Richard Holbrooke warned of the danger of Afghanistan becoming another Vietnam. He opposed Obama's surge. He was working on a negotiated settlement of what amounts to a civil war between the Taliban and the government in Kabul. He believed that "every conflict has to end at the negotiating table." His confidants believe that he would try to use Bin Laden's death as an opportunity to set the stage for peace negotiations in Afghanistan.
What Richard Holbrooke Knew--Nicholas Kristoff
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/05/15/opini … ef=opinion
I don't think he was off base in making that comparison to the monetary costs but way off on casualties. Why are we there? The president says we are there to defeat and dismantle al Qaeda which with best estimates is about 300 individuals at most in Afghanistan and for that we commit 100,000 troops and $10 billion per month....REALY?
Where are our priorities? We let 3.5 million Americans loose their homes last year alone, and we average over 16,000 murders per year. I think that $10 billion per month can be spent better here at home.
The real problem isn't in Afghanistan anyway, its the conflict between Pakistan and India. I think we're in Afghanistan just to keep Pak and her nukes in check.
Ralph, Afghanistan is all about the Taliban going to Texas in 1997 as guests of Unocal. It was reported by the BBC. The failure of the Taliban to let a pipeline be built to Caspian Sea investments of Halliburton and George Bush 1 is why Cheney thought up 911. He had to get that pipeline built while diverting blame for an imperialist war. So he helped kill 3k people on 911 to make sure that no one would blame the US government for violating international law.
Here is the BBC article. People should really read this: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/world/west_asia/37021.stm
No president is going to cross the neocons and pull out before that pipeline is built, IMO. I hope I am wrong and that the government sees the futility of the war.
Interesting BBC article. I wasn't aware of the events. Thanks.
Yeah--who knows WHAT they might do if they don't get their way!
Killing 3,000 of us, and then hundreds of thousands more resulting...
They have 0 sense of anything; morality, decency, conscience...
Yes but how do you bring someone to the negoiating table in a way that will get them to make necessary concessions? We brought Japan to the table with a bomb. We might so the same with Afghanistan, but Obama never will. Obama leads from behind. He waits to see what others will do and how the efforts of others will be viewed before he acts. Don't expect anything decisive from Obama.
Sarah. I heard that voice somewhere before. Do you have another name you go by?
Apparently you haven't been keeping up with the news wrt Obama's greatly stepped up drone attacks in Afghanistan and Pakistan and his increase in troops over the number sent by Bush. We're trying to make this a serious, fact-based discussion, not a knee jerk hate Obama session. Try to get your facts straight.
Which facts are you referring to because I didn't include any in my post. I just gave my opinion. Obama is trying to prosecute a sanitised version of war through the use of drones killing as many civilians as enemies. Personally I don't think that will work to bring anyone to the table for serious negoiation. It hasn't worked for Israel in the last 60 years!
Obama stepped up all of our activities in Afghanistan over what Bush was doing. What more do you think he should be doing?
I think we should just get out. There's no way to win wars like this any more. You have to make every resident of the country the enemy and subject to elimination. Then you have to take and hold the territory and resources for yourself. If you're not willing to do that or if the resources aren't enough to recover your costs than why bother?
Well, we're not too far apart on that. I'm hoping an orderly withdrawal will begin this year. Changing the culture of Afghanistan is a hopeless task. And by now there are more Al Qaida terrorists in Yemen, Somalia and scattered across Europe than there are in Afghanistan. My impression is that the Taliban's program doesn't include attacking the U.S. or at least it didn't originally.
I agree with that. The Taliban's main agenda is imposing their version of sharia law across Afghanistan. Their secondary agenda is to get all foreign troops off their land.
Deliberately blurring the distinction in the public perception between Taliban and Al Qaeda has been just another strategy used by those who want to pursue the war.
That's my impression as well. The American public is becoming tired of our commitments in Afghanistan. They are unsustainable, in my opinion. I expect Obama to over-rule the generals and begin significant withdrawals this year. Perhaps we could hone our nation-building skills nearer to home, for example, in Haiti or Detroit where I live.
Yes - what was Vietnam about? Afghanistan is about oil and gas pipelines, controlling those corridors, containing oil and gas to China and surrounding Iran. Obama is irrelevant.
what confuses me is that everyone calls Bush, Chaney and crowd no-brained idots, and now you want to give them credit for orchestrating something like this?
I don't think anyone calls Cheney no-brained. He's been at is since the 1970's.
Him and Rumsfeld. 2 peas in a pod.
Plus, consider Cheney's relationship with Bush senior...
It wasn't little George that was the brains...all he had to do was furnish the means.
Bush is a "no-brained idiot." Cheney is a devious reptilian humanoid monster.
There is a whole group:
http://poac.wordpress.com/2006/12/19/a- … refresher/
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