How to Beat the Afghan Insurgency

Here’s another good post on the impending Afghanistan crisis.   Yes, it’s that serious.  So its time for people to start offering up new ideas.  Here’s mine: 

 Allow the Afghan farmers to grow all the Heroin they want and then have the US government  buy it at market value and then burn  it.  When there are no jobs in a nation except for Heroin, use that to the US’s advantage rather than  sanctimoniously pretend it is such a “bad thing.”  The farmers don’t care what happens to the Heroin, as long as they get their money.  If the farmers are happy, then the country eases more towards a stable economy. 

On that note,  the US could overnight almost completely disrupt the drug flow from Columbia by adapting such a policy.  Let the cartels grow all the drugs they want, then buy them up and destroy them.  Money talks.  Economics is economics.

Threatening War Crimes or Good Solid Deterence?

Did Israel commit war crimes in the 2006 war vs Hezbollah? Sure.  Might threatening to commit war crimes in any  future confrontation be smart deterence theory?  Absolutely.  This seems to be exactly what they are doing:

JERUSALEM (AP) — Israel will use “disproportionate force” if Hezbollah guerrillas attack Israel, a senior military commander said in published comments Friday, adding that any village used to fire missiles against the Jewish state will be destroyed.

 Maj. Gen. Gadi Eizenkot, who commands forces along Israel’s northern border, issued a similar threat against Syria.

Eizenkot said Israel would show no mercy on Lebanese villages that harbor Hezbollah fighters. Israel has repeatedly complained that Hezbollah fighters used residential areas for cover, limiting Israel’s ability to respond.

Eizenkot stressed that this is “not a recommendation,” but a plan approved by the highest levels. “If fire is carried out from Shiite villages in Lebanon, this is the operational plan: Very aggressive fire.”

He said Israel would use what he called the “Dahiya doctrine,” a reference to the southern suburbs of Beirut where Hezbollah’s headquarters are located. During the 2006 war, Israel destroyed dozens of buildings in Dahiya, including the offices of Hezbollah leader Sheik Hassan Nasrallah.

“What happened in the Dahiya quarter in Beirut in 2006 will happen in every village from which Israel is fired upon. We will apply disproportionate force upon it and cause great damage and destruction there,” he said. “From our standpoint, these are not civilian villages, they are military bases.”

Let me be clear: I am not condoning war crimes.  But this is a smart strategy for Israel.  Here is the strategic reality:  Hezbollah has no ability to engage in s offensive operations against Israel.  Or, put it this way, they don’t have the ability to “liberate” a single inch of land.  The best they can hope for is to conduct provocative small scale attacks to bait Israel into entering South Lebanon where it can sit back and fight defensive guerrilla war which neutralizes to some extent Israel’s tactical advantage.  So for Israel the status quo is just fine.  And if by making these threats they scare Hezbollah or make it clear that the material price of any future attack against Israel is going to be so high, then this is very smart  nicely executed deterence theory in practice.