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Thursday, March 15, 2012

I know! (raises hand)

Victor Davis Hanson asks a multiple-choice question concerning American strategy in Afghanistan:
Somehow the U.S. finds itself in a position of having to apologize for the inadvertent burning of terrorist-desecrated Korans; of not expecting an apology from Karzai (a recipient of the 2004 Liberty Medal) for the murdering of U.S. troops by their supposedly friendly Afghan counterparts; and of again having to apologize for a horrific mass murdering spree by a lone, rogue gunman, who, nonetheless, off-the-record, is said to be emblematic of the frustration of U.S. troops. Our troops are largely forgotten by the administration and the public, cannot trust fully those on behalf of whom they are risking their lives, and are not sure what the U.S. mission has become. When an invading and occupying force apologizes so repeatedly to the resident population, it is a sign that locals have lost any fear of its unpredictability and lethality, or respect for its proven record of reconstruction and humanity, or for its own sense of self-confidence in its mission.

So what now?

a) To escalate is politically impossible and strategically nonsensical.

b) To leave abruptly is to admit defeat and cede complete control of the country de facto to the Taliban, and to confess that the previous human and material cost was wasted, while relegating millions of pro-Western-reform Afghans in the major cities to Taliban reprisals or refugee status. (I assume that at this point the Afghan Security Forces would not fight on, or at least not fight very well, alone against the insurgents.)

c) To continue with the present policy of announced withdrawal dates, and a final departure in two years, punctuated by periodic apologies to the Afghans when their customs are abridged, or civilians killed, in the hope that the Karzai government and its successor by 2014 will come to a power-sharing arrangement with the Taliban, one that will not nullify all the gains achieved in the last decade — a dubious proposition at best.
The answer is (b), VDH. The answer is (b). No one is fooled when the defeated occupation force "refuses to admit defeat". All that refusal does is square the stupidity. Not only was all of "the previous human and material cost" wasted, people like me have been telling people like you that for years!

And as for the "pro-Western-reform Afghans", screw them. Don't even think about bringing them over here, or you'll soon discover that they're a hell of a lot closer to the Taliban than they are to the West.

Labels:

40 Comments:

Anonymous Mr. Nightstick March 15, 2012 1:20 PM  

I say kill them all and start a colony. We could call it Liberia Junior. It would be awesome.

Anonymous Josh March 15, 2012 1:35 PM  

And as for the "pro-Western-reform Afghans", screw them. Don't even think about bringing them over here, or you'll soon discover that they're a hell of a lot closer to the Taliban than they are to the West.

that racis

Anonymous johnc March 15, 2012 1:36 PM  

How could anybody with a positive IQ not see just how naive and ill-conceived America's involvement in that region is? And now it's off to Tehran!

Stupidity causes extinction.

Anonymous Josh March 15, 2012 1:47 PM  

How could anybody with a positive IQ not see just how naive and ill-conceived America's involvement in that region is? And now it's off to Tehran!

Everyone knows that the third time's the charm, or something like that...

I mean, you're obviously a nazi because you s don't want to prevent a second holocaust...

Anonymous dan March 15, 2012 1:48 PM  

b) of course, w/o the refugees.

Anonymous RedJack March 15, 2012 2:01 PM  

If you have to conquer, colonize. Otherwise you are just wasting your time.

Blogger The LP 999/Linda March 15, 2012 2:04 PM  

Heck, with all this incoherency, dysfunction and disorder, we might as well adopt the entire middle east as united state of America.

I vote b, considering the paranoid Panetta didn't trust Marines (most of them, if not all, are honorable good men who wouldn't hurt on of their own no matter how much they disagree w/ Panetta & ilk). Panetta required the Marines disarmed before his highness would address them.

OT: Anyone find it interesting that a few weeks ago, maybe 2 weeks back Osama's body was not buried at sea? It is amazing that is considered news when many wondered what really happened to his body

Anonymous Ben, fan of Carolus March 15, 2012 2:06 PM  

Hanson is part of the problem. He wants to send other peoples children to die for his ideology.

You ever notice that people like VDH never apologize for their failed policies. They just forget what they espoused for the last decade and double down, making believe what they're saying now is novel.

Now it's central Africa, Syria, and ultimately Iran.

Anonymous zen0 March 15, 2012 2:13 PM  

Less than a week after a US staff sergeant allegedly massacred 16 civilians in Kandahar, American soldiers were banned from bringing guns into a talk by Mr Panetta (Sec. of Defense) at a base in Helmand province.

Around 200 troops who had gathered in a tent at Camp Leatherneck were told "something had come to light" and asked abruptly to file outside and lay down their automatic rifles and 9mm pistols.

Anonymous Buck Swamp March 15, 2012 2:15 PM  

Thank God, it's beginning to look like there's a chance that internal Afghani politics will force Karzai to demand that we leave. Just like in Iraq, that is the only way American troops will ever leave.

The American ruling class is incredible worthless.

Anonymous Anonymous March 15, 2012 2:30 PM  

Your Trilema is false. There are many other possible courses of action.

How do you define us as losing when you have not defined victory conditions.

What is wrong with the current strategy. Use US forces in Afghanistan as a huge shit magnet and give them a focus of hatred better Asscrackistan then other parts of the world.

Blogger Dominic Saltarelli March 15, 2012 2:40 PM  

Totally need to go with a)

War is the Answer.

What, you didn't know? Yo ass betta caaaaaaaaaaaaaaallll somebody!

Anonymous Anonymous March 15, 2012 2:41 PM  

First off, the new comment posting mechanism blows toads.

And your concern for "Western-ideal-subscribing Afghanis" coming to live here is very real. I worked with 15 or so Iraqis in the Green Zone in 2006. FOUR OF THEM now live in LA!

This can only result in increased diversity and thus, greater economic gains! Vive la Diversite!

Blogger Giraffe March 15, 2012 2:43 PM  

Around 200 troops who had gathered in a tent at Camp Leatherneck were told "something had come to light" and asked abruptly to file outside and lay down their automatic rifles and 9mm pistols.

One wonders why they would file back inside after that insult. Probably ordered to.

Anonymous bw March 15, 2012 2:45 PM  

It is always hilarious to watch people's reaction when you point out the powerful US of A has lost every "conflict" since WWII. Of course, it isn't about "winning" in the sense they or most people think of it, so the cognitive dissonance is..entertaining.

Anonymous Stilicho March 15, 2012 2:52 PM  

What is wrong with the current strategy. Use US forces in Afghanistan as a huge shit magnet and give them a focus of hatred better Asscrackistan then other parts of the world.

Then get thee to Asscrackistan to be a shit magnet.

Anonymous BillB March 15, 2012 2:57 PM  

To leave would be to admit, it was always unconstitutional for the federal government to involve itself in the affairs of other countries. This would denigrate all the elected officials who have been in office for 150 years+.

The Constitution limits expenditures to the debts, common defence and general welfare ... of the United States

What ARE the United States? First they are NOT a single nation as most improperly educated are wont to believe. They are a geographical area and no expense can be made for any action outside that geographical area. Common defence is NOT preemptive and it is highly questionable that Iraq or Afghanistan have ever acted in such a manner as to put the US on defense. I would venture to add that ONLY in the event of an attack on any of the United States could the term defense rightfully come into play. It is conspicuously dubious to lay claim to the actions in other countries as being the general welfare of the whole United States, all 50 of them.

Blogger JartStar March 15, 2012 3:11 PM  

The whole world knows that we lost Afghanistan to the Taliban and so taking option c) only means we are deluding ourselves and fooling no one.

Anonymous James Dixon March 15, 2012 3:15 PM  

> Your Trilema is false. There are many other possible courses of action.

It's not his trilema. It's Hanson's.

Anonymous Starbuck March 15, 2012 3:27 PM  

bw said...
It is always hilarious to watch people's reaction when you point out the powerful US of A has lost every "conflict" since WWII. Of course, it isn't about "winning" in the sense they or most people think of it, so the cognitive dissonance is..entertaining


Really? Do you have proof to this idiotic staement?

Anonymous ENthePeasant March 15, 2012 3:29 PM  

There always comes that moment in time when the corrupt, perverted Afghans revolt. Afghans are like whores, you can buy them if you've got the money but you will never be able to trust them... and for the love of God, don't bring them home. All the ones who have a semblance of civility in their hearts came here 20 plus years ago. Allah take the rest and let's admit our failure before we end up with a full revolt. Look at a map and you'll see we've alienated all the countries surrounding Afghanistan, a landlocked country if ever there was one, and without Russian help we could easily be cut off and see the demise of most of our army. It's happened before and it can happen now. All our technology will prove to be worthless shiite should Afghans get up in full on revolt.

Blogger ashepherd March 15, 2012 3:35 PM  

Defeat? That's the opposite of "win". So you have to define "win" before you can define "defeat."

If winning means totally overhauling a centuries-old culture without changing its underlying values by making "nice" to them and hoping they will embrace democratic government and its underlying principles of respect for life, uniformity of law and personal integrity (which now have limited respect in the US) then that was doomed from the beginning, so there never was a possibility of "win".

If the purpose was to militarily neutralize the regional terrorist element without addressing its Islamic motivation nor dealing effectively with its womb, Pakistan, then again it was doomed from the start.

There are three ways to stop a virus or any damaging intrusion to any system, neutralize it at its source, stop it from traveling, or resist it at point of entry. If it gets in, then you have to purge it. Our government, including Bush's, has been ineffective at all three because it basically has a religious worship of a wrong model of human behavior - a secular Marxist model functioning in a democratic matrix. So no matter what it does, it will not only fail, but like a cancer, make matters worse which it is doing internationally and internally.

I say get out, have a great big pity party with the Russians to see if we commiserating together might improve relations with them and so get some scrap of good out of this.

I live in an area with a lot of military. I'm impressed with their commitment and I hate seeing the litany of names of men and women coming home in their 20's and 30's with blown off appendages or in caskets while pundits and politicians worry about the failure of their philosophy and egos.

Blogger Rahul March 15, 2012 3:36 PM  

I choose B.

Anonymous Gen. Kong March 15, 2012 3:40 PM  

Millions of pro-Western-reform Afghans? VDH has been smoking the Pashtooni poppies served up by his Neo-Trotskyite masters for so long the old boy's become completely detached from reality.

Since he's busy playing the drooling, shufflin' step-n-fetchit for his Babylonian paymasters, why not go full retard and talk about the brilliant long-term strateegery of enlightening the Ummah by enforcing feminism and sodomy on them with predator drones.

Blogger tz March 15, 2012 3:41 PM  

"or respect for its proven record of reconstruction and humanity,"

Strange, the article didn't sound ironic.

"And as for the "pro-Western-reform Afghans", screw them."

Or urinate on them or their corpses as might be most convenient.

"of not expecting an apology from Karzai (a recipient of the 2004 Liberty Medal) for the murdering of U.S. troops by their supposedly friendly Afghan counterparts;"

You mean our Nobel Peace Prize winning leader broke a puppet string?

Veterans in Russia, recalling the final war of the USSR, as well as ghosts of the British Empire, must be rolling on the floor laughing.

Where Winston Churchill intones, "Yes, America can be that stupid. yes for that long".

Anonymous Gen. Kong March 15, 2012 3:52 PM  

Buck Swamp: The American ruling class is incredible worthless. They are far worse that that, BS. The proper terms to describe the oligarchy are "treasonous" and "genocidal".

Perhaps some of the uniformed zeks over there are starting to comprehend the nature of our ruling elite - hence the disarmament when Panetta flew in. Panetta is a perfect example of what I refer to - a domestic enemy of the constitution. Anyone who took the oath seriously would know exactly what should be done with him. I would have cheered louder than the Taliban if such a traitor had been accorded some instant justice.

Blogger Ghost March 15, 2012 3:58 PM  

Govt is the only corporation who can't fail. Wars, drugs, medicine, transportation, it doesn't matter how many die or how much money is wasted, failure is literally not an option. "what, you think it would be better if people were allowed to shoot heroin whenever they wanted?" Yes. Yes I do. Because the alternative wastes blood and treasure.

We aren't winning. Admitting defeat is the first step toward recovery.

Anonymous Stilicho March 15, 2012 4:02 PM  

Michael Yon predicted this:
I saw the massacre coming

Anonymous Anonymous March 15, 2012 4:05 PM  

I have a hard time caring about the presumed "millions of pro-western reform afghans", given that they don't seem to be doing jack shit to bring that about and instead are simply relying on our troops to provide them with safe haven (assuming they even exist in any numbers).

Anonymous bw March 15, 2012 4:22 PM  

Defeat? That's the opposite of "win". So you have to define "win" before you can define "defeat."

My point exactly. Who gets to define them and gets to spin it? The more the US military empire fights abroad, the less free you become at home in all manner of ways. Pat Tillman, a smart - and rich - guy, was committed to the idea of the US military and fighting terrorism as well ... right up until he began changing his mind.
One can be deeply "committed" to all manner of fraudulent causes. Cops are greatly committed also - to jackboot thuggery and collecting further revenues. That's going swell. Who cares that someone "feels" deeply committed to what they presume is certainly a just cause? What are the Results?
And being committed to and actually believing in any Leviathan government for most any purpose is...well, you decide. History shows the way. At this point, why does anyone believe the US govt does anything whatsoever "for the people"? What is this belief system that has been implanted in them? Where is the recognition of what we have seen just in our lifetimes, nevermind the historical record?
Cannon fodder for powerful, elite ruling classes? That's what militaries have always been. Who is the fool? Or to take @ashepherd one step further: What IS America, and what is it not?? What was it, and what is it now?
The biggest mind-screwing is the belief that there are "good" in any of this. See? Again, we're back to defining more terms.
The pioneers of a warless world are the young men who refuse military service
Of course, no draft is needed: simply tweak the economy is a certain way, and....

Anonymous bw March 15, 2012 4:38 PM  

Really? Do you have proof to this idiotic staement? - Starbuck

Sure. All of the military "wars" and "conflicts" and "interventions" have led to the Sitting President of the United States of America CHAIRING a United Nations Security Council session. (to spell it out for you, that is the "World Government body"). Again, that is chairing World Government as sitting President of the United States. And lest you are so ignorant as to play the "Obama is the worstest!!" argument, see GHW Bush's 1991 speech regarding the United States and the UN (and the general history of the US Elite and the UN's founding). Did you vote for BushI Starbuck? I did. What an historically ignorant fool I was at the time.
No more.
The joke, Starbuck? It's on you.

Anonymous O.C. March 15, 2012 5:42 PM  

I say we withdraw and nuke the entire site from orbit. It's the only way to be sure.

Anonymous Jason1975 March 15, 2012 6:44 PM  

I would like to go with option D.

Let's take the nuclear option.

Also known as "if I can't have you, no one can." :-)

Anonymous Anonymous March 15, 2012 9:42 PM  

Such language *LOL* /s

Rest assured President Soros...I mean 0bama, yeah, that's it...will surely throw some more money CCI's way to settle these "poor, oppressed refugees" among US.
Sorry, it's just the politically correct, multicultural thing to do, and "we're such a wealthy nation, after all", as HITLERy would doubtless ASSert.

- Galt-in-Da-Box

Anonymous zen0 March 15, 2012 10:14 PM  

bw said...

Cannon fodder for powerful, elite ruling classes? That's what militaries have always been. Who is the fool?


I think I would prefer to pretend to be an illegal alien than a member of the U.S. Military....you get more respect and better treatment.

Anonymous Idle Spectator Superpatriot March 16, 2012 1:06 AM  

//chugs budweiser

It's pussies like you Vox that made us lose in Vietnam! Those red, white, and blue colors don't run.

Blogger foxmarks March 16, 2012 2:11 AM  

Sunk costs are sunk. Past losses never justify future losses.

Victory was achieved years ago when al-Q was driven from their camps and their leadership structure destroyed.

The neocon philosophy does not accept victory. It keeps fighting until defeat is realized.

Anonymous DonReynolds March 16, 2012 10:29 AM  

When the Soviets invaded Afganistan in 1980, we started to provide the Islamic fundamentalists with modern weapons. When the USA invaded Afganistan, who took over the role of providing the "insurgents" with even more weapons? Chinese? I kinda doubt it was Russian, since they did not part as friends.

So once again, we have a war with the Chinese by proxy? How many does that make now?

Anonymous Gen. Kong March 16, 2012 12:24 PM  

foxmarks: The neocon philosophy does not accept victory. It keeps fighting until defeat is realized.

It's defeat for the US military and the US people. It's not a defeat for Neo-Trots or for the slave-power overlords they shill for. On the contrary, it's a tremendous "biz-niss" (looting) opportunity coupled with an excuse for their paid employees in the government to acquire totalitarian levels of state power - which can be ultimately employed for full-scale looting at gunpoint. Those deemed guilty of "hate" or "ter-r-r-r-r-r" or "sedition" or "violations" will be looted with impunity. Obamacare's decree that all religious institutions must provide abortion and contraception coverage for their employees is merely a first step.

Anonymous bw March 16, 2012 10:30 PM  

@Starbuck

Hello? That was simply the first of many examples, and a quite recent one. Apparently it has sufficed. I'm ready for your defense of the US Constitution as the supreme law of the land argument. By the way, when was the last time the US Congress declared war and the US Military been engaged according to the US Constitution?
When you have no clue of history - and apparently aren't very principled, it would be best to simply WONDER what someone could possibly mean by a statement, rather than simply calling it idiotic in some emotive ejaculation.
Oh yes, and when was the UN founded and inside of whose borders does it reside?? And who are those folks behind it again?
You're dismissed.

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