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.

Dorian de Wind, Military Affairs Columnist
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The_Ohioan
Guest
The_Ohioan
4 years 8 months ago

Even more, Dorian, we should not be enablers of the barbarians. Can it be that simple?

JOERG WOLF
Member
4 years 8 months ago

So you are saying we should leave Afghanistan, because we have failed to bring democracy and human rights over there and won’t be able to improve things, right?

Thus we should pull out, even though we all know that babaric acts like the one you mentioned will only increase if we pull out. That’s what you are saying, right?

The police arrested the in-laws. They won’t (be able to) do that once we leave.

Allen
Guest
Allen
4 years 8 months ago
We should leave Afghanistan as soon as possible. If any of the other participating countries want to stay, they are free to do so. Maybe Russia or China will re-invade and bring civilization to their own region. We knew this was a dead end when we went down this road a decade ago. Though the human toll is far less than in the wars of yore, it’s costing us way to much in treasure. Even to the point of our own demise, if we are not very careful. Other real and ominous threats are immerging. We must move on for… Read more »
ProfElwood
Guest
4 years 8 months ago
I’ve never visited the country, so all I can comment on is what I’ve read. Hopefully, someone can point me to a better resource for accurate information. It seems that Afghanistan is a country only for our convenience, but the people themselves see their tribal leaders as their real government. If that’s true, then any attempts to fix the country are probably doomed, because we’re working at a level they don’t accept. If you want to stop terrorists from attacking the US, stop attacking them. It’s funny how that works. Also, I’ve never believed in humanitarian wars. It always sounds… Read more »
Allen
Guest
Allen
4 years 8 months ago

Prof-

The Balkans seems to be an exception to your belief prof. I see your point though.

Maybe some day technology will allow protection of the innocent on par with policing a Saturday night juke-joint in south Louisiana. Until then, I fear we must accept the things we cannot change.

zephyr
Guest
zephyr
4 years 8 months ago

Hard to know what shape the world would be in if we weren’t always trying to play world policeman. Who knows, maybe all our intrusions make no difference in the long run, or even make matters worse. Meanwhile, we have serious, serious problems in our own backyard that aren’t being resolved. Eisenhower was right.

ProfElwood
Guest
4 years 8 months ago

Zephyr:”Eisenhower was right.”

True, in warning us about the military-industrial complex, but kind of ironic, since he started the meddling in the mid-east that led up to our current conflicts.

ShannonLeee
Guest
ShannonLeee
4 years 8 months ago

JW… they only arrested the female members of the family. Soooooo much for justice. Barbaric acts won’t increase after we leave. We just won’t hear about them anymore.

JeffP
Guest
JeffP
4 years 8 months ago
Dorian, I read somewhere (I think it may have been a reference to Pinker’s new book) that one of the reasons that War-in-general has been overall (worldwide)more scrutinized has been its tendency to not really change anything anymore. He discussed the issues with borders, actual land swaps or significant economic resource capture because of war, which generally haven’t happened for some time now. I guess it could certainly be said of our two recent wars that the retrospective concept of “spreading democracy” or somehow turning those nations into capitalist nations, or even (as some of my right-wing friends would insist)… Read more »
ShannonLeee
Guest
ShannonLeee
4 years 8 months ago

“What is probably a little more dangerous right now are Iran’s threats for unspecified military actions if our aircraft carrier(s) return to the Persian Gulf as they have every right to and as Obama and our Navy intend to exercise.”

Glad you mentioned that! I have been waiting for a post on this subject. The drums of war are beating and Iran will have to back down or there will be war.

I’d post something myself, but I don’t think our editors have the spare time to correct my terrible writing 😉

ShannonLeee
Guest
ShannonLeee
4 years 8 months ago

Oh no…you mean actually gathering my thoughts and putting fingers to keyboard!?!!?!? (pen to paper is so 20th century)

ProfElwood
Guest
4 years 8 months ago

Iran is not that close to having a nuclear weapon, and sanctions probably won’t work against the government. The people will probably suffer, as usual.

Sorry, but this just screams “false flag”.

JOERG WOLF
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Dorian,

I don’t want to put words in your mouth.

Perhaps you could clarfy your policy position.

This “made me pause and, yes, reconsider several times recently.” is vague and let me to the interpretation I used in my first comment.

How do you want us to interprete your rhetorical question “Is this what we are spilling our blood for and wasting our treasure for “over there”?”

JOERG WOLF
Member
4 years 8 months ago

Thanks, I now I get it. TMVs military affairs columnist does not have a policy position, but just “second thoughts.”

You are “reconsidering” like millions of people, but have not made up your mind.

That’s very newsworthy. Thanks for sharing.

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