I was told, years ago, that the problem with the military leadership is that they are always fighting the last war. It appears to be happening again.
The Obama administration has floated a trial balloon of leaving Afghanistan completely, leaving no troops there. 11 years later, more than 600 billion dollars of American capital spent, and some 20 thousand young Americans whose lives are changed, changed utterly, without even being able to point to a nascent terrible beauty.
Not only did we not learn, apparently, from the debacle in VietNam, we didn’t learn from the Soviet experience in Afghanistan. They, too, were routed after 10 years with nothing to show for it but a huge cost in lives and treasure.
Now it’s our turn. The administration broaches the idea of unconditional surrender to see if the American public will buy it. And, I have no doubt they will. They are tired, as our military surely must be, of being asked to endure a Sisyphean task. The military must certainly be tired of being attacked by their putative allies, and being unable to fight back. I’m certain they are tired of being told that the root of the “green on blue” attacks is the lack of sensitivity to their culture. They are told to respect a backward, primitive, tribal hellhole, and not to worry about the uniformed jihadist next to them.
Just the other day, a suspected member of the Afghan army ran amok at a patrol base in the heart of Helmand province, killing a British soldier and injuring six others in what appears to have been another “green on blue” attack. The killer was shot dead at the scene. The Taliban immediately claimed it was behind the attack — identifying the “infiltrator” as Mohammad Qasim Faroq. Does anyone remember the infiltrators in Vietnam, even among the ranks of the ARVN?
So, it appears that we will pull out of Afghanistan, which almost certainly means out of Pakistan and Uzbekistan, as well, along with wherethehellistan. Leaving in charge, of course, the Taliban. Who was in charge 11 years ago? The Taliban. Whether or not we ever went into Afghanistan, the end result is the same. I’m pretty sure that meets the definition of surrender.
So we’ve lost Afghanistan. We lost Egypt and are in the process of losing Syria. Not just losing, but we’re actively aiding the side most inimical to American interests. The Syrian “rebels” are now in the process of killing more people than Assad. At least Assad was a tolerable guarantor of religious toleration, which is something the sharia-observant jihadis aren’t.
After all of our “nation building,” the current administration has managed to install extremist islamic regimes from the Bosporus Straits, around to the Caspian and Black seas, and from there westward to Algeria. We’re currently arming the islamic insurgents in Syria, and continuing aid to Egypt, which includes money and fighter aircraft. Libya is a disaster, and even Tunisia is openly telling us to, in the British euphemism, “sod off.”
Many years ago, I was told by a very wise man to never attribute to malice that which can be explained by stupidity. Given the disasters throughout the middle east, it’s becoming more and more difficult to believe the administration is so totally incompetent and inept.