That the entire western world is freaking out about Afghanistan is not really a surprise, though the reasoning, or lack thereof, behind some of their concerns is.
If Americans are angry about the roughly 81 billion dollars in taxpayer money that went to a harmful war, ending for them in vain, then that’s understandable. While blaming Biden for the whole situation seems a miscalculation, if they’re angry at him for how the withdrawal took place, OK. If they, however, forget all that happened before just a few months ago, then shame on them.
And more importantly, if they mourn the disappearance of America from Afghanistan, in part out of fear for Afghan civilians, then I almost feel bad for them. They either were completely flummoxed by the media and the government for the past 20 years or just followed a twisted logic.
Since it appears that much of the world has the memory of a goldfish, especially those who live comfortably and whose wars are fought far away from their air-conditioned homes, let’s take a walk down memory lane:
“What happened in the 1980s is the Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan, and the United States saw an opportunity…to inflict upon the Soviet Union, its great geopolitical adversary, a defeat as humiliating and as psychologically devastating as the one the United States suffered in Vietnam for its own imperial hubris…And over the course of the 1980s, they inflicted tremendous damage on the Soviets, made the occupation, which was a brutal occupation by the Soviet Union, ever more violent and ever more protracted, to the point where the Soviets withdrew and, a couple years later, the regime the Soviets installed collapsed, much as like we’re seeing the one that the United States installed collapsed. The ensuing chaos and civil war was devastating for Afghanistan.”
“Faheem Qureshi was 13 years old when Obama launched his first drone strike. And it blew up Faheem’s compound, where he lived with his family. And they were gathering for a celebration of one of his relatives who had just returned from a successful business trip to the United Arab Emirates. Forty days later, Faheem woke from his coma. He had burns over most of his body. He was missing an eye. And he had learned that most of his family’s breadwinners had been killed in the strike, so that when he left the hospital, his responsibilities would immediately be providing for his family, however it was that his mangled body would perform.”
“And then, on a different level, the United States’s contribution — and not just the United States alone’s contribution — to the misery in Afghanistan came through the corruption that it always blamed on the Afghans but was a significant driver of itself, so-called development experts. Development aid and development money poured into Afghanistan far beyond a consideration of what a devastated Afghan economy could in fact absorb. And some of this money was very deliberately flooded in from the CIA to pay off warlords to ensure that they would ultimately be responsive to American interests, which would often be violent interests, which would often be things like, as the Joint Special Operations Command would perform throughout the Afghanistan War, Army Special Forces, in particular, throughout the Afghanistan War, raids on people’s houses suspected of being, aiding or facilitating the Taliban — and again, the Taliban, not even al-Qaeda, not the thing that attacked the United States, certainly not the core of al-Qaeda that plotted, planned and executed 9/11.”
These are but a few examples of the havoc wreaked. But we’re told to fear theocracies and religiously based governance.
This is not about saying that one group is infallible. It’s about looking at actual evidence; it’s about weighing actions.
It’s confusing that the same side that hated the war is now crying about Afghan civilians, worrying they won’t be safe. Were they also crying when their country killed Afghan civilians with drones? Were they in shock when the corrupt governments they propped up helped to increase Afghan opium production?
When you buy into this sensationalization, politicians in “democracies” can more easily craft their wars. They can more easily pull the wool over everyone’s eyes, convince them that, I don’t know, a country has weapons of mass destruction and they must invade. They can tell the press that the Taliban’s offer to negotiate with Karzai and relinquish control of Kandahar in December 2001 is unacceptable to their noble mission (like Rumsfeld did in December 2001).
Even if you don’t directly participate in the democratic process, simply swallowing the drama the media throws at you helps politicians move forward with their plans for wars. So speak against it.
And if they tell you to look at the facts of what happened between 1996 and 2001 in Afghanistan, you could point out: We cannot know the future, but at the least, from the past, whose reign in Afghanistan in the past 25 years has been the most destructive?
Question what you hear these days, as the lack of logic in much of it demands that.