Skip to main content

karzai
President Obama and "President" Karzai, March 2010 (Wikimedia Commons)
For years, Afghan "President" Hamid Karzai has been toying with U.S. President Barack Obama, enjoying the security provided by the U.S. military while stealing his last election and making a mockery of Obama's endlessly repetitive and ineffectual efforts to cajole, admonish or otherwise motivate Karzai to reform his chronic corruption. Over the weekend, Karzai's ingratitude flared into the open. On Sunday, the New York Times lede said it all:
President Hamid Karzai of Afghanistan said publicly for the first time on Saturday that the United States and the NATO-led coalition have been actively negotiating with the Taliban, an assertion he made in a speech that he also used to fire a broadside against his coalition allies.

Karzai also openly accused the U.S. of negotiating with the Taliban while denying he is negotiating with the Taliban despite formerly all but having admitted to negotiating with the Taliban. The U.S. reaction to Karzai was swift:

American Ambassador Karl W. Eikenberry lashed out at Afghan President Hamid Karzai Sunday in a carefully calculated and candid response to the president’s increasingly inflammatory criticisms against coalition forces in Afghanistan.

“When Americans, who are serving in your country at great cost — in terms of life and treasure — hear themselves compared with occupiers, told that they are only here to advance their own interest, and likened to the brutal enemies of the Afghan people,” the ambassador said, “they are filled with confusion and grow weary of our effort here.”

But the Obama administration has made so many calculated and candid responses to Karzai over the years that it's hard to know what to take seriously. And Karzai probably feels the same. And that's part of the problem. But just to prove that the failed attempt at nation-building in Afghanistan is not limited to the failure to create a functioning government, the Times last week also had this happy news:

Concerned over the growing pattern of Afghan soldiers and police officers attacking their coalition counterparts, the American military is sending 80 counterintelligence agents to Afghanistan to help stem the threat of Taliban infiltration in the Afghan National Security Forces, military officials said Friday.

In other words, just as repeated efforts at warning the chronically corrupt Karzai about his chronic corruption have been so successful at reforming him, 80 new cointel agents are expected at least to ensure the loyalty to the West by Afghanistan's failed military. And just to prove that the failed attempt at nation-building in Afghanistan is not limited to the failure to create a functioning government and military, last week also saw this further happy news from The Guardian:

The Afghan government will struggle to pay its bills "within a month" after the International Monetary Fund rejected proposals for resolving the Kabul Bank scandal, western officials have warned.

Although the war-torn country's biggest bank nearly collapsed last September, the government of Hamid Karzai and the international community are still at loggerheads over plans to fund an $820m (£507m) bailout as well as how the disgraced former managers and shareholders who helped themselves to hundreds of millions of dollars should be prosecuted.

As long as the IMF declares the plans to be inadequate, many countries, including Britain, are legally barred from pumping money into a government that is almost completely reliant on foreign cash to pay civil servants' salaries.

Reuters already is reporting that the IMF has rejected Afghanistan's plan.

But as that New York Times article on Karzai continued:

“You remember a few years ago I was saying thank you to the foreigners for their help; every minute we were thanking them,” he said. “Now I have stopped saying that, except when Spanta forced me to say thank you,” referring to his national security adviser, Rangin Spanta, who was present.

“They’re here for their own purposes, for their own goals, and they’re using our soil for that,” Mr. Karzai said.

The U.S. should admit to it. The U.S. should admit that after the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, it had its own purposes in Afghanistan, and that having finally tracked down Osama bin Laden in Pakistan, those purposes have ended. The Obama administration should inform Karzai and everyone else that it is ending its military quagmire in Afghanistan and will now limit itself to appropriate humanitarian aid. As that Times article on the U.S. ambassador's response to Karzai continued:

His comments, made before students at Herat University, were a rare break from the normally tolerant stance Western diplomats have taken in the face of Mr. Karzai’s anti-coalition rhetoric. And though he never mentioned the Afghan president by name, his comments were a clear warning that Mr. Karzai’s statements threatening, among other things, to denounce foreign forces as occupiers served to damage U.S.-Afghan relations at a critical time, as the American president is weighing troop reductions and support for the war is fast eroding both in Congress and around the country.

But the Obama administration has given Karzai a seemingly endless string of warnings, and Karzai's latest outburst has been typical of the seemingly endless string of responses. It's time to stop playing these public relations games. It's time to end this debacle. It's time to end this war. And Sunday's New York Times also featured this:

As the Obama administration nears a crucial decision on how rapidly to withdraw combat forces from Afghanistan, high-ranking officials say that Al Qaeda’s original network in the region has been crippled, providing a rationale for an accelerated reduction of troops.

There have been hints of such a possibility, but there also have been hints of intentions to keep U.S. troops in Afghanistan indefinitely. But the U.S. cannot create a functioning government for Afghanistan. The U.S. cannot create a functioning military for Afghanistan. The U.S. cannot create a functioning economy for Afghanistan. Afghanistan's future is up to Afghanistan. The U.S. can and should provide humanitarian aid, but that's it. The U.S. has its own problems to deal with. Afghanistan should not continue to be one.

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

  •  doesn't look like Mr. Prez is going to announce (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mightymouse, Pluto

    a total pull out tomorrow, right?

    Or could this be a planted article to pave the way for a major announcement.

    Hopes to be Reporting LIVE from Durban @COP17 ...

    by boatsie on Tue Jun 21, 2011 at 07:57:23 PM PDT

  •  Karzi is the glorified Mayor of Kabul & not much (5+ / 0-)

    more than that.

    Plutocracy too long tolerated leaves democracy on the auction block, subject to the highest bidder ~ Bill Moyers

    by Lefty Coaster on Tue Jun 21, 2011 at 08:02:58 PM PDT

  •  We should pull out entirely NOW... (7+ / 0-)

    ...we can't do a damned bit of good there. Let Karzai fall flat on his face.

    Float like a manhole cover, sting like a sash weight! Clean Coal Is A Clinker!

    by JeffW on Tue Jun 21, 2011 at 08:03:45 PM PDT

  •  Great diary. (6+ / 0-)

    Yep, the timing is perfect to bring them all home.

  •  Hoping for a surprise in Obama's speech... (8+ / 0-)

    ...but expecting a very modest withdrawal in 2011.

    Don't tell me what you believe. Tell me what you do and I'll tell you what you believe.

    by Meteor Blades on Tue Jun 21, 2011 at 08:11:15 PM PDT

  •  Contradicts Gates (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Bluefin

    In an interview aired on PBS television Defense Secretary Robert GAtes gave an optimistic picture of our probable ultimate success in AFghanistan.  This diarist gives a completely different picture.  Great diary!  It should be required reading for the President and his foreign policy and military policy advisors.

    Why must we continue making the same mistakes as the previous (Bush) administration?

    •  I question the article's negativity regarding (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Lawrence

      the ANA soldiers as many accounts state that they are finally growing,  better caliber and trained with improved salaries.  That mission was very neglected throughout the Cheney-Bush reign.

      The continued Karzai brothers' corruption is such a sad roadblock for progress but the locals certainly deserved better over the years.

    •  We make the same "mistakes" (0+ / 0-)

      because it is profitable for someone.

      Government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth - Abraham Lincoln

      by Gustogirl on Wed Jun 22, 2011 at 09:47:27 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  over on CBN their experts point to 2 (6+ / 0-)

    reasons to remain: 1 is that we will lose what we have gained (no mention of what that is) and 2 to lose there is an existential threat to the future of the US.  Well they must be right; imagine if we had bugged out of VN in 1973 or refused to prop up the regime in 1975.  No way the US could have survived either of those actions

  •  Someone would have to define (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Bluefin, skyounkin

    "negotiations" for me. It could mean bribery, which I believe has been tried, could mean fact-finding as in "what would it take for you to join in the political process now that we have killed a bunch of you". Could be a lot of things.

    But one thing sticks in my mind and that is the simple fact that Afghanistan now produces 90% of the world's heroin or so I am told, some 970 tons. If so, that means that we are basically the security detail for the drug trade. And you don't ship out quantities like that on mules. Time to get out. Long past it.

    •  Don't forget we are providing the same deep (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      skyounkin, koNko

      discount rent-a-cop service for the Red Chinese mineral companies.

      ...that means that we are basically the security detail for the drug trade.

      One of the drawbacks of being a debtor nation.

      "Double, double, toile and trouble; Fire burne, and Cauldron bubble... By the pricking of my Thumbes, Something wicked this way comes": Republicans Willkommen auf das Vierte Reich! Sie Angelegenheit nicht mehr.

      by Bluefin on Tue Jun 21, 2011 at 11:01:02 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Except (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Bluefin

        Said mine is not expected to be in operation for years and certianly not in the time the US is expected to pull out.

        And who props up the Treasury so the US can pour money down this drain?

        "Oh man, the shit in Afghanistan piled up so quick you needed wings to stay above it". - H/T to Francis Coppola and John Milius.

        What about my Daughter's future?

        by koNko on Wed Jun 22, 2011 at 04:57:08 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Continuing a war (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Bluefin, Pluto, skyounkin

    that costs $120 billion a year in a country that has a GDP of only $15 billion is just epic fail.

    "Victory means exit strategy, and it's important for the president to explain to us what the exit strategy is." - George W Bush

    by jfern on Tue Jun 21, 2011 at 08:38:49 PM PDT

  •  Karzai is not a credible partner (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    auron renouille, LLPete, Lawrence

    but a Taliban ruled Afghanistan would again host terrorists. And terrorize women, artists, doctors.

    •  That's exactly where we want terrorists to be. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Bluefin, Buckeye54, tari

      In the middle of the most backward, godforsaken, remote,  14th century place on the planet.  Let them train on their pathetic monkey bars all they want and sit around and talk about who hates the US most.  The last place we want to do is drive all enemies of the great Empire into the urban areas, the big cities, where they have access to all sorts of modern communications, resources, etc.  Then they might really get dangerous.

      And we can't drag the Afghanistan people into the modern world.  They will have to come, if they want, on their own, in their own time and way.  Meanwhile, they will practice their medieval lifestyle and it's none of our business.  

      And when we leave, and leave we will, they will say good riddance and go about living their lives the way they want to.  Probably 15th century style.  

  •  I don't want to spend another dollar there. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Buckeye54

    Not for military or humanitarian aid.  I feel bad for the people living there, but we aren't strong enough to save them from themselves.  Nobody is.  We need to save ourselves right now.  It's the same with Iraq.

    Protect Medicare, Win Everywhere!

    by Anton Bursch on Tue Jun 21, 2011 at 08:42:27 PM PDT

  •  Karzai = not reliable (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Bluefin, Egalitare, skyounkin

    Karzai was a Dubya pick, so of course he's a lying, duplicitous, corrupt prick.

    The U.S. forces should paint a bullseye on him and drop him in the middle of Taliban country. Maybe they'll find a use for the lying jackass.

    No more Americans need to die to save a country that doesn't care enough to pull itself into the 15th century.

    Bring the troops home now.

  •  What? Surge didn't do it for you? (0+ / 0-)

    I want my daily drone diary.  Setrak? Crickets?

    NO CE/CW. NO UNION BUSTING

    by Aeolos on Tue Jun 21, 2011 at 09:52:31 PM PDT

  •  Karzai has been an ungrateful SOB for a long time. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mjd in florida, Lawrence, r2did2

    I'd like to point out a telling incident that happened years ago with him.

    On 5 September 2002, An assassination attempt was made on Hamid Karzai in Kandahar City. Posing as a bodyguard, a gunman wearing the uniform of the new Afghan National Army opened fire, wounding Gul Agha Sherzai (former governor of Kandahar) and an American Special Operations officer. The gunman, one of the President's (actual) bodyguards, and a bystander who knocked down the gunman were killed, by the attacker (that's not what I saw in the video, the bystander was hit by gunfire from within the vehicle), when Karzai's American bodyguards returned fire. Recently, some pictures of the US Navy's DEVGRU responding to the attempt have surfaced. Allegedly one of their members was wounded.[1]

    Never heard of him thanking anyone for saving his sorry hide after this, and he was in the news quite a bit then.
    I remember seeing the video of it and watching as an heroic Afghan young man (or boy) standing alongside the vehicle grabbed for the assassin and got wasted by a US bodyguard (inside the vehicle with Karzai), who just sprayed everyone standing out there.

    Did Karzai ever recognize that heroic young guy, or reward his surviving family members? I doubt it.
    He and his kleptocratic kinfolk and minions are too busy stuffing their offshore bank accounts.

    Kharma for Karzai would have him end up as one of his predecessors did, Mohammad Najibullah (well, maybe not quite that bad).

    I actually admired this turkey early on, thought he looked like an honest, smart leader who meant well for his people.

    Guess this is what happens when Dickus Cheney handpicks somebody.
    .

    "Double, double, toile and trouble; Fire burne, and Cauldron bubble... By the pricking of my Thumbes, Something wicked this way comes": Republicans Willkommen auf das Vierte Reich! Sie Angelegenheit nicht mehr.

    by Bluefin on Tue Jun 21, 2011 at 10:53:01 PM PDT

    •  It is really (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mjd in florida, Bluefin

      very tough to defend Kharzai if all these reports are true.
      It makes me want to wash my hands of the whole country...but I am not the President.  He simply cannot just wash our hands of it. It sucks,but he cannot completely overrule his military commanders.
      I hate this war.

      •  Yes, he can overrule his commanders... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Bluefin

        in fact, our whole military system is based on civilian control over our military.

        President Obama sets the policy, it's the military's job to provide the wherewithal to get it done. If the military commanders do not approve the policy or object to it, they are free to resign in protest.

        That said—I hate this war and everything it stands for. My personal belief is that America's best interests would be served by withdrawing our forces and equipment as quickly as humanly possible.

        We can not prop up a government as corrupt as Karzai's and expect good results.

    •  Another Bush/Cheney legacy that we have to deal (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Bluefin

      with.

      Karzai is a fool, and I'll be happy to see him come to the end of his second term and leave the stage permanently in 2014, when the two-term limit rule for the Afghan Presidency kicks in.

      "A candle loses nothing by lighting another candle" - Mohammed Nabbous, R.I.P.

      by Lawrence on Wed Jun 22, 2011 at 05:38:54 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Afghanistan is NOT a country (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    skyounkin, carver, r2did2

    Afghanistan is lines on a map, drawn by the British, in a way that ignores the history of the region.  Afghanistan is actually a collection of tribal areas dominated by the Pashtun, but only because the Pashtun make up 40% of the population.  Technically, parts of Pakistan are Pashtun tribal areas (N. Waziristan/the "autonomous tribal areas") and the lines separating Afghanistan and Pakistan are meaningless there, too.  Within the "country" the various areas are dominated, to differing degrees, by the 7 major tribes, with the Pashtun being minorities in many areas.  The Pashtun are even divided into 2 tribes, the "city" Pashtun and the "country" Pashtun.  The country Pashtun resent their city cousins because the city cousins are wealthier, better educated and have a higher standard of living and because they were lucky enough to be the civil servants for the British when "Afghanistan" gained autonomy.  The Taliban are primarily country Pashtun, but when push comes to shove, blood is thicker than water and the Pashtun will stick together.  The Tajiks, who dominated the "Northern Alliance" against the Taliban have historically had an understanding with the city Pashtun because both tend to be the merchant class and money talks.  The remaining tribes form and break alliances with Pashtun, the Tajiks and each other, except everyone seems to hate the Hazara because they are Shia, not Sunni.  Trying to form a stable and democratic government under those conditions is like urinating in the wind.  And, because loyalty is to family first, the village and its elders second and the tribe third some very interesting interactions occur, including blood feuds between families, villages and tribes that last for generations.  I have many friends that have done tours there, and the stories about those feuds would be funny except that people get killed because of them.  "Form a lasting and democratic government" my rear end.

  •  The fix is easy peasy.... (0+ / 0-)

    Remove his US protectors for a week and let the Taliban do what they will with him.

    Why do Democrats still persecute gays? Is a vote for Democrats a wasted vote? I voted for change. Where is my vote?

    by SGWM on Wed Jun 22, 2011 at 12:15:37 AM PDT

  •  Mr Lewis, has Zero responsibility and total (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mjd in florida, Lawrence

    omniscient . He knows what is to be done but has the lecture of having no responsibility for the consequence. Indeed if Obama has followed his advice, and things went wrong his defence would be .."I am a blogger,...why would you even listen to me"...I remember Meteorblade  drumming for the Libya action, have you seen him defending the president action against the likes of Kucinich, once Obama did his bidden ...M-blade is nowhere to be seen with regards to the legality and the prudence of the Libya action. Progressives wanted Obama to save Benghazi but not by military means, they wanted to "glitter-bomb" Qaddafi.

    same here, Lewis ´knows next to nothing about what is actually taking place in Afghanistan, that does not however stops him from giving his opinion, it shouldn't either.

    What are the choices?

    what is the long term goal?

    what happens if the US withdraws?

    if the Taliban move back in and take power, would "true-progressives" cray out for Obama betraying the Afghan women?

    Would Mr Lewis be out there defending the president for doing what he demands?

    again Zero responsibility total omniscience...

  •  Wow , I'm shocked (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    nicethugbert, skyounkin, carver

    An executive from a War Profiteering Corporation that is doing his best to make sure a war goes on endlessly ? I am shocked.
    A man who is friends with Dick Cheney and he is an asshole - you sir, must be mistaken.

    Lest none of us here forget the original complaints about Karzi when he was given the job then 'elected' . The simple argument his brother is a Drug Lord seems to be enough of an argument to invade and oust a leader , or is that only if they speak Spanish and have bad acne ?

    The entire premise is ridiculous. Had corporations not taken over every facet of the world, this man would have never risen above low level manager at a Wal Mart, a popcorn fart if you will . In typical corporate cronyism fashion , he made the right friends and is now a leader.
    Afghanistan from invasion to now is what is wrong with the WORLD  , if the media sells it we buy it. And with parent companies standing to lose millions of dollars a day in misery profits I have a feeling the call to stay will grow louder.

    you can't remain neutral on a moving train

    by rmfcjr on Wed Jun 22, 2011 at 02:55:40 AM PDT

  •  Afghan govt will fall the moment we leave, (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    LI Mike, skyounkin

    doesn't matter if it's next month or ten years from now. It's South Vietnam all over again. They 're an unpopular govt that controls only Kabul. Our presence enriches a corrupt few with billions of our tax dollars. And I for one am sick of our brave soldiers giving their lives to keep THIS bottom of the barrel humanity in power.

  •  If Afghanistan insists in falling apart then...... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    skyounkin

    help it do so.  Make deals with it's neighbors to pick up the pieces.

  •  Interesting to note that the diarist writes alot (0+ / 0-)

    about Karzai, yet fails to mention that he is a Bush legacy and, even more importantly, fails to mention that a two-term limit applies to Karzai and that his second term ends in 2014, which is the planned date for full NATO transition.

    I also find it interesting that the diarist links to a piece that is over a year old to try and make it look like the effort to build Afghamistan's security forces is failed.  Furthermore, the linked piece does not even say what the diarist portrays it as saying.

    The fact is that the buildup of the ANSF is the most successful part of what is going on in Afghanistan and by all at least somewhat informed reports the ANSF have improved in leaps and bounds while growing considerably in size.

    In essence, this diary is heavy on spin and is manipulative, while underreporting and leaving out many facts from the ground in Afghanistan.

    The diarist's suggestion that the U.S. pull out immediately from Afghanistan and only provide humanitarian aid has got to be one of the most hare-brained suggestions ever on the FP here at DKos, as that would lead to an immediate collapse of the Afghan state and we would be back at square one... or worse.

    I could understand a proposal for an accelerated drawdown, but what this diarist is suggesting is neither realistic nor smart and I am damn glad that the diarist is not the one making policy decisions.

     

    "A candle loses nothing by lighting another candle" - Mohammed Nabbous, R.I.P.

    by Lawrence on Wed Jun 22, 2011 at 05:06:20 AM PDT

    •  afghan "state" (0+ / 0-)

      you're funny.

      The cold passion for truth hunts in no pack. -Robinson Jeffers

      by Laurence Lewis on Wed Jun 22, 2011 at 08:32:45 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  At least I'm not manipulative. (0+ / 0-)

        BTW, I remember you stating in a previous diary that  the ISAF effort in Marjah had failed, yet you never followed-up.  Is that because it turned out that your atatement was not true?

        Posted on Thu, Feb. 17, 2011
        Big gains reported in Afghan town that Taliban once owned
        Saeed Shah | McClatchy Newspapers

        last updated: March 02, 2011 01:13:49 PM

        MARJAH, Afghanistan — Schools that the Taliban closed have reopened in this southern Afghan town, and some girls are even back in the classrooms. The wheat and cotton crops are flourishing, and poppy cultivation is way down.

        A year after a major American-led operation to oust the Islamist insurgents from their onetime stronghold, security has improved dramatically, according to Afghan officials and U.S. troops, and townspeople say they no longer live in terror.

        With some 2,000 Marines stationed in and around Marjah, the militants have been pushed to the fringe of the area, and the hustle and bustle of everyday life has returned, helped by a huge injection of aid and development projects by the Marines.

        Marjah residents no longer fear meeting Americans, and they now routinely pass on intelligence about Taliban movements.

        "Security is good now. Life is better," said Gul Ahmed, a 34-year-old wheat farmer in northeast Marjah, close to a U.S. Marine patrol base. "Bad people like the Taliban cannot come here now."

        "The Taliban took money from us," he said. "They took food from us. They forced us to go with them to other provinces to fight."

        If the relatively peaceful conditions hold, Marjah, in Helmand province, could become a symbol of counterinsurgency at work in Afghanistan. It also would bear out the claim by U.S.-led international forces that a "surge" of 30,000 additional American troops last year has stemmed the insurgency in its southern heartland, Helmand and the neighboring province of Kandahar.

        http://www.mcclatchydc.com/...

        What does your predicitve fail in regards to Marjah say about your general analysis of Afghanistan?  It sure doesn't lend weight to your prediction about ISAF not being able to help create a credible Afghan National Security Force, that much is sure.

        You know, Laurence, sometimes it's good to admit when you were wrong.  When one refuses to acknowledge errors, then one can't continue to learn and progress as a person and intellect, after all.

        "A candle loses nothing by lighting another candle" - Mohammed Nabbous, R.I.P.

        by Lawrence on Wed Jun 22, 2011 at 10:29:03 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  yes (0+ / 0-)

          by focusing so heavily on marjah, they finally chased the taliban away. mostly to the north, where they're making inroads. the north where the taliban and the pashtun have never made inroads.

          the government is a failure, the military is a failure, the economy is a failure. your support of a failed war is a failure.

          The cold passion for truth hunts in no pack. -Robinson Jeffers

          by Laurence Lewis on Wed Jun 22, 2011 at 11:22:03 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Factually incorrect, once again. (0+ / 0-)

            I think you just don't understand how insurgency in Afghanistan works.

            The Taliban/IMU/insurgents have been returning to their limited pockets in the north since 2005/2006.

            And they're being pushed back out of there as well since last year.

            But hey, don't let the reality of what is actually going on there keep you from pushing that simplistic narrative.

            "A candle loses nothing by lighting another candle" - Mohammed Nabbous, R.I.P.

            by Lawrence on Wed Jun 22, 2011 at 11:48:02 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

  •  Write/call your congresscritter NOW (0+ / 0-)

    Urge them to vote for Rep. Barbara Lee's amendment that would limit funding for Afghanistan to money to get the troops home safely.

    For more information and an easy way to email, go to the Friends Committee for National Legislation website (the Quaker lobby in Washington, good folks).

  •  This is exactly what's being said (0+ / 0-)
    The U.S. should admit to it. The U.S. should admit that after the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, it had its own purposes in Afghanistan, and that having finally tracked down Osama bin Laden in Pakistan, those purposes have ended. The Obama administration should inform Karzai and everyone else that it is ending its military quagmire in Afghanistan and will now limit itself to appropriate humanitarian aid

    I believe that is exactly the message BHO is gonna be presenting tonight in his prime time speech on Afghanistan.  Word has it he's announcing a pull out .... an accelerated pull out starting immediately and ending by 2014.  I mean, look...unless we do like we did getting our butts out of Vietnam and just get the hell out of Dodge without packing up leaving weapons, equipment and a huge amount of infrastructure there...we've got to plan this withdrawal out, even as quickly as we want to do it.  

    The repubs will have all kinds of ways to reject what the president is announcing and planning...but, I believe it will be seen as just a bunch of whining and crying because it's actually a good plan and republicans aren't for ANYTHING that will be good for America (including our troops) if democrats are behind it.

    -- **Nothing sucks more than that moment during an argument when you realize you're wrong.**

    by r2did2 on Wed Jun 22, 2011 at 06:38:55 AM PDT

  •  Enough with the Humanitarian Aid Crap! (0+ / 0-)

    all we need to do is pull out as quickly as possible and let the Afgan people know that anytime we even think that something is going on there that may be antithetical to our interest, we will treat their pathetic excuse for a country the same way we treated Germany and Japan during WWII - if you're there, you're the enemy and we will rain holy hell down on you till you beg us to stop.

    and BTW, letting the taliban back into power is antithetical to our interest...

    Afghanistan isn't the graveyard of empires. it's the graveyard of fools who thought they could civilize the afghan people.

    I am not now, nor have I ever been, a member of the Republican Party

    by OnlyWords on Wed Jun 22, 2011 at 08:31:43 AM PDT

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site