02 March 2010

No idea is truly new

Once again, people are talking about asking China to help with securing Afghanistan. I've covered this topic before, at my old blog (which was ported to this one).

China has a large interest particularly in killing the Uyghur terrorists who train there. If this is why the US took out a Uyghur leader in Pakistan, and it ends up bringing in China on our terms, then bully for us and hooray. China has a lot to offer, in terms of money and men.

However, if China instead seeks a completely free hand, it should not be accepted. Chinese counterinsurgency tends to be "kill, kill, kill" without any subtlety, and in fact has likely made the Uyghur insurgency far worse than it would have been on its own.

We should keep them out of Afghanistan until the leaders have read "Accidental Guerrilla."


  1. Think China could help us fight in Afghanistan Russian-style? We could kill everything until we are broke, and never get anywhere.

  2. Exactly. We should only use China's help if they are willing to fight the COIN way...which has not been the traditional Chinese way of doing things.

  3. Do you think it would be possible for China and the US to coordinate on Afghan COIN, even if the Chinese were devoted followers of the philosophy? Do you think we have the ability to work militarily with our rising rival? I don't know enough about it to guess...

  4. Honestly, I think working with our supposed military rival would be worth a lot for us, because we would learn more from them than they would from us, if only because so much of what they'd learn would be public info anyway. So, doing so might be useful.

    On the other hand, I'm not sure how well it'd work. We have experience working with NATO, South Korea, Japan etc., but very little with China. It would be extremely difficult.