The photo has nothing to do with the article. Just a little peace before reality.
I first wrote this article three years ago for HubPages.com. Not a lot has changed in Afghanistan, but much of the Middle East has caught fire, and Europe, North America, Africa, in fact the whole world, will soon tremble from the march of so-called “peaceful” Islam as it pushes its way into schools, courts, governments….
One bad thing after another continues to happen not in our favor in Afghanistan. Hamid Karzai wants us out, but remember: he’s between that proverbial “rock and a hard place.” (Karzai of course is gone now.) The Taliban also wants us out. I’m pretty sure the leaders of Pakistan would like to see us fade away, too. Or would they? Maybe the only reason Pakistan has not fallen to the Taliban and become an Islamic republic is because America is still in Afghanistan. Pakistan can’t identify the enemy either. Everybody dresses and looks alike. And records? Are there any, especially up in the northwest territories, where the government does not have a lot—or maybe none—of influence? I don’t know. Pakistan has nuclear weapons but I wonder how much actual control they have on their people. (God help us if radical Islam ever gets control of those weapons.)
When our soldiers mistakenly burned the Koran, Oh my God did the Afghan civilians scream—and rightly so: after all, wouldn’t we be upset if they—and probably not mistakenly—burned the Bible? Oh yes, we would have been upset, but we wouldn’t have gone looking for Muslim people to kill because of it. I’m pretty sure the Taliban has much influence on many local Afghan leaders, and the word likely went out to riot and kill as many Americans as possible by whatever cowardly way possible.
Do Afghan civilians riot when the Taliban murder civilians, especially women and children? I don’t know. I haven’t heard much about that.
About this soldier a while back who killed 16 civilians…I have never been in combat but I can imagine what it would be like to be unable to identify the enemy, and to see a fellow soldier die right beside you, killed by a so-called “friendly.” That “friendly” might even have been wearing a uniform of the new Afghan military or police force. There’s no way to know who is what. Very similar to what happened in Vietnam, where a friend shared a story of himself blowing away a child who was running toward him with a grenade. The memory of killing that child will remain with him to his dying day. I doubt even a day will go by without his remembering, and wondering if he could have done something differently. The one other option, of course, would have been to do nothing, which would have guaranteed both he and the child would have blown up.
Then, of course, the My lai Massacre, and again the frustration of not being able to identify the enemy, but this article is not about Vietnam, it’s just the frustration of seeing so many similarities.
The young man who killed the civilians in Afghanistan will now be faced with the same unending memories.
Instead of waiting for that timeline date in the future, we might as well leave now, tomorrow, especially since the enemy now knows when we are leaving. Sorry, Mr. President, I know you have pressure from all sides to end this war, and we will end it. But all the Taliban has to do is stay away and hide across the border in Pakistan, oh, but of course kill as many Americans and other NATO soldiers as possible by ambush and those cowardly roadside bombs. (The timeline leave date has since been adjusted.)
The thing is we will leave. We will leave the job very unfinished just as we did when we left Vietnam, and Somalia (I don’t want to even think about Somalia, not even that part of the world!) (oh, and Lebanon, but I won’t go there even with my thoughts) but the same thing will happen. When we left Vietnam the communist north came swarming down and took over the country, and gave Saigon a brand new not-very-pretty name. The same thing will happen when we leave Afghanistan: the Taliban will come swarming back over the border from Pakistan and take over the government and the country. (With this surge of power they might even take over Pakistan itself: what difference could one more radical Islamic republic make anyway?) (Oh! I forgot: that particular Islamic country has nuclear weapons!) The Taliban might lose a few expendable men in these two operations, but not many. And any Afghan man who supported the Americans will be killed, hopefully not tortured first as he watches the so-called religious Taliban sub-humans murder his family.
Karzai himself might be killed too, for certain if he does not agree to be just a political figurehead, which I’m sure he would readily agree to. More likely, when America leaves he will leave also, because he knows with no doubt what will come next.
And Women? Many of them will be killed too, and whether or not they supported the Americans. They will simply be killed because they are women, women with new power since they got more rights, rights they have come to appreciate since the Americans have been there. Unfortunately, when the Americans leave, those “rights” will dissolve. Just as sure as the sun rises that country will drop back into a dark religious stone age, with men-only in charge. And this FACT should make every civilized person weep.
The old battle cry will go up now: “Do you (meaning me) want America to be the policeman of the world?” Well, no, but better America then Russia (with Putin back in charge) or the growing powerhouse of China.
The following comment appeared when I first wrote this hub. Again, not a lot has changed.
ib radmasters 3 years ago, from Southern California
Well done and articulated hub on this subject.
My opinion is that war is a last resort, but when the US goes to War they should go for a total win. Unfortunately, Iraq and Afghanistan is not any different from all the other wars involving the United States where the United States didn’t win the war. There is a difference between military victory and winning the war.
The Taliban along with Islamic Extremist Terrorists are never condemned for their atrocities, but when the United States is involved in any killings or casualties then it becomes a global issue. When 911 occurred, most of the third world, and that includes Afghanistan cheered.
Where are these critics of the United States when the US Captain killed people in his own fort in the US because of his Islamic beliefs.
A lot of the blame for the extended wars in Iraq and Afghanistan actually goes to the US Congress and all the liberals that didn’t give the military the moral support and the necessary military equipment to protect themselves against the enemy and the proper weapons to defeat the enemy.
These two wars are representative of all the previous wars that the US has been involved in, especially the ones after WWII.
Thanks, voted this hub up.
A sunset photo to offer more peace to a very unsettled world.