The worldwide appeal of the concept of the caliphate is demonstrated once again. “Afghan president admits he’s losing troops to ISIS,” Associated Press, March 21, 2015:
KABUL, Afghanistan — President Ashraf Ghani publicly acknowledged for the first time Saturday that the Islamic State is gaining influence in Afghanistan as he prepared to leave for the United States and attempt to slow the withdrawal of American troops.
Reports have been growing that commanders of the Islamist Taliban forces fighting the Afghan government are swearing allegiance to the terrorist network that controls swathes of Syria and Iraq, sometimes called “Daesh.”
“Daesh’s characteristic is that it is man-eating. It swallows its competitors,” Ghani said in a briefing. “Here, it is not physical presence of people from Syria or Iraq. It is the network effect.”…
Officials have said the Obama administration is set to abandon plans to draw down to 5,500 troops by year’s end, bowing to military leaders’ requests. And while no final decision on numbers has been made, the United States is expected to allow many of the troops to remain well into 2016.
However, Ghani has signaled in talks ahead of the visit that he wants the United States to maintain 10,000 troops in Afghanistan through the next decade, said a European military official who spoke on condition of anonymity….
The Afghan troops need targets!