And it never will.

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