Is it worth it?

More than 2,000 members of the U.S. military haven died in the war in Afghanistan

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It’s difficult to see how this ends well.

After a decade-plus of war and nation-building in Afghanistan, NATO and U.S. troops are increasingly being thanked for their trouble by traitorous Afghan colleagues – whom they have befriended and trained – who turn on our troops and kill them.

Nor have we talked to anyone in the know who truly believes that whatever peace and civil infrastructure we leave behind will remain intact once NATO and U.S. troops leave in 2014.

Meanwhile, the rules of engagement for our troops are so confining that our men and women are nearly reduced to sitting ducks.

Some 40 foreign troops, including U.S. troops, have been slaughtered by their treacherous “partners” in the Afghan police and military. Even Afghan President Hamid Karzai – who treats us as if he’s doing us a favor by letting us build his nation for him – was concerned enough about the increase in so-called “insider killings” that he recently called a meeting of his national security council – on a holiday.

Karzai blames “foreign spy agencies” for the murders. Perhaps. It’s an open secret that Iran is fueling the insurgency, and even supplying it with shoulder-fired missiles. But the truth is, Karzai’s own forces have been infiltrated at an alarming rate by Taliban sympathizers. In addition, the tribal, say-anything, do-anything treachery of the culture also inspires aggrieved individuals to lash out for apolitical, personal reasons. One such murderer killed eight NATO colleagues after an investigation discovered he was taking bribes to allow some people to gain privileged access to military aircraft.

Some we’ve talked to also blame President Obama’s publicly announced departure target for emboldening the opposition and making wary our allies.

Moreover, Voice of America reports, “The number of U.S. military members killed in the war in Afghanistan has surpassed 2,000, with more than half the deaths coming in the past 27 months.”

Two U.S. troops were killed in cold blood by an Afghan colleague Monday, bringing to a dozen the number of foreign troops killed by turncoats this month alone.

The long and the short of it is, you have to wonder if our continued presence in Afghanistan is worth it.

For what it’s worth, we don’t think it is. And we encourage the next president, whomever he is, to turn a fresh, unjaundiced eye toward whether to accelerate our departure from that tortured parcel of earth.

To his credit, Marine Corps Gen. John Allen, coalition commander, isn’t budging. “At this particular moment, I don’t believe that we need to contemplate reducing our contact with the Afghans,” he recently told reporters.

We trust that with the keen interest of the highest levels of the Pentagon, more measures can be taken to make our troops more secure from Afghan traitors in their midst. One step that’s already been taken is to allow weapons to be loaded while on base.

We hope increased security will put a stop to these killings, because our tolerance level for that kind of loss of American life is at about zero right now.

Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Martin Dempsey says the right strategy “might not be to pull back and isolate ourselves, but (to) reach out and embrace them even more.”

Afghan military leaders have been slow to see the urgency of this.

“In the past,” Gen. Dempsey said, “it’s been us pushing on them to make sure they do more. This time, without prompting, when I met (defense chief) Gen. Karimi, he started with a conversation about insider attacks...”

One possible reason for that: Traitors have been killing other Afghans at an even higher rate.

We’re glad to hear the Afghan military finally cares enough to speak up. We’re skeptical whether that will truly matter. But, God bless them, our military folks are unbowed.

“The more we can foster a relationship of brotherhood, the more secure that we are,” Gen. Allen says.

We don’t doubt that. But it remains to be seen whether that neighborhood is capable of long supporting brotherhood.

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omnomnom
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omnomnom 09/02/12 - 06:28 am
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why are we still questioning afghanistan's worth?

let us leave the graveyard of empires. nationbuilding begins at home. we can't afford to fix our infrastructure. osama is dead. let them fall back to their barbarous ways.

or lets go ahead and declare the country a protectorate and seize all of the rare-earth minerals... you know, for the future / tribute or whatever.

Techfan
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Techfan 09/02/12 - 06:29 am
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"The United States had

"The United States had widespread global support - heading up an international coalition - for its Afghanistan operation. As Afghan cities were liberated from Taliban rule, American and allied troops were welcomed as conquering heroes."
"Our hearts go out to the courageous American troops who were killed, but, as President Bush has reminded the nation repeatedly, the war against terrorism will be long and casualties are inevitable.
We just hope Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle, D-S.D., who's been whining that he wants to know the exit strategy, got the message. Most Americans certainly have."
"The best thing Americans can do to honor the fallen troops in Iraq - Americans and others, including the Iraqis who are with us - is not to abandon the war, but to remain resolute and see it through.
Those who are cynical about bringing freedom and democracy to Iraq and Afghanistan should read the gloomy reports in The New York Times and other mainstream media outlets back in the late 1940s and early 1950s, as Allied troops worked to bring representative government to Germany and Japan. They said it could not be done, but it was - though it didn't happen quickly or easily.
Our prayers and hearts go out to families of every loved one who has been cut down in the field of battles in Iraq and Afghanistan, but they have died like the hundreds of thousands before them in other wars - fighting for freedom and democracy, not only to bring to other lands, but to protect our own. It couldn't be for a better cause. Their deaths are not in vain."
"It's hard to see how vile attacks like these - a mixture of lies and character assassination - on the commander-in-chief more than a year before the election, and months before the primaries, won't undermine troop morale in Iraq and Afghanistan; and, even worse, give aid and comfort to the enemy. Terrorists strongly believe Americans aren't resolute enough to stay the course."
"But we're not dealing with pragmatists. We're dealing with religious wackos who can't see the writing on the wall, and who will never change their beliefs and, therefore, their reason for fighting. Their reason for fighting -- to kill non-believers, to revert human progress to about five or six centuries ago -- will never go away. You can bomb and shoot and threaten someone into submission, but not into believing or disbelieving something.
They'll never quit, admit defeat and try to work out an amenable compromise for life after war. For them, life holds no promise, and war has no end.
Thanks to our volunteer armed forces, most of us will be oblivious to these realities. We'll have our lives to live, largely uninterrupted. That's what we're fighting for, after all. It's OK.
But we need to be mindful of the traits of our enemy, and the sacrifice demanded of our military. Our troops and political leaders are fighting a war like no other -- a war that is certainly winnable, but may never end.
This is why, long after the conclusion of "major combat" in both Iraq and Afghanistan, U.S. troops are still under fire. To our enemy, the war has only begun.
Our task, then, is before us: to outlast an unrelenting enemy in a struggle without end.
If anyone can do it, we can."

allhans
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allhans 09/02/12 - 08:38 am
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Obama decided that Bush was

Obama decided that Bush was fighting the wrong war and Afghanistan was the place to be, along with a large buildup of troops..
Now how is that working out?

soapy_725
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soapy_725 09/02/12 - 08:48 am
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The Truth.....
Unpublished

Everyone in the world does not want American style democracy. And will not support same after the US troops are gone.

Most of the world's population is not obsessed with politics. They just wish to live.

Politicians want money and power. War gives them both. Wars actually stabilize the world economic system. Politicians also want money for their military contractors.

Generals want war. Because it is their vocation and avocation.

Front line soldiers want to complete their mission and go home alive.

Average American citizens want peace and a relief from foreign political strife.

Comparing Germany and Japan to Vietnam, Iraq or Afghanistan is a joke. The mission was entirely different. Japan and Germany were totally defeated and surrendered. Neither wanted to be "liberated".

Vietnam accomplished only death to millions. It was a political military action. It did bring Martin Marietta and Bell Helicopter out of bankruptcy.

Iraq and Afghanistan are political military actions. There is no "end strategy". The strategy is Middle East occupation. Deployment for the next world war.

soapy_725
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soapy_725 09/02/12 - 08:52 am
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Karzai is a crook and an
Unpublished

extortionist. Was and always will be. We have to have "someone" in the Jhagi camp for communications. And someone to blame for failures. The military are very well aware of this situation. Ask any soldier who has been to Iraq or Afghanistan. Ask about their deployment briefings.

soapy_725
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soapy_725 09/02/12 - 08:55 am
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South Vietnamise
Unpublished

leaders were crooks and extortionists. Pres Johnson and McNamara were making them rich while US soldiers were dying in a foreign civil war.

rmwhitley
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rmwhitley 09/02/12 - 09:23 am
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Seems
Unpublished

to me the ruskies had a little problem with the Afghanis back in the eighties. Bet you can't guess how that turned out? Good solution: couple of nuclear warheads strategically placed. May as well take care of iran and north korea while at it. Pave them over and operate the worlds largest go-cart tracks. obama could then "be shovel ready".

freeradical
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freeradical 09/02/12 - 09:48 am
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4
I love to hear the president

I love to hear the president say " tallybon "

He is such a hyper-intelligent soul .

We should sacrifice many more americans for 4 more years just to be

privileged to hear him say we are making significant inroads with the

" tallybon " .

Then the rest of the world has to respect us for having such a

smart man as our leader.

harley_52
23959
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harley_52 09/02/12 - 01:50 pm
6
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There Are About...

...1.6 BILLION Muslims in the world. Muslims believe it is their destiny to rule the world and that they cannot coexist with non-believers which they refer to as variously unbelievers, infidels, or kafirs. Some of them believe they will come to rule the world through procreation and immigration. If you look at Europe and some other places, you'll see that strategy in play. Once their numbers support it, they intend to institute Sharia as the law of the land. If we'll open our eyes, we can see it happening right here in the U.S.A., but most of us won't open our eyes.

Some Muslims seek to speed up the process of world domination by destroying non-muslims on the field of battle. Ill equipped to handle that challenge by conventional war, they've instead chosen the tactic of terrorism to accomplish it. They have, so far, killed thousands of soldiers and hundreds of thousands of innocent civilians around the world in an attempt to further their cause. If they can obtain weapons of mass destruction, they won't bat an eye in using them. Think about it.....there are millions of human beings alive today that would, if they could, press a button that would destroy every man, woman, and child in America, Israel, Western Europe, and anywhere else where kafirs (like us) reside. What percentage of the total Muslim population are these radical, terrorism supporting types? Nobody knows. Look at it this way, if only ten percent are radical/terrorist supporting types, that's still about 160,000,000 of them.

In the long run, we will have to either defeat Islam or it will defeat us. We've proven in both Iraq and Afghanistan that we have no intention of "winning" the wars there. In fact, you don't even hear the words "victory," or "win," discussed by the current Administration as a National, or military, goal. We can't even say the words.

We've lost our way, as a Nation. We've become complacent and politically correct. We have no clue what it's like to be a soldier who believed he/she was sent to win a war to overcome a threat to our National Security. Obviously they are wrong. We don't want to win. We won't let them win. We can't stomach the ugly results of war as concerning non-Americans, even though we've become more and more accepting of the maiming and killing of American soldiers. We hear it on the news, yawn, and ask "what time does the game come on?"

Bring our military home NOW. We've spilled too much blood, destroyed too many families, and lost too many sons, brothers, daughters, sisters, boyfriends, husbands, etc. We don't recognize the threat we face and we're not willing to pay the price required to overcome it.

Who wants to be the last man killed trying to accomplish a mission your Country doesn't want you to accomplish?

KSL
134725
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KSL 09/02/12 - 12:12 pm
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Obama is not intelligent, but

Obama is not intelligent, but he is cunning.

t3bledsoe
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t3bledsoe 09/02/12 - 12:20 pm
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Get The U.S. out of Afghanistan, NOW !

My name is Timothy ( Tim ) Monroe Bledsoe. The reason I put my name on this comment is because I whole-heartedly believe that The U.S. and The Troops should have been brought home many years ago!! I put The Afghan and Iraq War in the same catigory as The Vietnam War. These wars were fought to keep a certain people of common beliefs from ruling these three countries. I feel for every family that has suffered loses in these wars that lasted for years and years too long and caused thousands of families to suffer great loses ! It was President George W. Bush that put our country and thousands of troops into two asinine wars that have gone on for entirely too long ! I am so very, very glad to see that The Augusta Chronicle and conservative Republicans are finally say the same things about these two wars that Democrats have been saying for years ! I will encourage The Augusta Chronicle and ALL CITIZENS that believe these wars have gone on far too long to contact your Senators and Congressmen to tell them to get The U.S. and The Troops OUT OF AFGHANISTAN AND IRAQ !

harley_52
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harley_52 09/02/12 - 12:38 pm
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"Our task, then, is before us: ........

....to outlast an unrelenting enemy in a struggle without end."

Beginning with Sun Tzu in about 500 BC great military thinkers and strategists have assembled battlefield knowledge gained over the centuries and summarized those strategies that must be observed in order to win wars. After Sun Tzu came great military minds like Carl von Clausewitz, Napoleon Bonaparte, Henry Lloyd, Antoine-Henry Jomin, and more recently, people like Pershing, Patton, Eisenhower, and Petraeus have also added their views to the accumulated body of knowledge and thought on how to fight and win wars. These thoughts are summarized into "Principles of War" which are drilled into the heads of military leaders at various levels of schooling including the basic and advanced leadership courses, the Command and General Staff College, and the Army War College.

Nowhere in that eons old accumulated body of knowledge will you find a Principle of War that reads (or implies) that a fighting force should seek to "outlast an unrelenting enemy in a struggle without end."

We've witnessed history here today, folks. Future Colonels and Generals will have something new to learn and perhaps they'll even come to know it as "Techfan's Principle of Whittling Down Your Own Army."

"If anyone can do it, we can."

We can? I think you mean "they can." I mean unless you've decided to volunteer to be one of those soldiers sent to a foreign battlefield, hands tied with restrictive rules of engagement that you can't even fight back, and then instructed to "outlast" the enemy who's fighting dirty, and fighting to win.

harley_52
23959
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harley_52 09/02/12 - 12:31 pm
4
4
t3bledsoe....

" It was President George W. Bush that put our country and thousands of troops into two asinine wars that have gone on for entirely too long !"

How long should a war go on?

rmwhitley
5547
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rmwhitley 09/02/12 - 01:01 pm
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obama
Unpublished

is not only cunning but dangerous. he's a mentally disturbed young hooligan who believes in the chicagoland way of politics. Anyone remember capone, thompson, blagojevich? obama is no better than the somali punks who hijack ships and assassinate people. he destroyed the career of an opponent in illinois, while running for the U.S. senate seat, by lies , innuendo and what could be construed as criminal activity. his sheep, the left, are no better. When lies won't work, just keep screaming them and some morons will believe them. How many in his inner circle have left, been forced to leave and remain with criminal stains on them? eric holder? suzanne barr ( not to be confused with the ACTRESS roseanne)? biden, brain damaged from an undisclosed accident or episode? rangel, the reigning stalwart of new york city? jesse jackson, jr.? gov. blanco of La.? ray nagan (sic) of New Orleans? obama has never been successful at ANYTHING in his life but wants you to destroy people who are successful. What's he going to do with his wealth, guvmint pension, lifetime health care, lifetime security, travel expenses ( how about michelle's many expensive vacations)? Is the "boy wonder" going to re-distribute them to the oppressed, poor, homeless and disaster laden people? You tell me? I, personally, think he's a punk wrapped in criminal activity up to those ears of his.

burninater
9685
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burninater 09/02/12 - 01:08 pm
3
1
Harley, you're

Harley, you're misunderstanding Techfan's post.

Techfan simply reposted former ACES editorial positions on the War on Terror.

Perhaps they're the ones you should be exhorting to replace empty words with meaningful action.

harley_52
23959
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harley_52 09/02/12 - 02:01 pm
5
3
burninater...

When quoting, it's customary to identify the source of the material being quoted. If Techfan did that, I must have missed it.

If that/those is/are really ACES quotes, I'd be interested in seeing the dates/circumstances/context of their publication. If it was years ago, I may well have agreed. If it was within the past couple of years, I wouldn't.

Bantana
2071
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Bantana 09/02/12 - 02:03 pm
2
1
hardley...

what time does the game come on?

Gage Creed
17874
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Gage Creed 09/02/12 - 07:52 pm
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0
Ahmadinejad....

Ahmadinejad....

constituent
164
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constituent 09/02/12 - 09:28 pm
1
3
Republican presidents are

Republican presidents are warmonger, they like to stir up war and lied about (weapon of mass destruction) the caused for action. They don't believe in ending wars. One thing is a fact Democrat presidents do not like wars, so we need keep Obama in the White House and he will end this war like he ended the war in Iraq. This only for the people who are concerned or have family members stationed in Afghanistan were these unavoided act of terrorist attacks on our troop,vote democrat.

Gage Creed
17874
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Gage Creed 09/02/12 - 09:57 pm
1
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HUH?

HUH?

JohnRandolphHardisonCain
576
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JohnRandolphHardisonCain 09/02/12 - 10:25 pm
0
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I figured out proto (without

I figured out proto (without prompting) that Techfan was quoting previous Augusta Chronicle editorials. Funny the Afghanistan war was not mentioned at the Republican National Convention. Romney says they discussed it "beforehand". I guess he figured they didn't need to let the American people in on what they decided. The sad fact is that Obama has escalated this long failed war, but his aggressive use of U.S. military power especially drones is probably why Republicans can't truthfully claim that Obama is weak on defense. If Obama is reelected his triangulation on defense policy will be a major factor in why he wins in November. Romney says if he is elected he will keep the U.S. military so strong that no one would dare challenge us. I can't figure out what planet Romney lives on. That is a foolish claim. The best choice for Americans IMO is to reject both establishment candidates who are both controlled by pro-war interests including war profiteers. United States is rapidly making waging endless war its only option. The neocon inspired, neoliberal adopted, militarized U.S. foreign policy is making our economy war driven and war dependent. The U.S. cannot fix its problems as long as the establishment Powers That Be all support war. I'll vote for the Green Party this fall. And yes, ACES, we must get out of Afghanistan NOW. This has been a DOOMED war for at least the last 7 years of this 10 year 11 month long FAILED war.

Gage Creed
17874
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Gage Creed 09/02/12 - 10:56 pm
0
0
Will Green Party Candidates

Will Green Party Candidates Jill Stein and Cheri Honkala be out of jail in time for the election? That's right they were released on OR for those charges in Philly....Will they get another chance to OCCUPY a jail cell?

fedex227
11187
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fedex227 09/02/12 - 11:46 pm
2
0
Augusta journalism at its finest ...
Unpublished

"Some we’ve talked to also blame President Obama’s publicly announced departure target for emboldening the opposition and making wary our allies."

And the 'some' you 'talked to' (which you're unwilling to name for some unfathomable reason) would include whom? Perhaps you 'talked to' members of the Joint Chiefs of Staff? The spokesman for the Department of Defense? Representatives of the RNC? Carcraft? Or did you just 'talk to' each other (just to keep it on the up and up.)

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