I have Afghanistan on my mind a lot lately. I read what our contemporary progressive writers and speakers are saying and wonder what it will take to stop the endless war. Here's a selection of articles on Afghanistan from Commondreams. I pasted representative text under each link. I share it with you in hopes you will share it with others. ~ Carol C.
“The Afghanistan War is too costly to continue. ~Phyllis Bennis
The WikiLeaks documents provide a treasure trove of evidence--of what we already knew. This war has already failed. Every death, of civilian and soldier, is needless. The cost of this occupation and this war--in Afghan blood, in U.S. and NATO military blood, in billions of dollars needed for jobs at home and real reconstruction in Afghanistan and elsewhere--is too high.
We need to stop the funding now, bring the troops and contractors home, support regional diplomacy, and begin the long effort of repaying our huge debt to the people of Afghanistan and Iraq.”
Thanks to WikiLeaker, Afghan War Will End Soon ~ Ted Rall
“But the Wikileaks leaks are nevertheless a game-changer. They confirm what those few of us who opposed this war from the start have been saying all along. They prove that the military sees things the same way we do. So that's the end of the debate. The war is an atrocity and a mistake. Everyone agrees.
Public support for the war was already waning. Just 43 percent of the public still backs "the good war." The leaks mark the beginning of the end of one of a stupid country's countless stupid misadventures. I don't see what else might have accomplished the same thing so quickly.
Thanks to the leaker, thousands of lives will be saved in Afghanistan. Hundreds of U.S. soldiers will live out normal lives. Billions of dollars will stop pouring into the pockets of the Pakistanis. If that's irresponsible, well, call me a fan of irresponsibility.”
Afghanistan: It’s Even Worse Than You Thought ~ Haroon Siddiqui
“The training of Afghan security forces is not going well, either. It’s central to Obama’s pullout plan starting in July 2011. The forces were expanded too quickly and are said to be incompetent and corrupt.
Obama’s military surge was designed not so much to defeat the Taliban — they can’t be without a massive NATO commitment that is not forthcoming — but rather to weaken them enough to force them to the negotiating table. But the strategy has been rendered useless with the military offensive stalled.
Peace talks with the Taliban are sputtering along without direction. Hamid Karzai is holding his own negotiations, as is the UN special representative, both with a wink and a nod from the Americans, who can’t bring themselves to talk directly to the Taliban.”
The Afghan Dilemma ~ César Chelala
“As July has proven to be the deadliest month for US troops in the nine year old conflict, there are increasing calls for a withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan. For the U.S., the real dilemma is to persist in what increasingly seems like an unwinnable war or continue fighting a "war on terror" and also, a war for a strategic advantage on a natural resources-plentiful country.
This also begs the question: Can any foreign army subdue a naturally proud and intensely nationalistic people? Those who have failed in the past should be a sobering reminder to the troops now fighting in that country. Afghanistan has been called the graveyard of empires. It should more properly be called the graveyard of illusions.”
Out of Afghanistan ~ Ralph Nader
“The war in Afghanistan is nearly nine years old—the longest in American history. After the U.S. quickly toppled the Taliban regime in October 2001, the Taliban, by all accounts, came back stronger and harsher enough to control now at least 30 percent of the country. During this time, U.S. casualties, armaments and expenditures are at record levels. …
Congress—an inkblot so far—needs to assert its constitutional authority over budgets and policy toward the war. Members are regular rubber-stamps of White House recklessness under Bush and Obama.
Furthermore, nothing will happen without a few million Americans back home stomping, marching and bellowing to end the boomeranging, costly invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan and concentrate on America’s needs at home.”
Further Evidence of Afghanistan Occupation as a Lost Cause ~ Iraq Veterans Against the War
“The "war logs" describe secret units of special forces that hunt Taliban leaders for "kill or capture" without trial, a growing strength in the Taliban since 2001, including the use of heat-seeking missiles, questionable actions by UK and French troops, including a number of civilian casualty incidents and show that the U.S. military's public statements were often misleading.
These incident reports bear a striking resemblance to the stories told by IVAW members during their Winter Soldier testimonies.
The collection of documents is not a complete depiction of the war. It does not contain many references to influential events, more highly classified information, or any events in 2010 when the Obama Administration's new counterinsugurgency methods took place.
Wikileaks founder, Julian Assange, removed some material that might endanger local informants or reveal military secrets before sending it to the three news sources.
Bradley Manning, who was charged with leaking the "Collateral Murder" video on Wikileaks in April, has not been connected with the leaking of these records.”