As promised, from TPC (a bit faster than I expected):
VICTORY in Afghanistan!!!
Seventy-five years ago, on V-J Day, US Sailor George Mendonsa was feeling especially triumphant and perhaps a little frisky. He grabbed a total yet pretty stranger, nurse Greta Friedman, and planted a long, wet kiss on her. It was in Times Square, New York, New York, in a completely different era. There is a picture of the two of them, said (like virtually everything else since 1066) to be “iconic.” Now, with stunning news out of the Middle East, expect a similar incident to unfold in the Big Bagel. Things being what they are, we might have to settle and iconize a drag queen lip-locked with Panhandle Me Elmo.
But, for once in a good while, we do have legitimately great news about that hideous monstrosity bestraddling the Potomac: The US and the Taliban have signed an Agreement to End the War in Afghanistan.
Please click that link and scroll down to the document. It’s short, only four pages. The implications are huge. The main gist of concern to Americans may be summarized in the first paragraph of Part One:
The United States is committed to withdraw from Afghanistan all military forces of the United States, its allies, and Coalition partners, including all non-diplomatic civilian personnel, private security contractors, trainers, advisors, and supporting services personnel within fourteen (14) months following announcement of this agreement, and will take the following measures in this regard:
Fourteen months, and we’re outta there! It’s about damned time. There’s more – again, read the whole thing. But, the main point – if this agreement holds – is that America’s longest war will soon be over. I know you’ve all read the Afghanistan Papers, not that you needed to, and you realize that this martial expedition was a mistake from the beginning.
The Afghan War by the numbers:
0 Legitimate causes of action or objectives
0 Declarations of War (antiquated concept, pursuant to your Holy Parchment Thing)
1 Nation, already in bad shape, wrecked
2 times the CIA/DOD reported Osama Bin Laden died
12s of other nations destabilized, stressed, or otherwise afflicted
19 long years (20 years before total disengagement)
50/50 chance the Deal falls apart and the US remains…
2,400+ Americans killed
1,000s of American Afghan Veteran suicides
1,000s of other Coalition casualties
20,000+ Americans wounded
110,000+ Afghans killed
360,000+ Afghans wounded
2.6 million+ Afghan refugees (95,000 in the US)
$1 Trillion+ in Military-Industrial/Oil/Corporate revenues*
$2.5 Trillion+ in nominal US taxpayer expenses (for on-books outlays only)*
$10 Trillion+ in associated Central/Commercial banking theft*
Unlimited ill-will generated by the foregoing (likely to include the ire of the Almighty)
* The “Trillions” figures are speculative, based on intentionally nefarious accounting, and could likely be larger; the bankster graft could range much higher. We simply do not (will not) know.
People, places, and things acquire nicknames for various reasons. Perhaps you recall a few years ago when, at Sea World or somewhere they keep sea creatures confined in swimming pools, a woman swam happily with an Orca. Families were delighted! Then, for no reason at all, Willy decided to toss the woman around for a football. She died, of course, and everyone was shocked, especially those delighted families! All I could think at the time was: well, it’s an animal the size of a bus, with a mouth large enough to hold a refrigerator, and it has KILLER in it’s (alternative) name! Afghanistan’s nickname is “the Graveyard of Empires.” The moniker was allegedly bestowed by Emperor Babur of the Mughal Dynasty (“India,” 1483-1530). His point was that the land was unconquerable. History bears witness to this truth, with the failures of Alexander, Great Britain, and the Soviet Union, among others. Those specific three, upon withdrawing from lost Afghan campaigns, soon collapsed. More than one sign points to the US Empire joining them.
Like all recent US Imperial wars, the objective was not necessarily to win. “Congress gives us money to spend and expects us to spend all of it. … The attitude became we don’t care what you do with the money as long as you spend it.” – B. Gen. Brian Copes, Feb. 25, 2016. Yes. And all that spending helped kill all those people. Destroying either to make some parties richer and/or simply for destruction’s sake. Yet today, the Empire still stands, barely and shakily.
This Agreement is the first thing in the long, pointless conflict that in any way benefits the American people. It hypothetically sets the tone for further foreign de-escalations and renewed attention to that neglected region between Mexico and Canada. Thus, I have declared it a victory! Now, minding you the #metoo movement, go on out and kiss a nurse.
I suppose this means I’ll have to do another TPC/CFF article for the coming week. March madness…