Afghanistan War–not one more drop of blood!
The Afghanistan War has been stuck in a holding pattern for 10 years now. Despite commanders on the ground, rank and file and a handful of journalists reporting the REAL battle conditions in the war-torn tribal nation- American blood continues to spill. It’s enough. Not one more life, arm, leg or finger should be lost. Whether American troops leave tomorrow, next week or next year the outcome will be the same.
A Congressional hearing was held today at Rayburn House to begin unraveling the problems that plague the 10-year Afghanistan War.
Conditions on the ground suggest Afghanistan is headed to a bloody civil war. Military intelligence officers say that every time a drone strikes and kills a suspected terrorist, America creates 10 new enemies. Therefore, the number of Afghan causalities is meaningless for insurgent warlords, but it’s infinitely important to the U.S. military. Because there is no real roadmap for victory, America’s GI’s are fighting for the Military-Industrial-Congressional Complex. That’s it.
“(There’s) no doubt Petraeus hammered the Taliban extremely hard. I am sure that some of them are more willing to parlay. But, equally, for every dead Pashtun warrior there will be 10 pledged to revenge. I’m afraid I don’t think the present increase in violence is right or proper and its nightly slaughter of the Taliban without a political strategy in place is tactics, not strategy. It is profoundly wrong and it is not conducive to a stable political settlement,” said Sherard Cowper-Coles, former British Ambassador to Afghanistan.
Another American miscalculation is the nation building theory. Afghanistan is a tribal society stuck in the Middle Ages, giving them “democracy” hasn’t worked and it’s time for the cowardly political leaders as well as the Pentagon’s feckless military officers to put their collective feet down and recite—“enough is enough.” No more execution-style murders of U.S. soldiers by ungrateful Afghanistan Security Forces (America is purportedly training Afghanis to “keep the peace” once the stars and stripes ship out, but increasingly it seems we are training our own executioners). It’s time for NATO generals serving in the tribal nation to report the facts, set forth a plausible exit strategy and end the bloodshed. The callous inaction by Washington DC politicos will not change the end result, but it will further hinder a generation of soldiers to lifelong suffering and medical treatment.
The purview of winning “hearts and minds” is nothing more than a pipe dream. And those 535 lawmakers inside the beltway are solely responsible for the continuation of Obama’s “right” war. Don’t believe it? Under the guise of “national security” Congress feeds the defense contracting industry that strategically places manufacturing plants in 42 critical states ensuring their prosperity and eagerly purchasing lawmaker’s souls in the form of campaign money. It’s the ole pimp and whore routine.
Equally abhorrent is President Obama’s “kill list” and the weekly meetings he hosts at the White House to determine who lives and who dies. While this secret practice began under the Bush Administration, President Obama has embraced the program and even boasts about the list with senior reelection campaign officials.
“In the name of fighting demons in pick-up trucks and wars that Congress has never declared, the government shreds our rights, taps our cellphones, reads our emails, kills innocents abroad, strip searches 87-year-old grandmothers in wheelchairs and three-year-old babies in their mothers’ arms, and offers secrecy when the law requires accountability,” Judge Andrew Napolitano wrote. “Obama has argued that his careful consideration of each person he orders killed and the narrow use of deadly force are an adequate and constitutional substitute for due process. The Constitution provides for no such thing. He has also argued that the use of drones to do his killing is humane since they are ‘surgical’ and only kill their targets. We know that is incorrect. And he has argued that these killings are consistent with our values. What is he talking about? The essence of our values is the rule of law, not the rule of presidents.”
Taking this into considering one would think lawmakers could unite and end the usurping of Congressional powers, cut the Afghan War funding and bring the brave men and women serving in an unwinnable quagmire home.
There are a number of reasons why victory remains elusive
In February an analysis of the Afghan war was published in the Armed Forces Journal that challenged the “accuracy and veracity” of how some senior defense officials have characterized the state of affairs in Afghanistan. Based on a year traveling throughout that country and talking to hundreds of Soldiers, Army LTC Daniel Davis argued the situation had consistently worsened since the launch of the Afghan surge. One reoccurring theme LTC Davis heard from leaders in Afghanistan was “nothing is what it seems.”
Last week NATO met in Chicago to discuss the Afghanistan War and leaders shared a rosy snapshot with fellow allies.
“In the ten years of our partnership the lives of Afghan men, women and children, have improved significantly in terms of security, education, health care, economic opportunity and the assurance of rights and freedoms. There is more to be done, but we are resolved to work together to preserve the substantial progress we have made during the past decade,” the signed declaration read.
However, esteemed foreign policy expert, Anthony Cordesman, of the Center for Strategic and International Studies published a report that represents a stark contrast to NATO’s assessment.
“As in Vietnam, the insurgents can lose every major tactical engagement and still win control in some Pashtun areas once U.S. and ISAF forces are gone… If there is a solution, it lies in accepting the reality that the present strategy will almost certainly fail to secure the south and the east of Afghanistan… Pursuing today’s ‘strategy’ and illusions offers almost no hope at all,” Cordesman said.
“(ISAF) needs to address corruption, the steady outflow of capital, the inability to determine what portion of spending is actually spent in – and stays in – Afghanistan. They need to address the fact that narcotics and gray and black economic activity is a major part of the Afghan domestic economy. They need to stop making absurdly optimistic assumptions about the ‘New Silk Road,’ future domestic revenues and exports, and the other techniques being used to promise progress that cannot happen. At present, no official source of economic data and analysis – US, allied, Afghan or international – meets these basic tests of professional integrity.” Cordesman’s Afghan War conclusion leaves no stone unturned and he calls NATO out for either misrepresenting facts or omitting key variables that result in systematic dishonesty.
Further compounding the war’s failure is highlighted in the German Institute for International and Security Affairs report titled; “Is Afghanistan on the Brink of a New Civil War?”
The German think tank concludes; “Despite overriding economic and profit interests, the ethno-political polarization (will) intensify to such an extent that the army and the police as well as the Karzai government (will) collapse. Local warlords and uncontrollable insurgent groups (will) battle each other (and) crime (will) spiral out of control. The central power (will) cease to exist even in nominal terms; it is a war of shifting alliances or one in which “everyone fights everyone.”
“It is crucial to note that all the above statements, reports, and analysis have been produced, not by some propaganda arm of the Taliban – but by people on our side,” LTC Davis said. “They want us to succeed as much, and in some cases more, than we do. How can it be then that with such an unbridgeable gulf between official statements and the large and growing body of work that comes to a very different conclusion, why does Congress refuse to even ask questions?“
Of greater concern to Davis, however is “the men and women in the Armed Forces who will pay with their lives, their body parts, their flesh and blood, and suffer continued degradation to their emotional and psychological well-being in pursuit of a strategy that will not benefit America.
Taking all of these factors into consideration, Americans can draw two conclusions—either Congress is ignorant or they are pacifying their defense industry donors in an effort to retain power inside the beltway. Either option is unacceptable and our service members deserve to serve with honor instead of dying for ungrateful politicians seeking to make a quick buck.
To read more about Afghanistan:
Afghanistan War lingers- military deception for political expediency–http://www.examiner.com/article/afghanistan-war-operational-deception-or-political-hoodwink-1
Afghan War ain’t about hearts and minds- ‘just win baby’– http://www.examiner.com/article/afghan-war-ain-t-about-hearts-and-minds-just-win-baby-1
For more stories: http://www.examiner.com/homeland-security-in-national/kimberly-dvorak
© Copyright 2012 Kimberly Dvorak All Rights Reserved.