The Put Up or Shut Up Act of ’21

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Listen up you arrogant, saber rattling, chicken hawk, chickenshit, hyper-partisan, hot air breathing firebrands, (f)lawmakers and broadcasting blow holes!

IF your perfect 20/20 hindsight has been triggering your opposition to wheeler / dealer Donald J. Trump’s Afghanistan Exit Strategy (seen to fruition by President Joe Biden); IF you flat-out insist that American troops get redeployed, STAT; i.e., to restage that till the end of time, no-win, godforsaken war, THEN YOU go fight it!

Working towards that end…

Just to indulge you cannibals; to sate your ravenous hunger for human entrails; quench your insatiable thirst for human blood, I propose the following legislation, which I’m certain you pseudo-patriot, flag humpers will support TWO TRILLION PERCENT. It is with you in mind that we name this law, too. Check this out!

The Put Up or Shut Up Act of ’21

And, I’m reasonably confident, too, that Biden would promptly sign on the dotted line to make it the law of the land!

This law, stated unambiguously…

America will hereby draft and deploy, wherever needed, all able-bodied, age 18+, warmongering pundits and politicians; as well as each and every able-bodied, age 18+ warmongering member of their families.

Acting Senator CommonSenseTom • August 23, 2021

I can already sense your exhilaration; so much so, that you’ve already started packing your bags, updating your wills and pre-planning your own funerals! As they say in show biz, “Break a leg!”

Listen up re my pre-battle pep talk, too. The time is ripe for you guys to put up or shut up! IF your battlefield bite equals your bluster’s bark, the Taliban won’t stand a chance. Of course, that IS a BIG IF!

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The Wind of 120 Days / Change

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Being unable to actually, meaningfully converse with civilians who still call Afghanistan home, my understanding of their plight will be limited to conjecture; hopefully insightful, educated guessing. And, seeing how I’ve only had a scant seven days to sort out that godforsaken war’s tragic, abrupt, turn for the worst, this post, at best, should be viewed as a work in progress.

And plight is apt terminology, considering how, the Taliban toppled President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani’s administration; not unlike how the “Wind of 120 days” would slam into a house of cards; indeed, a most unwelcome wind of change.

Re my educational creds, I’m no heavily college degreed student of this particular region’s history; merely a man whose gut has oft proven trustworthy, at times, prescient.

And my gut reaction, right from the get-go, was that “President” George W. Bush’s invasion of Afghanistan was doomed to end precisely like it did! There’d be no way in Hell, that moron could ever bomb his way into nation building; i.e., into establishing an enduring, honest, level-headed, even-handed Democracy. And Hell, too, is apt terminology.

Let’s now try to look at this from my uncertain perception of the Afghans’ perspective.

• For starters, how could civilians not resent any superpower’s meddling; even by a nation that’s purportedly benign? What could ever be worse to eyewitness, first hand, than America’s ceaseless attempts to willy-nilly bomb their already imperfect homeland back to the stone age? Think about it. Oppressor W mindlessly maiming and murdering, to do what? Oust another oppressor such as the Taliban? An apt song couplet doth comes to mind:

“Meet the new boss
Same as the old boss”

Pete Townshend • Composer of “Won’t Get Fooled Again” • Full Lyrics Linked Here

• As for Americans training Afghan troops, did the generals actually expect their barked out orders, “Fight W’s war, Dammit!”, would be met with a resounding chorus of “Yessirs!”? Many of these new recruits would likely yell, “Yessir!” to Townshend’s very lyrics; i.e., shout, “No Sir!”, to being bossed around.

• Of course we must be fair, here, too. There had been some societal improvements, especially the gains made by females of all ages. But, seeing how defusing chronic, toxic masculinity can be problematic most anywhere in our world, why would Afghanistan be any different? Wherever a male fits into the Taliban hierarchy (if, indeed, anywhere), it’s highly unlikely that female liberation would wind up, high up on his to do list.

For now, for the sake of keeping this post mercifully short, I’ll limit this far from complete analysis to those three bullet pointed speculations above.

Suffice to say, other than one helluva, beyond repair, mucked up mess, George W. Bush wound up with nothing to show for the oceans of red blood and red ink he had needlessly spilt.

And, considering the Taliban’s brutal, sadistic nature, this wretched régime’s return to absolute power won’t find them in any particular hurry to right any of war criminal W’s unforgivable wrongs.

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Alternate Reality’s Rose Hath a Thorn

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Just to score brownie points with the orange DJT, history revisionists / propagandists, have been conveniently, completely forgetting how President Joe Biden inherited “President” George W. Bush’s boots on the ground, groundless, no-win Afghanistan War. And it is crucial that we do make that distinction ‘tween George and Joe.

There’s also need to honestly assess the primary cause and effect that led up to W’s war. To do so, will make it abundantly clear why that so-called prez had made Afghans his political pawns. To flesh that out, succinctly, W had to cover his sorry ass after the 9/11 attacks had caught him with his Commander-In-Chief pants down.

Here’s the skinny. Had W not ignored, his 08/06/2001 Presidential Daily Briefing; ominously titled: “Bin Laden Determined to Strike in US”; had, instead, heeded this report’s dire warning of hijackings, he’d have had five weeks to, bare minimum, implement more rigorous airport / airline security. Had W done so…

A much rosier alternate reality would’ve materialized; one where Osama bin Laden’s hijacking plot, quite literally, had never gotten off the ground; and consequently, there would’ve been no need for the Afghanistan War, where 241K people perished (71K of them civilians).

Alas (long sigh), no rose is thornless…

While the Afghans would’ve avoided sociopath Bush’s inflicted death and suffering, they would’ve still suffered an abysmal quality of life under Taliban domination.

The tragic, heartbreaking reality is how, mere days ago, due to W’s abject failure to truly liberate them, the Afghans, once again, got stuck with the horrifying, inhumane Taliban’s oppression, anyway.

There are (at least) two certainties:

  • War Criminal George W Bush’s “invitation” to visit The Hague is nearly 20 years overdue.
  • Those who commit torturous and genocidal acts cannot claim any statutes of limitations.

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Afghanistan: All W’s Fault!

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Near zero interest re my recent post, Dubya Owns the Afghanistan Debacle, comes as no shocker on (at least) three counts.

  • Such unflattering, honest critiques PO history’s revisionists/propagandists.
  • Saddening/maddening warfare never delivers a feel good buzz to readers.
  • Readers rarely find the time to pour over any post with an 863 word count.

Nonetheless, humankind must always understand the perils of empowering errant leaders; especially the sort who remain unaware and/or unyielding and/or unrepentant.

And, while those first two bullet pointed items cannot be readily dealt with, I can rein in my verbosity, thusly…

George W. Bush didn’t take seriously, his 08/06/2001 Presidential Daily Briefing, ominously titled “Bin Laden Determined to Strike in US”. Had he been more attentive re that report’s five weeks in advance, dire warning of hijackings, he’d have heightened airport / airliner security. Alas, he did nothing.

Consequently, the 9/11 attacks went down and W got caught with his Commander-In-Chief pants down.

Job #1 for W’s image makeover consultants became erecting a smokescreen to cover his sorry ass. He’d provoke a distracting, needless, vengeance seeking war against Afghanistan; all on the pretext of “smoking out” Osama bin Laden.

  • In essence, the Afghans had become W’s pawns.
  • The Afghanistan War never brought ObL to justice.
  • Eventually, Operation Neptune Spear succeeded where W had failed.

Conclusion: War criminal George W. Bush is solely responsible for mucking up Afghanistan for mere political gain. He is totally culpable for the needless oceans of hemorrhaging red blood and red ink.

History can only fault his successors, Barack Obama and Donald J. Trump, for not ending that godforsaken, genocidal, $2 Trillion debacle sooner.

President Biden must be commended, never condemned, for finally making the gutsy move to end America’s longest war. At the very least, he must warmly welcome the fleeing Afghan refugees into our American family.

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BTW, I successfully whittled down the word count; from 863 to 327!

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Dubya Owns the Afghanistan Debacle

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My bygone, middle school’s Social Studies instructor, H.M., taught me how critical thinking, in part, depends upon one’s ability to accurately sift thru the cause and effect aspects, of the situation at hand.

As of late, the media analysts / would-be strategists (of all political stripes) have been rehashing Afghanistan’s downfall. Considering these talking heads’ inconclusive hand wringing and worthless finger pointing, it’s my conclusion that their difficulties, in part, are based upon their inability to grasp how cause and effect actually interact. Let’s dig deeper.

Twenty Augusts ago, on the 6th, (then president) George W. Bush, (purportedly) took a gander at his Presidential Daily Briefing; that PDB ominously titled “Bin Laden Determined to Strike in US”; that very document even envisioning commercial jet hijackings!

As everything eventually panned out, the recently installed prez had been granted / gifted an ample five week long heads up; i.e., to prepare in a prompt, proactive manner; to protect and defend the United States of America; to, ultimately, prevent needless human suffering and death.

Did W even lift a pinky finger to do so? NOPE! By the time 9/11 had rolled around, W’s leadership vacuum had managed to suck 19 of Osama bin Laden’s box cutter wielding terrorists into America’s airports and comfortably seat them aboard 4 jetliners. If things had been any worse, he probably would’ve served ’em breakfast, too.

Ergo, ObL’s predicted attacks wound up catching W with his Commander-In-Chief pants down, all of which horrified his handlers. However, it was not the attacks, themselves, which had formed worry lines on their mugs. What actually sent them reeling in panic mode boiled down to the Q:

How will we ever be able to cover our boss’s sorry ass; firm up his politically flaccid image?

Their eventual, concocted M.O. amounted to a diversionary scam. They’d instruct bush-leaguer W to, FIRST, fearmonger the gullible, non-critical thinking public and, NEXT, dupe these sheeple into blind acceptance of his vengeance seeking, “smoke out” Osama bin Laden (dead or alive), willy-nilly, batshit crazy crusade.

One wonders if they had ever considered flying a more brains over brawn approach up the flagpole; i.e., something akin to Operation Neptune Spear, which President Barack Obama would eventually approve (come 2011); the meticulously orchestrated, regimented operation, where U.S. Navy SEALS were able to finally track down and obliterate bin Laden (not that his death did much of anything to win W’s no-win War on Terror/make our world a safer place).

Anyway, seeing how W’s “smoke out” plan was never anything more than a CYA smokescreen, he had never actually intended to bring 9/11’s architect to justice. All his wranglers did manage to accomplish was snagging their boy his coveted second term. And, as is true with most other cookie cutter Republicans, clutching to power (and amassing obscene wealth) is all that ever really matters to them.

Alas, throughout W’s eight year reign of terror, he exploited the Afghans as his political pawns; used them as his punching bag; even waterboarded / tortured suspected enemies of his own making; while trying to cover it all up with his euphemistic catchphrase, “enhanced interrogation techniques”.

Abroad: W was, still is, guilty of [1] needlessly slaughtering 241,000 people, 71,000 of them civilians [read it and weep article located here], [2] stifling / snuffing out that nation’s culture, and [3] blasting the real estate / infrastructure to smithereens.

Domestically: To this very day, W’s fear generated, U.S. Patriot Act still bulldozes and buries our once-upon-a-time Constitutionally guaranteed personal freedoms and has pissed away TWO TRILLION FREAKIN’ DOLLARS; revenue that would’ve been far better spent on domestic programs to vastly improve Americans’ quality of life.

As bad as all of that already sounds, the repackaging and rebranding techniques, which served to refurbish W’s image, long ago, became canon within the Republican Party’s mucked up, political playbook.

You see, what those wranglers / spin doctors learnt during W’s Era, is that IF they could so readily groom an asshat, such as the ne’er-do-well George W. Bush; morph that imbecile into a pseudo conquering superhero, THEN such a coat of whitewash can also be easily slapped onto any subsequent, political wannabe stumblebum.

Case in point, in preparation for the 2024 Presidential Elections, image makeover (con) artists will be able to easily groom elitist Donald J. Trump; morph that insurrectionist fascist freak into a fake founding father figure.

Bottom lining it, George “Dubya” Bush’s negligence was, still is, and shall forever brand him the CAUSE of the EFFECT; better known as the War in Afghanistan! Dubya flat out owns that godforsaken debacle!

Had Dumbass Dubya properly and promptly reacted to his PDB’s dire warning and thwarted the 9/11 attacks, his pre-existing leadership vacuum would’ve never been strong enough to suck America into that two decades too long, no-win war! Hell, that war would’ve never even existed!

Regarding Bush’s dreadful character faults and deplorable deeds, be these mentioned above or not, on behalf of America, my heartfelt apology to all Afghans. I know what I’m about to type will be of no consolation to either you or me, but say it I must:

I never voted for him!

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Embattled Mixed Emotions

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As a pacifist, I concur with President Joe Biden’s decision to finally end George W. Bush’s ill-conceived War in Afghanistan; the projected exit date to fall on September 11, 2021; the 20th Anniversary of the NYC / DC / PA al-Qaeda attacks.

As a pragmatist, I know there’s little for the world to gain by America soldiering onward, endlessly, in that one specific war zone; especially considering how terrorism, by its very nature, knows no geopolitical boundaries; when new, terrorist training camps proliferate not unlike metastatic cancer cells; when any attempts at shutting them down is not unlike playing a bloody, deadly game of Whac-a-Mole.

As an ethicist, I also need to factor in the Pottery Barn, “You Break It, You Own It Rule”. Obviously, since W did his damnedest to break Afghanistan, unfortunately, that means that each of his presidential successors, have inherited the carnage. And, as such, there’s a moral and financial obligation to clean up all that W had mucked up.

The rub here is that when it comes down to any Wars on Terror, there are no easy exit strategies; as the reality of W’s nearly two decades long AND Russia’s one decade long no-win battles can both certainly attest to.

The problem began when brain dead W, in his futile attempt to “smoke out” Osama bin Laden, had resorted to boots on the ground overkill when, truth be told, a more refined, cogent approach would’ve sufficed; e.g. President Barack Obama’s deployment of the “United States Navy SEALs of the U.S. Naval Special Warfare Development Group (also known as DEVGRU or SEAL Team Six)” (quoted content copied / pasted from Google search).

Of course, that’s not to say there have been no gains within Afghanistan, in particular, we must consider the modest improvements re human rights; more specifically, women’s rights.

As an altruist, the very thought of the Taliban (or any other barbaric, moronic, misogynistic régime), muscling its way back into that embattled region is repugnant to me.

As a realist, I know that U.S. troops have been fighting no-win battles. So, how the hell could it ever be any different for the Afghani forces who will soon be left to fend for themselves?

As a kinda / sorta journalist, I find it absolutely unsettling to end a blog with a question, especially one that neither I nor anyone else can honestly answer in a hopeful manner. Long sigh.

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The 9/11 Prez’s Stench Rendered Naïve Voters Nose Blind

 

Let’s rehash George W. Bush… the 9/11 “prez”. For starters, his very rise to power hinged upon his mouthpieces and handlers successfully corrupting 5 of the 9 SCOTUS judges… coercing them into denying his opponent, Al Gore, what should’ve been the mandatory, statewide recount of the disputed Florida ballots.

In the end, W wound up stealing the 2000 elections… cheating his way into the Oval Office. The glaring irony… he had never actually wanted the presidency. He had amply demonstrated his disinterest by turning a blind eye to his 08/06/2001 Presidential Daily Briefing’s figurative, flashing red lights… a deaf ear to the accompanying, figurative, high decibel klaxons. What part of that PDB’s headline “Bin Laden Determined To Strike in US” did he not comprehend?

That spot-on, invaluable intel had forewarned W of the imminent hijackings five full weeks before they went down. Why the hell… at the very least… had he not beefed up airport security?

OK… in all fairness… it’s totally possible such an effort would’ve proven insufficient to prevent 9/11. Nonetheless, he should’ve tried. But, instead, W went on vacation… and after a mere seven months into his first term.

And so, his slacking off allowed the jets to crash into the twin towers, five sided architecture and rural real estate… caused nearly 3,000 needless deaths. And so, he was caught with his commander in chief trousers down… staring into the cameras… caught in their unforgiving glare like the proverbial, dazed deer caught in the headlights.

At that point, his in a tizzy spin doctors and image consultants went into damage control mode to beef / stiffen up his flaccid, unpresidential image. Yep, they were already thinking way ahead towards his ’04 reelection campaign. To that end, they’d begun to mutate their little boy W into “The Boy Wonder”… the “blood and guts”, “rampaging”, “superhero” persona he never had and never would. He’d order US troops to pointlessly rampage into Afghanistan and Iraq… to bomb the crap out of them… to commit crimes against humanity such as the waterboarding / torturing of their captured POWs… to permit Osama bin Laden to flee.

And, as if that weren’t bad enough, already, W collaborated with US Congressmen to bulldoze and bury the US Constitution… to gut that once hallowed, Founding Father penned document of any promises that’d “secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity”

W’s legacy… He became an un-convicted war criminal and bank robber. He needlessly rolled out the tanks and tanked out the economy. He militarily splattered the red blood and monetarily splattered the red ink.

To keep it real… statistically, W blew away one million humans and blew one trillion bucks fighting his no-win, never-win war on terror.

All that had actually accomplished was to set the Republican, presidential expectations bar low. In other words… if the majority of American voters could put up with the stench of George W. Bush, they could easily go nose blind to the far worse stench of Donald J. Trump.

The End!

 

9/11’s Wars Only Filled Coffins and Emptied Coffers

 

On this 16th anniversary of 9/11, America’s darkest day in recent history, it would’ve been far too easy for this blogger to extensively lambaste America’s alleged ruler of that era… fault him for ignorantly or indolently or intentionally failing to heed a key intelligence briefing… one which would’ve provided him five full weeks to try to thwart that terrorist attack.

That squandered opportunity resulted in nearly 3,000 dead and over 6,000 injured on 9/11, itself, and, subsequently enabled war profiteers to make a killing (both figurative and literal) once the U.S. got entangled in two, ill-conceived, unwarranted wars. By some accounts both endless, never to be won battles, to date, have slaughtered 1,000,000 innocent souls… while bleeding humanity and the U.S. treasury dry. In other words…

All we have to show for the war on terror are filled coffins and emptied coffers.

Now, if you think my three above paragraphs are too strong and too long, you should’ve seen my three-pager word document, re this same subject matter, which never hit the www on this day!

Just so there’s no misunderstanding… I totally despise all terrorists especially ISIS, al Qaida, the Nazi Party and the Ku Klux Klan. However, we can never expect conventional wars to ever combat and conquer any of these deplorable insane, intracranial ideologies. Indeed, terrorism’s specific latitude and longitude cannot be found on any world map, which makes the boots on the ground approach obsolete… which makes a damned fool out of any leader, who’d ever declare a war on terror.

The best way to thwart terrorism is to end nutritional and intellectual starvation wherever it’s found in our world… to see that everyone makes full use of their God given (or if you’d prefer) their innate talents… to not stand in the way of every industrious individual’s progress. When nearly everyone has a purpose in life… feels fully contented with their lot in life… it will become nearly impossible for any terrorist recruiter’s sales pitch to ever gain any traction.

True, that’s a tall order to fill and will take considerable time and effort… but that’s true of all worthwhile endeavors. And the sooner we, as a society wise up, the better.