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Unread 08-23-2021, 05:19 AM   #106
DaGeek
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Originally Posted by Almost Enough View Post
Ok. I'll try to play by the rules. If mr. tlj wants to keep coming in here and dumping fox news talking points and then bailing when the heat is on then that's on him.

We've known for years that Afghanistan was a ____ show. I have dead or injured high school friends because of it. If you want to read more about this boondoggle I would encourage you to dip your toes in with the Afghanistan Papers that dropped in 2019 that nobody really paid attention to. Link:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/graph...ial-documents/

Do I like how Biden handled this? No. Do I think he could have made a better decision? I dunno. I've also been in leadership roles and have had to make difficult decisions that made me look bad. Do I think the previous POTUS would have done better? ____ NO.

I support NGOs that are working their tails off to help those in need in the area. If you want to make a difference then I encourage you to check out people like Preemptive Love Coalition. I realize I may have a reputation here that doesn't particularly bode well with some people so please don't let that color your view of what they're doing. If you have a heart for what is happening to these people who are being let down by foreign actors AND their puppet government then find a way to make a difference.

Also, in light of what beanbag said, I am no longer a part of a faith community. I left the evangelical church and my missionary position 3 years ago due to the unchristlike things I saw going on. If I'm no longer welcome here then let me know. I was unaware that I might not be welcome in the politics portion of this site. I still consider myself a Christian but I'm not sure where I land with you guys so let me know.
To clarify at least the last point, you’re 100% welcome regardless of your connection to an established faith community. Like beanbag said, though, we just ask that you treat others respectfully, as we expect anyone else to treat you.

I don’t have nearly enough time to share my full thoughts, but, having spent time in Iraq (not Afghanistan, however), my question has always been why we’re still in Afghanistan. I understand why we went there originally, but for two decades we’ve hung out there letting soldiers get hurt or killed without any clear grand strategy or purpose. The jaded part of me wonders who’s been getting rich that’s been able to keep us there, while the less jaded part of me wonders if someone actually thought we were going to make a difference there. Maybe things could have been done better, but I don’t believe we ever put enough of the right resources into that country, and I don’t know that the country ever cared enough to fight for itself.

I support Biden’s decision to withdraw; however, I find it shameful how we left many of our supporters there out to dry. Like you said, perhaps there’s some underlying reason we peons don’t know, but I’ve heard of many interpreters and Afghan special forces who have been getting hunted down. Maybe they didn’t want to come here and chose to stay, but I kinda think we bungled that part more. This refugee crisis at the Kabul airport tells me we could have done better. But, then again, it’s easy to tear it down from the sidelines. I just wish we hadn’t stayed so long in the first place, and I also wish so many weapons and ammo that we gave to Afghanistan were not in Taliban hands.

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Unread 08-23-2021, 10:35 PM   #107
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Originally Posted by DaGeek View Post
I donít have nearly enough time to share my full thoughts, but, having spent time in Iraq (not Afghanistan, however), my question has always been why weíre still in Afghanistan. I understand why we went there originally, but for two decades weíve hung out there letting soldiers get hurt or killed without any clear grand strategy or purpose. The jaded part of me wonders whoís been getting rich thatís been able to keep us there, while the less jaded part of me wonders if someone actually thought we were going to make a difference there. Maybe things could have been done better, but I donít believe we ever put enough of the right resources into that country, and I donít know that the country ever cared enough to fight for itself.

I support Bidenís decision to withdraw; however, I find it shameful how we left many of our supporters there out to dry. Like you said, perhaps thereís some underlying reason we peons donít know, but Iíve heard of many interpreters and Afghan special forces who have been getting hunted down. Maybe they didnít want to come here and chose to stay, but I kinda think we bungled that part more. This refugee crisis at the Kabul airport tells me we could have done better. But, then again, itís easy to tear it down from the sidelines. I just wish we hadnít stayed so long in the first place, and I also wish so many weapons and ammo that we gave to Afghanistan were not in Taliban hands.
You're less jaded than me, I'll be honest. I don't really know why we were there in the first place. Now, that being said, I was a freshman in high school when we went in. Most of my insight is hindsight. That said, I agree with the rest of your first paragraph.

As for your second paragraph, you are saying better than I could have what I felt inside. The most jaded part of me wonders if the previous administration deliberately sabotaged this administration but that is as conspiratorial as I'm willing to get. Again, having been put in leadership roles before I've been handed hot potatoes that I completely understand why some peoe didn't want to deal with. I wonder how much of this was Biden taking the high road while also taking the blame for the negativity. That said, it should have been abundantly clear that what the brass was reporting about Afghanistan was much more rosey than what was true. Again, see the link posted above about the Afghanistan Papers.

I'm hoping and praying for the best. It seems like there are some people in the country that want things to be more democratic. Afghanistan is not typical nation state. It'll be interesting to see how things play out. Hopefully there are enough nations to intervene to save those that want out and might otherwise not be able to get out.

Again, I want to reiterate. There are NGOs doing work and need financial support. If you honestly feel strongly about what is going on and want to make a difference please consider supporting them. They probably have boots on the ground who are very aware of how to best move those funds to make the most impact.
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Unread 09-03-2021, 12:52 PM   #108
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To answer you sarcasm, I would have recommended staged withdrawal while maintaining logistical and air support. Evacuating civilians before removing our soldiers also would have been helpful.

As for the "fox news talking points", feel free to post something you consider important. I'll be glad to engage on anything that you believe I've balked at. I prefer discussion and I don't tend to get my feelings hurt. So please feel free to comment.
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Unread 09-04-2021, 09:30 PM   #109
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To answer you sarcasm, I would have recommended staged withdrawal while maintaining logistical and air support. Evacuating civilians before removing our soldiers also would have been helpful.
I agree.

I do think that the fact that the Afghani president turned and ran so quickly showed how much of a house of cards it truly was, though. I wonder how long and drawn out it would have been had they been more methodical and proactive in notifying people. Some of this withdrawal from the country makes me wonder if there was some intelligence that led higher up mucky mucks to think that this was the best way to save face in the long run. Rip the band-aid off, if you will.

I have to admit the logistics of moving as many people as they did in that short of time is impressive. It's absolutely terrible and heartbreaking that there were lives lost in the process. I'm worried for those left behind but I'm hopeful that they will at least be recognized more than other groups after our past evacuations. The Kurds come to mind immediately, as do some of the translators that we abandoned in other recent middle eastern conflicts.

I'm caught with Biden so far. I'm a far left progressive so I definitely have my issues with him. I consider him a diet republican. As this is a politics thread I'll say that I am hopeful that he's working behind the scenes to move things in the right direction. I do get the feeling that he's taking a much different approach to the media and to foreign policy than the previous guy. I am crossing my fingers that he won't pull an Obama and be the drone strike in chief in the white house. We will see how things play out.
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Unread 09-05-2021, 08:46 AM   #110
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I have no evidence to substantiate it, so take the following as pure conjecture, but I wonder if the reason we didn’t withdraw civilians sooner than we did was to avoid a different debacle. Imagine a scenario (that’s not that far-fetched) in which we start doing massive airlifts with our 2-3k soldiers in country and, in response, opposing groups take that as invitation to hit us hard while we’re stretched out and vulnerable. How many troops might we have lost? Could it have been an international incident/embarrassment of epic proportions? I think this whole situation is just far too complicated for the lay person (like myself) to grasp without knowing the vast number of factors that go into it.


Ending speculation about that, though, a really good point was brought to my attention. It appears (from my low level view) that we left abruptly without choosing the withdrawal date cooperatively with the other coalition members who had thousands of troops combined in Afghanistan with us. That feels like the even bigger blunder here if that is indeed the case.
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Unread 09-05-2021, 01:21 PM   #111
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I'm just glad that there's a little less war on our national plate.
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Unread 09-06-2021, 06:43 AM   #112
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Ending speculation about that, though, a really good point was brought to my attention. It appears (from my low level view) that we left abruptly without choosing the withdrawal date cooperatively with the other coalition members who had thousands of troops combined in Afghanistan with us. That feels like the even bigger blunder here if that is indeed the case.
I have an uneasy feeling that "we" will back in there before it's all over with.
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Unread 09-06-2021, 09:52 AM   #113
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I have an uneasy feeling that "we" will back in there before it's all over with.
That has been my fear as well...
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Unread 09-07-2021, 08:34 AM   #114
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I have no evidence to substantiate it, so take the following as pure conjecture, but I wonder if the reason we didn’t withdraw civilians sooner than we did was to avoid a different debacle. Imagine a scenario (that’s not that far-fetched) in which we start doing massive airlifts with our 2-3k soldiers in country and, in response, opposing groups take that as invitation to hit us hard while we’re stretched out and vulnerable. How many troops might we have lost? Could it have been an international incident/embarrassment of epic proportions? I think this whole situation is just far too complicated for the lay person (like myself) to grasp without knowing the vast number of factors that go into it.


Ending speculation about that, though, a really good point was brought to my attention. It appears (from my low level view) that we left abruptly without choosing the withdrawal date cooperatively with the other coalition members who had thousands of troops combined in Afghanistan with us. That feels like the even bigger blunder here if that is indeed the case.
It seems to be a fact that we didn't consult with our allies that were in Afghanistan with us. They have been openly criticizing us about it.

I personally think we should have stayed. We only had 2,500 troops present and haven't had an American death in something like 18 months. Seems like a small price to pay for a base to fight terrorists, and watch Pakistan and Iran.

But if we were going to pull out, I think we had 7 airports around the country and the Taliban do not fight in the winter. Seems like there was a better way.
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Unread 09-11-2021, 01:23 PM   #115
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https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/...tigation-finds

Terrible. Absolutely heartbreaking. I really hope Biden's plan isn't to take this back from being boots on the ground to being a CIA backroom drone program with no accountability (not that we are ever held accountable internationally anyways).
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Unread 09-11-2021, 05:40 PM   #116
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terrible news. but since when has our military had accountability? especially in Afghanistan? I don't believe we had justification invading there after 9/11, especially after so many other nations failed to tame that desolate place before us. heck, we (along with Britain and China) trained and armed their troops against the Soviets in the 80's, leading to the creation of al-Qaida in an attempt to rid Afghanistan of us pesky foreign influences. people losing their minds over the Taliban using our weapons today have short memories - they used our weapons and training against us in the 80's - 90's, too. it was stupid to even try invading. at least we finally are out, hopefully we stay gone this time.
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Unread 09-12-2021, 11:23 AM   #117
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The original reason for going in wasn't to tame Afghanistan, it was to get Bin Laden, destroy the terrorist network and leave. The nation building came later when we decided that it would be beneficial to have bases in the area to run operations out of. But you are right. You would think that we would eventually learn from past mistakes.
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Unread 09-24-2021, 10:03 AM   #118
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https://www.politico.eu/article/eu-c...ies-aukus/amp/

Between the Afghanistan pullout and this conflict with France and by extension the EU, we are just ticking off all of our allies.
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Unread 09-24-2021, 02:59 PM   #119
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Yes, though, to be fair the last administration had already ticked off our EU allies. Its been an ongoing issue for the last 5 years or so.

Honestly, it seems to me like France is being a bit whiny. But, idk.
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Unread 09-24-2021, 05:02 PM   #120
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Both valid points and both mentioned in the article. Still, I doubt that the deal was negotiated overnight. The secrecy may have been necessary. But in general it would have been nice to let your allies know who all the players are so that they know it is at least a possibility.

But I think that the frustration is more that after Trump, everyone thought Biden would be much better at international diplomacy. Maybe he we be eventually but so far, we have ticked off everyone and it hasn't been a year yet. Which is pretty much what Charles Michel says in the article.
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