Leaving Afghanistan now seems to be the only option…

Did we win or did we lose? That seems to be a main concern for many when it comes to the United States “intervention” in Afghanistan. Our goal was to overthrow the Taliban government and to institute some kind of order – the last month demonstrated that we may not be able to reach that goal.

We also have to look at the situation critically and see if what we’re doing will have a lasting impact – and that’s in question. While there’s no doubt that the Taliban is destructive and murderous, do we believe that once we pull out the current government will last? Or we continuously putting off an inevitable, while thousands of Afghans and Americans die?

With the recent videos of U.S. soldiers burning copies of the Quran, urinating on the bodies of Taliban soldiers and the recent massacre of Afghan civilians by a U.S. solider, our moral authority in the region is slipping and the Taliban is gaining fodder for its propaganda machine that paints the West as murderously meddlesome and corrupt.

No one wants to admit defeat and any president that decides to pull troops out will have to contend with accusations of giving up. President Obama’s hearing that now with the troop withdrawal from Iraq.

And while the situation is different in Iraq – let’s look at Iraq for a quick second. We purportedly went into Iraq because of mythical WMD. We amended our stand and decided that Saddam Hussein and his regime was too brutal (a fair and accurate charge). But now we’re hearing reports of Iraqi youth being killed for identifying or being perceived to be “emo” – wearing skinny jeans, wearing their hair long and spiky – the implication being that there’s something Satanic or gay about it. While the perpetrators of these crimes have been amateur militia, there is some reports that they are acting with the consent of the Ministry of Interior.

Obama feels he has to tread very carefully as he begins to unveil his reelection bid. He will be very strategic in how he responds to the situation in Afghanistan, which some may call disintegrating. Relations between the U.S. and Afghanistan are in a terrible bind – because both feel they need the other – we want a stable Middle East and see Afghanistan as an important factor; the Afghan government knows that it needs the U.S. because it’s not ready to rule on its own.

Whatever the decision our leaders will make – one thing is clear, a change is needed, as this month demonstrated.



Filed under commentary, politics

3 responses to “Leaving Afghanistan now seems to be the only option…

  1. A complicated question–I got to spend 15 months in Afghanistan and 6 in Iraq and, frankly, the problem with both situations at the end is that there was never any clear guideline as to what “winning” meant. Everyone on the ground knows it. I mean, what does building a secure and stable government really mean unless we’re willing to devote decades of money and manpower to it? So it’s not even if we won or lost, but whether either endeavor was even remotely worthwhile. Glad I’m not running for election this year… 🙂

    • Thanks so much for your response as well as your service…That’s just what I think – I don’t know what “winning” means but I worry that because our gov’t doesn’t either, more US soldiers and civilians will die…it’s very complicated and I wish there was an easy right/wrong answer (it’d make running the world a lot easier, huh). I’m with you, btw – I’m glad I’m not running for anything either 🙂

  2. We got OBL. Mission accomplished. The mission in Afghanistan is confused and muddled at best. Get our troops out before more calamity occurs.

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