I have an opinion about ending the war in Afghanistan — this endless, expensive, pointless war.

  • We shouldn’t have gone there in the first place. They had nothing to do with 9/11 and experts at the time said it was not a winnable war.
  • We’ve been there for 20 years. At what point do you recognize that there’s never going to be a victory for the U.S. in Afghanistan? Do we set up a permanent position? Do we form a party and have them elect Americans to run the place?
  • We should have gotten out 15 years ago because even then, it was obvious that we were never going to win.

We lost in Vietnam too. The difference is that in Vietnam, instead of admitting we lost, we declared a victory. THEN we moved out. Here, we are admitting defeat — and moving out.

We do love our wars – Photo: Garry Armstrong

What did everyone think was going to happen? Did they think we were going to become permanent participants in Afghan’s never-ending civil war? No one wanted it to end like this, but then again, I’m not sure anyone was thinking about an end when they decided to go pound the hell out of a country we basically didn’t like. I often wonder if our military has a grip on the concept of wars ending. They are very good at the starting them, but bad at wrapping them up and going home.

So our Republicans ask “Will any country trust us again?”

Did the Afghans ever trust us? To the best of my knowledge, it wasn’t their idea for Americans to go there in the first place. That was our idea. They had to make the best of it. I doubt any country trusts us. If I were a small, poor country, I wouldn’t trust us. I’m not sure I trust us sitting right here in New England. Sometimes other places want or need our help because we’re rich and they are poor, but trust us? I don’t think so.

The last time we held a war and got out following a victory was World War II. Since then, it has been one pointless war after another without victories and nothing much accomplished. Except a lot of death and destruction.

If we are going to start wars and embroil our young men and women in them, the least we can do is have a plan on why we are going there, what we are doing, and how we can win or, barring that, when we can formally call it “over.”

If none of these can be made understandable by normal, non-military people, maybe we should call off the war. Let’s take that money and clean the trash out of the ocean. Fix the undrinkable water in Flint and other cities. Figure out how we are going to manage the next generation of power plants.

Instead of sending our military to far away places, how about using these same dedicated people to be heroes at home? Oh, right. There are laws about that. We can’t use our military on U.S. soil. Aren’t we lucky that it’s okay to use them any and everywhere else?

I would like to refer you to Sean Munger’s brilliant post about this. He is a real historian, not hobbyist like me.

Afghanistan: another history that we failed to learn from.

Categories: Anecdote, opinion, War and battles

Tags: , , , ,

24 replies

  1. Right on… “When will we ever learn, when will be ever learn… “


  2. History repeats itself over and over again. The U.S. was not the first nation to try it with Afghanistan. Previously, the Russians tried it, but then realized that it was pointless. A waste of money and resources.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I so agree with this. Biden will take the brunt of the heat, but it was way overdue and the right thing to do.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Why cant big rich countries mind their own and just help less fortunate countries to survive. UNO is the biggest disappointment as they have never ever been able to solve any disputes among counties.Our generation must work together towards Word Peace if we are to leave any future on Earth for upcoming generations.


    • I agree. Unfortunately, I have no control over what our government does or doesn’t do. I am absolutely sure they don’t care what I think, or about my opinion, or any knowledge I have.

      Does YOUR country care about you? Do they call you when they are making a decision about war or peace? Because I assure you, no one gets in touch with me unless they want money. Otherwise, I don’t exist. If you’ve got a better deal with whoever runs your government, I’d be really interested to hear about it.

      We are little people. The politicians and lawmakers have zero interest in us, what we think or want unless they are running for election — at which point mostly what they want is money and of course, our vote. I don’t have any money. Oops.

      The world would be a better place for all of us if our governments actually cared about us — which as far as I can see they never have done. I’m 74 and NEVER has anyone asked for MY opinion on anything. I’m pretty sure they never will. Moreover, as far as I can tell, this is 100% true for citizens of EVERY country on earth.

      Pretty sad, isn’t it?

      Liked by 1 person

  5. “Victorious warriors win first and then go to war, while defeated warriors go to war first and then seek to win.”


  6. Americans are leaving a big mess behind them. Like 1990’s we will have to face a huge influx of refugees from Afghanistan and they bring their own problems with them like drugs and guns.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Yes. Does the fall of Saigon ring a bell?! Best, Babsje


    • We learned nothing. Americans believe we always win. The reality is we haven’t won a war since World War II. Everything else was a draw or a loss — or we just snuck out pretending nothing really happened.

      Liked by 1 person

      • And it’s likely that the generations younger than ours haven’t even been taught and so the “fall of Saigon” isn’t even on their radar. Sigh


        • Ah the joy of learning no history or the wrong history. We don’t learn anything, even those of us who were THERE and should know better, so why should the kids learn? If we are too stupid to figure out the message, we have nothing to teach.

          Liked by 2 people

          • Hi Marilyn. You’re right. There is a failure to learn and a failure to teach. Throughout my pre-college school years, none of the History teachers got us last the Civil War, ever. They all ran out of time or out of steam by the 1880s ended. No WWI or WW2 or Korea and we lived through Viet Ban real-time so it wasn’t yet actual “history” then I took AP History my senior year in High School and got an excellent education up to a point – and that point also didn’t get passed the Civil War. Shocking.


          • Aargh. My kingdom for the ability to edit my last comment for typos. Why or why WordPress?? Sorry


    • Pity that the president willing to stand up and say “We lost” is the one who is going to get whacked for doing something no one else had the willingness to do: declare defeat. Oh, I’m wrong. JFK admitted we lost Cuba. That was the only other time we “lost.” Not counting all the actual losses we will never admit.


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