Just yesterday, I wrote about how the opinions and suggestions —expert and non-expert— about what to do in Afghanistan are all over the map, ranging pretty much from “How to Win in Afghanistan” to “How to Lose in Afghanistan,” and making one of our nation’s most critical and perilous endeavors look like a do-it-yourself project.
This morning’s New York Times has a similar compendium of ideas on how to achieve victory in Afghanistan, this time reading like one of those “Happiness in 12 Easy Steps” advertisements.
Don’t get me wrong, these “steps” are written by experts in their fields such as David Kilcullen, a former adviser to Gen. David Petraeus, Anthony Cordesman, a senior fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, Merrill McPeak, the chief of staff of the Air Force from 1990 to 1994, and Nader Nadery, a commissioner on the Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission.
Individually, each step makes good sense. I don’t know whether,when applied together, they would make a perfect recipe for Afghanistan. Some steps may be even incompatible with each other. For example, “Reform or Go Home,” and “Don’t Believe That We Can Afford to Lose.”
Anyway, it is a very interesting read.
The author is a retired U.S. Air Force officer and a writer.