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All right, assume for a moment that President Obama announced a unilateral pullout from Afghanistan

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SidneyCarton Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 09:59 AM
Original message
All right, assume for a moment that President Obama announced a unilateral pullout from Afghanistan
This pullout would happen within six months, and the military would be out of there by the end of April 2010. (In fairness, I'm not sure whether or not this is logistically possible, but the question is hypothetical, and unlikely in the extreme)

Now what?

How long do you suppose the Karzai goverment would have once we leave?

What will happen with the Taliban?

How about the security situation in Pakistan?

If Afghanistan returns to the situation it was in in the 1990's, do we not run the risk of having to do this all over again?

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ShortnFiery Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:04 AM
Response to Original message
1. Oh, how about we let the NATIVES settle their differences. It's not like the terrain is EDEN.
Let the war lords and the drug lords vie for power. If we're lucky, some of the more devout Taliban will take charge and LOWER the rate of poppy harvesting.

Yes, ya know, I think those "little brown people" did fine BEFORE us and they'll get by without us. :thumbsup:

Karzai? F**k Him! He's on his own ... cut the puppet strings brother! :evilgrin:

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SidneyCarton Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:07 AM
Response to Reply #1
4. And the fact that the Taliban hosted Al Qaeda?
Letting the natives sort out their own differences is all well and good, but in the mean time the Taliban has gone on tour into Pakistan, a nuclear-armed state. Now, leaving Afghanistan in a state of chaos might not be disastrous in and of itself (after all the two main crops in that country are opium and kalashnikovs) but chaos in a nuclear state is a bad sign no matter what.

What makes you so sure that things will stay bottled up in that glorious little sandbox?
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mdmc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:10 AM
Response to Reply #4
11. ya think in any way the west can help stabilize Pakistan from
religious extremism?

I think that our military involvement will only make it worse.

by the way - what is kalashnikovs?
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SidneyCarton Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:12 AM
Response to Reply #11
18. Kalashnikovs = AK-47's
No, I don't think any further intervention in Pakistan will help anything, but I wonder if leaving Afghanistan to implode will make the situation in Pakistan deteriorate further. (On the other hand, it may relieve pressure on Pakistan, as these groups go back over the Khyber to fight in Afghanistan.)
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mdmc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 11:57 AM
Response to Reply #18
73. thanks for the reply
peace and low stress
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HamdenRice Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:08 AM
Response to Reply #1
6. And if Saudis, Pakistani ISI, & Cheney henchmen decide we need a good scaring the bejeebus out of us
Then what?

It's already happened once.
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cali Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:14 AM
Response to Reply #1
21. I want the U.S out of Afghanistan but it's beyond ignorant to claim
that things were hunky dory there before we went in. And I think your prejudice is disgusting. The way you fling around the phrase "little brown people" is shameful.
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proteus_lives Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 12:41 PM
Response to Reply #21
82. Isn't it?
For all her claims, I always get a "White Man's Burden" tone from her posts.
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LynneSin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:15 AM
Response to Reply #1
25. Sure because hell, those Friday night stonings and appendage chopping events rival the Super Bowl
Edited on Tue Oct-06-09 10:16 AM by LynneSin
:eyes:
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SOS Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 12:16 PM
Response to Reply #25
79. Stonings, hand chopping and beheading happen every week in Saudi Arabia
Yet they are Washington's best buddies.

:shrug:
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Toasterlad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-07-09 01:09 PM
Response to Reply #79
107. Bingo.
I love the people who present war as a moral imperative. If we cared that much about human rights, we'd be at war with 3/4 of the planet.

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cliffordu Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:51 AM
Response to Reply #1
66. My favorite delusional armchair general.
Jesus. You ought to be ashamed to post idiotic shit like this.

Nice posters, though.
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spanone Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:05 AM
Response to Original message
2. we are not the world's police.
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SidneyCarton Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:08 AM
Response to Reply #2
7. Fair enough, but the world also has no police force.
And unlike Vegas, what happens in Afghanistan does not always stay in Afghanistan, so what do we do once we leave?
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spanone Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:12 AM
Response to Reply #7
16. stay out
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thunder rising Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:16 AM
Response to Reply #7
26. We stay gone? The chance to do anything positive was squandered by Bush (surprise)
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ShortnFiery Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:51 AM
Response to Reply #26
65. Nothing truly positive can be gleaned by occupying a nation that will NEVER surrender.
We've had this nightmare before.
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Odin2005 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 04:01 PM
Response to Reply #2
100. We are, and have been since 1945
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MNDemNY Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:07 AM
Response to Original message
3. Here:
The Karizai Govt. will fall. As it is illegitimate anyway

the taliban will again invoke islamic law. Oh well.

The security situation in pakistan will remain as it is (very precarious.)


We maintain a strong special ops presence to tamp down any "terrorist activity".

WE save billions per year, not to mention countless american soldiers, and keep our country as safe as it is now.

It is not our responsibility to keep Afghanistan "safe" from the taliban.

That is basically the "Biden" plan.
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mdmc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:12 AM
Response to Reply #3
17. yup
don't know what the Biden plan is, but everything else is yupyup..
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LynneSin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:18 AM
Response to Reply #3
29. +1
I don't want full occupation, but we need something over there to help bring normalcy back to that country if only to ensure the human rights. Women will go back to being 4th class citizens and the stadiums will be once again used for the weekly stoning, hangings and appendage removal events.
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thunder rising Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:26 AM
Response to Reply #29
36. So? Not our problem. It is their society. They like it.
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LynneSin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:41 AM
Response to Reply #36
56. Well the men like it....
but the women, or the people being stoned or having their hand chopped off. Do they like it?

I guess you think they like it that way in Darfur too.

I know we're not the world police but our country along with all nations need to do our part when Human rights are in violation. The biggest problem with Afghanistan is we essentially did a shitty job for 8 years while diverting all the money to a country that had nothing to do with the terroristic attacks on 9/11. Perhaps if we stuck with the country that was rooted in that issue we'd be out of Afghanistan ages ago and they'd have a functioning society that wasn't repressing their citizens in a cruel manner.
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JackRiddler Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 12:08 PM
Response to Reply #56
76. The question is whether any of this can be improved by intervention.
It's easy and right to condemn the human rights violations. But what is going to help that situation?

Do you believe the US presence has improved the situation for the majority? In Kabul, maybe.

Also important: Do you believe this was a reason for the US presence? It is what Laura Bush said, true.

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LynneSin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 12:58 PM
Response to Reply #76
86. I've believed that Bush's policy over the 6 years we've been there pretty much sucked
and now we have to clean up that suck.

And it's not going to be pretty - we need to find a solution and I think Afghanistan needs to be turned over to the UN
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berni_mccoy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:54 AM
Response to Reply #29
67. There has never been "normalcy" in that country, therefore, we cannot bring "normalcy" back.
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mdmc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:07 AM
Response to Original message
5. allow me to retort
Now what?
NATO or the Taliban would take over

How long do you suppose the Karzai government would have once we leave?
Not very long. Karzai would have never been in power without the blood of American troops.

What will happen with the Taliban?
They will take over or share power with those that support them.

How about the security situation in Pakistan?
It wouldn't change, imho. It would most likely be a military state.

If Afghanistan returns to the situation it was in in the 1990's, do we not run the risk of having to do this all over again?
If we rule the world, sure. If we protect our borders and work toward improve humanitarian conditions worldwide, then why would we need to "invade" again.

peace and low stress and thank you for the OP..
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ShortnFiery Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:10 AM
Response to Reply #5
10. Do this again? Oh I don't know - I think we've got the *box cutters* angle covered.
It's not like this was "a high tech" attack.

We're better off --- less threatening to the ME countries, if we stop occupying sovereign MUSLIM nations. Duh - THUD!
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SidneyCarton Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:15 AM
Response to Reply #10
22. This assumes that history repeats itself exactly.
As to stopping the occupation of sovereign MUSLIM nations, how many were we occupying in 2001? We had bases on Saudi soil, yes, at the invitation of the Saudi Government, but how many Muslim nations were we occupying prior to 9/11.
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JackRiddler Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 12:35 PM
Response to Reply #22
81. Define occupation, because it's not simple.
Edited on Tue Oct-06-09 01:06 PM by JackRiddler
In 2001 the security of the medieval Gulf monarchies' security was under US guarantee. Kuwait still existed because of the earlier US-led war on Iraq. Several principalities were providing bases.

Iraq was in the 10th year of sanctions that were helping to keep its people in poverty, although its WMDs (the reason given for sanctions) were known to have been completely destroyed by 1998. Iraq was furthermore subject to frequent and sometimes protacted bombardments with many casualties, and "no-fly zones" imposed by US-UK (without UN approval). A big slice of the Kurdish north was under de facto occupation.

Israel, which can be argued is a US proxy nation because of its dependence on many billions in US military aid, maintained a deadly occupation of the Palestinians and had attacked Lebanon many times since the 1980s. Egypt, a one-party dictatorship under the same president since 1981, also took billions in US aid as a direct reward for following the US policy line, especially with regard to Israel.

The Carter doctrine, that the US will invade the ME if necessary to secure its oil supply, had never been repudiated.

The PNAC principals who had lobbied openly for a regime change war on Iraq had just taken all of the key foreign policy positions in the just-installed Bush regime. Well informed persons could guess that an invasion of Iraq was on the agenda, and also that the "Great Game" maneuvering for advantage in Central Asia (involving oil companies and foreign policy mandarins like Brzezinski and Kissinger) could lead to wars there. As later became clear, the Afghanistan invasion was also already being planned before 9/11, with a start date in October.

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SidneyCarton Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 12:46 PM
Response to Reply #81
83. Good points, I see what you're saying.
Yet this is somewhat different from what the other poster had pointed out. That said, it's clear they lack your sense of nuance.
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thunder rising Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:23 AM
Response to Reply #10
34.  got the *box cutters* angle covered ... good ....very good
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SidneyCarton Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:11 AM
Response to Reply #5
12. Thank you for the answers, they sound like a realistic assessment to me.
I doubt NATO would take over, the Italians and Germans are adamant about pulling out their troops, and the French and British are unlikely to stay without us.

Whether or not the Taliban would share power is an interesting question, I suppose it depends on how much the composition of the Taliban, and the rest of the warlord structure and balance of power in country has changed in the past years.

Good points all of them, thanks.
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mdmc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:57 AM
Response to Reply #12
68. my pleasure
for the record I am a cut and run surrender monkey.

I think we can use diplomacy, intelligence, and protectionism to best move toward a post-terra focused world.

peace and low stress..
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madokie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:09 AM
Response to Original message
8. I don't think you'll get too many of us VN Vets
that wouldn't like to see that. I remember the commies were on our tail back in the end of our war and look how thats turned out. Hell I'd like to go back to Vietnam and visit now.
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ShortnFiery Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:13 AM
Response to Reply #8
19. Wow! I know many Vietnam vets who realized that they were over there FOR NOTHING.
Edited on Tue Oct-06-09 10:13 AM by ShortnFiery
I didn't see that dreaded "domino effect" of Communism spreading all over the globe.

Besides, there are pockets of al quaeda all over The World.

If we wish to NOT be attacked from people hailing from the ME, how about our combat troops stop occupying their countries?

Now that's what I call, a good start. :thumbsup:
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madokie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:21 AM
Response to Reply #19
30. I knew that within a few days of stepping in country
that we were there to grease the war machine with our and the Vietnamese's blood
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thunder rising Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:09 AM
Response to Original message
9. Karzai is the Bush anolog in Afghanistan; stolen elections and all
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NNN0LHI Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:11 AM
Response to Original message
13. UNOCAL Karzai will leave when we do. Promise
Edited on Tue Oct-06-09 10:18 AM by NNN0LHI
Don't forget that the only reason the Taliban thugs came to power was because they weren't quite as bad as the Northern Alliance and other known thugs we supported during the invasion and continue to do.

Don
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Tierra_y_Libertad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:12 AM
Response to Original message
14. The "Falling Dominoes" scenario...again.
Of course, just like the fall of Saigon when Vietnam took over all of southeast Asia and it's mighty army is now approaching San Francisco, we will see the same happening in South Asia, with the Taliban's unstoppable Navy launching landing craft crammed with fanatical Jihadists to storm the beaches of Atlantic City...oh, wait.

The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary. H.L. Mencken

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SidneyCarton Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:18 AM
Response to Reply #14
28. I didn't invoke the falling domino theory.
Because I don't see the apocalyptic scenario that others saw in SE Asia. What I do see is a situation that would implode in Afghanistan (such seems to be the natural state in that country) and an ongoing destabilization in Pakistan, a nuclear power. I cannot see the Taliban spreading beyond this region, but this seems enough trouble as is.
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Tierra_y_Libertad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:34 AM
Response to Reply #28
46. Same theory, different bogeyman.
In the worst case scenario, the Taliban, could achieve some sort of standing in parts of Pakistan. A highly unlikely event. The Pakistani military is in de facto control of Pakistan and isn't about to let the Taliban or any of it's various clones run anything save a few of the most backward areas of Pakistan. Pakistan has used the militants for it's own ends up to this point. Mostly as a threat to India.

Even if the Taliban is successful in driving us out of Afghanistan, a very likely scenario considering that the American public has now turned against that lost war, it is far more likely that there will be a negotiated settlement between the warring Afghan factions than a return to Taliban rule.

As for a realistic plan to get out of the quagmire, try this:

http://www.atimes.com/atimes/South_Asia/KJ02Df01.html

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SidneyCarton Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:36 AM
Response to Reply #46
49. Some excellent suggestions in that article. Thanks for posting.
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cali Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:12 AM
Response to Original message
15. Aren't we running a risk by being in Afghanistan?
And there are always risks. Afghanistan is a freakin' mess. We need to get out.
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SidneyCarton Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:22 AM
Response to Reply #15
33. True enough.
Nor do I totally oppose the idea of unilateral withdrawal. I just want to know what we do afterwards when that country goes back to hell in a pot.

Failed states attract those who wish to act with impunity, and Afghanistan is a chronically failed state, it will attract gentlemen like Bin Laden again, and the disorders that afflict that wretched state will not be confined merely to its borders. So if we're going to leave, it behooves us to have other defenses (and hopefully more effective defenses) planned elsewhere.

"getting out and staying out" is a pat answer that ignores future security reprecussions from the decision to withdraw.
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Obamanaut Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:13 AM
Response to Original message
20. The pullout could be done by having a garage sale of all the
equipment, or render it unusable. Leave the buildings behind, or destroy them. Bring the troops home en masse. Start with the troops.

Why should we care what happens with the taliban?

What about the security situation in Pakistan, or any other ...stan? We can no longer afford to be police for the world. Those folks have been established longer than the US, let them straighten themselves out, or perish in the attempt.

"If Afghanistan returns..." Why should we really give a rat's ass. We have enough turmoil right here at home to keep us busy for awhile.

Oh, and close all the other bases in all the other countries as well. Bring those troops home. Sell the host nations the equipment. Leave the infrastructure on the bases, and let them defent themselves.
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ShortnFiery Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:25 AM
Response to Reply #20
35. Then how are our beloved Defense Contractors going to spend FY 2010's = 515 Billion.
Damn, those bombs don't blow themselves up, ya know?!? :wow: :nuke:

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SidneyCarton Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:26 AM
Response to Reply #20
38. And should there be a heap of dead Americans, or a pile of smoking rubble in the future
That can be traced back to Afghanistan, we will certainly give a rat's ass. We need not police the world, but we do need to keep an eye on what is going on. The "stans" are old peoples, but young nations (with the exception of Afghanistan, the earliest of them date from 1947, while the others came into being in 1992)

You want to bring all the troops home and close all the bases, great. Beyond this, what is your plan for national defense?
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Obamanaut Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 11:35 AM
Response to Reply #38
72. I googlled 'us military bases worldwide' and picked this link at
random. I don't know it is left, right, or no wing. According to this there are 761 sites in 39 countries. Close them and let the host countries take care of their own national defense. Bring the troops home - might as will bring home the tanks and aircraft and so forth, that should take care of our own national defense nicely.

You may not have noticed, but bases in those 39 countries did not keep the World Trade Center standing, nor save the lives of the thousands who died there. Those 761 sites did not do squat for national defense.

Maintain a nice fleet of aircraft carriers and if need be, a carrier battle group can do a heap of damage to folks who do us harm. Unleash the hounds! This has not yet been done. Even the "shock and awe" was not all that awesome - troops are still there, aren't they?

If one desires to maintain hundreds of military sites, keep all the troops brought home on active duty if they so desire, and use the money presently being spent on overseas sites on similar sites in CONUS. Or, reopen some of the previously closed bases to house them and their equipment. Or, enlarge existing facilities. With any of these options, the money currently being funneled elsewhere (which didn't help the WTC) will be spent on local economies.


http://www.inteldaily.com/news/178/ARTICLE/8942/2008-12...

<snip>According to the DoD Base Structure Report<1> the US Department of Defense remains one of the worlds largest landlords with a physical plant consisting of more than 545,714 facilities (buildings, structures and utilities) located on more than 5,429 sites on 29.8 million acres, valued at over $706 billion. (761 sites are located in 39 foreign countries, excluding Iraq, Afghanistan and many others). <more at link>
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tammywammy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 12:16 PM
Response to Reply #72
78. Didn't Bush try to shut down bases
Especially in Germany and the goverment bitched about it? The bases provide a lot of economic stimulation to the cities/towns they're located in.
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Obamanaut Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 12:50 PM
Response to Reply #78
85. I believe the OP was along the line of conjecture, so this is what
Edited on Tue Oct-06-09 12:51 PM by Obamanaut
I was doing. These would be my suggestions.

I am aware the other POTUS suggested base closures in host nations overseas. I am also aware that the bases "provide a lot of economic stimulation to the cities/towns they're located in." Our government surely didn't mind closing or 'down sizing' a multitude of bases stateside, did they.

You know what? They could provide that same stimulation in cities/towns in the US as well. And cheaper, because there would be no fuel expense to fly in materiel, munitions, personnel, etc.

It gripes me that with that many military sites overseas, and the economic mess we find ourselves in here at home, we concern ourselves with "...a lot of economic stimulation..." elsewhere. It just does.
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Stinky The Clown Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:15 AM
Response to Original message
23. So are you arguing to stay there?
See, here's the thing ...... we are INTERFERING.

Karzai?

Fuck him. Let one of the oil companies continue to pay to keep his useless ass alive.

What do we accomplish by staying?
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SidneyCarton Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:31 AM
Response to Reply #23
42. Not necessarily, I am considering the situation and gathering feedback.
As to Karzai the man, I could care less, he seems to have a strong sense of self-preservation, no doubt he'd come out of this and settle in Monte Carlo with a load of cash pilfered from the treasury. My question was that of the ironically-named "afghan government" which would be effectively doomed. This however seems to be inevitable, much like the South Vietnamese government before it, it is a creature wholly of our making, and thus dependant on our continued presence to uphold its existence. That makes it worthless.

Nevertheless, I am curious as to what people think our defense strategies will be when we leave.
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thunder rising Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:46 AM
Response to Reply #42
60. What we were doing on 09-10-01 ... without Iraq harrassment
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Ozymanithrax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:15 AM
Response to Original message
24. Karzai would escape with us...
Edited on Tue Oct-06-09 10:17 AM by Ozymanithrax
NATO is all that keeps him and his government in power. It would likely resemble the fall of Saigon in its aftermath.

The Taliban would waltz into Kabul, but would face civil war among various warlords especially those of the former Northern Alliance who detested the Taliban anyway. This civil war would consist mostly of people sniping at each other form a distance while calling each other bad names over tea.

Any warlord that worked with the US/NATO would be suspect and likely have to swear on a stack of Koran's or have enough personal power to ignore the Taliban.

Private persons who cooperated with US/NATO would be rounded up, tried, and killed.

What few advances women have made under Karzai would evaporate.

For Pakistan

Pakistan's war against their own Taliban would reach a negotiated settlement led by their secret police. Their government would recognize whatever Taliban based government won power in Afghanistan and support it with a stipend of cash. They would have tea together.

Pakistan's place in International War on Terrorism would remain the same, they would still get lots of American Cash (which will be worth less and less by week though that is not related to the fall of Kabul) and do even less than they are doing now.

Blackwater/Xe would be hired by the AFghani's to hunt down members of the new old Northern Alliance.
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SidneyCarton Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:32 AM
Response to Reply #24
43. You've done this before haven't you?
Good analysis, I think you're right.
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Ozymanithrax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 03:44 PM
Response to Reply #43
95. I was serving on an Air Craft Carrier when Saigon fell.
But such things follow a script. I just applied what happened after Saigon fell, and after the Soviets left Afghanistan.
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Subdivisions Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:17 AM
Response to Original message
27. Sec Def Robert Gates:
Edited on Tue Oct-06-09 10:18 AM by Subdivisions
"We will NOT leave Afghanistan. Staying there is a long-term strategic goal." (Paraphrased from MSNBC just now)
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SidneyCarton Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:32 AM
Response to Reply #27
44. Hence the question was hypothetical.
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Romulox Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:21 AM
Response to Original message
31. OMG! It would be SO TRAGIC if we don't give Afghani's US style democracy!
Thanks for the chuckle. This is currently the most ridiculous post of the day.
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SidneyCarton Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:34 AM
Response to Reply #31
47. Did I mention tragedy.
The tragedy is your inability to read an OP coupled with your knee-jerk snark reaction. But if I really did make you chuckle, perhaps not all is lost.
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Romulox Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:36 AM
Response to Reply #47
48. No, but I saw your upper lip begin to tremble a bit while you were talking
Edited on Tue Oct-06-09 10:36 AM by Romulox
"The tragedy is your inability to read an OP coupled with your knee-jerk snark reaction."

I read it. It was dumb. :hi:
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SidneyCarton Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:37 AM
Response to Reply #48
50. "I read it. It was dumb."
Damn me with faint praise sir.
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Romulox Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:39 AM
Response to Reply #50
53. I don't think you understand what that phrase means.
An insult isn't "faint praise". :hi:
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SidneyCarton Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:40 AM
Response to Reply #53
54. I forgot the "sarcasm" smilie. n/t
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Romulox Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:44 AM
Response to Reply #54
58. Again, you might want to consult a dictionary
"Sarcasm" isn't another word for illogic. :hi:
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bigtree Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:21 AM
Response to Original message
32.  Responsibility for the Afghanistan 'security' effort needs to be given to a regional organization
Edited on Tue Oct-06-09 10:22 AM by bigtree
. . . like the Shanghai Cooperation Organization to take away the domination of the U.S. and our objectives in avenging the 9-11 attacks. If we're looking for some buffer against those attacks it shouldn't be forgotten that even the Bush intelligence agencies collectively concluded that our presence and activity in the region was 'fueling and fostering' more individuals bent on violent resistance than our forces were able to stifle or eliminate. The more the U.S. recedes from the defense of the Karzai government, the more credibility the regime will gain with the Afghan population. Right now, it's hard to argue that our grudge match against the specters of al-Qaeda is in the bast long-term (or short-term) interests of either Pakistan or Afghanistan.
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ShortnFiery Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:27 AM
Response to Reply #32
40. What's wrong with PERMITTING the people themselves sort-out the rule of their own NATIVE land? eom
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Romulox Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:28 AM
Response to Reply #40
41. It's the modern version of "White man's burden" that prevents that. nt
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bigtree Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:32 AM
Response to Reply #40
45. I would assume that Karzai isn't willing
. . . to completely reject all of the nations who have committed forces to his regime's protection and defense. I expect that there would be some outside help offered or requested by Afghanistan to supplant their own defenses. I believe that effort should be a more regional one, with controversial (in the U.S.), and influential countries like Iran and China taking on a more direct and encompassing role in their neighbor's future.
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ShortnFiery Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:47 AM
Response to Reply #45
61. "all those nations"" WTF ... their numbers are dwindling fast.
No, NO help. Let the native people within this SOVEREIGN nation sort it out for themselves.

Hell, I don't see us invading Honduras anytime soon and that leader was fairly elected and ousted by a coup.

Nope, out of both nations - it's beyond time to "make like a sheep-herder and get the FLOCK out. :evilgrin:

p.s. We (USA) don't technically reside "in their neighborhood." We are not their neighbors.
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bigtree Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 11:10 AM
Response to Reply #61
69. as I said
. . . the Karzai government should work with the nations they want to in the effort to provide security for themselves.

You've taken my comments far out of context. I don't think the U.S. should be in the business of directing that effort and I'd prefer we stay out of it all together. That doesn't mean that the Karzai government wouldn't want or need to solicit some of the nations now participating in the NATO effort to help in one which is more central to the relatively new Afghan government. I'm assuming that the existing regime won't want some sort of free-for-all for the seat of power and authority in the event of a U.S. withdrawal.
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SidneyCarton Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:38 AM
Response to Reply #32
52. Excellent points, thanks for sharing them.
Giving this mess over to regional powers sounds like a decent idea to me.
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ShortnFiery Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:49 AM
Response to Reply #52
62. Too funny! Most SANE nations don't want any part of "taming the un-tamable."
;)
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mike_c Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:26 AM
Response to Original message
37. those consequences are largely our making-- the results of our foreign policy...
...so yes, I think it's a damned shame that pulling out of Afghanistan will have negative consequences. Staying will have even more. We've created a nightmare with no good ending. We can point to alternative bad endings all day long in support of avoiding the other bad endings, but in the end, we're stuck with lots of dead people and wasted treasure.

Since we are largely responsible for this mess, I think the best thing for us to do first is to get out and stop exacerbating the problem. Yes, it's a shame that we'll be leaving a mess behind for the Afghans and Pakistanis to deal with. Yes, more suffering will likely ensue before it gets any better. When you throw a tantrum in the Pottery Barn, things get broken. Continuing the tantrum won't fix them.
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RoccoR5955 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:27 AM
Response to Original message
39. Perhaps we should pull our military out of ALL foreign countries.
We are not the police of the planet.
We could fund health care for all if we didn't have to fund military installations all over the planet!
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Bigmack Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:49 AM
Response to Reply #39
63. Yup... over 700 bases....
I'm with you. The only reservation I have to really cutting the military is what it would do to unemployment.

Maybe a CCC or WPA type corps to rebuild the parks and infrastructure.
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RoccoR5955 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 11:27 AM
Response to Reply #63
71. And THERE you go.
If we set up those kinds of public works projects, once again WE THE PEOPLE, could have better infrastructure, and more of it too! I look at the buildings here in NY that were built during the WPA era, and I can tell you that they were built by artisans, not construction workers. They have much more class and are so much more appealing than the buildings that go up today. Yeah, they may take longer to build, but if we didn't have to support the Military-Industrial Complex, we would have the money to support this. Not only these sort of projects, but green infrastructure could be created as well.
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Obamanaut Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 02:40 PM
Response to Reply #63
90. I'm in favor of shutting down, according to the source linked below,
761 sites in 39 countries. It wouldn't necessarily impact unemployment. Keep the returned troops on active duty, reopen the bases stateside that were closed or enlarge existing bases as necessary. Reduce the number of military through normal attrition. There should be some cost savings because of the lease payments for those 761 sites no longer being paid, no upkeep on the sites, no fuel costs to transport personnel and materiel to/from the sites.


http://www.inteldaily.com/news/178/ARTICLE/8942/2008-12...

<snip>According to the DoD Base Structure Report<1> the US Department of Defense remains one of the worlds largest landlords with a physical plant consisting of more than 545,714 facilities (buildings, structures and utilities) located on more than 5,429 sites on 29.8 million acres, valued at over $706 billion. (761 sites are located in 39 foreign countries, excluding Iraq, Afghanistan and many others). <more at link>
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RoccoR5955 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 07:14 PM
Response to Reply #90
106. That 706 billion is Medicare for each and every person
There's your Universal Health Care money! Right there. Close all those facilities, and you have it!
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thunder rising Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:37 AM
Response to Original message
51. The Entire Afghanistan Situation WAS PLANNED AND IMPLEMENTED BY BUSH NEOCONS ... get it?
any thinking person would get the ~!@#%$ out of there.

Gates and his strategic goal. What's the goal? Something more specific than Strategic?
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MilesColtrane Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:40 AM
Response to Original message
55. 'Our Man in Armani', knowing what's good for him, resigns the Presidency and...
Edited on Tue Oct-06-09 10:41 AM by MilesColtrane
...immediately goes into exile in Pakistan.

He reemerges months later as the C.I.A.-backed candidate in that country's next Presidential election.

Meanwhile back in Afghanistan, the Taliban reassumes power.
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SidneyCarton Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:42 AM
Response to Reply #55
57. So creepy it might be true.
Considering how inept Karzai has been in running Afghanistan, he'd fit right in in Pakistan, until the military overthrew him.
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yurbud Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:44 AM
Response to Original message
59. the Pakistan military largely ran the Taliban and whether fundamentalists in the hinterlands are
called extremists, terrorists, or whatever solely depends on how obedient they are to the military, which largely corresponds to American corporate interests--but when our corporate interests aren't being served by the Pakistani military or civilian government, we suddenly notice all those extremists and start bombing there--like when Pakistan gives a juicy pipeline deal to Iran instead of US companies.

http://professorsmartass.blogspot.com/2009/08/war-on-te...
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undeterred Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 10:50 AM
Response to Original message
64. We are not the WORLD POLICE.
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stray cat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 11:17 AM
Response to Original message
70. People dying doesn't bother us as long as we aren't there
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HiFructosePronSyrup Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 11:59 AM
Response to Original message
74. What's going to happen?
The same thing that will happen when we pull out 5 years from now, or 10 years from now.

We've been there 8 years and nothing's getting better. How long are you going to keep making the same mistake?
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Democracyinkind Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 12:00 PM
Response to Original message
75. The Taliban supremacy was not homegrown. It was due to outside influences.

This "9/11 happened because we weren't there" meme baffles me. We were there, we didn't stop it, which is kind of ironic given the fact that with a little help from Rich B. we could have stopped the whole thing without ever going there.

As to the assumption that the Taliban would suddenly take over the country, I'm not so sure. The south and southwest maybe, but that's something the Iranians can (and do) handle pretty well. What is left of the Northern Alliance has profited greatly from the last few years, I don't see them losing M-e-S or other major towns to the Taliban again without renewed obvious help from foreign interests. I somehow don't see the US swallowing another ISI sponsored offensive by the Taliban - and most people agree that on a territorial/strategic level the Taliban have not made significant progress in the last 10 years.

As for Pakistan. That clusterfuck won't be helped by further meddling. As long as we let the ISI et al. run their own show, we have no chance of ever providing security in that region. And dismantling the ISI network that calls the shots in Pakistan would require an effort of manpower and resources that makes thinking about the whole concept a farce. I agree with the writings of Tariq Ali, there's a shitstorm brewing there since the creation of those "states" and eventually things will have to play themselves out... Guns, special ops and drones won't be able to ameliorate that inevitable outcome. Diplomacy, aid and honesty might have a minor but significant impact.
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JVS Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 01:16 PM
Response to Reply #75
88. We can thank Brzninski (or however that twisted fuck spells it).
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Democracyinkind Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 04:41 PM
Response to Reply #88
102. I "thank" Far West Ltd. and Dilligence for our Afghanistan adventure for the most part.
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harun Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 12:09 PM
Response to Original message
77. Not our problem.
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SidneyCarton Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 12:47 PM
Response to Reply #77
84. It wasn't our problem on Sept. 10th 2001 either.
The problem with Afghanistan is that it has a tendency of making itself our problem.
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moondust Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 12:33 PM
Response to Original message
80. I don't have the answer.
But certainly that is the concern. The Obama admin is taking the time to get it right because they have to get it right.

If only there was a comprehensive model that could be used to gauge the strength of the Taliban vs. the Afghan gov't at any point in time perhaps the troops could stay there until the odds of the Taliban retaking control of the gov't were acceptably low so as to allow a phased withdrawal dependent on continued acceptable odds.
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JVS Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 01:00 PM
Response to Original message
87. Behold the sound of me not giving a fuck.
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ShortnFiery Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 02:11 PM
Response to Original message
89. The present Taliban LOATHE al Quaeda and have no desires to go to Pakistan if we are NOT
Occupying their native areas within Afghanistan.

OUT NOW! The overage of Taliban will migrate back into Afghanistan and Pakistan will not be threatened.

End of Story.

But oh, we won't be able to blow up all those bombs and use all weapons and mutions that keep the Military Industrial BEASTIE fed to the tune of 514 BILLION DOLLARS/YEAR. Boo Hoo :eyes:
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mvd Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 02:42 PM
Response to Reply #89
91. Good point!
:hi:
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TheKentuckian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 03:48 PM
Response to Reply #89
96. Proof? I don't deny the assertion but I hear the opposite
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Mixopterus Donating Member (568 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 02:49 PM
Response to Original message
92. Heh
Maybe if we didn't fund the Islamic maniacs the Russians could have kept them at bay, or maybe even modernize the nation like they did to most of Central Asia. Sadly, all the progressives (who just happened to be FILTHY COMMIES OMG!!!!111) are dead or fled the country, essentially leaving the aforementioned Islamic crazies to run the show and shape the society as they see fit, no matter what the muted population says or thinks.

What you are asking is to, essentially, remake the country without a popular movement beforehand. The Russians only went in to Afghanistan in the first place because they were asked to following a coup by a sufficiently politically sympathetic party, meaning the foundation of change was already in place. We don't have that luxury. Such is the price of folly.
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Toasterlad Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 03:31 PM
Response to Original message
93. Give Me One Thing We Can Actually Accomplish In Afghanistan, And I'll Be On Board With Sticking
As every former would-be conqueror can tell you, Afghanistan is a bottomless hole of futility.
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TheKentuckian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 03:50 PM
Response to Reply #93
97. I think we can destroy in semblance of an organized terror network
and help to guard Pakistani nukes.

Very small footprint stuff. I have no case for the nation building occupation stuff.
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Ozymanithrax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 03:51 PM
Response to Reply #93
98. We accomplish killing a lot of people who otherwise...
would have lived long lives.

In my opinion, we are in Afghanistsan because during the election Obama needed a way to continue to speak tough and defuse the accusatiosn that he was light on National Security. We are on schedule to declare victory and go home after the 2012 election.
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oldlib Donating Member (549 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 03:35 PM
Response to Original message
94. Middle East Strategy
A USA military solution to the Taliban activity in Afghanistan
is not practical, nor will it win. To help in the effort to
stop the Taliban I believe that the USA should encourage the
moderate Muslin countries in the area to help. With USA
support these Muslin's should organize a Religious-Military
operation to fight the Taliban on moderate Muslin terms. This
will provide the Afghan people a humane and viable fighting
force that can defeat the Taliban without the dominance and
brutality of the USA military. There are about fifty Muslin
countries and a sizable number are friendly to the USA. The
Religious-Military force could be a collaboration of
progressive Christian and Muslin religions, combined to give
protection for the Afghan people against the Taliban.
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Odin2005 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 03:56 PM
Response to Original message
99. The rampant stupid isolationism in this thread is nauseating.
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SidneyCarton Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 04:04 PM
Response to Reply #99
101. It's an American tradition.
Ignore the world and pretend that nothing exists beyond the oceans, or the Rio Grande. (We have to grudgingly admit that the Canadians are there, otherwise the NHL would kill us with cognitive dissonance.) And react with shock when the world comes knocking (often unpleasantly) at our door.
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PVnRT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-07-09 01:23 PM
Response to Reply #101
109. So, we should bomb and invade away, I guess
If you were really concerned about our door being knocked on, you would support invading Saudi Arabia, where most terrorist funding comes from.
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Bigmack Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 06:25 PM
Response to Reply #99
103. Wait one fucking minute....
closing bases isn't isolationism... it's one of those pesky reality-based things again. We simply can't afford to be an Empire anymore.

If we close bases and expand our Intel services into actual, functioning Intel machines, we'd be far better off than with thousands of troops stationed in Germany or Japan or Greenland or East Bumfuckistan.

I could go on, but I think perhaps you've confused a real need to pull back from World Presence with isolationism.
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rug Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 06:54 PM
Response to Reply #99
104. It's a nice change from the rampant stupid warmongering.
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PVnRT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-07-09 01:18 PM
Response to Reply #99
108. "Isolationism"
I didn't realize that the only way to engage other countries was to use military force. Yay, war!

What other countries do you support invading? North Korea? Saudi Arabia? Maybe a small, easy one like Guinea? We wouldn't want to appear "isolationist," after all.
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SidneyCarton Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-07-09 03:52 PM
Response to Reply #108
112. before you jump down someone's throat, you should read the other comments on the thread.
There are are many here who have stated that nothing that occurs in Afghanistan will affect us in any way. Obviously military force is not the only way to maintain engagement with the world, but there are far too many here whose foreign policy posture is that of an Ostrich, with one's head in the ground, confident that no one would dream of placing a well-aimed kick to their rear.
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Ignis Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-07-09 01:29 PM
Response to Reply #99
110. Yeah, let's take another crack at Somalia!
It worked out so well the first time.
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DireStrike Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-06-09 07:00 PM
Response to Original message
105. The Afghan war should be fought with spies, not soldiers.
Though technically they'd be the same thing, just with a different focus.

And not "no soldiers" either, just far less than there are now.

We've screwed with countless governments, notably in latin america, with so little force that nobody at home even noticed. We can't do that in Afghanistan? Maybe we've only learned how to prop up corrupt right-wing regimes through subterfuge, and not legitimate, social or left-wing ones.
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Bluenorthwest Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-07-09 01:31 PM
Response to Original message
111. With war, there is only one question to ask yourself
and that is would you yourself go fight it, or willingly send your own family to fight it? If not, all the theory and rhetoric in the world does not change a thing. If you'd not do it yourself, you should not support it. And this war is 8 years old, and you do not seem to be in Kabul. So, there you go.
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