It’s Time To Bring Our Troops Home

Operation Enduring Freedom

JuiceVox Media:

There’s no sugar-coating Obama’s drawdown: the Taliban has won

President Obama has announced a new timeline for the US military withdrawal from Afghanistan. The big news is that the US, which currently has 33,500 troops in the country, will leave 9,800 through the first months of 2015, but those troops won’t be around long. By the end of 2016 the only American military presence left will be a contingent guarding the US embassy in Kabul.

So what does this mean for the war in Afghanistan? The good news is that the Obama administration is sticking to its pledge of leaving Afghanistan, which it’s been carrying out by gradually withdrawing troops since 2012. The Americans’ war is ending.

The bad news is that the administration is tacitly confirming what everybody already knew: the war against the Taliban is not one that the US believes it can win, so we’re going to stop trying. That war, Afghanistan’s war, is going to continue.

This is not necessarily welcome news for Afghans. One of the main issues in this year’s Afghan presidential election was whether or not the country should sign the Bilateral Security Agreement, which allows the US to keep troops in the country. Hamid Karzai opposed the BSA; the two candidates who came out on top in the election both vocally supported it. Many Afghans I’ve met, whatever their politics, are outspoken about wanting the Americans to stay, not because they are blind to the invasion force’s mistakes or missteps but because they see it as the security bulwark against something much worse: the Taliban.

There’s more at the link if you are interested.

Some people who haven’t been paying attention for the past six years might think I am going to criticize this move because Obama is the one ordering it. Well, surprise! This is one of those rare occasions that I agree with Obama’s decision, but not necessarily his motivations.

It’s time to bring our troops home. Actually, it’s way past time. The war in Afghanistan has basically been a lost cause since Bush and Cheney decided to shift our focus over to Iraq.

Don’t get me wrong – the Taliban are evil scumbags. The whole fucking country is a shithole. But that’s the point – there is nothing in that whole godforsaken place that is worth one American life. It’s filled with people who hate us and despise our whole way of life. It’s primary cash crop is heroin.

Fuck ’em all.

It’s not our job to change those people. Most of them don’t want to change anyway, at least not bad enough to fight for it themselves. We gave them a chance to change but they prefer to do things their way. Namaste.

There is a reason that Afghanistan is called “Where empires go to die.” It has been conquered many times, but nobody has managed to hang on to it. They wore us down, just like they wore down the USSR, the British, and every army dating back to Alexander the Great. Sooner or later everybody says, “Fuck this place, let’s go home.”

Now it’s our turn.

Bring them home.

“When you’re wounded and left on Afghanistan’s plains,
And the women come out to cut up what remains,
Jest roll to your rifle and blow out your brains
An’ go to your Gawd like a soldier.”

From “The Young British Soldier” by Rudyard Kipling

About Myiq2xu - BA, JD, FJB

I was born and raised in a different country - America. I don't know what this place is.
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102 Responses to It’s Time To Bring Our Troops Home

  1. The Klown says:

    (Due in October)

  2. awwwww-congratulations!!! BTW–I noticed that my last comment was “awaiting moderation” Did I do something wrong:(

  3. driguana says:

    Interesting perspective and one that many of us agree with. Actually we should get out of any place we still have any military interests and just let whoever lives there have at it. Unfortunately, given the state of current affairs, things would fall apart rapidly as perhaps they should. It even seems as though on our country is on some kind of verge. I can’t imagine that severe racial strife is not too far away. So, I’m patiently waiting for Michael Rennie to land his sleek space ship on some little league ball field somewhere and unleash Gort on all of the evil doers! Klaatu Barata Nikto!

  4. DeniseVB says:

    I’ve been reading snippets that Obama wants to send troops to train and arm the “good” Syrian rebels against Assad ? Haven’t we learned our lesson from those other ME countries we “helped”?

  5. DeniseVB says:

    Michelle goes after Republicans for trying to clean up her lunch program mess ….

    Meanwhile over at Sidwell Friends, her daughters eat like little Princesses ๐Ÿ˜‰

    • elliesmom says:

      Just as an observation – I had the opportunity to eat in a school cafeteria every day as an adult. Some of the food was OK, some was pretty awful, and none of it was what I would call good eating. The most popular feature for the kids was always the salad bar, but after a couple of hundred kids who didn’t have time to wash their hands before lunch had at it, it sort of lost its appeal for me. But the quality of the food aside, the kids had 20-25 minutes to each lunch. If you were at the end of the lunch line, realistically you had 10 minutes to eat. A lot of food gets tossed because the bell rings. Kids who bring their lunch from home get to sit down and eat it right away. Not only can you bring what you like, you can even chew it. Unless I qualified for a free lunch and couldn’t afford to make my kid lunch, I’d never have my kid eat a school lunch, healthy or not. Kids who pay full price for their lunch are helping to subsidize the kids who aren’t, which is the real reason schools try to discourage kids from bringing their lunches from home. I’m not saying that’s a bad thing. Just saying there are multiple reasons why food ends up in the trash. And most kids who bring their lunch from home at least have time to eat it.

      • Lulu says:

        All three of my kids took a lunch to school everyday. My eldest didn’t have time to eat in the first grade. Thus lunches were made after the first week for twelve years for each one of them. Sandwiches of their choice in a size appropriate for their age, cut up veggies or fruit, water or fruit juice, and a small snack size chips or pretzels. I can still make this in my sleep and see lunches lined up to grab on the kitchen counter. This started for me in 1988. The other two said the same thing. By the time they got through the lunch line there was no time to eat whatever was served. I got a few notes from lunch Nazi’s that didn’t like what the kids wanted in their lunch which I generally ignored. The funny one was when my husbands stopped by at lunch to sit with one of our sons in middle school. A teacher made a crack at him about the huge sub our son had in his lunch and that he was overfeeding a twelve year old or something. My husband stood up and told our son to stand up (6″5″ and about 6′ at the time and both slim) and said “Are you saying he shouldn’t be fed what he needs? All kids don’t need the same amount of food lady. You are saying that children should be hungry. Are you crazy?” That was the end of the lunch comments from the school.

        • elliesmom says:

          I will probably get kicked out of the teacher club for this, but there are 3 kinds of teachers. The bleeding hearts who are more worried about boosting self-esteem than what the kids learn, the let’s get this done so we can learn more and better stuff types, and the ones who are on a power trip but know if they tried that stuff with grownups they get their assets kicked type. The latter are the ones who volunteer for things like cafeteria duty.

      • Constance says:

        I hate that crap of giving growing kids only 5 minutes to eat. Add to the lunch line the fact that the rowdy ones want to get out to recess and will dump their food just to go outside and you couldn’t really design a worse system. It works better to have kids eat in their classroom which means smaller more cooperative groups but the poor teachers need to have a mid day break.

        • elliesmom says:

          As a science teacher my classroom was always a lab, which doesn’t mix well with eating food. I always taught middle school or high school. After lunch recess stopped at 4th grade. My students were more likely to be competing with each other for a bathroom stall because after lunch they would be returning to class.

          • Constance says:

            My kids were the rowdy asses in a hurry to get outside, I couldn’t have sent them to a school with no ‘run around and burn off energy’ time after lunch. The most challenging thing my son ever did in school is sit still for long periods. Of course they would have preferred to drug him but I don’t believe in drugging children.

      • DeniseVB says:

        I think the GOP’s trying to fix the “one size fits all” of her school nutrition bill, some districts are cutting into the teachers’ budget to find fresh fruit out of season, when gallon drums of fruit cocktail would do just fine. Kids aren’t picking the fresh fruit/veggie options, thus they get thrown out. Not every lunch menu suits every child either. I loved them, while my picky friends wouldn’t touch “mystery meat” I was licking the gravy off the dish and whatever splattered on the tray ๐Ÿ˜€

        • elliesmom says:

          I’m not picky, and I really like most vegetables. On the rare day I bought my lunch, the cafeteria ladies would heap my plate with veggies to “set a good example for the kids”. But string beans that have been sitting in a steam table for two hours would make any kid hate then. Like I said, the kids loved the salad bar. And the bagels that were left over from breakfast. They liked the deli sandwich line, too, but it took too long to get through unless your class was first in line. Basically, they liked anything that didn’t get cooked.

          • Lulu says:

            You just described the lunches I made for so many years. Sandwiches and uncooked pieces of fruit or veg in lunches. My daughter ate slices of bell pepper daily for years in her lunch (she ate frozen English peas at home for a snack!) The boys ate raw carrots, celery, sliced apples, pears, peaches, a banana, orange sections, any seasonal fruit or veg that could be crammed into a lunch. By middle school the boys sandwiches were huge. I bought hoagie and sub rolls, turkey, ham and tuna by the gross to stuff those sandwiches. And they all ate breakfast. And dinner at home. None showed much interest ever in junk food or soft drinks. Of course my mother gave them sweet tea in their bottles when they were little so who needs a soft drink.

      • Jadzia says:

        God bless small-town school lunches in a country that doesn’t have to meet “Let’s Move” guidelines. Our lunch ladies get to cook real food! The kids sit down and have 3 course meals. Which I found out the first week or so we were here, when I asked a kid, “So, how was lunch today?” And he replied, “Well, for the FIRST COURSE we had…” LOL.

        In my small town in the UP, however, I remember eating gray hamburgers for school lunch. (And being pressed into “volunteer” lunch lady service, like all the girls in my class.) It’s been 30 years and the thought of that is still kind of gross.

  6. jeffhas says:

    Well – at least we’re not taking about the VA scandal…

    PS: I agree, get the F out…. Although – I do wonder about the quote in the linked story about how the two candidates opposing Karzai ran on a US security agreement, and came out on top – maybe there was something to protect after all…

  7. The Klown says:
  8. The Klown says:
  9. The Klown says:
  10. DeniseVB says:

    Reading through twitter comments about Obama’s campaigny-photo oppy commencement speech at West Point:

    “He’s using those cadets like rented Greek columns” ๐Ÿ˜€

  11. DandyTIger says:

    Computer security humor:

  12. 49erDweet says:

    Always thought Bush’s biggest mistake was Afghanistan. It’s a perfect place to use as a target range for an air force but a lousy place to grind down an army. We could have $aved million$ by disposing of our huge amount of outdated napalm stocks on their cave complexes.

  13. 49erDweet says:

    WP note: Re: the dysnesting issue, noticed yesterday that mobile version also doesn’t handle the deepest level of replies. Just ignores/omits them. Weird.

  14. The Klown says:

    Pissypants Obama Lectures Female Reporter After She Asks About Syria:

  15. The Klown says:
    • The Klown says:

      Meh. They practice sitting silent and stone-faced. You can’t judge by their expressions or reactions.

      • angienc says:

        Yes, but acting professionally instead of teen age girls at a Beatles concerts = “icy reception.” Obama is “god” to the MSM, and is treated as such, after all.

  16. The Klown says:

    Last year I planted a zucchini and got LOTS of them for my mom. (I don’t eat them)

    This year I planted TWO of them, one green and one yellow. Mom eats zuke everyday. She gives away more than she eats. I just gave* my neighbors 6 zukes (3 ea.) and I brought 4 more in from my garden. I have 10 of them ready to take to mom and several more that are almost ripe. If I don’t pick them early they grow HUGE.

    *Left on their front porches and ran.

    • Somebody says:

      I wish you were my neighbor, that would be awesome to find veggies on my porch. I can’t believe you don’t eat zucchini. Perhaps you need to find the right recipe. I love zucchini grilled, yum!

      BTW good post, as I started reading it, the where empires go to die quote immediately popped into my mind…….I see it was on your mind too. I’d forgotton about Kipling’s poem until I read your excerpt. Several years ago a soldier rewrote that poem with a more modern day flavor and not nearly as much writing talent!

      I agree it’s past time to leave Afghanistan. I also agree that Iraq took too much focus off of Afghanistan. We should have leveled Tora Bora way back when instead of backing off and allowing so many to escape to Pakistan.

      Poppies and heroin are not their only economic resources, although it is definitely their largest to date. Afghanistan has a lot of minerals the Chinese are gobbling up. We found several mother lodes over there, but the Chinese are mining it all so let the Chinese have a go at Afghanistan. They have huge reserves of gold, copper, iron, cobalt and biggest of all lithium. Afghanistan is the “Saudia Arabia of lithium”. Fat lot of good our discovery did for us, they let the Chinese come in to mine it so double eff them.

      • 49erDweet says:

        It would actually be “smarter” of us to let China work the country and buy the minerals we need off the worldwide marketplace. Cheaper, too.

        • The Klown says:

          Whoever works it will have to deal with Muslim extremists.

        • Somebody says:

          Once we’re gone maybe, but up until now we’ve been basically providing security for the Chinese…….of course we borrow money from them to buy the bullets for said security.

          I agree let them have it and yes they’ll have to deal with the muslim extremists on their own, but the truth is the Chinese won’t pussyfoot around with them.

    • elliesmom says:

      Cut the zucchini into spears. Dredge it in flour. Dip it in slightly beaten egg whites. Mix some panko bread crumbs with grated parmesan cheese. Roll the zucchini in the bread crumb mixture. Put it on a baking sheet. Spray it with some cooking spray. Bake it at 400 degrees until it’s crispy. 20 to 25 minutes or longer depending on how thick you cut the spears. It’s so good, and good for you, too. My grandkids like to dunk it in marinara sauce.

      • The Klown says:

        When I was a kid I was forced to eat zucchini, broccoli, cauliflower and other nasty tasting veggies. I swore that when I grew up I would never eat them again.

        I’ve kept my promise.

        • driguana says:

          I’m with you on the broccoli and cauliflower but I’ve learned to love zucchini….just put it in something…bread, soup, stew….and only plant one plant in your garden!!! If you have a garden.

    • 49erDweet says:

      Ah, yes! Zucchini overload. One of the reasons I moved from the central valley…..

  17. The Klown says:

    The technical term for this is “fraud”:

    Emails and VA memos obtained exclusively by The Daily Beast provide what is among the most comprehensive accounts yet of how high-level VA hospital employees conspired to game the system. It shows not only how they manipulated hospital wait lists but why–to cover up the weeks and months veterans spent waiting for needed medical care. If those lag times had been revealed, it would have threatened the executives’ bonus pay.

    What’s worse, the documents show the wrongdoing going unpunished for years, even after it was repeatedly reported to local and national VA authorities. That indicates a new troubling angle to the VA scandal: that the much touted investigations may be incapable of finding violations that are hiding in plain sight.

    “For lack of a better term, you’ve got an organized crime syndicate,” a whistleblower who works in the Texas VA told The Daily Beast. “People up on top are suddenly afraid they may actually be prosecuted and they’re pressuring the little guys down below to cover it all up.”

    “I see it in the executives’ eyes,” the whistleblower added. “They are worried.”

    • DandyTIger says:

      Time they take a long walk off a short pier.

    • Somebody says:

      The whole process at the VA had to come from the highest levels. There is no way so many facilities across the country were doing the exact same thing without it being coordinated and pushed from the highest levels. I hope they’re worried, they should be brought up on criminal charges……but do we really think Holder will do that?

      • 49erDweet says:

        The thing they aren’t thinking of is if their malfeasance isn’t adjudicated before 2017, It’s likely a new AG would go gangbusters on them all, meaning really, really hard time for the whole crew, if convicted. Statute of limitations is no longer their friend. They’d do better if Holder softballed them now, but that would reflect poorly on His Specialness.

        • r u reddy says:

          If the perps had stolen several trillion dollars, they would pay Obama enough money to have Obama have Holder softball it for them. But they didn’t get enough money to be able to offer Obama enough money to make it better for them . . . the way the major FIRE sector operators did.
          So Holder/Obama will do whatever the political pressures and image-management requirements say do.

  18. The Klown says:
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  20. Constance says:

    At least we should teach the women in Afghanistan to shoot and arm them before we check out. Yeah they probably couldn’t stand up to the Taliban but they could at least have gone postal and taken out a bunch of them on their way to dying to avoid submission.

  21. 49erDweet says:

    30 years ago or so my late Dad used Loma Linda VA. A bunch of the staff there were Adventists, and wouldn’t support clinic cops who they believe misbehaved. If that still holds true there may be a case.

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