Tuesday, April 27, 2021

036 The Erickson Report for April 22 to May 5, Page Two: Afghanistan

036 The Erickson Report for April 22 to May 5, Page Two: Afghanistan

I'm just going to take a minute or two for this because I am absolutely sure you have heard about it, but just as absolutely it has to be mentioned.

President Joe Blahden has directed that all remaining US forces be withdrawn from Afghanistan by September 11, ending America’s longest war 20 years after it started, in a decision supported even by veterans groups across the political landscape and from both Democrats and GOPpers in Congress.

NATO troops will also depart.

Despite the bipartisan support, there are still those urging that 20 years of war and $2 trillion in spending is not enough, that leaving has to be "conditions based" - in other words, the killing should continue until we win. The threat, they say, is civil war, as if that's not what Afghanistan has been experiencing all along.

Besides that obvious point, there is the argument that pulling out actually increases pressure on both the Taliban and the Afghan government to reach an agreement because neither can continue to hold the US hostage to political developments in the country - the government because it can no longer sit back and rely on the US to maintain it; the Taliban because it can no longer use the presence of foreign troops to build and hold popular support.

There is some wiggle room in the announcement, as the administration plans to leave “sufficient” forces in the region to conduct counterterrorism missions and keep a check on the Taliban, but how extensive those forces will be or where they will be stationed is unclear.

What's really odd, though, is that some are referring to it as a "surprise" announcement, even though the deadline is more than four months after the May 1 deadline agreed to by the Tweetie-pie administration last year.

I guess, like some of us sometimes, they just couldn't imagine it really ending.

No comments:

// I Support The Occupy Movement : banner and script by @jeffcouturer / jeffcouturier.com (v1.2) document.write('
I support the OCCUPY movement
');function occupySwap(whichState){if(whichState==1){document.getElementById('occupyimg').src="https://sites.google.com/site/occupybanners/home/isupportoccupy-right-blue.png"}else{document.getElementById('occupyimg').src="https://sites.google.com/site/occupybanners/home/isupportoccupy-right-red.png"}} document.write('');