while its still there
Afghanistan: Sustaining West European Support for the NATO-led
Mission—Why Counting on Apathy Might Not Be Enough (C//NF)
This memo was prepared by
the CIA Red Cell, which has
been charged by the Director
of Intelligence with taking a
approach that will provoke
thought and offer an
alternative viewpoint on the
full range of analytic issues.
The fall of the Dutch Government over its troop commitment to Afghanistan
demonstrates the fragility of European support for the NATO-led ISAF mission.
Some NATO states, notably France and Germany, have counted on public
apathy about Afghanistan to increase their contributions to the mission, but
indifference might turn into active hostility if spring and summer fighting
results in an upsurge in military or Afghan civilian casualties and if a Dutchstyle
debate spills over into other states contributing troops.
The Red Cell invited a CIA expert on strategic communication and analysts following public opinion at the State Department’s Bureau of Intelligence and Research (INR) to
consider information approaches that might better link the Afghan mission to
the priorities of French, German, and other Western European publics. (C//NF)
Public Apathy Enables Leaders To Ignore Voters. . . (C//NF)