Analysis by Kyle A. Lohmeier
The Trump regime, under the guidance of Secretary of Defense General Jim Mattis, will send an additional 4,000 young American men and women into Afghanistan for no readily apparent reason, according to the Associated Press.
“The Pentagon will send almost 4,000 additional American forces to Afghanistan, a Trump administration official said Thursday, hoping to break a stalemate in a war that has now passed to a third U.S. commander in chief. The deployment will be the largest of American manpower under Donald Trump’s young presidency,” Lolita C. Baldor and Robert Burns wrote very early this morning.
Why do we need to “break a stalemate” between the Taliban and the corrupt Afghan government we’ve been propping up for years? To what end? What does the average American taxpayer get out of such a “victory?”
Obama tried in the past to send in far more troops than just 4,000 to batter the Taliban into peace talks. That didn’t work, the Taliban just took their gruesome losses and fought on. We, as in Americans, don’t understand the long-simmering tribal and ethnic rivalries of the region. We, as in the U.S. government and military, have no way of placating the “enemy,” nothing that we can offer that will make them go away short of unconditional surrender. We also lack the ability, political will and international backing to viciously wipe them all out in Afghanistan and neighboring Pakistan. We don’t even have the political will to pressure the Saudis to cut off the funding for the madrassahs that radicalize young Pakistani Pashtun kids and turns them into Taliban soldiers.
Even if we pretend this influx of 4,000 more soldiers is enough to finally “win” the war, what does “winning” in Afghanistan even look like? A negotiated truce between the weak government and the Taliban warlords? Then what? Why would anyone assume either side would honor whatever truce we’d be unlikely to broker in the first place? And, most of all: who cares?
The U.S. went to Afghanistan sixteen years ago to find one guy. Supposedly, they got him years later in Pakistan. Why the hell are we still in Afghanistan; I mean other than mission-creep and feckless governing by Obama and Bush? Why are we surprised that a war without an end in mind has resulted in an endless war?
Were it up to me, I might send 4,000 more service men and women to Afghanistan. They would, however, exclusively be logistical units – guys to break down all the big, expensive equipment we’ve brought there and ready it for transport back to the U.S. Then, I’d have all military members home from Afghanistan (and everywhere else, again, were it up to me) by Labor Day.
There is nothing to win in Afghanistan. That entire country has become a big, ugly black hole in the Earth into which American’s property has been disappearing for going on two decades now. Why is the government continuing to waste our tax money there long after it supposedly killed bin Laden? The only reason is that there must be something the oligarchs want there; even if it is only the violence that the defense industry oligarchs need to make big money.