Updated: Dec 18, 2021
As I sit through a dreadful State Department brief on the "Afghanistan" situation, I can't help but drawing comparisons with Saigon in 1975. You know...the rat race to flee the city as the NVA closed in....the helicopters being dumped off ships. If we have learned nothing in the last 45 years, it should be, that when you lose a war...it ends badly. No State Department spin monkey is going to change that. Even better...former CNN talking head RADM (ret) John Kirby...now DoD Press Secretary...joined the fray with some Defense Department spin.
How Did It All Go Wrong?
In late 2001, the original military mission in Afghanistan was counter-terrorism...go after the bad guys that planned and executed 9/11...Al Quaeda....remember those guys? I think most Americans would agree that was a necessary military endeavor. By mid 2002, the mission had been pretty much completed...successfully. So why did we stay? Well, you can read the recently released Afghanistan Papers to see what the confused bunch of ass clowns in charge at the time thought...namely Bush II...Rummy...Cheney...Powell...Rice...Wolfewitz...etc...etc. The bottom line: Bush II envisioned Afghanistan as a bright, shining beacon of democracy...in an area where there is not much of that. You know...nation building...with the military in the lead. Bad idea. The local inhabitants....the Taliban...who are not terrorists (hell...we gave them Stinger missiles to fight the Russkies in the 80's)...eventually grew restless with an armed foreign presence on their turf. So we soon got in to a shooting war with them. Now the military mission turned in to counter-insurgency...which the US military has never been successful at doing...and it failed miserably. In fact, there have been very few successful counter-insurgent campaigns in history, as they require extreme methods...mass starvation...civilian brutality etc. Think Boer War or Philippines...nasty stuff. So Biden did what Bush II....Obama...Trump would not. Admit defeat and move on.
Lets Get Real
So will Afghanistan end with a Saigon like embassy rooftop shot of a bunch of sweaty Americans scrambling for a seat on the last chopper out? Hell if I know. What I do know is that the military presence in Afghanistan should have ended in 2002...or at least when Obama was elected at the latest. The fact that it did not, just shows how little this country has learned in the last 50 years.