In Afghanistan, there’s no path to victory

Despite the success of U.S. troops on the ground — a success repeated in battle after battle — we lost the Vietnam War. Military historians and counterinsurgency experts cite two major reasons for that defeat:

1.) Our opponents had a sanctuary in North Vietnam that we could never effectively close down for fear of starting an even larger war in the region. We bombed its factories and mined its harbors; we tried to shut down its supply lines to the South. But North Vietnam remained a constant source of new manpower and new resources for our enemies.

2.) The South Vietnamese government was corrupt and ineffective, incapable of and actually not all that interested in winning the allegiance of its own people. That’s fatal. The U.S. military’s field manual on how to conduct a counterinsurgency (COIN) — a document drafted under the leadership of Gen. David Petraeus, and which led to his appointment as U.S. commander in Iraq — highlights its importance: “The primary objective of any COIN operation is to foster development of effective governance by a legitimate government.” Note those two words: “primary objective.”

In the Vietnam War, we never came close to solving those two central problems. And we are even farther from resolving them in Afghanistan.

Earlier this week, the Obama administration released a five-page unclassified summary of its internal strategic review regarding Afghanistan and neighboring Pakistan. The document is an exercise in strained optimism.

“Specific components of our strategy for Afghanistan and Pakistan are working well and there are notable operational gains,” it claims. ” … in Afghanistan, the momentum achieved by the Taliban in recent years has been arrested in much of the country and reversed in some key areas, although these gains remain fragile and reversible.”

All of that is undoubtedly correct, but almost beside the point. In Pakistan, the Taliban enjoy a sanctuary that is even more secure than North Vietnam provided, and that situation shows no sign of changing because Pakistan has no interest in changing it.

Sure, Pakistan is nominally our ally, and is the recipient of billions of dollars in U.S. military and development aid. But Pakistan sees the Taliban as useful allies as well, and it will continue to frustrate U.S. efforts to defeat them. From an American perspective, that is a maddening, frustrating betrayal. From a Pakistani perspective, it’s just smart strategy, and nothing we can say or do will change that conclusion.

But the real problem is the Afghanistan government, which is even less effective and as least as corrupt as our allies in South Vietnam were. It is beyond our power to change that, no matter how hard we try. Only the Afghans themselves can change that, and again, they have shown no capacity or interest in doing so.

As long as effective host-nation governance — “the primary objective of any COIN operation” — is a hopeless cause, the larger battle is hopeless as well. And there’s little sign that our national leadership is ready to come to grips with that reality.

In Vietnam, of course, American public opinion eventually forced a withdrawal of U.S. forces. And U.S. public opinion about the war in Afghanistan has turned decidedly negative. In a poll released this week by ABC News and the Washington Post, 60 percent of Americans said the war has not been worth fighting.

afghan

Ordinarily, such low public support for a war would be enough to end it. But the sad truth is that the American people just don’t care enough about it to force a decision from their leadership. They’ve concluded that yes, it’s a stupid war to still be fighting and it’s too bad that American kids are still dying and we really ought to be finding a way out of there but then there’s the deficit and unemployment and Blake Edwards just died and wasn’t he married to Julie Andrews and I don’t know what to get the wife for Christmas and I sure hope cousin Eddy can save his house from foreclosure by the bank.

What was that about Afghanistan again?

400 comments Add your comment

TH

December 17th, 2010
9:50 am

Today is December 17.

BONER, WHERE ARE THE JOBS CREATED FROM THE BUSH TAX CUTS FOR THE WEALTHY?

Normal

December 17th, 2010
9:52 am

Jay, My Friend…

the American people just don’t care enough about it to force a decision from their leadership. They’ve concluded that yes, it’s a stupid war to still be fighting and it’s too bad that American kids are still dying and we really ought to be finding a way out of there but then there’s the deficit and unemployment and Blake Edwards just died and wasn’t he married to Julie Andrews and I don’t know what to get the wife for Christmas and I sure hope cousin Eddy can save his house from foreclosure by the bank.

What was that about Afghanistan again?
——————————————

That says it all…and makes it so terribly sad.

Union

December 17th, 2010
10:00 am

TH
December 17th, 2010
9:50 am

Today is December 17.

“BONER, WHERE ARE THE JOBS CREATED FROM THE BUSH TAX CUTS FOR THE WEALTHY?”

they are now the obama tax cuts.. and all those jobs are working for the govt.. they seem to be doing well..

now.. back on topic.. @ normal.. you forgot to add american idol in your list? maybe because its off season or something? (nicely put)

jewcowboy

December 17th, 2010
10:00 am

“What was that about Afghanistan again?”

Without a shared sacrifice by the entire population keeping the costs in life and treasure in the public’s mind, any chance of long-term success drops, especially after a decade. Quite frankly, I’m surprised anyone in the public is still realizes we are still fighting a war. Anyone other than those in the military and their loved ones that is…

I don’t blame the public from tuning out…I blame our leaders that let mission creep, creep right out of control.

J. Kase

December 17th, 2010
10:02 am

Jay; You forgot to add major reason number 3: to us it was the Vietnam War. To the Vietnamese it was home. Number 4: we could never win over the hearts and minds of the people. This is happening in Afghanistan.

jm

December 17th, 2010
10:03 am

We should swiftly draw down to a force of no more than 10,000 in Afghanistan. The residual guys will play whack a mole with Al Qaeda and the Taliban, but at least keep them in a position where they can’t do as much damage as previously.

The rest of the effort and spending is not terribly useful. Some residual funds can be put toward civilian efforts to help get the country out of the 5th century.

$100B’s per year is a poor use of money in Afghanistan. I can think of a dozen better things to do with the $’s, starting with deficit reduction…. followed by infrastructure investments and education incentives.

JKL2

December 17th, 2010
10:04 am

As long as the population has no regard for the safety of their own children, you will never win. It would be nice if we could learn to fight in cycles like the Afghani’s do. They go home for the winter then come back out to start blowing stuff up in the spring.

So when you hear reports of violence being way down over the next couple months, it has nothing to do with what the Army is or isn’t doing. It’s because the bad guys are on vacation.

AmVet

December 17th, 2010
10:05 am

Last night while watching the Newshour on PBS, they ended their broadcast, as always, showing photos, names and home towns – in silence – of those whose information becomes available, and who have died in the modern day Crusades.

Last night, there were 10 more young men listed. Almost all of them 21 to 23 years old.

How utterly heartbreaking to know that these families have been torn apart for no good g*dd@mn reason.

STOP THE WARS NOW, OBAMA!

Del

December 17th, 2010
10:05 am

It’s time to get out of Afghanistan. I know it’s a travesty to not finish a job that many of our young people gave their lives for but we’re in a war we cannot win for reasons unrelated to the war fighting abilities of our military. Unfortunately, we face other potential conflicts that would be far more difficult and far more important to our national security. Time to rest and restore our armed forces.

ty webb

December 17th, 2010
10:06 am

“Only the Afghans themselves can change that, and again, they have shown no capacity or interest in doing so.”

Well said Jay. Reminds me of that old saying about leading a horse to water.

jm

December 17th, 2010
10:07 am

Jay, by the way. Random trivia fact for the day. Did you know Thomas Jefferson was the only soul permitted to run a Casino in the early days of our nation? He was up to his eyeballs in debt and it was deemed the only way to help the former pres get bailed out.

Seems Sonny style corruption runs all the way back to the founding days. Kind of takes the shine off our principled founders….

obamas fault

December 17th, 2010
10:10 am

Jay, I love how you cite polls only when it falls in favor of your beliefs. How come you ignore the polls that show that Americans in increasing numbers, do not want the healthcare takeover bill that was passed by the Dems?

md

December 17th, 2010
10:11 am

“Only the Afghans themselves can change that, and again, they have shown no capacity or interest in doing so.”

Time to pull it in and push the afghans out front……this slow weening process is nothing more than dependency. You are right, they have to make the change……..pull to the rear and let the battle begin. If they want it, they’ll go get it……..if not, so be it.

jm

December 17th, 2010
10:12 am

I’m waiting on tenterhooks for the deficit reduction fight. Should start soon in 2011….. first up, spending! Then more tax reform.

People are going to get tired of all this. First Republican presidential debate is in June…. next year.

jewcowboy

December 17th, 2010
10:14 am

obamas fault,

“How come you ignore the polls that show that Americans in increasing numbers, do not want the healthcare takeover bill that was passed by the Dems?”

Perhaps because a poll about healthcare wouldn’t make much sense in a post about Afghanistan?

Palin fan

December 17th, 2010
10:15 am

Obama is week and does not have the guts to fight. He is a wimp that is why we will lose this war – week democrat president. Just like Vietnam.

AmVet

December 17th, 2010
10:17 am

Obamas fan, I love how you never want to address any topic that does not agree with your sensibilities.

The question is will you never, ever be able to resolve you red herring (a rhetorical tactic of diverting attention away from an item of significance) addiction?

To wit, men overseas are dying needlessly every single day, and you want to blubber on some more about health care?

Go find a recruiting station and kill some sandies for us…

Bosch

December 17th, 2010
10:17 am

“Without a shared sacrifice by the entire population keeping the costs in life and treasure in the public’s mind”

Exactly. Which is why I’ve always thought we should have a “war tax” just like a sales tax if for no other reason just so that every time we buy a piece of bubble gum, or something as trivial, we are reminded why we can afford that luxury.

jm

December 17th, 2010
10:17 am

Palin fan – I think Obama’s been president for almost 100 weeks now….. and at this point in the calendar, the president would have 100 weeks under his/her belt whether he/she was a Republican, or a Democrat. Your 10:15 is a bit garbled.

jm

December 17th, 2010
10:19 am

Bosch 10:17 – agreed….

obamas fault

December 17th, 2010
10:19 am

Amvet….as a vet, I have killed better men than you so STFU.

jewcowboy

December 17th, 2010
10:22 am

Bosch,

“Which is why I’ve always thought we should have a “war tax” ”

Or we could just go to Disney world…

“Fly and enjoy America’s great destination spots. Get down to Disney World in Florida. Take your families and enjoy life, the way we want it to be enjoyed.” ~ President Bush

Normal

December 17th, 2010
10:23 am

Did everybody take a good look at Luckovich’s cartoon this morning?

USMC dawg

December 17th, 2010
10:25 am

I want to thank President Obama and the Democrats who control Congress for passing a bill that does not RAISE taxes.

As far as the war in Afganistan, I guess we can start using the hateful language of:

Obama lied, People died…

No, on second thoughts we have more class and integrity than that.

Normal

December 17th, 2010
10:25 am

obamas fault

December 17th, 2010
10:19 am

Childish, very childish…and, I bet you haven’t killed even a squirrel…

obamas fault

December 17th, 2010
10:25 am

jewcowboy, My point is that he, like pretty much all of you libs on here, always discount polls unless they suit your needs and your beliefs. Now as far as the issue he is talking about….Do I think we should be there. Yes. Why? Let’s kill them over there than over here. Should we perhaps do it a little bit differently? Yes. I think setting up hundreds of posts scattered throughout the country is significantly degrading our capabilities. Consolidate our forces around the major cities and force that government to become functional.

Doggone/GA

December 17th, 2010
10:26 am

“Which is why I’ve always thought we should have a “war tax” ”

I agree, but we should also have a draft. Bottom line – it wasn’t the dollars it cost that got us out of Vietnam, it was 58,000 young American lives wasted. When the death toll isn’t even 10% of that, there’s still too many people who haven’t felt the pain of losing a loved one in a useless war.

obamas fault

December 17th, 2010
10:26 am

Normal. Shut your trap dude.

Palin fan

December 17th, 2010
10:26 am

If Obama was not so weak and we had a president with some warrior experience, america would have already whipped the Afghanistans.

Mary Elizabeth

December 17th, 2010
10:26 am

Although I listened to last night’s news about the Afghanistan War in a rather cursory manner, I believe that the president is planning to start withdrawing troops there next July, 2011.

Based on what I heard last evening, I do not believe President Obama’s agenda is to let the Afghanistan War drag on. His plan for withdrawal, as I heard it, seemed typical to his prudent and carefully thought through nature.

[...] In Afghanistan, there’s no path to victory | Jay Bookman. This entry was posted in Afghanistan, Opinion, War. Bookmark the permalink. ← Are LinkedIn Users Losers? | PCMag.com [...]

paleo-neo-Carlinist a/k/a Joe the Plutocrat

December 17th, 2010
10:27 am

JB, AfPak is a success, if you define success as a jobs/entitlement program for the military industrial complex. same novel, different dustcover. Vietnam: Cold War anti-Communism/Domino Theory created the boogey man/problem and the arms merchants and an imperialist foreign policy was the solution. Vietnam ended up taking the brunt of the blow with well over 1,000, 000 dead. untold numbers wounded (many civilians), the region defoliated and laced with land mines and still unexploded ordinance, but hey – we now trade with ‘em and Pepsi is sinking $200 million into the Vietnam “market”. AfPak: war on terrorism created the boogeyman (actually our CIA did – we ‘created’ al Qeada, and we tacitly supported the Taliban when the Soviets pulled out in the early 90’s). Bush & Co should be sued for copyright infringement, as they stole LBJ & Co’s business plan. And Obama is no different. if he does not get out by 2011, this war will take him down as Vietnam took down LBJ. but the beast will be happy. It doesn’t take $1 trillion and 50,000 troops (plus another 25,000-30,000 contractors and spooks) to hunt and kill terrorists; but heaven forbid the military industrial complex actually “earned” it’s paycheck (where they not “protecting us” on 9/10/01?

Left wing management

December 17th, 2010
10:28 am

Jay: “and unemployment and Blake Edwards just died and wasn’t he married to Julie Andrews and I don’t know what to get the wife for Christmas and I sure hope cousin Eddy can save his house from foreclosure by the bank.”

And don’t forget: “…and how are we going to get little Julie and Justin off to college in a few years when we’re treading water as it is?

jewcowboy

December 17th, 2010
10:28 am

obamas fault,

“My point is that he, like pretty much all of you libs on here, always discount polls unless they suit your needs and your beliefs. ”

Yes…we know how objective you and other “conservatives” are when it comes to polling data…never picking the poll or source that backs your viewpoint.

obamas fault

December 17th, 2010
10:28 am

A draft would be the worst thing. Learn a little bit about history before making stupid statements like that. Part of the reason why our military has transformed itself since Vietnam is because they removed the draft.

Normal

December 17th, 2010
10:28 am

USMC dawg

December 17th, 2010
10:25 am

Sorry, but Bush and his posse did lie…and people did die. I blame Obama for the people still being brought home in a box. His lie was saying he’d end it , same as Nixon did.

jm

December 17th, 2010
10:29 am

Palin fan – I assume you count Caribou hunting as warrior experience?

Normal

December 17th, 2010
10:29 am

obamas fault

December 17th, 2010
10:26 am

WAH, WAH, WAH, Quick! give him a lolly pop!

Bosch

December 17th, 2010
10:30 am

“Why? Let’s kill them over there than over here”

That, in my opinion, is very cowardly. It assumes that it is okay to put in harms way or even kill the civilian population in another country because they do not matter as much.

Bosch

December 17th, 2010
10:31 am

Hi Normal!

Yes, I saw Luckovich this morning….spot on as usual. :-)

Mick

December 17th, 2010
10:32 am

Obama didn’t start this war but it sure is apparent that he doesn’t want or know how to end it. The US as a world power is diminishing every day that we stay.

obamas fault

December 17th, 2010
10:32 am

Normal@ 1028…just think all of this lying and dying could have been prevented if only Clinton had taken action on a couple of items.
1. Taken care of Bin Laden when he had him.
2. Actually held the UN accountable for following through on any of the bazillion resolutions they applied towards Iraq.
Instead, Clinton had his mind on other things.

Paul

December 17th, 2010
10:33 am

We went into Afghanistan when the Taliban gov’t would not turn over OBL and cease sanctuary for AQ. Sure the Taliban were fundamentalist Moslems who destroyed international artifacts and subjected women and minorities to harsh treatment, but they stayed within their borders and we didn’t really care until AQ struck in a significant way.

So of course the Taliban has morphed into an organization more and more like AQ. We’re still there, we want to change their society so they fight. We should do what we offered to do before we invaded: negotiate a settlement to give them access to political power as long as they sell out their rivals for power, AQ.

If that works, fine. If not, then the Karzai government has given the Obama administration the perfect cover to begin a withdrawal. They are corrupt, do not have the support of the people and are not effectively confronting our joint enemies.

Dudley

December 17th, 2010
10:33 am

Had bush concentrated on Afghanistan instead of starting a useless war in Iraq we would not be having this conversation because the mission would be accomplished and bin laden would be dead or in custody

jewcowboy

December 17th, 2010
10:33 am

Palin fan,

“we had a president with some warrior experience”

You mean President George H. W. Bush? He was the last President with any “warrior experience”…unless you count flying planes around TX and AL as “warrior experience”.

Paul

December 17th, 2010
10:34 am

Mick

“Obama didn’t start this war but it sure is apparent that he doesn’t want or know how to end it.”

Then responsibility lays at the feet of State and the civilians and military at Defense.

obamas fault

December 17th, 2010
10:35 am

“bin laden would be dead or in custody” Hmmmmm….I think somebody else had an actual opportunity to do this very thing.

jm

December 17th, 2010
10:35 am

Palin fan- the afghanistans? “america would have already whipped the Afghanistans.”

I’m trying not to be too much of stickler here. I have typos in my posts all the time. Lemme help. They’re Afghanis or Afghans. Not Afghanistans.

Palin fan

December 17th, 2010
10:35 am

Palin, like me, grew up in a household full of proud American warriors – not like the week elitist Obama. You can’t fight a war with a bunch of BS from Harvard.

Normal

December 17th, 2010
10:36 am

If a draft of ALL 18 to 26 young people was started again, it would be a good thing. It would force patriotic duty on our young again and and it would, for damn sure, stop these useless “police actions” when the sons and daughters of Congress persons would be involved…
—————————

Trouble is, intodays political climate, trying to pass this bill would be political suicide.

Dudley

December 17th, 2010
10:37 am

There is no proof W ever showed up in Alabama to fly planes

Normal

December 17th, 2010
10:38 am

Palin fan

December 17th, 2010
10:35 am

“You can’t fight a war with a bunch of BS from Harvard.”

But you sure can spell “weak” with that Harvard BS…just sayin’

Mick

December 17th, 2010
10:38 am

paul

History shows that many have been laid waste in afghanistan. The majority of the people are illiterate and could not find the US on a map. What is our objective? Leave these people be, we have the technology to make sure al quaeda does not regroup.

The Mandarins

December 17th, 2010
10:39 am

Please make Afghanistan a civilized nation. This will enable us to begin mining in a safe and secure environment. We support the war in Afghanistan. Go USA!

paleo-neo-Carlinist a/k/a Joe the Plutocrat

December 17th, 2010
10:39 am

Palin fan, by “BS from Harvard” do you mean W’s MBA? and please, dial down the “proud American warrior” stuff. you a Bible-reader? familiar with the passage; “…pride cometh befor the fall…”?

Doggone/GA

December 17th, 2010
10:39 am

“unless you count flying planes around TX and AL”

Every time this comes up I’m reminded of George Gobel and his WWII flying experience. As far as I know, he was never deployed overseas – so, as he says: “There was not one Japanese aircraft got past Tulsa.”

USMC dawg

December 17th, 2010
10:39 am

Obama’s legacy is starting to shape up pretty well:

WAR and TAX CUTS!

jewcowboy

December 17th, 2010
10:40 am

obamas fault @ 10.32,

Perhaps you should go back a bit further and look to Brzezinski and ultimately the Reagan Doctrine.

obamas fault

December 17th, 2010
10:40 am

“If a draft of ALL 18 to 26 young people was started again, it would be a good thing. It would force patriotic duty on our young again and and it would, for damn sure, stop these useless “police actions” when the sons and daughters of Congress persons would be involved…”

Normal, you seriously are CLUELESS. Ours sons and daughters of Congressmen would get exemptions the same manner that they receive them during Vietnam. Oh, and don’t forget all of the college student exemptions that would be handed out. We would pretty much face the same situation you face then…..a bunch of people that did not want to be there fighting for a cause that they may or may not believe in.

jewcowboy

December 17th, 2010
10:41 am

USMC dawg,

“WAR and TAX CUTS!”

Makes one wonder where that “ultra-liberal” label the right continually swings at him comes from…

larry

December 17th, 2010
10:41 am

Does anyone really think the Repugs would have let Clinton go after Bin Laden?

jm

December 17th, 2010
10:42 am

Why can’t GA have some real conflict of interest laws? All GA politicians should have to put any and all assets in a blind trust as a condition of running for office. And they can’t get them out of the blind trust for 5 years after serving office. Seems simple enough. But when the fox is in charge of the henhouse, I guess this is impossible….

Paul

December 17th, 2010
10:42 am

Mick 10:38

I don’t have any strong objections to any of that. My prior post was directed at what I read as the assertion Pres Obama is clueless about what to do. I think that inaccurate. He and his staff received indepth reviews and options from the Bush Administration. State, Defense and national security agencies presented options. Presidents nearly never come up with a complete, original, heretofore unthought-of strategy.

So if he’s ‘clueless,’ meaning it’s not working, look at the professionals who exist from administration to administration who fed him the ideas.

Doggone/GA

December 17th, 2010
10:43 am

“Does anyone really think the Repugs would have let Clinton go after Bin Laden”

Don’t let it concern you. That “Clinton let Bin Laden go free” is just a red herring. At the time he was “offered” to the US there was no evidence, let alone proof, that he had ever done any harm to the US. Remember, this was BEFORE 911.

paleo-neo-Carlinist a/k/a Joe the Plutocrat

December 17th, 2010
10:43 am

Mandarin, you got it pal. Lithium is the next petroleum, and Central Asia is teeming with the stuff. As with the Middle East, in the mid/end of the 20th century, we just need to cut the best deal with the warlords and Muslim imams who control the areas we want to mine. very possible the “next” Afghan War will be a scrap between the US and China to see who gets to strip mine the region. And boy, will it be a doosie

USMC dawg

December 17th, 2010
10:43 am

Normal,

Congress saw the same intel as Bush and voted accordingly:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XnjcofMFHsA

just saying

jewcowboy

December 17th, 2010
10:44 am

week = A period of seven days…

weak = Lacking physical strength, energy, or vigor; feeble

Normal

December 17th, 2010
10:45 am

obamas fault

December 17th, 2010
10:32 am

OH Yeah, tired talking points again…if you will (can) remember…the REPUBLICAN controlled Congress kept saying “No war for Monica”, not wanting to divert attention away from that situation. That was the REAL reason Clinton wasn’t able to go after Osama Bin Laden.

Dude, even your Nom de Blog tells the world that you don’t have it in you to think past what Rush tells you to think. But thank God for you this is America and you have the right to be a stupid as you want, so go for it.

obamas fault

December 17th, 2010
10:46 am

Paul, Obama IS clueless and it has nothing to do with his policies just on Afghanistan…..it has to do with ALL of his policies. The guy is in wayyyyyyyy over his head. He has no clue about the economy, no clue on international affairs/foreign policy, does not understand budgeting, and is just a terrible leader. Basically, this country voted for community organizer who speaks well and nothing more.

jm

December 17th, 2010
10:46 am

Obama’s going to pull people out. No one needs to worry. We’ll still have troops in Afghanistan in 2 years. But it will be a fraction of the current number and rapidly shrinking…. mark my words.

Nice Guy

December 17th, 2010
10:46 am

AJC Headline – “A few low-wage, low-skilled jobs are available, but some potential workers find they’re better off on long-term unemployment.”

Wait a second. According to Jay and the Bookmanites, this was supposed to be a complete falsehood! I mean, why would anyone choose long term unemployment over a job?!

Oops.

/driveby

Normal

December 17th, 2010
10:46 am

USMC dawg

December 17th, 2010
10:43 am

Get your head out of your helmet, Congress saw exactly what Bush and his Cronies wanted them to see and no more. Remember the “outing”?

jm

December 17th, 2010
10:47 am

jewcowboy – you’re so week minded….. :D

larry

December 17th, 2010
10:48 am

The war in Afghanistan suffered from years of inattention, bad leadership, and a lack of resouces. The President has tried to make it a winnable situation but with the nation so currupt, im afaid its not going to happen . I would just bring the Men and Women home.

And give them all the love and support they need.

obamas fault

December 17th, 2010
10:48 am

Normal…..Bin laden was already in custody and he let him go…even Clinton admitted to it. And I certainly do not listen to Rush. I would sooner put a bullet in my own head than hear what that fat toad has to say. Unlike you, I have the ability to think for myself and not sit here and spew “facts” spewed by the leaders of my ideological affiliation.

Normal

December 17th, 2010
10:48 am

obamas fault

December 17th, 2010
10:40 am

Can you not read either? I said a Draft for ALL! People, this boy is….

paleo-neo-Carlinist a/k/a Joe the Plutocrat

December 17th, 2010
10:49 am

USMC dawg. do you actually think “intel” was behind the decision to go to war? both the left and right voted to war because they were told to go to war by the interests that own them. the “intel” (or “patriotism”) was the pitch, not the impetus for war.

jm

December 17th, 2010
10:49 am

Palin fan / jewcowboy – Just so you know. I’m pretty week minded too. Happy Friday Everyone!

Redneck Convert (R--and proud of it)

December 17th, 2010
10:50 am

Well, long as this war is over with before little _____ Zell George is old enough to serve, it’s OK with me. Us rednecks are all for war, just not for having our kin get killed.

I see they used the kind of drug vets use to put pets to sleep on this guy out in Oklahoma. It made me wonder why states just don’t bring vets in to shoot the poison to these killers and save a ton of money. I get all worked up, if you know what I mean, every time I hear somebody’s got the Death Penalty. Heck, it’s better than nekkid women.

Have a good Friday everybody. And now I got to get to hauling if you drunks are going to have your beer while you trade weird music tonight.

Mick

December 17th, 2010
10:51 am

paul

Do we learn from history or not? Vietnam showed that the world’s greatest superpower couldn’t overcome certain obstacles for total victory. Afgahnistan is similar in that the people do not have modern communication or the 24/7 news cycle but rather inhibit a world that is tribal, and very backwards by our standards. Who are these american soldiers and why are they here? Go home and leave us alone. Every new president should chart their own course, especially if the current path is leading to nowhere except more loss of life and treasure.

Jimmy62

December 17th, 2010
10:52 am

You left out real reason #3: We were winning and we won a major victory during the Tet Offensive, but then Cronkite decided he didn’t like the war, so he convinced the public that we lost Tet and there was no way we could win the war. My Dad nearly lost his life over there, yet Cronkite sat in his news studio and destroyed everything my Dad fought for.

Many military historians agree with this view.

Doggone/GA

December 17th, 2010
10:52 am

Q: “Did Bill Clinton pass up a chance to kill Osama bin Laden?”

http://www.factcheck.org/askfactcheck/did_bill_clinton_pass_up_a_chance_1.html

A: “Probably not, and it would not have mattered anyway as there was no evidence at the time that bin Laden had committed any crimes against American citizens

USMC dawg

December 17th, 2010
10:52 am

“Makes one wonder where that “ultra-liberal” label the right continually swings at him comes from…”

Well said JC

paleo-neo-Carlinist a/k/a Joe the Plutocrat

December 17th, 2010
10:53 am

obama’s fault. “in over his head?” “no clue about the economy”? to the contrary, he knows exactly what he is doing. as AmVet likes to say, he’s Bush v. 2.0. he’ll throw bones to his base (and it ain’t “the left”) and occassionally “reach across the aisle” to present the image of bipartisan compromise, but he is an agent of the plutocracy just like Bush. Obama does what is best for his benefactors (owners) and what is best for Obama.

md

December 17th, 2010
10:53 am

“Had bush concentrated on Afghanistan instead of starting a useless war in Iraq we would not be having this conversation because the mission would be accomplished and bin laden would be dead or in custody”

And IF frogs had wings, they wouldn’t bump their butt on the ground all the time.

obamas fault

December 17th, 2010
10:54 am

Normal….and the draft before wasn’t for ALL people????? Funny, I think everybody(well, men over 18) has to fill out a draft registration card, right? Technically everybody is included in the draft pool initially. Many, notably the rich, the college students, and people with connections just get the exemptions. To think that the same thing wouldn’t still happen is just ridiculous. Besides, why exactly is a draft needed? Our armed forces are not suffering a shortage. The fact that you are arguing this point just shows how out of touch you are with reality and how stupid you truly are.

Paul

December 17th, 2010
10:55 am

obama’s fault 10:46

That sounds a bit harsh, rather emotional. One may disagree with his policies, but that does not mean he has no idea what he’s doing.

Question: if McCain were president and the unemployment rate was about where it is and Afghanistan was about where it is (and I saw nothing in candidate McCain’s proposals to indicate his policies would have any significantly different outcomes), do you really think the perception of him would be any different than some have of Obama?

larry

December 17th, 2010
10:55 am

do you actually think “intel” was behind the decision to go to war?

Especially when the “intel” was partially provided by some guy named ” Curveball” .

Would anyone believe anything that “Curveball” said? Curveball sounds like the cherry-picking process Cheney used on the ” intel” .

ty webb

December 17th, 2010
10:55 am

“Sorry, but Bush and his posse did lie…and people did die.”

Good Lord! “Hey hey, Ho Ho”, some of these slogans have got to go! “What do we want?…new BS slogans, When do we want them…Now”(rinse, repeat). Sheesh!

jewcowboy

December 17th, 2010
10:56 am

jm,

“you’re so week minded…..”

Only on Fridays ;)

Palin fan

December 17th, 2010
10:56 am

Go ahead and laugh while you can at some silly tie-poes.

But american needs strong warrior leaders that can lead America to Victory against the enemy and help america maintain its place as the most powerful and greatest nation EVER!!!

Instead, what do we have? A weak liberal who has America on a one-way train to Socialism and Tryanny.

Normal

December 17th, 2010
10:57 am

Obama,
I know you are not that stupid so I guess you are being obtuse. People do that to try to cover up the fact that they have been licked in a debate. So be it. You live with your “facts” and I’ll know the truth.
Have a good life…and try not to kill anyone… :lol:

BULLSEYE

December 17th, 2010
10:57 am

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

Union

December 17th, 2010
10:57 am

maybe someone could help me out a little.. i cannot seem to recall a president that was/is disliked so strongly by his own party than obama?

USMC dawg

December 17th, 2010
10:58 am

“USMC dawg. do you actually think “intel” was behind the decision to go to war? both the left and right voted to war because they were told to go to war by the interests that own them. the “intel” (or “patriotism”) was the pitch, not the impetus for war.”

Paleo,
I won’t necessarily disagree with your statement, but when the Left says the BUSH just decided one day to increase his political popularity by going off on his own and lying in order to start a war. That is BS.

Actually, I was sitting for my neighbor who just had surgery and he was watching a movie called the Obama Deception. And while I am not a big conspiracy theorist, it did catch my attention. Have you seen this movie?
(my neighbor is liberal and gay, so no, I wasn’t at a HATE Obama party)

Paul

December 17th, 2010
10:59 am

Mick 10:51

Okay… but as I said in my previous post, I was questioning your assertion “Obama didn’t start this war but it sure is apparent that he doesn’t want or know how to end it. ”

He had a major change in direction, an escalation, somewhat similar to what Pres Bush did in Iraq. He’s also made it clear we will begin a wind-down. But international politics being what they are, one doesn’t abruptly say “turn out the lights, the party’s over.” Wind-downs take time.

retired early

December 17th, 2010
10:59 am

Reduce our military presence to a much smaller total area of the country. Drastically reduce the size of our fighting force…Make sure the area includes the Capital city…build a few permanent military bases…then, when the Taliban move back in to other parts of the country… bomb the peetootee out of them. Protect only what can protect…long term.

Mick

December 17th, 2010
10:59 am

union@10:57

Read my lips, GHW bush

Paul

December 17th, 2010
11:01 am

Doggone/GA

“as there was no evidence at the time that bin Laden had committed any crimes against American citizens”

Interesting, isn’t it? Pres Clinton gets a pass because evidence of crimes was insufficient.

Yet, another Democratic president, Obama, issues a kill or capture order against an American citizen believed to be in Yemen whose evidence of ‘crimes’ is likely less than what we thought about bin Laden at the time.

obamas fault

December 17th, 2010
11:02 am

Paul, oh you think I am a McCain fan? hahahahahaha. But I will answer your question. Do I think that perception of him would have been differently? We all know that he would be getting scorched by the media who still continue their love affair with Obama. McCain obviously would not be the recipient of similar treatment. The scrutiny of him would be much much worse. Add to it that most Cons and Reps were not all that thrilled with him as their candidate and he would have been skewered even further. The only saving grace for McCain would have been that he could vetoed all of the crappy legislation that was passed by Congress that steals from hard-working taxpayers and gives to the leaches of society that want nothing more than to get their “obama money”