The Scandal of 2013

1By Diana West

Early in 2012, I opened a column with this question: “Is there a  single public official who is examining – who cares about – the murder  spree by Afghan security forces against Western troops and security  contractors in Afghanistan?”

Nearly one year has passed, during which 62 Americans and other  Westerners have been killed by Afghan forces “inside the wire.” The  president has yet to call for “meaningful change”; in fact, he has said  nothing about it. The Congress has said nothing about it. During the  presidential campaign, Mitt Romney said nothing about it. Such silence  is a national disgrace, but it’s an answer to my question. No. They  don’t care. Not about the men. Not about their families. What they care  about is the story line – the fraud that has kept the national arteries  to Afghanistan open, fueling the American-led “counterinsurgency”  fantasy that an ally, heart-and-mind, exists in the umma (Islamic  world), if only Uncle Sam can mold it and bribe it and train it into  viability.

But this trail of blood shed by our men – fathers, husbands,  brothers, friends – leads in another direction. If We the People were to  follow it, drop by drop, we would begin to understand there is no ally,  no “partner” in Afghanistan, no matter how hard our leadership lies to  us. We would see for ourselves that the difference between the  “extremists” and the “moderates” in a Shariah-supreme culture is  ultimately inconsequential, and that the gulf between Islam and the West  is too deep to plumb without losing ourselves in the process. If we  were to keep following this trail of blood, we would even conclude that  our leaders, from President Bush to President Obama, have been wrong,  criminally, recklessly wrong, ever since 9/11/01, when they began doing  everything possible to deny the centrality of jihad in Islam even while  sending America and her allies to combat jihad in the Islamic world.

Silence, thus, becomes the way our leaders can keep both their  delusional ideology intact and their places in power secure. Deflection,  too. In March 2012, a month in which three Afghan attacks took the live  of two British soldiers and three Americans, Chairman of the Joint  Chiefs of Staff Gen. Martin E. Dempsey deemed such shootings as  “additional risk” necessary for “national security.” In April, he would  order all branches of the military and the service academies to scrub  any training materials deemed “disrespectful of Islam” – another blow to  the study of jihad. In August 2012, midway through a month in which 12  American and three Australian forces would be killed in seven “insider  attacks,” Afghanistan commander Gen. John Allen actually offered excuses  for the murders – the strain of Ramadan fasting, summer heat and fast  operational tempo. The following month, after four Americans and two  British troops were killed in two separate shootings, Obama campaign  adviser and former senior Pentagon official Michele Flournoy minimized  the attacks as a “very occasional” problem and a sign of “Taliban  desperation.”

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Afghanistan – Time to Go

by  ED  KOCH

I learned from reading page 9 of the New York Times of July 8th that “The  United States declared Afghanistan a major non-NATO ally on Saturday with  Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton personally delivering the news of  Afghanistan’s entry into a club that includes Israel, Japan, Pakistan and other  close Asian and Middle Eastern  allies.”

The Times also noted the U.S. “pledged $16 billion for civilian needs in  Afghanistan, but for the first time insisted that the Afghanistan government  resist corruption in order to receive all the  money.”

Over the 12 years of our being in Afghanistan, we have read reports  alleging corruption of the Afghan government officials, including President  Hamid Karzai and his family.  We read that his brother, now dead, was a  major drug trafficker.  We have been spending tens of billions annually in  Afghanistan, not only on the military, but on rebuilding that country.  The  monies invested have not produced the intended upgrading of Afghanistan’s  infrastructure, but rather, the upgrading of the personal fortunes of members of  the Afghan government and warlords who actually control parts of the  country.  Now we know their ability to continue to eat at the trough filled  daily with American tax dollars and support from other nations will go on  undiminished.  What kind of ally have we purchased with our tax  dollars?  We are now spending $2 billion a week in  Afghanistan.

We are enriching a host of corrupt Afghans, including President Karzai who,  according to the Times, “has in the past at one point call[ed] Americans ‘demons.'”  Worse than that, he threatened on one occasion to join the  Taliban against the U.S.  Now reports the Times, “Mrs. Clinton reiterated  on Saturday that Washington did envision keeping American troops in Afghanistan,  where they would provide the kind of air power and surveillance capabilities  needed to give Afghan forces an edge over the  Taliban.”

Over the last 12 years, 2,038 American service members have been killed in  Afghanistan and 15,322 have been wounded.  What is most shocking is that  there is now a rise in the killing of American soldiers and soldiers of our  allies in Afghanistan, e.g. Britain, Germany, et. al.  Last week, three  British soldiers were killed by a member of the Afghanistan security  forces.  Since 2007, we have lost 57 soldiers at the hands of Afghan  National Security Forces, who our soldiers were training.  This undoubtedly  will go on if we stay there.  The killing of NATO soldiers by Afghan  security forces is now called “green on blue.”

Another tragedy took place this past weekend when six American soldiers were  killed by the Taliban using IEDs.  Let me sum it up by saying, it is  madness not to get out of Afghanistan totally and as soon as possible, rather  than stay with a large force until the end of 2014 and a smaller force  thereafter.

We went into Afghanistan originally because the Taliban, then the government  of Afghanistan, had given shelter to al-Qaeda and bin Laden, in which country  was hatched the monstrous plan to blow up the World Trade Center towers in New  York City on 9/11/2001.  Al-Qaeda now functions in at least 62 countries  while, according to C.I.A. Director Leon Panetta, it has no more than 50  operatives in Afghanistan.

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