Why are we in Afghanistan?
This is from the Washington Post article about the U.S. efforts in Afghanistan that Diana West took apart the other day:
Marine commanders have little doubt that the additional 9,000 troops moving into the province will push the Taliban out of its remaining sanctuaries in Helmand. But the gains will be transitory if U.S. forces do not build effective local police forces and foster a government that is relatively free of corruption and can provide for the Afghan people, U.S. officials said.Right. Let me translate the last paragraph into its pure logical form. We have got to do A. It is absolutely essential that we do A. Furthermore, A. is doable. But there’s a catch. All the results won by doing A. will come to nought if we don’t also do B., and it just so happens that B. is not possible in this Bleeping universe!
There is no way, not in this world, not in some alternative dimension of reality, in which the U.S. has the ability to foster an Afghan government that is relatively free of corruption and can “provide” for the Afghan people. It’s not in our power.
And since we can’t foster such a government, we will not be able to keep the Taliban from returning to Helmand and rendering in vain all our struggles and the losses of our soldiers’ lives.
And yet all the trained intellects of the military and the national security establishment, with all the expertise and energy they devote to this problem, and all their intelligence reports and their task forces and their brainstorming sessions and their PowerPoint presentations, never grasp this obvious, fatal flaw in their thinking. I’m starting to think that it’s a genetic flaw in the American mind.
Well, maybe it’s not that bad. Maybe it’s not a genetic flaw in the American mind but in the liberal mind.
But … is there a difference?