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9/22/2017 12:11:25 AM
Posted: 8/6/2005 6:57:01 PM EDT
Besides the USA backing the Afgans, why do you think the Soviets had their own Vietnam, whereas the USA basically swept over Afganistan pretty easily?
Link Posted: 8/6/2005 7:01:00 PM EDT

Originally Posted By fight4yourrights:
Besides the USA backing the Afgans, why do you think the Soviets had their own Vietnam, whereas the USA basically swept over Afganistan pretty easily?


There's no getting around that reason. That is precisely why.
Link Posted: 8/6/2005 7:02:38 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Wobblin-Goblin:

Originally Posted By fight4yourrights:
Besides the USA backing the Afgans, why do you think the Soviets had their own Vietnam, whereas the USA basically swept over Afganistan pretty easily?



There's no getting around that reason. That is precisely why.




I don't think so - Soviets were getting their assed kicked before they brought in the Hinds.


Then the scale was tipped in their favor, so we supplied Stingers, which tipped it back.


I don't think we were supplying that much stuff before the Stingers, were we?
Link Posted: 8/6/2005 7:03:39 PM EDT
Stingers.
Link Posted: 8/6/2005 7:04:00 PM EDT
Simple. Most of the Afghans hated the Taliban as badly as us, they were just powerless to topple the bastards until we came along and provided them the means.

The Afghans did most of the actual fighting. Our air power was the deciding factor. Once the first town fell, a domino effect followed.

The Soviets never had that same fortune. They weren't welcomed by most of the people like we were.
Link Posted: 8/6/2005 7:08:32 PM EDT
The Soviet invasion united the general populatrion of Afghanistan together against them. The Taliban weren't exactly riding a wave of public popularity with their 7th century ideals and when the Coalition went in, there were pleanty of people in Afghanistan who were prepared to cooperate to get rid of the Taliban.
Link Posted: 8/6/2005 7:10:54 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/6/2005 7:11:17 PM EDT by ar15bubba]
Lots of the Ruskies were probably wondering why they were there. Our guys know why they are there, to avenge 9/11. Morale and we are just a better military force is why.

Link Posted: 8/6/2005 7:31:01 PM EDT
In a nutshell, in both cases it was US technology. With the USSR, Stingers made the CAS hesitant to fly. No CAS, no armor. With no armor support, the infantry curtails ground ops and defaults to a siege mentality (with themselves as the besieged).

In 2001, precision guided US munitions zapped the Taliban in bunkers and caves where the native Afghanis ordinarily would have stood no chance of rooting them out. In fact, that was how many SF won their spurs with the Afghanis and shored up the Afghanis' willingness to do their own fighting. The Afghanis would point out a position where the Taliban were hopelessly burrowed in and the SF would call for a bunker-buster to obliterate it. The Afghanis took this as a sign both that the Taliban were indeed vulnerable and that the US could deliver the support it was promising.
Link Posted: 8/6/2005 7:32:19 PM EDT
It appears our soldiers believed in their cause more then the russians.


SGatr15
Link Posted: 8/6/2005 7:36:49 PM EDT
My opinion: The Afghan people were truly tired of the 20 years of civil war which claimed 70% of the male population. They're tired of fighting. After the Taliban was removed from power the people were content to stop fighting and give peace a chance.
Link Posted: 8/6/2005 7:40:19 PM EDT
If you want to really know, rather than getting half stupid-ass opinions from people that don't know anything about the whole deal, I suggest

-The Bear Went Over The Mountain
-The Soviet Army In Afganistan

Both by Lester Grau. In the latter, it's a study from Soviet HQ. Kinda not the usual "Muj killed lots of soviets all the time!" we like to say.



Still using the same tactics. They know how to fight on thier ground.
Link Posted: 8/6/2005 7:45:39 PM EDT
Our Soldiers are much better trained and lead than the Russian Conscript Army.

Even the most high tech weapons are useless unless they are employed by highly trained troops who have quality Leadership from Officers and NCO's.
Link Posted: 8/6/2005 7:46:53 PM EDT
Ditto to most of the above.

Also, we went in to liberate and avenge. The Russians went in to conquer. Makes all the difference when you're a local.
Link Posted: 8/6/2005 7:54:58 PM EDT
We were not fighting Afghans --we were fighting the taliban, sponsors of Al queida. Lots of the taliban are foreigners who came to Afghanistan AFTER the soviet pullout on the pretense of restoring Afghanistans goverment etc but ended up usurping power and establishing a radical muslim theocracy and battling Afghans for control of the country, such as the Northern alliance. The Taliban was aided by Afghan warlords who tend to bend with the wind in order to preserve thier own tribal power IE they side with whomever appears stronger at any given time.
Folks like OBL showed up after the Soviet occupation ended and claimed to have a track record of fighting the Russians. Our biggest mistake in the whole Soviet / Afghan affair is that after the mujahadeen suceeded in causing the Soviet Union to withdraw, we simply pulled our agents and support out and walked away patting ourselves on the back while leaving behind a power vacume and a country with no stable govt to speak of. I am not really sure what we thought would happen -- I just think we didnt think about after the war at all.
Link Posted: 8/6/2005 7:58:36 PM EDT

Originally Posted By offctr:
We were not fighting Afghans --we were fighting the taliban, sponsors of Al queida. Lots of the taliban are foreigners who came to Afghanistan AFTER the soviet pullout on the pretense of restoring Afghanistans goverment etc but ended up usurping power and establishing a radical muslim theocracy and battling Afghans for control of the country, such as the Northern alliance. The Taliban was aided by Afghan warlords who tend to bend with the wind in order to preserve thier own tribal power IE they side with whomever appears stronger at any given time.
Folks like OBL showed up after the Soviet occupation ended and claimed to have a track record of fighting the Russians. Our biggest mistake in the whole Soviet / Afghan affair is that after the mujahadeen suceeded in causing the Soviet Union to withdraw, we simply pulled our agents and support out and walked away patting ourselves on the back while leaving behind a power vacume and a country with no stable govt to speak of. I am not really sure what we thought would happen -- I just think we didnt think about after the war at all.




And it was all freedom loving Afgans during the Soviet occupation?

Those people fight. It's what they do. It's how they get food on the table. They're used to it, and, they are good at it.
Link Posted: 8/6/2005 8:31:47 PM EDT

Originally Posted By offctr:
Our biggest mistake in the whole Soviet / Afghan affair is that after the mujahadeen suceeded in causing the Soviet Union to withdraw, we simply pulled our agents and support out and walked away patting ourselves on the back while leaving behind a power vacume and a country with no stable govt to speak of. I am not really sure what we thought would happen -- I just think we didnt think about after the war at all.



Our biggest concern in Afghan. during the Soviet invasion was to do everything we could
to give them their "Vietnam". The roles were reversed completely.

Once they pulled out our mission was accomplished. Who cares what happens to this shithole
country! I agree, like you said our biggest mistake was not attempting to place a favorable
government in charge instead of the power "vacuum" like you stated before.

LB
Link Posted: 8/6/2005 8:34:46 PM EDT

Originally Posted By fight4yourrights:
Besides the USA backing the Afgans, why do you think the Soviets had their own Vietnam, whereas the USA basically swept over Afganistan pretty easily?



Cause we're teh fukin sh!t!



Sorry, couldn't resist.


But it is true none the less...
Link Posted: 8/6/2005 8:39:32 PM EDT
We benefited from being able to study the previous failures of conventional vs. guerilla warfare (including Vietnam and the USSR vs. Afghanistan) and then applied what we learned in the correct manner.
Link Posted: 8/6/2005 9:18:10 PM EDT
B/C the Soviet Army was an army without a soul.
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 7:52:57 AM EDT
The Soviets tried to stamp out Islam, and Couldn't bring in enough Man Power and Fire Power to institute such a change.

I think the Stinger's effect was overblown. Also Soviet Tactics and Technology was/is decidely different than what is being used over there now.

Link Posted: 8/7/2005 8:06:29 AM EDT

Originally Posted By sgtar15:
It appears our soldiers believed in their cause more then the russians.


SGatr15



And more to the point, our cause was/is right. The Soviet, atheist cause wasn't. They had no "help" from above. It ain't all by might...
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 8:11:21 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/7/2005 8:13:57 AM EDT by Garand_Shooter]
It comes down to a number of things, many of which are cited above.

But in the end, it comes down to the Afghani's. So long as most of them support us, and believe in what we are doing here, the Taliban, the HIG, and Al-Queada (all of whom operate here) will never win. But as soon as they think a better life will come if one of those groups win we will start having a hard time.

During the war with the Soviets, the fighters could hide their weapons and blend into any village. Now, if they come to a village they will be reported fast. They are reduced to hiding in the mountains and coming to the villages only to steal food and terrorize the people.

Why? All the soviets could offer was socialism. They retaliated against the poulation when things went bad, and treated the locals like shit. We do not. We build roads, provide jobs at a wage that is like gold around here, build schools, clinics, and send mobile vet and medical teams out to all regions.

And we are letting them control thier future. They elected a president last year, but the important elections, the provincial elections are coming up this September. Many of the warlords and militia leaders have agreed to disarm in order to be allowed on the ballot..... that in itself is HUGE.
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 8:15:28 AM EDT

Originally Posted By fight4yourrights:
Besides the USA backing the Afgans, why do you think the Soviets had their own Vietnam, whereas the USA basically swept over Afganistan pretty easily?



Because I don't think we used lots of armored vehicles in AFG, just lightly armed guys in humvees. The russians used heavy armor a lot.

Ben
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 8:18:41 AM EDT
Maybe we believe in it & have a just reason for being there. Plus aside from all the negative media coverage, possibly we're winning some hearts and minds?
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 8:25:40 AM EDT
Charlie Wilson's War is one of the best books on US support to the Muj. Another good book is IIRC Shadow Wars.
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 8:33:10 AM EDT
The Soviets idea of waging a fight consisted of bombing oir shelling the area to be moved into into oblivion, then moving in with tanks and BMPs and doing more of the same.

Troops would generally never leave their vehicles, in part due to shitty boots and heavy body armor they just didn't feel like roaming about in, and incredible apathy. All engagement was done by weapons, not people.

No winning of the hearts and minds.
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 8:38:39 AM EDT

Originally Posted By fight4yourrights:
Besides the USA backing the Afgans, why do you think the Soviets had their own Vietnam, whereas the USA basically swept over Afganistan pretty easily?



The Soviets were too inside Afghanistan to pummel the land for fear of friendly fire. We basically stayed at a distance and pounded A-stan into level ground (Tora Bora, just as an example) w/o fear of hitting our on troops. Thermobaric warheads and other latest and greatest toys helped as well. Then it was the tactics and high speed operators.
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 8:50:44 AM EDT

Originally Posted By offctr:
We were not fighting Afghans --we were fighting the taliban, sponsors of Al queida. Lots of the taliban are foreigners who came to Afghanistan AFTER the soviet pullout on the pretense of restoring Afghanistans goverment etc but ended up usurping power and establishing a radical muslim theocracy and battling Afghans for control of the country, such as the Northern alliance. The Taliban was aided by Afghan warlords who tend to bend with the wind in order to preserve thier own tribal power IE they side with whomever appears stronger at any given time.
Folks like OBL showed up after the Soviet occupation ended and claimed to have a track record of fighting the Russians. Our biggest mistake in the whole Soviet / Afghan affair is that after the mujahadeen suceeded in causing the Soviet Union to withdraw, we simply pulled our agents and support out and walked away patting ourselves on the back while leaving behind a power vacume and a country with no stable govt to speak of. I am not really sure what we thought would happen -- I just think we didnt think about after the war at all.



Exactly. The Taliban elite was ARAB in a country FAR FROM the Arab world. There are few parallels to our war and that of the Soviets. It is all about the image of your forces, and the effectiveness of propaganda on both sides. The Soviets were seen as an aggressor and occupier. We maintained a very small presence on the ground and simply assisted one side of an ongoing civil war.
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 8:54:36 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Bostonterrier97:
The Soviets tried to stamp out Islam, and Couldn't bring in enough Man Power and Fire Power to institute such a change.
...




A mistake that it seems like half of the so-called "supporters" of our current war effort seem to want us to make ourselves - and not just in Afghanistan.

How anyone can say they "support" the war on terror and contribute to enemy propaganda so readily (the Americans want to stamp out Islam" "The Americans have no respect for your traditions" etc.)

Link Posted: 8/7/2005 9:00:16 AM EDT
FWIW, the Soviets took over the country fairly quickly - they "won" the war in any conventional sense quite effectively. It was the peace they lost - as they failed to prop up an effective government - sonce they were only concerned about their own interests.

We are still in that stage, and it is critical that the people belive we have their best interests in mind as we assist them.

Can you see why the "Kill them all" threads are not only inappropriate, but put our troops and mission at risk?
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 9:03:57 AM EDT
USA Liberators

Russia Invadors
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 9:15:19 AM EDT

Originally Posted By PSYWAR1-0:
Charlie Wilson's War is one of the best books on US support to the Muj. Another good book is IIRC Shadow Wars.



Definetely, I consider a must read.
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 9:18:48 AM EDT
Maybe because we didnt go into every village and kill the women and children.

Most of the Afgans are happy to have the US there, as the Taliban was as bad as the Russions.

FREE



Originally Posted By fight4yourrights:
Besides the USA backing the Afgans, why do you think the Soviets had their own Vietnam, whereas the USA basically swept over Afganistan pretty easily?

Link Posted: 8/7/2005 9:21:43 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Adam_White:
FWIW, the Soviets took over the country fairly quickly - they "won" the war in any conventional sense quite effectively. It was the peace they lost - as they failed to prop up an effective government - sonce they were only concerned about their own interests.

We are still in that stage, and it is critical that the people belive we have their best interests in mind as we assist them.

Can you see why the "Kill them all" threads are not only inappropriate, but put our troops and mission at risk?



+1
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 9:35:41 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Charging_Handle:
Simple. Most of the Afghans hated the Taliban as badly as us, they were just powerless to topple the bastards until we came along and provided them the means.

The Afghans did most of the actual fighting. Our air power was the deciding factor. Once the first town fell, a domino effect followed.

The Soviets never had that same fortune. They weren't welcomed by most of the people like we were.



Somthing else you should remember, the Soviets failed for the most part because they focused on controlling the cities. In a country as compartmentalized as Afghanastan holding the cities means almost nothing whatsoever, you have to do like we did and have a heavy SF presence as well as a good Airpower.

As said a few posts before, the Soviets didn't bring the Hind in until it was almost too late, and then once they did bring them the CIA provided Stingers which pretty much nullified the Hind's and effectivly ended the lopsided war.
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 9:39:15 AM EDT
Um, JDAMS?

They tend to get your attention
Link Posted: 8/7/2005 9:47:37 AM EDT

Originally Posted By USMC_LB:

Originally Posted By offctr:
Our biggest mistake in the whole Soviet / Afghan affair is that after the mujahadeen suceeded in causing the Soviet Union to withdraw, we simply pulled our agents and support out and walked away patting ourselves on the back while leaving behind a power vacume and a country with no stable govt to speak of. I am not really sure what we thought would happen -- I just think we didnt think about after the war at all.



Our biggest concern in Afghan. during the Soviet invasion was to do everything we could
to give them their "Vietnam". The roles were reversed completely.

Once they pulled out our mission was accomplished. Who cares what happens to this shithole
country! I agree, like you said our biggest mistake was not attempting to place a favorable
government in charge instead of the power "vacuum" like you stated before.

LB



Yup. Of course, people here on ARFCOM are advising that we repeat that same mistake again. "We got rid of Saddam Hussein, so let's pull out and F what happens to the Iraqis."
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