Let’s get out of Afghanistan now before we shame ourselves again.
After the insurgents we funded drove the Russians out in 1989, we rapidly abandoned the Afghans. Our contest was with our cold war enemy, the Russians. With their defeat, we could declare victory and go home. And we did.
Unfortunately, by leaving the Afghans on their own, the freedom fighters we supported against the Russians became the Taliban who sheltered Al Qeida. This group then oppressed the Afghan people and helped Al Queida carry our their attack on New York.
So we went in again in 2002, this time with our troops to get some vengeance, hopefully find Bin Laden and clean things up. Unfortunately, we again substantially abandoned Afghanistan and its people after Iraq became our number one enemy.
This allowed the Taliban to reform so that they are now our latest number one enemy. Our strategy now is to clean out the Taliban and again restore security to the Afghan people. This takes their cooperation in working with us and informing on the Taliban insurgents. We say we’ll stay around to protect them.
We’re already talking about exiting Afghanistan. Why should any of these people stick their necks out helping us when the Taliban will be there, whenever we leave, to wreak vengeance on them?
It’s a nation sized version of the police asking a neighborhood to help clean out drug dealers but then leaving and leaving the people who helped the police to suffer retaliation from the criminal element. We did it in Vietnam when we declared victory and left, leaving the South Vietnamese to suffer at the hands of the North.
We’ll do it in Afghanistan when our public and politicians get tired of the whole mess. Let’s leave now and minimize our shame at abandoning them again.