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

Tuesday, April 9, 2019

Update for Tuesday, April 9, 2019

I suspended posting here because the U.S. presence in Iraq and Afghanistan continues, with no real end or purpose in sight; and because Americans have largely forgotten about both of those countries. I felt that I was just yelling at the clouds, and my time was better spent on other projects.

The occasion of four more U.S. combat deaths in Afghanistan, while obviously a small event compared to the suffering of Afghanistan's people, brings me back to make a formal administrative statement. I don't know if anyone is reading, but I would like to set up a regular schedule to post here to follow longer-term developments, such as they are.

With the elimination of IS-held territory in Iraq and Syria, the situation in Iraq has settled into what seems a stagnant situation of corrupt and incompetent government, low-level guerrilla war by Islamist extremists, and little progress toward reconstruction or refugee resettlement. We have been given no rationale for the continued U.S. military presence there.

In Afghanistan, what looked like stalemate now looks like gradual erosion of territorial control by the Kabul government, and deteriorating security in spite of the massive ongoing investment in the government by the U.S. and allies. The U.S. is essentially trying to negotiate terms of surrender in order to withdraw its remaining forces (reminiscent of Vietnam), but that may yet turn out to be politically unpalatable in Washington.

Under the circumstances it seems to me that weekly posting might make sense here. My mission will be to provide an informational resource for people who are interested in the two countries, from the perspective of a U.S. citizen who has always dissented from both interventions. I principally care about the people of the two countries, but I also care about the welfare of the U.S. troops and civilians who serve there, who do not make policy choices. If anybody is interested, I will be here again, mostly on Saturdays.


Al said...

I can understand why you feel like you are "yelling at the clouds". I just seems like no one gives a shit about what the US war machine has been doing around the world for more than 70 years and it seems like it's never going to stop. I use to be angry, now I'm just sad because the US is the most evil and dangerous country on the planet. This is what we have become. This is the American Dream come back to bite us and turn into a living nightmare for millions of people.

Scott said...

I share all of your news stories on FaceBook. People are reading and appreciating your coverage. Keep it up.

Anonymous said...

The US is more committed to defeating ISIS in Syria. Sigh.......


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