US diplomat urges NATO to partition Afghanistan or loose control

London, Sept 13 (ANI): A senior former American national security adviser, Robert Blackwill, has warned that the Taliban are "winning" and the foreign forces are "losing" in Afghanistan and added that the country should be partitioned along ethnic lines by pulling back NATO forces to deal with the problem.

Blackwill, who was Condolezza Rice's deputy as National Security Adviser in 2003 to 2004, will reportedly deliver a speech at the International Institute of Strategic Studies think tank in London on Monday, urging President Barack Obama to make changes in the war's objectives.

He further stated that the surge of forces launched in 2009 to stabilise Afghanistan was "high likely" to fail and that the death toll in the conflict was too high a price to pay.

"The Taliban are winning, we are losing. They have high morale and want to continue the insurgency. Plan A is going to fail. We need a Plan B," The Telegraph quoted Blackwill, as saying.

"Let the Taliban control the Pashtun south and east, the American and allied price for preventing that is far too high," he added.

According to Blackwill, the US should only seek to defend those areas dominated by Afghanistan's Tajik, Uzbek and Hazara minorities by pulling out of bases in the south.

By accepting that the Taliban would overrun Kandahar and other big population centres, the US would threaten the Taliban only if it allowed al Qa'eda to reform or if the movement started to encroach northwards.

He also claimed that over a decade, "innumerable errors" in the Western approach to Afghanistan, especially American policy to expel al Qaeda from its Afghan sanctuaries and crushing the Taliban and installing a democratic government in Kabul, has led to deploying 1,000 soldiers for every one of the estimated 100 al Qaeda operatives. Because of this, 100 billion dollars a year is spent on the conflict.

"If we were to leave before 2015, a point at which on current progress we expect to have achieved our security aims, it would be a shot in the arm to violent jihadists everywhere, re-energising violent radical and extremist Islamists," he added. (ANI)

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