Friday, November 27, 2009

In the Land of Custer

Normally I don't talk about US policy except through the lens of tech but the perceptive article from the NY Times titled Taliban Open Northern Front in Afghanistan compells me to say something about futility, George Armstrong Custer and why Afghanistan is a loss leader along the lines of 'Nam.

For starters, the Taliban don't have to win, just persevere. The US will not be in Afghanistan forever so just showing up is enough. Afghanistan is a huge country, inhospitable to occupiers as seen throughout history via defeats placed on Alexander the Great, the British and the Russians. Now it's our turn and Obama and the military just don't get it. To top it off, we are contemplating negotiating with the Taliban while trying to root out e-Qaeda, the terrorist organization which may or not be even a force in this war torn nation and who may be supporting the Taliban, the erstwhile enemy/collaborator? that we may or may not be fighting against in Afghanistan as both organizations consist of fanatical Sunni Muslim operatives. Note: We haven't even discussed the corrupt US backed Karzi government which is distrusted by a large segment of Afghans, a situation eerily reminiscent of the distrusted South Vietnam government backed by the US during the Vietnam war. Note II: We won't discuss the economic impact either as the defense budget already is almost 700 billion this year and counting while the US shuffles toward bankruptcy and Wall Street takes in 13 trillion of tax payer money. Same as it ever was - Talking Heads.

Alice in Wonderland
has nothing on this hall of mirrors which includes the ongoing undeclared war with Pakistan designed to 1. minimize the influence of the Taliban in that nation while negotiating with the same entity in Afghanistan and 2, destroy e-Qaeda base camps located in the hinterlands of West Pakistan through the use of remote control Predator Drone attacks that often kill innocent civilians in the process. Makes sense doesn't it?

Bill Moyers' seminal piece Johnson's Escalation of Vietnam: A Timeline, says it all but maybe Obama doesn't see or realize the fact that "Those who fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it." - Sir Winston Churchill

After reading the Washington Post piece titled Newly deployed Marines to target Taliban bastion, it appears Obama has little problem with Churchill's comment.
Post a Comment