The bottom line is clear: Our vital interests in Afghanistan are limited and military victory is not the key to achieving them. On the contrary, waging a lengthy counterinsurgency war in Afghanistan may well do more to aid Taliban recruiting than to dismantle the group, help spread conflict further into Pakistan, unify radical groups that might otherwise be quarreling amongst themselves, threaten the long-term health of the U.S. economy, and prevent the U.S. government from turning its full attention to other pressing problems. -- Afghanistan Study Group

Friday, September 11, 2015

Update for Thursday, Sept. 11, 2015

By now I expect that most people have nearly forgotten that the U.S. first invaded Afghanistan in response to the events of this date in 2001; and that the Cheney administration then used the same events as the foundation for a campaign of lies leading to the illegal war of aggression against Iraq. So, of course, Americans spend the day wallowing in their own victimization but nobody has anything to say about the millions who have died or been driven from their homes as a result of U.S. actions -- people who had nothing to do with it.

The refugee crisis in Europe right now is trivial compared to what is happening in Lebanon, Jordan, Kurdistan, and the suburbs of Baghdad, where millions of displaced people live in desperate circumstances even as the UN is running out of funds to feed them. But we don't hear a word about that because those countries aren't in Europe. They aren't complaining, however, and they are doing their best to take care of people who have no other refuge, even though they are relatively poor countries and have many other problems of their own. I have had a few words to say about this here.

This is not a day for Americans to pity themselves, wallow in fear or swell with militant bluster. Remember how the events 14 years ago were used to strip us of liberties -- which we have not regained -- militarize our local police, create a network of dungeons and torture chambers all over the world, destroy an entire country, and squander trillions of dollars even as we pretend we can't afford to educate our children or keep our bridges from falling down. There's a lot we need to remember on this day, but it's not what people are talking about.


Anonymous said...

Well said

anatta said...

on your soapbox again I see..and much I agree with, but I think you are missing the fact if 9-11 hadn't happened much of our reactions wouldn't have either.
Don't forget the first World Trade center bombing, the USS Colle etc.

And please don't give back bin Laden type reasoning that Al-Qaeda is somehow a legitimate response to western imperialism in Muslim lands.
Thanks as always for the reportage, and the editorials

Cervantes said...

Sure, my whole point is that Americans overreacted and mis-reacted to the events of 9/11.

Anonymous said...

and wat about the conspiracy thorists and the 9/11 truth .com people who say the twin tower free fall destruction was a conspiracy planned to wage war in the islamic lands to grab their resources and to destroy them--- all this has happened before our eyes only this has not gone all to plan .! while the west and america are embroiled in this criminal war china has grown unmolested and unhindered into a giant world power that will go on to eclipse the west in everything.

Dancewater said...

I agree. We wallow in victim-hood and fear. Pee-your-pants-because-you-are-an-American!