They’re Coming Home!

Finally after years of my bitching and ranting like me and others about our endless wars….one of them may be ending…..Afghanistan……..

President Biden confirmed Wednesday that he will not be taking the Afghanistan war into its third decade. “It’s time to end the forever war,” he said in a speech from the Treaty Room of the White House, which CNN notes is the same room in which George W. Bush announced the start of US military involvement in Afghanistan after the 9/11 attacks almost 20 years ago. “War in Afghanistan was never meant to be a multigenerational undertaking,” Biden said, per the New York Times. “We were attacked. We went to war with clear goals. We achieved those objectives.” Biden plans to withdraw all US troops by Sept. 11 this year. Around 2,500 US troops are left in the country. NATO officials said after Biden’s speech that the alliance plans to withdraw its 7,000 troops from the country along the same timeline.

Biden said it was time to “end the cycle” of extending the American presence in the hope of creating better conditions to pull out. “I am now the fourth American president to preside over an American troop presence in Afghanistan. Two Republicans. Two Democrats,” he said. “I will not pass this responsibility to a fifth.” Unlike the deal Donald Trump negotiated with the Taliban last year, Biden’s withdrawal plan is not conditions-based, officials say. Biden said he spoke with George W. Bush and Barack Obama before announcing the decision. After the speech, Biden visited Arlington National Cemetery and said it was “absolutely clear” to him that withdrawing from Afghanistan was the right move, the AP reports.

“Never meant to be a multi-generational war”….if not then why was it?

They say (whoever they are) that the American people are tired of war,,,,,,then where were those voices?  I have heard very little opposition to war.

I know why….but I will pretend that this was good faith by Biden.

Good news our troops are coming home to their families (for now)…..but maybe not ALL our troops….

The Times report reads: “Instead of declared troops in Afghanistan, the United States will most likely rely on a shadowy combination of clandestine Special Operations forces, Pentagon contractors and covert intelligence operatives to find and attack the most dangerous Qaeda or Islamic State threats, current and former American officials said.”

I applaud Biden for this action….but there is a caveat here…..

They are coming home because the Pentagon is gearing up for the confrontation of China in the China Sea.

This is excellent news on the one hand and disturbing on the other.

Please stop this ‘gunboat diplomacy’ BS (explanation in a future post).

Be Smart!

Learn Stuff!

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

 

More Biden Afghanistan Policy

I have not been thrilled with the Biden policies toward Afghanistan and the endless war…..my thoughts were written here….https://lobotero.com/2021/02/09/biden-in-afghanistan/

That ‘other guy’ that was president did something that I agreed with….in principle…..when he set a date for US troops to leave Afghanistan…..01 May…..and since Biden has been in the White House he has continuous balked at the idea of US troops leaving the country……

With the May 1 pullout date fast approaching, President Biden seems reluctant to state his actual intentions on Afghanistan. On the one hand, he says the May 1 deadline is hard to reach, but that he also “can’t picture” US troops staying beyond next year.

Those two positions combined might put the US pullout date sometime after May 1 but before 2022. If it was that simple, however, one would expect that Biden would say as much, instead of just reiterating what he doesn’t expect to do.

This gives the same impression that Biden has given on Afghanistan since taking office, that he intends to avoid making a decision for as long as possible, and avoid any political fallout with congressional hawks who’d just as soon keep the troops there.

Since making his own peace deal, President Trump had the US ahead of pace on the pullout, but having come short of finishing it by Biden’s inauguration, he left an estimated 2,500 US troops there to be withdrawn.

A small number of troops means it’s a comparatively small expense to the US, and some in Congress, like Rep. Mike Rogers (R-AL) are expressing comfort with just leaving the troop level as it is.

Biden would avoid fights with Congress that way, but moving beyond May will be seen as a challenge to the Taliban. Taliban officials warn that any delay is unacceptable, and that they want the US pulled out on time.

As this is going on, the US proposed a deal between Afghan government and Taliban, including an interim government. The US seems to have made this proposal to tamp down Taliban anger about the pullout delay, and to argue that the peace deal needs time serves as a justification, of sorts, for the US delays.

Yet this is an empty proposal too. With the Ghani government already having ruled out an interim government, they quickly rejected the US plan, leaving that as another open-ended question about how things might shake out.

This all leaves us totally in the dark about US intentions. This could perhaps be likened to Trump’s position in 2017, when he avoided taking a position for months before deciding on a new surge. Biden seems similarly inclined toward anything that keeps the war going, but the appearances are that he’s dragging out any announcements to avoid making it into an issue.

(antiwar.com)

Just as I and many others have continuously stated that Biden will do little to change our involvement in these endless wars…..as a matter of fact the US is pleading for an extension of the 01 May deadline……

Citing sources close to the Taliban, Afghanistan’s Tolo News reported that the Biden administration has asked the Taliban to agree to a continued US presence in Afghanistan for three or six months past May 1st.

The May 1st withdrawal deadline was set by the US-Taliban peace deal that was signed in Doha last year. While the Biden administration has yet to make an official announcement, it’s clear the US is looking to stay.

Tolo News said the Taliban has not yet made a decision on the US request and is asking that first their 7,000 prisoners should be released and that the group’s officials are removed from a UN blacklist.

(antiwar.com)

I have always said that the endless war was about cash……and here is a prime example of what I state…..

Since February 29 of 2020, the US has had a peace deal in place, intending to withdraw from Afghanistan on May 1 of 2021. The US military was always averse to that, but seems to have been basing its contracts on the idea it wouldn’t happen.

Former financial officials are warning that if the US does leave Afghanistan, either on May 1 or any time in 2021, the Pentagon would be facing down a “barrel full of lawsuits” from contracts that had not been fulfilled yet.

This is rather a flimsy excuse for dragging the war on, and such a clumsy situation to be in with the knowledge of the war’s end being public throughout, that it must inevitably be questioned if this was just many, many colossal blunders, or if the Pentagon was openly trying to contractually obligate itself to the Afghan War.

Another obvious question is why, as theses contracts kept being signed, officials weren’t raising the issue of these contractual obligations throughout 2020. At the very least, that would’ve been a chance for someone to convince them to stop making such contracts before now, which once again makes this seem nearly deliberate.

(antiwar.com)

You still do not believe that war is about the money?

A final thought on the war in Afghanistan……there is commonality between Russia and the US……

After nearly two decades of fighting, the U.S. military is facing a force of Taliban fighters that is roughly the size of the Mujahideen insurgency at the end of the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan.

Soviet Maj. Gen. Aleksandr Lyakhovskiy, a respected historian, estimated that by the end of 1988 the Mujahideen fielded about 82,300 full-time fighters out of a total of 173,000 personnel.

Fast forward a couple of decades and a May 2020 United Nations report estimated that the Taliban have between 55,000 and 85,000 fighters, adding: “Taliban facilitators and non-combatants could bring the total figure to 100,000.”     

The Taliban’s ranks have swelled immensely since 2014, which marked the official end of the U.S. military’s combat mission in Afghanistan, said Jonathan Schroden, director of the Center for Stability and Development at CNA, a federally funded research and development center.

“When you go back to 2014, that time frame, the sort of official estimates of Taliban size you can find quoted openly by U.S. officials was in the 20-30,000 range,” Schroden said. “Certainly since then, it’s just continued to grow.”

20 years into the War in Afghanistan, the US is in the same position as the Soviets when they lost

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

More Biden Foreign Policy

My forte is international relations and I spend a lot of time in ‘open source’ intel looking at our positions around the world….especially when it comes to our wars and our dealings in the Middle East.

Not even a hundred days into his presidency and he has made my sh*t list……

I believe it is time for the US to get out of Afghanistan…after 20 years and many lives lost and we are in no better position than we were 15 years ago…..and I think that KSA needs to be punished for their brutal murder of the NY Times journalist……at least at this time….none of those situations will be resolved…..

Trump made a deal with the Taleban for ‘peace and the removal of US troops……Biden will crap on that deal….

President Biden said in an interview that aired on Wednesday that withdrawing from Afghanistan by the May 1st deadline set by the US-Taliban peace deal will be “tough.”

“I am in the process of making that decision now as to when they will leave,” Biden said of the remaining US troops in Afghanistan. He said the deal signed between the US and the Taliban last year in Doha was not “very solidly negotiated.”

“And so we’re in consultation with our allies as well as the government, and that decision’s in process now,” Biden added. When asked if the process will take longer than May 1st, the president said, “I don’t think a lot longer.” He said a withdrawal by May 1st “could happen, but it is tough.”

The US appears to be trying to buy more time in Afghanistan. The Biden administration presented the Taliban and the US-backed government with a power-sharing deal for an interim government, which both sides are now deliberating on.

(antiwar.com)

He , Biden, has no intention of punishing MbS, prince of KSA, for ordering the murder of a NY Times journalist who was dismembered…..

US President Joe Biden defended his administration’s decision to not impose sanctions on Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, despite acknowledging that the royal was responsible for the murder of US-based journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

In an interview with ABC News aired in parts on Wednesday, Biden credited himself for releasing the US intelligence community’s findings on the killing but said sanctioning bin Salman would have been unprecedented.

“I’m the guy that released the report,” Biden said, referring to the assessment by the Office of Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) that was made public last month.

https://www.middleeasteye.net/news/khashoggi-murder-biden-defends-decision-against-punishing-mbs

He released the report….oh goody now step the Hell up and make the bastard pay for his barbaric actions.

Enough said?

Then there is the row of China/Russia….Biden is focusing on the rise of China’s military….

But how serious is the threat?

Someone needs to say this, and it looks like it’s gotta be me: China and Russia are not our enemies.

Somehow, the opinion-makers in the media, the bloated military brass with all their ribbons and stars and with little to do but worry about how to keep their massively overbuilt operation afloat with ever more taxpayer money, and the members of Congress who like to gin up fears among the voters so they’ll keep voting for them have gotten everyone thinking that Russia is still hell bent on world communist takeover and that China it trying to replace the US as global hegemon.

Nothing could be farther from the truth.

Let’s Stop Pretending Russia and China are Military Threats

So far I have seen nothing from Biden that shows me that he will change anything in our foreign policy….endless wars…..kowtowing to KSA and Israel like a whipped puppy.

So much for a new direction.

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Bring The Troops Home!

Yes I am antiwar and I am be redundant when I write that our troops need to be home and not deployed multiple times in a war we cannot win.

After 2 decades and it is still being fought is unacceptable.

Quickly approaching 20 years of war in Afghanistan….a quagmire….some have a different opinion but those are invalid to me…

I agree with an opinion written in the American Conservative…..(and yes I read TAC)…..

Today foreign policy is dominated by a bipartisan clique which believes that America’s default position should be to intervene. In this view, the U.S. is a geopolitical Vestal Virgin, possessing the world’s conscience and determined to eliminate evil and redeem sinners worldwide. As Madeleine Albright once declared, America stands taller and thus sees further. So it is entitled to run the world—with brutal military force, if necessary.

Globe-spanning military deployments, like today, naturally follow this philosophy. The Defense Department believes it should station troops wherever they are welcome, and often where they are not. Naturally, the wishes of other nations are ultimately irrelevant; their duty is to obey their betters in Washington. The U.S. might go through a pretense of “consultation,” since it is sometimes necessary to pacify the “natives,” as it were, but even formal alliances are never equal partnerships.

Time to Bring the Troops Home

All the insider experts are telling basically that Biden should stay in Afghanistan…..time for these toads to go….

U.S. President Joe Biden is coming under heavy pressure to abandon the May 1 deadline to withdraw U.S. combat troops from Afghanistan. The push to move the deadline might come from a former secretary of state, the congressionally mandated Afghan Study Group, or even NATO’s secretary-general. Opposing the pleas of these popular figures are 20 years of unbroken strategic failure. There is ample evidence to suggest that 20 more years of failure await, should the president give in to the wishes of these personalities.

In February, former Secretary of State Madeline Albright argued Biden should ignore the May 1 withdrawal date and instead adopt a series of five new steps. The Afghan Study Group likewise advocated to abandon the withdrawal date and offered its own objectives. Meanwhile, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said the May 1 date was a “conditions-based” deal and declared the Taliban hadn’t met the conditions, and therefore NATO should continue the war.

https://www.realclearworld.com/articles/2021/03/03/ditch_the_afghanistan_experts_766573.html

This war has dragged on and on and all that is accomplished is the weapons industries keeps their profits rolling in at the cost of American lives.

20 years is long enough!

Children of the first invasion are now possibly fighting this same unwinnable war.

Let us not forget that other endless war, Iraq…..17 years and counting……

Friday is the 18th anniversary of George W. Bush’s invasion of Iraq. That misadventure proved to be a humanitarian catastrophe. As well as Washington’s worst geopolitical blunder in four decades. Tragically, America’s involvement is the misbegotten gift that keeps on giving – and killing.

President Joe Biden should bring America’s troops home from Iraq. Now.

Bring Americans Home from Iraq’s Endless War

Pres. Biden is stuck in the spiraling cycle…..

Joe Biden professed a desire to limit the use of military power only to defend vital U.S. national security interests. Like too many previous presidents, however, he has resorted to force early in his administration, presumably to establish his national security bonafides. His decision to use force in the proxy war with Iran over Syria and Iraq could compromise the leading and perhaps only legitimate national security concern in the region—the renewal of the Iran nuclear accord, the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action.

Biden has brought back every major actor from the Obama administration who was responsible for negotiating the JCPOA in 2015. This list includes CIA Director William Burns, who was the initial point of contact with the Iranian government; White House environmental tsar John Kerry, who was the key negotiator as secretary of state; National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan, who was Kerry’s aide-de-camp in the negotiations; and Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman, who was a key nuclear disarmament advisor to Kerry. Moreover, Biden has ignored the protests from the Israeli lobby and has named Robert Malley, a genuine progressive when it comes to U.S. policy toward the Middle East, to be the special emissary to Iran. All of the pieces are in place for a successful negotiation if “events” don’t get in the way.

Biden’s Quandary: Proxy Wars and Endless Wars

For god’s sake….enough is enough!

End the damn madness!

End it now!

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Afghanistan–The Future

This post is about the future of US troops in the country…

Trump admin reached an agreement with the Taleban about the removal of US troops from the country…..but that may be put on hold with the new admin that wants to keep troops involved in the country for the present.

A new report that was ordered by the Trump admin tells a disturbing tale…..

When a report comes out of Washington that has been co-authored by a who’s who group of, among others, former Secretaries of Defense, Chairmen of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Ambassadors, and U.S. Senators, it’s a good bet the results are solid. Unfortunately, in the case of the recently released Afghan Study Group’s report to Congress, this stable full of eminent members produced a policy paper that, if followed, would replicate the previous 20 years of costly, failed war – and cement that failure well into the future.

The congressionally mandated study group was formed in April 2020 with the charge to, “consider the implications of [President Trump’s February 2020] peace settlement, or the failure to reach a settlement, on U.S. policy, resources, and commitments in Afghanistan” and then make policy recommendations for Congress and the new Administration.

That is an appropriate charter, and those areas of study are factors Congress and the White House need to consider. Regrettably, however, the commission was filled with many of the very architects of America’s failed Afghan policies of the past two decades.

Their “new” recommendations look disturbingly similar to the policies that produced so much failure over the past two decades. Fortunately, there are superior, logic-based alternatives available to the Biden Administration for implementation.

Afghan Study Group’s New Report Would Guarantee Failure

Biden will have a decision to finally make…..and there seems to be only three options for him….

According to a report from Vox, President Biden has been presented with three options for how to either end the war in Afghanistan or prolong it. The Biden administration is currently reviewing the US-Taliban peace deal that was signed last year, which set May 1st as a deadline for a US withdrawal.

The first option is for President Biden to adhere to the deadline and withdraw the remaining 2,500 troops from Afghanistan by May 1st. The second option is to seek an extension of the deadline through negotiations with the Taliban. The third option is to scrap the deal and remain in Afghanistan indefinitely.

The report said the Biden administration will likely choose option two, citing unnamed US officials and experts that spoke with Vox. But it’s not clear if the Taliban has any interest in negotiating a deadline extension, as the group has been appealing to the US to withdraw.

The idea of an extension is to remain in the country while the Taliban and the US-backed Afghan government reach a deal to end fighting. But there’s no telling how long this could take or if an agreement could ever be reached.

Since the US-Taliban deal was signed, the Taliban has not attacked US or NATO forces, and no US troops died in combat in Afghanistan for an entire year, a first since the war started. But that will all change if the US stays in Afghanistan without the consent of the Taliban. It will mean an escalation of the almost 20-year war.

US officials also told Vox that the administration’s review of the US-Taliban deal is almost done, and an announcement is expected soon.

(antiwar.com)

But the rhetoric says that the US is going to be in Afghanistan until the weapons makers find a backbone and put needs of country above profit…..and that will not happen in my lifetime.

In case you doubt my words…..

Earlier this month, a study group established by Congress recommended that President Joe Biden extend the May 1 deadline for withdrawing troops from America’s longest war. It’s a strategy that many experts say runs the risk of abrogating the U.S.-Taliban agreement and potentially setting back the potential peace process in Afghanistan — or even dooming it to failure.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, there is a striking similarity in the backgrounds of the individuals involved in these critical recommendations, which are likely to influence whether Biden maintains a “conditions based” U.S. military footprint in Afghanistan. Two of the group’s three co-chairs and nine of the group’s 12 plenary members, comprised of what the group refers to as “members,” have current or recent financial ties to major defense contractors, an industry that soaks up more than half of the $740 billion defense budget, and stands to gain from protracted U.S. military involvement overseas.

There was more diversity in views and financial interests among the 26 “senior advisers” that the group consulted. At least three of these advisers have warned publicly that the suggested troop withdrawal extension may pose significant risks. But the study group’s plenary is deeply intertwined with the military industrial base, with nearly $4 million the group’s co-chairs and plenary have received in compensation for their work on the boards of defense contractors.

Weapons biz bankrolls experts pushing to extend Afghan War

Oh goody!  A multi-generational war!

We are looking at another 20 years of this conflict if things do not change…..

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Afghanistan Forever

I recently read a statement made by a NATO official when asked about a possible NATO withdrawal he said that NATO would depart when there was more stability in the country.

Seriously?

After 20 years and the Taleban controls about 52% of the country……when would this stability miraculously appear?

The SecDef made it clear that there would be NO end to our involvement.

Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin met with NATO ministers on Thursday and discussed the war in Afghanistan and the approaching May 1st deadline for all foreign forces to leave as per the US-Taliban peace deal. While no decisions were made on the pullout, Austin assured his NATO counterparts that there will be no “hasty” end to the almost 20-year-old war.

According to a statement from the Pentagon, Austin “reassured Allies that the US would not undertake a hasty or disorderly withdrawal from Afghanistan.” He also reiterated that the Biden administration is conducting a “thorough review” of the US-Taliban agreement.

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said after the meeting that no decision was made on whether or not the alliance is planning to leave before May. While NATO and the US claim the Taliban hasn’t lived up to its end of the agreement, one pledge the Taliban did stick with was not attacking the US or other coalition forces in Afghanistan.

I am sorry but there needs to be some sort of moral obligation for Biden to end this forever war…..

The U.S. is approaching its 20-year mark in the Afghan civil war. Intervening after 9/11, Washington speedily crippled al-Qaeda and ousted the Taliban. Alas, three successive administrations found it much harder to bring strong central government and Westminster-style democracy to Central Asia. So American military personnel remain on station. Like in the Hotel California, it appears that Americans can check out but never leave.

Even many hawks gave up justifying the war on humanitarian grounds, preferring to talk about the importance of staying to fight terrorism or achieve other ends. However, Ronald E. Neumann, a former US ambassador to Afghanistan, took up the challenge of justifying nation-building. He asked: “At this time, when so many young Afghans are dying to build the kind of society we preached to them, have we no moral responsibility to sustain what we helped build?”

This claim has enormous emotional appeal. But it cannot justify America’s indefinite, and likely permanent, participation in someone else’s endless (civil) war.

President Joe Biden Has a Moral Obligation To Bring America’s Troops Home from Afghanistan

When will the American people start demanding that this war comes to an end?

When will the troops become a more important part of the dialog?

Questions with few actual answers.

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Afghanistan–Should We Or Stay?

How about we do something different?

Let’s talk about something that has lasted 20 years and counting.

After 20 years of the same war….the former president tried to get our forces out of the quagmire and for that I will give him a small amount of credit.

Now we have a new president and the question once again arises….should we go or should we stay?

Joe has had a confusing 47 years in DC…..

Joe Biden hasn’t had too many finest hours in his 47 years plus years on the national scene. To be fair, he’s had his moments – like a powerful, earthy, and impassioned 1986 speech he delivered to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, opposing the Reagan administration’s apologism for the “repulsive, repugnant” Afrikaner apartheid “regime” in South Africa. Sure, he later – during the 2020 campaign – repeatedly peddled a bizarre lie that he once got arrested attempting to visit Nelson Mandela in prison. Nor does Biden sport such clean record on race relations in his own country – busing, crime bill, mass incarceration, anyone? Nevertheless, it was a damn good pitch Joe made in excoriating the (recently deceased) then Secretary of State George Schultz that July day in 1986. Moreover, within a month of that exchange Congress began debating on the Comprehensive Anti-Apartheid Act – imposing sanctions on South Africa – which eventually passed both Houses in a rare override of Reagan’s veto.

Less fanciful, but far more relevant now, was Biden’s behind-the-scenes – but apparently impassioned – opposition, as vice president, to the early Obama surge in Afghanistan. In one contentious 2010 exchange with Ambassador Richard Holbrooke (recorded in the latter’s diary) – Obama’s special envoy to Afghanistan and Pakistan – Biden apparently shouted: “I am not sending my boy back there to risk his life on behalf of women’s rights! It just won’t work, that’s not what they’re there for.” In this case, at least, Biden – who’d been staggeringly wrong on Iraq – was basically right, even if his vague pragmatism strikes some as crass or callous.

Joe’s Just Gotta Let Us Know: Will He Stay or Will He Go?

Personally I say…get the Hell out and bring our troops home where they belong.

There is no reason for us to stay….

The Biden admin has made it clear that they are no hurry to leave Afghanistan……https://lobotero.com/2021/02/09/biden-in-afghanistan/

There is zero reasons for us to stay…..

The Biden national security team must resist the temptation to dismiss the agreement or seek to unilaterally modify the terms. The United States has been fighting a pointless, unnecessary war in Afghanistan for nearly two decades. As of now, there is a firm date for the bleeding to stop and our participation in the war to end.

Already, many pundits in Washington are lobbying the new administration to cancel the withdrawal timeline and wait until the two sides have concluded a peace agreement. Not only is this not a provision of our February 2020 deal, abrogating it would almost certainly extend the fighting and might put the negotiations in peril.

Many supporters of keeping U.S. troops indefinitely fighting in Afghanistan claim – with some justification – that we cannot trust the Taliban’s promises and base our security on mere words. Washington should never entrust our security to promises given by any adversary. Fortunately, American national security is secured by our own, powerful intelligence and military capacity.

https://www.realclearworld.com/articles/2021/02/11/there_is_no_point_to_extending_commitments_in_afghanistan_660098.html

Biden recently made a statement that he bring about responsible end to our endless wars……

Speaking at the Pentagon on Wednesday, President Biden said he will work with Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin to bring a “responsible end” to US wars.

“I will work with Secretary Austin and leaders around the world to bring a responsible end — a responsible end to wars that have dragged on for far too long, while continuing to ensure that terrorist threats cannot endanger the security of the American people.”

Biden’s comments come as he has an opportunity to end the almost 20-year-old war in Afghanistan. The US-Taliban peace deal signed in February 2020 paved the way for a May 1st withdrawal. While the administration hasn’t made an official announcement, all signs indicate that US troops will remain in Afghanistan beyond the deadline.

Biden Says He Will Bring a ‘Responsible End to Wars’

The Taleban already controls about 52% of Afghanistan….appears that the government only controls the area around the capital of Kabul….

With hopes that the 2020 US peace deal and intra-Afghan peace talks might ultimately end decades of war, some uncomfortable facts remain, raising the question of who controls Afghanistan anymore.

The US would insist the Ghani government is the lawfully elected government there, but the facts on the ground show that the Taliban physically control 52% of the country, compared to only 48% in government hands.

That’s a staggering amount when one considers that the Taliban has been fighting 20 solid years of war with both the would-be government and NATO. It would be hard to imagine that people living in Taliban territory wouldn’t feel that the Taliban, who was the Afghan government before the 2001 invasion, is effectively still in charge.

The Ghani government has focused mostly on densely populated areas, and argues they control 59% of the population. Yet Afghanistan is not a nation of cities by and large, but a rural country with a lot of natural resources and farms. Controlling physical land is ultimately more important to the country’s future.

This has been the case for some time, with the Taliban having retained important parts of the country, particularly in the south and southwest.

(antiwar.com)

I agree there is NO point in extending our stay or commitments in Afghanistan…..but Biden will listen to the M-IC that wants these wars…..they make lots of money off them.

Bring the troops home and stop this insanity.

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Biden In Afghanistan

I believe that there are a few readers that think that I had nothing positive to say about our last president…..my reply to that is that hey should read more often.

When Trump tried to end the endless wars in Afghanistan and Iraq I was behind the move and I wrote my approval of his plan.

Now we have a new president and a new plan for our troops in Afghanistan…..

With the deadline for a US withdrawal from Afghanistan approaching, a congressionally mandated report was released on Wednesday that calls for the Biden administration to stay in the country.

The US-Taliban peace deal signed in February 2020 set May 1st as a deadline for the withdrawal of all foreign forces from Afghanistan. The report, released by the Afghanistan Study Group, says the US should push the deadline back. The study repeats the usual talking points that hawks use to justify prolonging the almost 20-year war.

The report says if the US leaves by May, a civil war will break out since intra-Afghan peace talks are not complete. But that ignores the fact that fighting is already ongoing between the Taliban and the US-backed government.

Biden administration official said the US hasn’t made a decision on the Afghanistan withdrawal. “At this time, no decisions about our force posture have been made,” State Department spokesman Ned Price told reporters, adding that the administration is reviewing the US-Taliban peace deal.

While the US hasn’t made an official announcement, there is little hope that the withdrawal will happen. The Pentagon said last week that the withdrawal timeline is uncertain, and NATO officials told reporters that foreign troops will be in Afghanistan after May 1st.

(antiwar.com)

Biden is halting the pullout…..does this signal another two decades of this conflict and our troops?

The report they reference is from the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR). And while the office’s quarterly report does say that the drawdown “introduces some limitations on force capacity and on the train, advise, and assist mission,” the very next sentence says that leaders of the U.S. forces have said that that the drawdown to 2,500 troops was not currently adversely affecting its work.

It’s slightly odd of ABC News to attempt to paint SIGAR as some sort of critic of Trump’s troop withdrawal because for years now SIGAR reports have been the primary way that Americans who were still paying attention would know that our continued involvement in Afghanistan has absolutely failed to stabilize the country and served primarily as a massive money pit for defense spending and a threat to the lives of our troops.

Don’t Let Biden Sink Troops Back Into the Afghanistan Quagmire

How much longer must we waste money and blood in a dead end country?

I told my readers that Biden was a hawk….this just another example….

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Women For Stability In Afghanistan

The US is working on removing itself from Afghanistan…well that was Trump’s grand plan…..but will Biden continue the push to end America’s longest ever war?

Most of us that follow international affairs know just how horribly women are treated in Afghanistan….they are little more than chattel…….

But there is a proposal for the rehabilitation of Afghanistan by making women the cornerstone of the reforms for the country.

Afghan women are closely watching as peace talks continue between their government and the Taliban. Women hope the talks will end decades of unabated violence, and not return them to a social, political, and economic prison from which there is no escape.

Afghanistan has made significant yet fragile gains over the past two decades. The country’s Constitution and political system ensure equality and human rights for all. Its economy has been working toward self-sustainability, and Afghan society has restored its rich tapestry of art, music, and culture — a legacy that the Taliban had erased.

But for Afghanistan to maintain its hard-won gains for women and girls and in human rights and democracy, the United States still must play a role in preventing the rise of extremism. It won’t be forever – the Afghan people should and will control their future. But at this pivotal juncture, continued support from the Biden Administration and the U.S. Congress are needed both for Afghanistan and for the security of the United States.

This means investing in programs dedicated to the education, economic empowerment, and leadership development of women and girls, including initiatives that address the specific effects of COVID-19. But the needs are broader than that, as national and economic stability also impact the lives of women and girls.

https://www.realclearworld.com/articles/2021/01/26/for_stability_in_afghanistan_investing_in_women_must_be_cornerstone_of_us_policy_657987.html

Seriously?

Once we leave the Taleban will fight on until they control the country and then women will be persecuted even more.

It is his concern.

In the 1990s the US turned its back on Afghanistan and all serious programs were underfunded and women took a backseat.

While I agree that women should be the cornerstone I would be remiss if I did not point out the reality on the ground.

The ultra-conservs will NOT allow women to progress.

The US and the think tanks cannot dictate to the Taleban…..that would be like a fart in a hurricane….

Sorry to be a downer on this….but these proposals need to be based in reality not some fanciful hope.

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Push Back To Leaving Afghanistan

I have seen the reasons that some have for Trump’s decision to move our troops out of Afghanistan……most of those that want to stay are getting paid by the corporations that are milking the taxpayers out of their money…..and that includes the former VP Biden…he has NO plan to bring our troops home..

Beyond that I have made an accusation that it is about the cash and not the foreign policy……here is why I say this….

The 19-year-old war in Afghanistan continues to be a huge sinkhole for US taxpayer dollars. The US government’s oversight authority that monitors waste in Washington’s Afghanistan reconstruction effort released a report this month updating its findings.

The Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) found that as of December 31st, 2019, Congress appropriated almost $134 billion to Afghanistan reconstruction since the 2002 fiscal year. Of that amount, SIGAR reviewed about $63 billion and found approximately $19 billion or 30 percent was lost to waste, fraud, and abuse.

Between January 1st, 2018, and December 31st, 2019, SIGAR found an additional $3.4 billion was lost to waste, fraud, and abuse. Of that total, SIGAR identified $1.5 billion in taxpayer funds that were lost to waste, $300 million lost to fraud, and $34 million lost to abuse. The remaining $1.6 billion was allocated to counter-narcotics, which SIGAR believes was also wasted.

In a 2018 report, SIGAR described US counter-narcotics efforts in Afghanistan as a “failure.” A UN report from 2019 found Afghanistan is the source of 80 percent of the world’s illicit opium production despite the billions of US taxpayer dollars being spent to stop it.

Since SIGAR was formed in 2008, the oversight authority has investigated approximately 44 percent of the $134 billion spent by the US on Afghanistan reconstruction. According to Brown University’s Costs of War project, as of September 2019, the US has spent $2 trillion on the war in Afghanistan. The number includes interest on borrowed money used to fund the war and money spent on care for veterans

(antiwar.com)

Can you see it now?

Close to $2 trillion and who thinks that the M-IC will give up that easy cash without a fight?

Here’s another thought about the $2 trillion…..

Pursuing trade and industrial policies that boost U.S. exports and eliminate the trade deficit while investing $2 trillion over four years in the nation’s infrastructure, clean energy, and energy efficiency improvements could support 6.9 to 12.9 million “good jobs” annually by 2024, according to an analysis published Tuesday.

https://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/10/20/investing-2-trillion-us-clean-energy-and-infrastructure-could-create-millions-good

Something to think about…..

Be Smart!

Learn Stuff!

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”