Cynical Synapse

Tue, 22 Sep 2009

What to Do About Afghanistan

Filed under: Congress, Global War on Terror, Military, Politics, Take action, Terrorism — cynicalsynapse @ 11:45 pm

Let’s not forget the Global War on Terror started in Afghanistan after Al-Queda attacked America. It was then I knew my vote for George W. Bush, instead of Al Gore, had been the right decision at the time.

In Afghanistan, the Taliban provided a haven for Osama Bin Ladin and the Al-Queda terrorist network to train and operate from. Ousting that regime was a no-brainer.

Unfortunately, President Bush started, and became fixated on, the war in Iraq. This distracted us from the fight against the Taliban in Afghanistan. Just as we’ve been behind the power curve in Iraq, we are about a year behind in Afghanistan. The US still has a Soldier missing there.

Donald Rumsfeld and Paul Wolfowitz refused to listen to Gen. Shinseki about troop strengths needed to keep the initiative in Iraq. As a result, we lost control when looting started after the fall of Hussein’s government. It’s taken 6 years to fix that and we’re not done yet. I hope Secretary Gates and President Obama don’t minimize Gen. McChrystle’s assessment on Afghanistan.

If our political leadership declines to accept the military professionals’ opinion on the Global War on Terror, and fails to resource it adequately, the US is doomed to repeat the fiasco of Vietnam. Here’s the key difference, however. In Vietnam, the north was trying to unite the country and we had taken on a failed cause from the French. The Taliban, Al-Queda, and other Islamist extremists, seek nothing less than the annihilation of western civilization and, particularly, the American way of life.

We must, therefore, see it through in Afghanistan, no matter what it takes. Make sure your senators and representative know your views on the struggle for America’s future taking place in Afghanistan right now.

Failure to persevere in Afghanistan is no worse than turning our backs on those who lost their lives on September 11, 2001. We must, therefore, commit the resources necessary to achieve success in Afghanistan. Anything less dishonors our 9/11 fallen.



  1. CS, I suppose this post reflects why we have a lot in common. I, too, was more pleased that Bush was President at the time of 911, and also agree that had he not, as you say, become fixated on Iraq, the situation in Afghanistan would not be as bad as it is now. The Taliban and Al-Qaeda were/are our real enemy. But the question is what we do now.

    I won’t presume to have all the answers like so many do because I don’t. But I remember all to well the Vietnam War and what I thought then. We either have to get the hell out now or fight the war properly. Nuclear weapons aside, we can not fight a limited war nor can we allow our politicians to fight the war for us. It’s time to commit or leave. I vote on committing.

    Comment by The Old Man — Thu, 24 Sep 2009 @ 1:06 pm

    • I agree, we need to commit.

      I think we have to help Afghans be self-sufficient. That needs to include recognizing and work with their tribal cultures. Success or failure will take place on a local level, village by village, more so than at the national level.

      Comment by cynicalsynapse — Fri, 25 Sep 2009 @ 1:03 pm

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