Is Trump Serious About Ending War?

The United States is embroiled in multiple military excursions across the Middle East and recently President Donald Trump has expressed his desire that two of those excursions be wound down. Of course, this is a reference to Trump’s suggestion that the United States get out of Afghanistan and end our limited military operations in Syria. These utterances were made a few weeks ago and there has been no action, so the question become, is President Trump serious about winding those two operations down?

Beginning with Afghanistan, it is important to do a very quick rehash of what this war is about. It was the response by the George W. Bush administration for the al Qa’ida inspired attacks on September 11, 2001. That really does not need to be covered. What is more pressing is that just a decade ago (yeah it doesn’t feel that long to me either) this war was called the “good war” by then presidential candidate, Senator Barrack Obama. Obama’s campaign positioned itself to end the operations in Iraq and focus on Afghanistan, where the real battle was since that is where 9/11 was planned (it wasn’t, that was Kuala Lumpur). This resulted in an additional 33,000 military personnel being shipped to Afghanistan to add to the numbers that were already there. By 2012, the Afghan Surge was ended and those troops were brought home. Did it accomplish anything?

That depends on when the evidence is examined. At certain points in time, one might point to the decrease in violence in the souther provinces. However, that violence ticked up when the surge ended. At the political level, it created a huge backlash from the then presidency of Hamid Karzai. However, that was made pointless when the United States staged a political coup to oust him because of his opposition to such a strategy (Karzai would eventually be pushed out in 2014 for current Afghan President Ashraf Ghani). And then there were those “green-on-blue” attacks where Afghanistan trainees would “frag” their U.S. trainers. The list could go on, but the point here is that there was a tremendous price to pay for little to no gain in the overall situation.

Today, the Taliban–those terrorist harboring thugs whose destruction was the initial goal way back in 2001–is negotiating with the United States in Moscow, and the two main points to these talks have been affirmed by the parties. First, the Taliban will no allow terrorist groups like al Qa’ida to have safe harbor in Afghanistan. Second, all of the troops will be withdrawn from Afghanistan. Al Qa’ida still exists, though it is must less effective as a functioning organization like it was in 2001. And the Taliban is going to regain control of the government. So after 17 years of fighting and no telling how many thousands of deaths for all parties, the situation is likely to end in the same position as it would have had President Bush taken the Taliban’s offer to allow them to oust Osama bin Laden to another country instead of handing him directly to the United States.

Now to Syria. This is a much more difficult nut to crack because we really have no reason to be there aside from just stirring the multiple factions involved in that little war into killing each other. Again, some background. Syria began in Iraq when the Islamic State went from Junior Varsity to All-Pro by taking out a substantial portion of Iraq, at one point getting to roughly 20 miles from Baghdad itself. Then after being pushed out of the largest northern Iraqi city, Mosul, the Islamic State began to fall back into Syria and lose its grip on the ground it had gained in Iraq. In Syria, the United States was stuck because there was no legal authority for any U.S. military operations to occur. But that lasted only for a short while.

After the notion of providing support to the Syrian “rebels” was swatted down by Congress (thankfully) in 2012/2013, the then Obama administration decided they were going to use the weapons collected after the other little war in Libya and ship them to the “rebels” in Syria. Turns out, those “rebels” were really terrorist organizations and when they got wind of those weapons shipments ceasing, the torched the U.S. consulate in Benghazi and killed Ambassador Chris Stevens in the process. This operation, to varying degrees continued up until the Trump administration took over and ended it in 2017. What is the situation now?

As of today, Syria is still under the ravages of war. However, the Islamic State does not have the strength it did just a couple of years ago. Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad is still in power, the Russians are still there providing Assad forces with air cover (during the Obama administration U.S. and Russian forces would coordinate their airstrikes so as to avoid possible international incidents), and the Kurds seem to be everyone’s new sympathetic entity with which sentiment for more war can be garnered from the U.S. population. A complete cessation of U.S. military operations in Syria would not worsen the situation there by any means, but giving what the foreign policy establishment in Washington D.C. wants could be a serious problem for that region–as if that region does not have enough problems.

So the question remains: Is Trump serious about ending U.S. involvement in these two war torn countries? Frankly, it appears that Trump is serious about this but he has to fight the national security apparatus of the permanent state comprised of the Intelligence Community and the Pentagon. Trump is the commander-in-chief. He could snap his fingers and, if he wanted to remove those forces, things would have to start moving tomorrow. Unfortunately, the bureaucracy will not operate that way for Trump. It is dragging its feet, waiting, praying, that he will be gone come January 2021 and someone from the Republicrats will assume the Oval Office and allow them to continue senseless wars.

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66 thoughts on “Is Trump Serious About Ending War?”

  1. Robert A. McReynolds:
    First, the Taliban will no allow terrorist groups like al Qa’ida to have safe harbor in Afghanistan.

    Well that’s rich! The Taliban disapproves of terrorism? The problem with groups like ISIS and al- Qaeda is that they metastisize wherever they find a safe haven. They may be out of Syria, Afghanistan or even Pakistan, but there is is always Somalia, Ethiopia, Northern Africa.

    Trump needs to keep tabs.

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  2. In Afghanistan, Trump would like to achieve a negotiated win and leave.   He has not got the negotiations to that point yet.   He quickly ran into the same situation that caused Obama to stay in Afghanistan which he had wanted to leave.   In negotiations with the Taliban, it is difficult to know who can speak for the Taliban; whose word will be honored by the rest of the Taliban?   They have a shifting cast of characters, and they have a habit of lying like Commies.

    Trump will not pull out of Afghanistan the way Obama pulled out of Iraq.   However badly he may want to pull out, he is listening to the graybeards at the Pentagon and in the State Department, who are begging him not to pull out in a way that would effectively sign death warrants for every Afghan who had cooperated with America.

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  3. EThompson:

    Robert A. McReynolds:
    First, the Taliban will no allow terrorist groups like al Qa’ida to have safe harbor in Afghanistan.

    Well that’s rich! The Taliban disapproves of terrorism?

    No; the Taliban are not disavowing terrorism.   They are simply promising to keep al-Qaeda out of Afghanistan.   The reason we went in to Afghanistan in the first place was that the Taliban had allowed al-Qaeda to construct terrorist training camps for Muslims all over the world to learn fighting, bomb-making, forging and other skills to export terrorism “to the Jews, to the West and to America!”   When President W bombed the camps, the Taliban started rebuilding.   When President W bombed them again, the Taliban started building new camps that they said they would give to al-Qaeda.

    Now the Taliban have reached a point of having a path to regain power in Afghanistan in return for cutting ties with al-Qaeda.   It isn’t personal; it is just business.

    The problem with groups like ISIS and al- Qaeda is that they metastisize wherever they find a safe haven. They may be out of Syria, Afghanistan or even Pakistan, but there is is always Somalia, Ethiopia, Northern Africa.

    Trump needs to keep tabs.

    Trump knows that al-Qaeda will continue to sponsor, train, and conduct terrorism around the globe without re-establishing their camps in Afghanistan.   But, if he can trust the Taliban to keep al-Qaeda out of the terror training business in Afghanistan, then he potentially could pull out and abandon America’s friends in Afghanistan to that awful fate.

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  4. Regarding Syria, President Trump has said we will pull American forces out of Syria.   Team Trump is busy working the back channels to try to get the U.K., France, Poland, Australia, etc., to put some troops forward to prevent a power vacuum from leading to bad unintended consequences there.

    The thing about a Trump pullout from Syria is that American mass media have been neglecting Syria ever since Obama let it get overrun by ISIS.   However, if Trump pulls out now, then every civilian whose death can be captured on video will be splashed on CNN, et al, with a chryon to blame the violence on Trump.

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  5. MJBubba:
    In Afghanistan, Trump would like to achieve a negotiated win and leave.   He has not got the negotiations to that point yet.   He quickly ran into the same situation that caused Obama to stay in Afghanistan which he had wanted to leave.   In negotiations with the Taliban, it is difficult to know who can speak for the Taliban; whose word will be honored by the rest of the Taliban?   They have a shifting cast of characters, and they have a habit of lying like Commies.

    Trump will not pull out of Afghanistan the way Obama pulled out of Iraq.   However badly he may want to pull out, he is listening to the graybeards at the Pentagon and in the State Department, who are begging him not to pull out in a way that would effectively sign death warrants for every Afghan who had cooperated with America.

    Well that just means we have to stay there in some capacity forever. This is not like Germany where there was some rationale for staying well beyond the occupation period after WWII. If we pull out of Afghanistan, yes, it creates a hardship for those who helped us, but it doesn’t leave open the door for an international, existential threat to fill the void. What is going to fill the void is a force that is stuck in the 800s with no way of causing any true harm–in terms of complete destruction–to the United States. I do not think “we can’t leave because Jamal is going to get schwacked if we do” is much of an argument for continued occupation there. There is certainly no strategic justification coming from that argument.

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  6. MJBubba:
    Regarding Syria, President Trump has said we will pull American forces out of Syria.   Team Trump is busy working the back channels to try to get the U.K., France, Poland, Australia, etc., to put some troops forward to prevent a power vacuum from leading to bad unintended consequences there.

    The thing about a Trump pullout from Syria is that American mass media have been neglecting Syria ever since Obama let it get overrun by ISIS.   However, if Trump pulls out now, then every civilian whose death can be captured on video will be splashed on CNN, et al, with a chryon to blame the violence on Trump.

    Again, this is certainly not a legitimate basis on which to base one’s strategy. If the only reasons that can be offered for staying are the ubiquitous “vacuum” and CNN will blast him, then he truly is as dumb as they say. You do not, nor should not, put US soldiers into harms way for some empty notion such as “vacuum” and the likelihood of receiving bad press.

    Syria was already in a shambles and a war zone before we inserted any military personnel there. Furthermore, if you want US troops in Syria, go to Congress. Right now I maintain that any military operation in Syria is an illegal act under our Constitution and based on the (wrongfully decided) criteria set forth by SCOTUS in the Prize Cases of 1863. These wars are nothing more than make work programs provided by the general government for the hogs at the trough named Lockheed, Boeing, and Raytheon. Not to mention the connected bankers who make money off of the interest payments made on an ever increasing national debt.

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  7. MJBubba:
    not to pull out in a way that would effectively sign death warrants for every Afghan who had cooperated with America.

    Only victory work that way.  I am a little cross-threaded with some of my military crowd because I am now so completely anti-intervention or something.  I don’t have a name for it and I haven’t thought it through.  I just oppose sending Americans to die for shithole causes when we are always only one election from a communist President who craps on their graves.

    Now sometimes the trash has to be taken out, and sometimes, that duty may fall to us despite lack of a tidy connection.  Well, sometimes, it’s just time for dirty work for dirty reasons.  FINE.  Make it brief.  Make it irrevocable.  Make it public.  Make it unforgettable.

    And if not, then don’t bother.

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  8. @Haakon Dahl, this is how I feel, also. This sounds harsh (maybe because it is), but we should have bombed the Taliban back to the century they seem to want to live and then come home. Course that’s wishful thinking now. These “play nice war-like things” we are playing with these countries won’t get us anything but dead soldiers and I can’t like that. Sorry.

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  9. Yeah that is pretty much where I am coming from. This grand strategy game that is played by the nat sec elite involves real lives and real treasure. We have to stop sending these young people to countries where they risk everything in exchange for leverage over this or that loosely connected power not directly involved. Basically just stop with the empire stuff.

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  10. Robert A. McReynolds:

    MJBubba:
    In Afghanistan, Trump would like to achieve a negotiated win and leave.   He has not got the negotiations to that point yet.   He quickly ran into the same situation that caused Obama to stay in Afghanistan which he had wanted to leave.   In negotiations with the Taliban, it is difficult to know who can speak for the Taliban; whose word will be honored by the rest of the Taliban?   They have a shifting cast of characters, and they have a habit of lying like Commies.

    Trump will not pull out of Afghanistan the way Obama pulled out of Iraq.   However badly he may want to pull out, he is listening to the graybeards at the Pentagon and in the State Department, who are begging him not to pull out in a way that would effectively sign death warrants for every Afghan who had cooperated with America.

    Well that just means we have to stay there in some capacity forever. This is not like Germany where there was some rationale for staying well beyond the occupation period after WWII.

    This is a legitimate rationale.  It just happens to be a rationale that you do not like.

    I did not invent this rationale, but I happen to agree with it.

    If we pull out of Afghanistan, yes, it creates a hardship for those who helped us,

    Hardship?   Yes, death is a hardship.   And, worse, since if we pull out entirely, then the Taliban would be highly likely to adopt the model we saw in ISIS-controlled Iraq:  The man was hauled out of his house, with his wife and kids lined up to watch as his throat was slit, and then they were auctioned into sex slavery to the gathered ISIS fighters.

    but it doesn’t leave open the door for an international, existential threat to fill the void. What is going to fill the void is a force that is stuck in the 800s with no way of causing any true harm–in terms of complete destruction–to the United States. I do not think “we can’t leave because Jamal is going to get schwacked if we do” is much of an argument for continued occupation there. There is certainly no strategic justification coming from that argument.

    The strategic justification is the message.   If we pull out of Afghanistan the way Obama abandoned Iraq, we will be sending a message to the whole world that ‘it is dangerous to cooperate with Americans, that Americans only care about Americans, and that Americans will desert you and betray you whenever it becomes convenient or if they get bored with your pitiful country.

    That message had gone around after the Democrats pulled us out of Vietnam.   By the 1990s that message seems to have dissipated.   But after Obama dropped tools in Iraq and let ISIS seize half that country, if we repeated that sort of pullout we would never be able to get other people anywhere else in the world to assist us.   In Iraq, tribal chiefs who cooperated with America were killed.  Ordinary clerks who took jobs as translators for America were killed.  There was an awful slaughter that went unreported because the Leftist journalists knew it would make Obama look bad.

    At the Pentagon and in the State Department there are graybeards begging Team Trump not to set up America with a new international motto:  “America, betrayer of friends.” 

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  11. Robert A. McReynolds:
    Yeah that is pretty much where I am coming from. This grand strategy game that is played by the nat sec elite involves real lives and real treasure. We have to stop sending these young people to countries where they risk everything in exchange for leverage over this or that loosely connected power not directly involved. Basically just stop with the empire stuff.

    “Empire stuff” ??

    That is a lie right out of the Leftist playbook.

    America has not undertaken the wars in Afghanistan or Iraq as imperialist ventures.   Our stated goals, and everything we have done since, is based on the intent to establish self-contained, self-sustaining governments of those people, by those people, and for those people.   Our only baseline requirements were that they stop giving aid and support to international terrorists and drug gangs and that they establish some minimum level of human rights in their domestic policy.

    I agree with you in blaming the Neocons for blowing the call and underestimating how deeply embedded the support for terrorism is in Muslim lands.   But the idea that we should just pull out and wash our hands of the Middle East is a recipe for more war, not less.

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  12. Haakon Dahl:

    MJBubba:
    not to pull out in a way that would effectively sign death warrants for every Afghan who had cooperated with America.

    Only victory work that way.  I am a little cross-threaded with some of my military crowd because I am now so completely anti-intervention or something.  I don’t have a name for it and I haven’t thought it through.  I just oppose sending Americans to die for shithole causes when we are always only one election from a communist President who craps on their graves.

    Now sometimes the trash has to be taken out, and sometimes, that duty may fall to us despite lack of a tidy connection.  Well, sometimes, it’s just time for dirty work for dirty reasons.  FINE.  Make it brief.  Make it irrevocable.  Make it public.  Make it unforgettable.

    And if not, then don’t bother.

    I see this comment quickly gathering “likes,” so I feel a need to respond.

    I understand the weariness of sixteen long years in Afghanistan.   But I think of it differently.   I think of the eight years under Obama as lost time, in which Obama really wanted to pull out, but did not because his advisors were saying it would be disastrous to do so.

    Why would it have been disastrous for Obama to pull out of Afghanistan, when he had just pulled out of Iraq with no consequences to him?   One thing is that the Iraq pullout had gone very badly and ISIS had seized half of that country, spreading murder and torture and inspiring terrorists around the globe.   The worst stuff was being hidden and covered up by American journalists in order to protect Obama.   But if the same thing happened in Afghanistan, as it undoubtedly would if America pulled out, then Obama would not be able to be shielded by compliant media; it would be too much.   So, Team Obama kept Afghanistan on simmer, left on a back burner, with just enough investment to pretend to be working towards a solution.

    So my view of Afghanistan is that Afghanistan never saw America’s best efforts.   Team W was distracted from Afghanistan by Iraq, and whatever energy was exerted in Afghanistan came to an end in 2007 (President W was tired by then and was coasting to the exit).   Team Trump is only now getting a grip on the true situation, and I pray that their evaluation is sound and that they will undertake the heavy lift that would actually lead to peace in Afghanistan.

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  13. MJBubba:
    In Iraq, tribal chiefs who cooperated with America were killed. Ordinary clerks who took jobs as translators for America were killed. There was an awful slaughter that went unreported because the Leftist journalists knew it would make Obama look bad. At the Pentagon and in the State Department there are graybeards begging Team Trump not to set up America with a new international motto: “America, betrayer of friends.”

    The rest of the world already sees us that way.  This is one of the reasons that I viewed Obama’s 2012 re-election as a do-or-die moment.  Nobody cares that Trump is President except us and the international left.  There’s no reserve of foreign brianiacs betting their lives, their fortunes, their sacred honor on whether or not Trump gets re-elected.  That ship has sailed, struck a mine in the harbor, and sunk.  It happened in 2012.  The rest was just waiting for the fragments to fall.

    Our honor is already forsaken, or reputation worthless, our name shit.  You don;t “come back” from the Obama years and still be America.  That sort of amnesia is a delusion that only Americans can afford.  You know who matters to international observers?  Cortez.  Despite the reassuring math of off-season elections, the fact is the last thing we broadcast to the world is that we are OUT of the reality game.

    America can survive the vicissitudes.  Our allies will not.  Therefore, they will cease being our allies.  The Obama re-election was a landmark moment — it changed this country — it changed the world.

    We are so screwed.

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  14. There is no global welfare program to oversee outcomes for the indigenes of foreign policy, and those Afghans etc who helped us had better connive a way to GTFO before the curtain falls.

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  15. If we had gone all “empire”, we would be in better shape than we are now.

    Here’s the haakondahl plan:

    • Go in with overwhelming force
    • Kill anybody who disagrees
    • Or don’t go in

    I have been through all 360 degrees of cointer-insurgency.  It’s a great idea, but it cannot be carried out by this country.  We spilled all that blood for an “Islamic Republic of Afghanistan”, and are now “negotiating” with the Taliban for permission to leave.  Think about that.  I have.

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  16. Haakon Dahl:
    America can survive the vicissitudes. Our allies will not. Therefore, they will cease being our allies. The Obama re-election was a landmark moment — it changed this country — it changed the world. We are so screwed.

    This.

    Modern isolationists are unwilling to face the reality that fast transportation and instant communication has made the idea of a “Fortress America” utterly ridiculous.  We have enemies around the globe that hate us for our freedoms, not for what we do.  We will always have such enemies, and we will always need allies to help bring violence to those who would do us harm.  Waiting to be attacked to justify foreign involvement is a suicidal policy.  Our foreign “entanglements” will cease when, or shortly before, we’ve destroyed our country.

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  17. MJBubba:
    Team Trump is only now getting a grip on the true situation, and I pray that their evaluation is sound and that they will undertake the heavy lift that would actually lead to peace in Afghanistan.

    Too little, too late, too bad.  Nobody wants to hear another genius plan for how to get Americans killed in pursuit of.,. what?  Back when I was down wit’ de struggle, people asked me what victory in Afghanistan would look like.  I said I didn’t know, but you had to stand in Pakistan to see it clearly.  And so on.

    I do not give a galloping Fluke about Afghanistan* or the rest of it.  We have already seen that control of countries or locations in the middle east has nothing to do with our own security.   When would we ever kick Syria’s ass and then stand down the TSA?  Never, because the two are not connected.  We are bled out overseas and oppressed at home, and there is no connection between the two.

    So screw Afghanistan (where I have friends to this day), and screw Syria, Iraq, and all the rest of it.

    If anybody lays a finger on Israel, nuke them.  If a foreign country is clearly involved in an attack against Americans — ANYWHERE — their capital (or military HQ) is forfeit.  Nuke it.

    If you;re going to take Vienna, goddammit, the Take Vienna.  And if not — don;t bother.

    We are never going to take Vienna.  So I am firmly in the don;t bother camp.

    Next month I will go to a 10-year memorial for some friends who were killed in Afghanistan — a nurse and an engineer, who played soccer and baseball with Afghan soldiers, and who volunteered as a habit to go on community engagement missions out to the villages and so forth.

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  18. MJBubba:
    But, if he can trust the Taliban to keep al-Qaeda out of the terror training business in Afghanistan, then he potentially could pull out and abandon America’s friends in Afghanistan to that awful fate.

    Point taken but the key word in your argument is trust.

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  19. @MJBubba, I have a special appreciation for your point of view.  It is full of honor and rightness.  I shared this point of view for a long time.  Neither your or my opinion on what is right will budge the needle now.  What remains is what is possible, and I think that what escapes many Americans is that a viewpoint based on what is right (to a conservative), including RealPolitik, muscular intervention, America as the force for Good in international affairs, and so forth — is no longer possible.

    This is the lesson of the re-election of Obama, and the failure of America to get to the bottom of Benghazi: Nobody gives a shit what you think.

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  20. I sorrowfully agree with comment #19.

    Edit: I may disagree about Vienna. Some things are worth fighting for as in Western Civilization. I could easily see myself standing in front of the Opera House with an Uzi or more realistically, hiring Simon Templar and his gang of professionals. He’s be a great choice because he loves that city as much as I do.  🙂

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  21. Afghanistan is not the enemy.  Al-Qaeda is a joke.  They only hit us because we are a joke.  The Taliban is the enemy.  They are not joking.  The Taliban does not depend upon any charismatic figure, nor do they require a geographic locale.  They are an ideology, a popular one, and while they may fight with ISIS at times, this is because they compete for the same chair, not because they disagree — about anything.

    Admiral Stavridis really got under my skin in his article a couple of years ago begging Trump to send X thousand more troops to Afghanistan in order to secure our bargaining position with Afghanistan.

    Here’s what;’s wrong with that position.  No matter what happens, we own it, because we negotiated for it.  How much better to announce to the world that we spent enough blood and treasure there, and that we are leaving.  We should just come clean about the fact that Russia and China will now leap into the void, and that Pakistan and Iran will be the key players there, and that America no longer gives a crap what happens in Afghanistan.  Let them.  They can have it.  Women getting shot in the soccer stadium?  ASK CHINA.  Boys fair game for viagra-fuelled greybeards?  ASK RUSSIA.  Can’t figure out whether or not your investment in Afghanistan will survive the year?  ASK PAKISTAN.  OR IRAN.

    Just don’t ask America.  We’ve been fundamentally transformed.  And we have PROBLEMS enough to deal with. Insert link to southern border.

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  22. I agree with the conclusion in your last paragraph. I think Trump is serious, because (a) what sane paterfamilias  wouldn’t want to end wars,   and (b) if you’re in the hotel business, war is to your livelihood as the boll weevil is to farmers.

    But–no effing way.  It can’t be done, not on any grand scale.  Human history is the history of war and migration.  They ebb and flow, they shift locales around the globe, but vanish?  Never.

    Here (from memory) is Frost’s great poem The Flood:

     

     

    “Blood has been harder to dam back than water. /Just when we think we have it impounded safe/Behind new barrier walls–and let it chafe!/ It breaks away in some new kind of slaughter.

    We choose to say it is let loose by “the Devil”,/But power of blood itself releases blood./ It goes by might of being such a flood/Held high at so unnatural a level.

    It will have outlet, brave  and not so brave./ Weapons of war and implements of peace/Are but the points at which it finds release./ And now, it is once more the tidal wave/ That, when it has swept by, leaves summits stained.

    Oh, blood will out. It cannot be contained.”

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  23. Haakon Dahl:
    So screw Afghanistan (where I have friends to this day), and screw Syria, Iraq, and all the rest of it. If anybody lays a finger on Israel, nuke them.  If a foreign country is clearly involved in an attack against Americans — ANYWHERE — their capital (or military HQ) is forfeit.  Nuke it. If you;re going to take Vienna, goddammit, the Take Vienna.  And if not — don’t bother. We are never going to take Vienna.  So I am firmly in the ‘don’t bother’ camp.

    Our problem is that the Taliban are not a great threat to America.   There is no public support for a robust military action that would begin to address the true threat that is represented by the Taliban.

    As you observed the Taliban are in agreement with al-Qaeda.   The Taliban may agree to prevent al-Qaeda from setting up shop in Afghanistan again, but there is no need for that because al-Qaeda has affiliates in a dozen other places that allow them free range for their training activities.   Some Taliban guys would leave Afghanistan to go join al-Qaeda affiliates elsewhere.

    Then, at home in Afghanistan, girls’ schools would be closed, full niqabs required for the women, Christians and other religious minorities murdered, and 8th-century life would resume under a brutal Sharia regime.

    Any time the Taliban could be proven to have violated our agreement how would we respond?   Drop a cruise missile from three thousand miles away?   That is really expensive and it is hard to do with precision.   We would be foregoing any effective enforcement mechanism.

    And we would be establishing a very bad precedent for Pakistan and all the other ‘stans.

    It would be easier to rile the American people up if the Taliban were a more immediate danger to the U.S.A.

    The Taliban do represent a grave danger, but simply as a figurehead.   In every country that is more than 7 percent Muslim there is a threat of Islamicist violence.   Much of Europe is already over that threshold.  The Muslim sword threatens the whole world.

    The primary targets of Islamicists are:

    • their immediate neighbors who are insufficiently bloodthirsty Muslims who need to be brought in line,
    • their own government if it is not supportive of the most brutal forms of Sharia law,
    • their non-Muslim neighbors who must be subjugated into dhimmitude,
    • Western Civilization, and
    • the Jews.

    There is no particular order to this list of Islamicist enemies.   Targets from all five groups are selected as opportunities are found.   The Islamicist cancer spreads because we have become incapable of addressing the threat they pose.

    We will continue to be unable to adequately address the threats from Muslim jihad until we have addressed a more immediate enemy that prevents us from even having an honest public debate about Islam and Islamicism.

    The more immediate and grave threat is from a different enemy:

    The Left.

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  24. MJBubba:
    Than, at home in Afghanistan, girls’ schools would be closed, full niqabs required for the women, Christians and other religious minorities murdered, and 8th-century life would resume under a brutal Sharia regime.

    This is yet another recipe for disaster and unless we take a cold, hard stance against the madrasas we are doomed to procreate generations of jihadists.

    Bomb, nuke, and send in the drones. Keep Muslim immigrants out of our country; they have no desire to assimilate.

    I don’t want to lose anymore American soldiers. We have the power between the CIA, Homeland Security, and our impressive military tech to follow up with a minimal loss of life.

    We can clean up this mess if we weren’t so afraid of world condemnation. The Saudis and the Kuwaitis and the other oil rich countries are perfectly happy to let us do the dirty work.

    Just do it.

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  25. I kinda liked Derb’s recommendation for a two-week Afghanistan war a long time ago.

    Bomb the heck out of the Capitol, including the Capitol building.  When the surviving government complains, tell them “Oh Sorry, we heard you were helping bad guys do bad things to us.  We’ll be more careful with the next country we hear that about!”

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