With President Trump’s Monday night speech, prospects for ending the Afghanistan war anytime soon have vanished. Whether that bodes well for U.S. national security is another matter.
What I am not hearing is allowing Afghanistan to determine its own future, as the United Nations and International Law recommend.
Embedded in the link below from the BBC (much lower in the article), is an eight minute video of life in Taliban dominated Helmand Province.
This video puts a face on books about Afghanistan.
Then there are the books on Afghanistan. Here are a few which give, together, as accurate a look at Afghanistan as many of us will ever get:
“Farewell Kabul” (superb, and right up to date, by a British foreign war correspondent)
“Wearing the Green Beret” (2011), about a young Canadian who joins the UK Royal Marines and his tour in Afghanistan’s Helmand Province (boots on the ground perspective - Helmand Province center stage !):
“Lone Survivor”, by Marcus Lutrell - a must read - for a view to Navy Seal indoctrination, for a look at Texas religion, for a first hand and almost unbelievable account of tribal Afghanistan and ‘Pashtunwali (wikipedia)’:
People are making their voices heard on healthcare----people need to make their voices heard on militarism----NOW IS THE TIME! Democrats need to know its not OK to be increasing the military budget!!!The corporate media need to start reporting what the military is doing. This is the longest war in US history???----People are voting against war-----Trump promised a major global pull back—where is it???
Trump’s supporters will likely applaud his move.
To be sure, some will, but not all of them. His precious alt-right supporters, including Steve Bannon, supported him for his many promises to end all foreign entanglements. After last night, Trump now establishes himself in their eyes as just another in a long line of Beltway war toadies. As for his refusal to provide any details, under the guise of not showing his cards, it’s more likely Trump being his usual clueless self. Regardless, the waste of human life and resources continues with no end in sight.
The policy of endless war is undeniably “a terrible mistake, a total disaster and a complete waste”
This has now become Trump’s legacy. We must make sure to use it as a brush to tar every Republican and Democrat who supports this insanity - a scarlet letter, a millstone, carved into an albatross to hang around each and every one of their necks.
Denounce - Discredit - Disown.
Trump does not know what to do. He is a sham commander in chief with none of the skill nor competency but with all of the power inherent in the office. This was a non specific speech because it wasn’t really a speech about the war. It was as might be expected from the week Trump has been having that have been filled with calls for either his impeachment or his resignation! With advisory councils melting away, Trump stands exposed by his own lack of competency.
Were you expecting a tighter military strategy or even a refocusing of attention and intent to bring an end to the ‘Forever War’ someday if not exactly soon? Yeah okay? See if our president can be pulled away from watching TV, tweeting rash or reckless embarrassments like a self absorbed teenager, playing golf as his contribution to the war effort, playing golf while on one of his all too frequent mini vacations or ‘breaks’ from playing the political image game and from playing golf rather than let the possibility of nuclear war or the heavy demands of the Oval Office throw off his well manicured golf game. Trump plays through … the Oval Office!
Trump is not engaged in real world terms with the demands of being the President and as this speech showed… with the responsibilities of being the commander in chief during war time.
“Raise the military budget!” Said Trump in public!
“Once the military budget is raised then I’m covered as Commander in Chief! Simple!” Mused Trump on the golf course as he watched the Secret Service climb into the golf carts.
Herr Twihitler, the pathological liar n Chief after totally denouncing Obama’s Afghan policy and insisting on an Afghan pull out basically adopts continuation of Obama’s plan. Reality check for clueless Dumb Donny, looks like he doesn’t know more than the generals, or anyone else.
’Yet in an ironic but illuminating way, his decision on Afghanistan tells us one thing: Trump has abandoned what once ostensibly formed the foundation of his presidency — a commitment to “America first.” ’ Andrew J. Bacevich.
In one sentence Mr. Bacevich skewers Trump in a way that SHOULD be fatal, but probably will not. And that is because his followers and sycophants are not listening and paying attention beyond the red hat slogan, nor have they ever been. Trump has crossed his own Rubicon on this one. He may well have found the quicksand embedded in “the swamp.”
Thanks for these excellent referrals. Now on my library list.
This is one more great article by Bacevich. I am totally convinced that he is smarter on this subject than Trumps and his entire “National Security” team.
Thank you! What a perfect analogy!
In the dumpster, with the rest of his lies!
Sadly, his most loyal supporters have probably never heard of Bacevich, much less read his work (or anything else important). Rush and Bannon tell them the truth, right, so why waste time reading?
I always immediately stop reading these articles when I see the term (used oh so often) “mistake” when discussing what we’ve done in the Mid East.
I agree with questioning why Afghanistan cannot determine its own future.
As long as war makes profits- well you know the rest.
Does that mean Bush, Cheney, Rove, Rummy, Yoo et al – and O’Bummer – are off the hook? DAMN!!
You could totally make stuff about what Trump said or did, and his core supporters would approve it. Then make up a completely opposite set of Trumpisms and they would approve that as well. For some people now Trump doesn’t have to connect to any reality. He is their reality. It comforts them.
I’m already tired of winning.
Third times certainly not the charm.