Thursday, October 15, 2009

Afghanistan? Really?

Besides fields filled with lethal opium poppies, Afghanistan is a dusty hell-hole without roads, schools, hospitals, or anything in the way of even 18th century civilization.
We've already chased the Taliban to Pakistan, so basically American troops are in Afghanistan shooting at shadows and bombing hillsides, and for what?
Generals on the ground are asking for massive troop increases, saying if we want any chance of victory, we must have more troops.
Define victory.
Would that be America assisting the suspiciously "reelected" Hamid Karzai in establishing a democratic civilization?
Are we really so arrogant we think that by sheer force and spending trillions of dollars we don't have, we can drag an 8th century dump into the 21st century?
Define victory.
Is it a Starbuck's on every corner and Baptist churches in every neighborhood?
They don't have neighborhoods!
They don't have anything. Not even valuable bombing targets.
Even their Arab neighbors don't give a damn about propping up Afghanistan.
Joe Biden is right.
Let's pack our troops and our stuff and get the hell out of there.
Obama should announce that Afghanistan was another of Bush's ill-conceived wars, and he won't be throwing more money at Bush's abysmal failure.
I almost said "throwing more money down the drain," but Afghanistan hasn't got any drains, now do they?


Iain said...

Has any general ever asked for fewer troops? Has any political leader ever identified or admitted to reasons for continuing to be in Afghanistan? Do they even know?

And if nation-building is not the reason, Karen's questions are well-aimed: what's the point? Spend another few years, soldiers and money in chasing armed fundamentalists to another place, then...what? Declare victory, leave Afghanistan in the same abject poverty as before...and wait for the next group, probably the same group, of nutters offering hope in pennies and religion.

It's always about poverty.

bigsis said...

The Soviets spent 30 years training and equipping the "Afghan Army" and failed. After the civil wars, Mujahideen, Taliban and every other bunch looking for reasons to blow things up in Afghanistan, what the hell makes the US think we can go in and fix that country? The US is the reason terrorists are prospering in these primitive areas. Its too much, and after 8 years we're half way to the 16 yrs we wasted in Viet Nam.

They don't want us there and we don't want to be there. Hey 20-Somethings, we're spending your future, get off you asses and protest like we baby boomers had to do to end the Viet Nam fiasco!

Lulu Maude said...

So sad. Women are so vulnerable there. Did you see the film, "Osama"?

But this war can't fix that, I suspect.

The time for it has come and gone. Another Bush fiasco.

Jess Wundrun said...

Karen, while you know I love you, I take some objection to your classification of Afghanistan. The country and the country's history are beautifully laid out in the novel 'The Kite Runner'. The horrors of rule by Taliban are shown in 'A Thousand Splendid Suns', I'd hate to be so callous toward people we've been abusing for the last eight years.

Having said that, we have to remember that Cheney started this whole misadventure to be able to secure a pipeline for his oil buddies. We don't have those reasons for staying there any longer which would argue for leaving.

And now Pakistan is turning into the mess we've been worried about for years.

The UN has completely fucked the situation by backing Karzai in the *now admitted* rigged elections.

I wish I knew the answer. I'm not ready to say it is time to leave.

Karen Zipdrive said...

Jess, believe me, I am not without compassion for innocent Afghani citizens.
If the United States were to offer them humanitarian aid to provide Afghanis food, hospitals and a better life, I'd be all for it.
But they do not need decades more of military occupation, by us or any country.
And we can no longer afford to chase the Bush administration's selfish desire for oil or pipelines or feeding the greed of the terrorist industrial complex 9/11 has spawned.
There is absolutely nothing our military presence can provide for Afghanistan. We've wasted enough time and treasure on wars without end, with no idea what victory would entail.

nonnie9999 said...

i don't know what the answer is. what's going on now is certainly not working, and more troops would just be more gasoline on the fire. if afghanistan is going to change, the people are the ones who have to change it. how that happens is beyond me. i think knowledge is the best weapon. maybe we should be dropping those computers that don't need electricity instead of bombs.

Fran said...

Here is my take on this issue.....

• Enough with the USA playing 911 to the world.
• I honestly believe we are doing more harm than good.
• CONGRESS APPROVED $681 BILLION in military appropriations for the 2010 fiscal year. Just lst week.

Did any of you folks hear one fricking peep from Congress having a hard time approving so much money to military expenses?
That vote for all those hundreds of billions sailed through without a blink.

I have to verify the #'s but it seems I have heard more than once & more than from one source- that the projected cost of Health care is somewhere in the neighborhood of $800 billion OVER 10 YEARS.

Of course we don't have money for health care.... we are burning it up with wars.

I agree, turn the mission into humanitarian aid & turn it over to another entity (Red Crescent?)
and get out.

If we could not "win" in 8 years, we ain;t gonna.

Also not a wise idea to announce for a year & 1/2 that you will be having a military surge for all to hear-- essentially giving them a big heads up & time to prepare.

I have a great deal of compassion for those not in the Taliban, having to live under such brutal conditions.

That & I can't help but notice..... one war keeps leading to another & Pakistan is heating up big time. We are not even out of Iraq.....
stuck in Afghanistan 8 years, and is Pakistan next???


Enough already!

Distributorcap said...

there is no purpose in that war ---- the ONLY reason we are there now is to say we havent lost.

i am dead set against this war = and i was dead set against it in Oct 2001. you cannot militarily fight hate - it only breeds more hate.

but america thinks all wars are like john wayne and we can NEVER lose, because we are big bad ameruka.

if obama chooses to stay and fight for whatever reason we are fighting for (which no one really knows) - then expect the same speech from obama as we heard from lyndon johnson on 3/31/68 - this will doom him.

if we really wanted to "win" (since that seems to be the only defined goal) - then send in 1,000,000 trips and make the country a parking lot - but these small steps in aplace like that only mean more harm to american troops

get out NOW

Karen Zipdrive said...

I think the six day war back in 1967 set the bar for all wars.
Israel got disgusted with all those Arab bullies, then took less than a week to kick their asses and win.
Unless a war can be fought and won within three months tops, then don't do it.
First you gotta know what the objective of the war is.
With Israel, it was control of Jeruselem.
With Afhganistan, it's uhh, umm, well, I don't know what it is.
Do you?