Watch: The last 4 US presidents really nailed it on Afghanistan

Originally published at: Watch: The last 4 US presidents really nailed it on Afghanistan | Boing Boing


2 trillion would have gone a long way in healthcare and eduction. Instead we got people killed and lined the pockets of war supplying industrialists and capitalists.


Look up clusterfuck in the dictionary, Afghanistan is right there staring back at you.


Let’s not fool ourselves into believing the war is the reason it wasn’t spent that way though. It’s never been about what we’ve been able to afford, it’s about what we’ve been willing to spend money on.


agreeing kevin corrigan GIF


I would say, sarcastically, “who on earth could have foreseen this outcome?! Clutch the pearls!!” But the truth is way too many folks gave their stamp of approval on this terrible idea from the beginning.


Absolutely. Even “leftist” politicians like John Lewis and Bernie Sanders voted in favor of the invasion, as did our current POTUS. Just one U.S. Congressperson—Barbara Lee—argued against and ultimately voted against it. For this she was called a terrorist and a traitor.

I wish I could believe our country learned a lesson from this but I don’t doubt for a second that it would go down the same way if we experienced another 9/11-type event today.


" and at least 66,000 Afghan lives"

That’s just Afghan military casualtes. The article also list 47,245 civilians killed. Not that any numbers are reliable.


“You’ve fell victim to one of the classic blunders! The most famous is never get involved in a land war in Asia…” -Vizzini in The Princess Bride


Any time someone says we can’t afford universal healthcare, or welfare, or universal pre-K, or infrastructure repairs, or whatever, I always reply: “I refuse to believe a $17 Trillion a year economy can’t afford it.”


Money is spent into existence for whatever gov wants, not spending it on education and healthcare is purely ideological so i couldn’t give a crap about the trillions (over there) and billions (over here) that were spaffed on this but the senseless waste of lives on the other hand…


So, a Benghazi a week, for 20 years? I know I’m being horrifically glib, and many more orders of magnitude of Afghan lives were lost.


and honestly not just in deaths.

we send our troops over for these oil wars, and our whole society is ra ra for the honor of greyskull, leaving people with serious serious trauma.

the addiction and homeless crises in the states isn’t just the result of absent government programs it’s also a result of the military program we do have

most of my family has served, very few of them escaped unharmed. and i believe a large part of the qanon mentality a few of them have comes right from the conflict of perceived and actual moral value that they can’t reconcile

it’s hard to see that any good has come of this that couldn’t have been achieved using less violent and traumatic means


This was always going to be a debacle, in every phase, beginning to end.
Supposedly, this was done in order to get Bin Laden, even though the Taliban offered to turn him over to a third party… and none of the hijackers on 9/11/01 were Afghans.
Most of the hijackers were Saudis, so why no drum-beats to invade Saudi Arabia?
Even after it was established that UBL had fled to Pakistan, not a word about invading them in order to get him until the deed was done long after was there.
Rhetorical questions, I know.

Perhaps we should bring back the Draft. Do away with volunteers. Everyone does a stint, even if it’s in the Peace Corps & not the military. Some of the chickenhawks might cool their jets if they knew they were sending their own Sprog off to die…

Just a couple of years after its stint in Afghanistan, the USSR imploded. I wonder if the American Empire will last that much longer, as well.

Well, some of us, anyway.
The Gawd, Guns, n Guts crowd has sure gotten their way for a long time.


The Afghanistan War achieved its purpose within three years - Bush was re-elected and had enough military power and political capital to attack Iraq, his real target. Now that whole cabal is either comfortably retired, being paid millions for speaking engagements, or have peacefully died. Contemporary democrats didn’t do enough to either stop it or guarantee its success, Obama didn’t have the balls to do anything about it, Trump secretly caved, and Biden was president when it finally ended in chaos (or really no one could hide the chaos anymore), but really, this is all on Bush and his cronies. All of it.


That’s kind of a cop-out though.

Congress didn’t exactly need to be strong-armed into attacking Afghanistan by Bush or his cronies—as I noted, Barbara Lee was the only member of the legislative branch who spoke up to counsel restraint or voted against the invasion. The invasion itself was probably the most bipartisan action Bush took during his whole administration. If Gore had been in the White House at the time he probably would have sent forces into Afghanistan too.

None of that excuses the war or means it was a good idea. But people do really stupid things when they’re angry, and in the days following the 9/11 attacks the entire country was really, really angry.


As a famous Major General of the USMC once said - and these are the words of the most-highly decorated Marine in US history, at time of his death - War Is a Racket.

Worth a read; it’s a short book that lays out this truth with five concise and convincing points, backed by his own experiences that led him to realize he had been a lackey for the racketeers all along.


“… Instead we got people killed and lined the pockets of war supplying industrialists and capitalists.

In other words, the war was a success.


Yeah, I mean, I’ve seen estimates upwards of two to three hundred thousand killed. Because it’s not just those directly killed (add at least another 50K of dead “militants” to the official numbers you mention), many of whom weren’t counted, but everyone who died as a result of aid programs being disrupted by the US invasion, etc.


The fact that I can’t understand how 20 years of night-vision, laser-targeted, drone-delivered explosive supremacy failed to kill every AK-47 and IED-planting Taliban shows me one thing: I have absolutely no military understanding of Afghanistan.

I just hope that the last 20 years gave enough Afghan women a chance that there’s no way the country can return to the Taliban’s extremist incarnation of Islam…