Thursday, October 08, 2009

Tell us again why we are in Afghanistan?

Robert Scheer:
It’s time to declare victory and begin to get out rather than descend deeper into an intractable civil war that we neither comprehend nor in the end will care much about. Terrorists of various stripes will still exist as they have throughout history, but the ones we are most concerned about have proved mighty capable of relocating to less hostile environments, including sunny San Diego and southern Florida, where the 9/11 hijackers had no trouble fitting in.

There is a continued need for effective international police work to thwart the efforts of a widely dispersed al-Qaida network, but putting resources into that effort does not satisfy the need of the military establishment for a conventional field of battle. That is the significance of Gen. Stanley McChrystal’s leaked report calling for a massive counterinsurgency campaign to make everything right about life in Afghanistan, down to the governance of the most forlorn village. The general’s report aims not at eliminating al-Qaida, which he concedes is barely existent in the country, but rather at creating an Afghan society that is more to his own liking.

It is a prescription, as the Russians and others before them learned, for war without end. That might satisfy the marketing needs of the defense industry and the career hopes of select military and political aspirants, but it has nothing to do with fighting terrorism. In the end, it would seem that some of our leaders need the Afghanistan battleground more than the terrorists do.

2 comments:

Josh said...

> That might satisfy the marketing needs of the defense industry and the career hopes of select military and political aspirants

...Aaaand there's your answer.

We need war to live because our own capitalist system is incapable of providing enough resources to feed everyone.

ellroon said...

I don't think we send our soldiers to war because of lack of resources but because war is such a wonderful enriching business.

The fact that this creates horrific suffering, destroyed infrastructure, and death does not make any difference to these people.