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View Full Version : Mr. President you ended the wrong war.


zulater
08-31-2010, 08:58 PM
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/asia/afghanistan/7972863/Afghanistan-bomb-attacks-kill-twenty-one-US-soldiers-in-48-hours.html

Hopefully what's been won in Iraq wont be lost now that we've declared ourselves done there. We can argue all night about whether we went to war there under false premises or not, regardless the fact is that's a salvagable country. Given time they could prove to be a model for democracy throughout that region. Or at least something close to it. I'm not saying more lives wont be lost, or that it will be easy, but i don't think it will be at a cost of a great many more lives, and the end result could be benificial for the people of that country and the region for generations to come.

Now about that other war, while very few argue with the reasons for becoming involved there, it's time to cut and run imo. Afghanistan is ungovernable, your chasing rainbows thinking you can install an effecitve government there. If a totalitarian state such as the former Soviet Union couldn't manage the peace there, how the hell is a U.N. force bound by western rules of engagement going to manage?


All we're doing now is building up a body count, theirs and ours. Time to get out Mr. Presiden. As far as the future threat of the Taliban, predator drones and scecial forces deployments should do the trick. go in create mayhem, get the hell out.

SteelCityMom
08-31-2010, 09:13 PM
I understand his motives for wanting to better the place, and think a lot of citizens there really do want the US to be able to do some good...but I agree, it is somewhat hopeless.

urgle burgle
08-31-2010, 09:50 PM
I understand his motives for wanting to better the place, and think a lot of citizens there really do want the US to be able to do some good...but I agree, it is somewhat hopeless.

war is horrible, any war. that being said, once in a war, the position should be to win that war. people can debate what that definition of win means, but, to me it is pretty simple. decimate and destroy the designated enemy so that they cannot wage war, or terrorism, on anyone, again. we could have done that, in both Afghanistan, and Iraq, not to mention Vietnam, or going back a long way, Korea, if we, as a nation had put all our efforts into doing as much. we did not, and have not. without using the might of the country and populace as a whole, these wars should have never been fought. it does a disservice to those who fought and died, their families, and the people we are trying to "free," just to name a few. if this mindset does not change, then i want us out of Afghanistan also. i have more to say on this subject, but im just not in the mood.

SteelCityMom
08-31-2010, 10:12 PM
war is horrible, any war. that being said, once in a war, the position should be to win that war. people can debate what that definition of win means, but, to me it is pretty simple. decimate and destroy the designated enemy so that they cannot wage war, or terrorism, on anyone, again. we could have done that, in both Afghanistan, and Iraq, not to mention Vietnam, or going back a long way, Korea, if we, as a nation had put all our efforts into doing as much. we did not, and have not. without using the might of the country and populace as a whole, these wars should have never been fought. it does a disservice to those who fought and died, their families, and the people we are trying to "free," just to name a few. if this mindset does not change, then i want us out of Afghanistan also. i have more to say on this subject, but im just not in the mood.

I agree with you, and I agree with some of the reasons for being there. No intentions of offending anyone at all. It's just such a hellhole right now, and the situation seems bleak.

I'm almost thinking that it would be best to get as many civilians as possible out right now and just drop a nuke on the place. I really never have thoughts like that often, but it's hard to see the road at the end of the tunnel over there ya know?

urgle burgle
08-31-2010, 10:31 PM
I agree with you, and I agree with some of the reasons for being there. No intentions of offending anyone at all. It's just such a hellhole right now, and the situation seems bleak.

I'm almost thinking that it would be best to get as many civilians as possible out right now and just drop a nuke on the place. I really never have thoughts like that often, but it's hard to see the road at the end of the tunnel over there ya know?

odd that you said that mom. i dated a girl in az for awhile. she grew up in Afghanistan, spoke farsi fluently(which was really hot). she grew up during the Russian occupation, until the Taliban took hold, and as the Russians fought the Taliban but eventually left. she lost a lost of family and friends to the fighting. although she didn't like nor agree with the Russian occupation, she said it was better than the Taliban, and what they were doing. in one of our many discussions about things like this, among many others concerning national security, she stated an interesting opinion. mind you, she would be considered very liberal, totally against the iraq war (again we used to talk about this all the time, knowing i was still in the Army, and differed in viewpoints), was bisexual, etc. very liberal. but her viewpoint about Afghanistan was that nothing can be done with it, it needs to be nuked, and start over. her words, not mine. that blew me away. no pun intended.

tony hipchest
08-31-2010, 10:38 PM
i wish we woulda dropped bout 5-10 more daisy cutters or MOAB's on tora bora when we thought we had bin laden cornered.

i mean what were we worried about? turning a rocky mountain range into a mountain sized pile of rocky rubble?

oh well... i do like the idea of special ops and about 100 preadators and reapers with bunch of young air force gamer junkies practicing video warfare from california.

SteelCityMom
08-31-2010, 10:40 PM
Yeah, I'm usually not for those kinds of extreme measures...but it doesn't seem like there's much else that could have been done. (To me) It seems like they're playing whack-a-mole over there.

I have very, very conservative views on foreign policy and would prefer that the US not mingle in any nations affairs except for business purposes, but on the realistic side of it (since we can't go back in time and not be there), that just seems like the only way to get a good clear message across and end it all at once, with minimal civilian lives lost.

urgle burgle
08-31-2010, 10:52 PM
i wish we woulda dropped bout 5-10 more daisy cutters or MOAB's on tora bora when we thought we had bin laden cornered.

i mean what were we worried about? turning a rocky mountain range into a mountain sized pile of rocky rubble?

oh well... i do like the idea of special ops and about 100 preadators and reapers with bunch of young air force gamer junkies practicing video warfare from california.

politics, politics, and more politics. rumsfeld wanted to show the world we could go in with minimum troops, minimum force, and only use speed and SOF forces to get the job done. he got only part of it right. he had a personal issue with shinsecki, who said (along with Iraq), to secure the area we would need way more boots on the ground. on top of that, we wanted to play more political and nicey nice games, and use Afghani forces to get their "own", only to make a "statement." regardless of the consequences. idiocy. it was a i know better than you do, blah blah blah.
politics are useful and necessary, but only before, and after, the war/conflict are over. youd think we would have learned this lesson by now.

steelerohio
09-02-2010, 08:17 AM
I believe this was the war he had promised to end during the election... It's just to appease those who voted for him IMO...

zulater
09-03-2010, 12:27 AM
I believe this was the war he had promised to end during the election... It's just to appease those who voted for him IMO...

Well I think his voter base is going to start get more and more antsy about Afghanistan as the body count continues to climb with no measurable progress being realized. I

MasterOfPuppets
09-03-2010, 12:57 AM
an army that plays by rules , will never defeat an enemy that recognizes no rules. the russians who care far less about public or international opinion couldn't get rid of the taliban, so i doubt we'll have anymore success. you win wars by attrition and breaking the will of the enemy to fight
. killing a few taliban a week isn't going to get it done. how do you you break the will of people that don't mind blowing themselves up ?

U.S. troops battle both Taliban and their own rules

KASHK-E-NOKHOWD, Afghanistan | Army Capt. Casey Thoreen wiped the last bit of sleep from his eyes before the sun rose over his isolated combat outpost.

His soldiers did the same as they checked and double-checked their weapons and communications equipment. Ahead was a dangerous foot patrol into the heart of Taliban territory.

"Has anyone seen the [Afghan National Army] guys?" asked Capt. Thoreen, 30, the commander of Blackwatch Company, 2nd Battalion, 1st Infantry Regiment with the 5th Stryker Brigade. "Are they not showing up?"

A soldier, who looked ghostly in the reddish light of a headlamp, shook his head.

"We can't do anything if we don't have the ANA or [the Afghan National Police]," said a frustrated Capt. Thoreen.

"We have to follow the Karzai 12 rules. But the Taliban has no rules," he said. "Our soldiers have to juggle all these rules and regulations and they do it without hesitation despite everything. It's not easy for anyone out here."

"Karzai 12" refers to Afghanistan's newly re-elected president, Hamid Karzai, and a dozen rules set down by Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal, the commander of U.S.-led forces in Afghanistan, to try to keep Afghan civilian casualties to a minimum.

"It's a framework to ensure cultural sensitivity in planning and executing operations," said Capt. Thoreen. "It's a set of rules and could be characterized as part of the ROE," he said, referring to the rules of engagement.

Dozens of U.S. soldiers who spoke to The Washington Times during a recent visit to southern Afghanistan said these rules sometimes make a perilous mission even more difficult and dangerous.

Many times, the soldiers said, insurgents have escaped because U.S. forces are enforcing the rules. Meanwhile, they say, the toll of U.S. dead and injured is mounting.

By mid-November, Capt. Thoreen's unit had lost five soldiers to suicide bombings and improvised explosive devices (IEDs). Many more had been wounded and three of their Stryker vehicles had been destroyed.

In his Aug. 30 assessment of the situation in Afghanistan, which was leaked to the press, Gen. McChrystal said that the legitimacy of the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) had been "severely damaged … in the eyes of the Afghan people" because of "an over-reliance on firepower and force protection."

To succeed, he wrote, "ISAF will have to change its operating culture to pursue a counterinsurgency approach that puts the Afghan people first." This entails "accepting some risk in the short term [but] will ultimately save lives in the long term."

The Times compiled an informal list of the new rules from interviews with U.S. forces. Among them:

• No night or surprise searches.

• Villagers have to be warned prior to searches.

• ANA or ANP must accompany U.S. units on searches.

• U.S. soldiers may not fire at the enemy unless the enemy is preparing to fire first.

• U.S. forces cannot engage the enemy if civilians are present.

• Only women can search women.

• Troops can fire at an insurgent if they catch him placing an IED but not if insurgents are walking away from an area where explosives have been laid.

The mission

Without Afghan army or police, Capt. Thoreen and his troops were about to scuttle their mission: a house-to-house search for weapons and insurgents in the poor Pashtun village of Kashk-E Nokhowd, combined with an effort to win over the village's 200 residents by passing out toys, pencils and toiletries.

Finally, a small ragtag group of Afghan police arrived to accompany the Americans. The Afghan army was a no-show.

The police, some of whom who looked as young as 13 in their oversized uniforms, have a poor reputation in the local Maywand district for corruption and extortion.

"I'm guessing it was too early for the Afghan National Army to get up out of bed and help us out," Capt. Thoreen said. "They're probably still asleep. Unbelievable."

"Is everyone accounted for?" he asked. "Let's move — stagger your positions."

As the sun revealed the Red Mountain of Maywand, the soldiers headed out the gate of combat outpost Rath with weapons ready.

They set up a security perimeter near a more than century-old British fortress, whose crumbling walls overshadowed the small outpost.

continued ....
http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2009/nov/16/us-troops-battle-taliban-afghan-rules/?page=4

MasterOfPuppets
09-03-2010, 01:26 AM
In 1880, British and Indian forces fought and lost a battle here against Afghan forces led by a girl named Mawali, a Pashtun interpreter told The Times. He asked that his name not be used to protect himself and his family from Taliban retribution.

"She told the men in the village that they were not men if they would not raise their arms to fight the enemy," he said. "They were so embarrassed they went to battle and Pashtun farmers killed more than 6,000 British and Indian soldiers."

The interpreter said this Pashtun Joan of Arc was buried not far from the village. On this day, however, there was not a woman in sight. Under the Taliban's strict interpretation of Islam, women are discouraged from appearing in public and are supposed to be shrouded head to toe in burqas.

Because of the Karzai 12 rules, U.S. forces have had to bring in American women to conduct searches of their Afghan counterparts.

So Cpl. Amy B. King, 42, a medic from Springfield, Mo.; Spc. Dionalyn O. Bird, 29, a cook from Bloomfield, Conn.; Spc. Toni Winkler, 20, a medic from South Carolina; and Sgt. Frevette J. Skelton, 31, a cook, entered the village with Capt. Thoreen's men.

"We have the women say their names before we search them because sometimes it's a man under the burqa," said Cpl. King. "In some cases, there are weapons on them."

"It's OK for the insurgents to use their women to hide weapons but it's not OK for us [men] to search them," said Staff Sgt. Joshua Yost, 27, of Shelton, Wash. "So now, we have to break our own rules and bring women into combat just so they can search the women."

Dusty little faces peered over ancient salmon-colored mud walls as the Americans entered the village. The children giggled and pointed at the soldiers.

"Stop, don't walk any closer," the Pashtun interpreter told a farmer and two boys who emerged from the back of the old British fort. "Stop where you are."

They kept walking in the soldiers' direction but the soldiers did not raise their weapons.

"Stop," the interpreter yelled again. "Don't move."

He then asked the man and boys to lift their traditional tunics to show the soldiers that they were not carrying weapons or explosives. Eventually, they were allowed to pass.

The platoon members spread across and around the fields surrounding the village. An announcement from a dilapidated mosque alerted villagers of the impending search.

"Well, the bad guys know we're coming," said the interpreter, laughing. "They're probably hiding their weapons by now."

Some of the men squatting outside the mosque looked stoic. Others stared in anger.

In the mosque, the soldiers discovered a 9 mm handgun with clips.

A U.S. civil affairs officer, who asked that his name not be revealed because of the nature of his work, said only insurgents carry such handguns. "Everyone here has Kalashnikovs, very few have these," he said.

The mosque's imam, who gave his name as Sahed, walked alongside the U.S. soldiers down a narrow dusty road, followed by a gaggle of children.

"We need help getting clean water," he told Capt. Thoreen through the interpreter. "Water is what is most important."

Civilian aid workers and State Department officials rarely visit Maywand because of security concerns, so development work falls on the U.S. military's shoulders.

"We have to be everything from the soldier to the engineer, water expert to medical care," Capt. Thoreen said.

"We try to hire locals but first we need to secure the region," he said. "We are not going to get the [nongovernmental organizations] out here until we do that."

Imam: U.S. 'needs to go'

Interviewed by The Times, Sahed the imam said U.S. troops were "respectful to his people and provided security."

"I tell my people in the mosque to not become suicide bombers and to not kill those who want to help us," he said.

However, asked about the presence of U.S. troops in his village, Sahed said they "need to go. Get out of Afghanistan or it will never be resolved. Between Islam and the infidel there can never be a relationship."

"In my personal opinion, the Americans won't be able to resolve this problem," he added. "The longer they stay the more likely there will be another attack like Sept. 11. It's only the Afghan people who will be able to resolve this problem."

The next day, however, the imam visited the U.S. combat outpost for the first time, bringing a gift of homemade yogurt candy. He told Capt. Thoreen that he had asked his people to stop targeting the U.S. soldiers.

Capt. Thoreen said he appreciated the gesture but wasn't sure whether the imam was telling the truth.

"To some degree we are trying to pull the people of Maywand back over," he said.

"In some ways, we're not just fighting for their security but our own and those of the ones we love back home."

Then he added, referring to the rules of engagement that his forces try to observe, "For our guys, it's tough. Sometimes they feel they have their hands tied behind their backs."

Contacted by e-mail after The Times' reporter and photographer had returned to the U.S., Capt. Thoreen described a clinic his unit had since hosted, which treated 75 locals including 20 women.

"It was a huge success. The people are becoming much more open and friendly," he said. As evidence of that success, he cited a drop in IED attacks on his soldiers. :doh:

steelerohio
09-03-2010, 08:18 AM
Wth rules like those, esp. the can fire at an insurgent if he lays an IED but not if he's walking away from an area where it has been laid, we just might as well pack it up and bring them all back. If they come here again and fight wars on our turf, then we can have no rules then... War is supposed to be hell, not nice rules to appease the rest of the world at our disadvantage...