As readers who have followed my writings — some call them rants — for the past few years know, while I have always opposed and condemned our invasion and occupation of Iraq, I have supported our efforts in Afghanistan to catch and punish the perpetrators of 9/11 and, in some measure, to rid Afghanistan of the Taliban.
However, so many of the reports coming out of that country about the government’s corruption, the incompetence of its military and the continuing barbarism by some of its people have made me pause and, yes, reconsider several times recently.
Take the barbaric — there’s that word again — acts perpetrated against a poor, defenseless 15-year-old girl by her own flesh-and-blood because she refused to go into prostitution.
There have been so many other instances — too many — of similar atrocities and human rights violations, that one sometimes must wonder: Is this what we are spilling our blood for and wasting our treasure for “over there”?
Some will say, we are still there because of 9/11. I thought we had killed its mastermind and have decimated al-Qaeda.
Some will say, we are fighting over there for our national security. Show me how.
Some will say we are fighting there to bring some democracy and human rights over there. Are we?
Yes, we do sometimes see similar barbaric acts in our own country. However, such exceptions, such aberrations in our culture should not be a straw man to shoot at in this tragedy.