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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