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Originally Posted by perotista
. A month or two from now, Afghanistan will be ancient history. Some other hot issue or event will have taken its place.

I’d be willing to bet that for a large number of Americans it’s been ancient history for a while. I’d like to know how many people were surprised by this withdrawal because they thought it had happened a long time ago.


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Originally Posted by Mellowicious
Originally Posted by perotista
. A month or two from now, Afghanistan will be ancient history. Some other hot issue or event will have taken its place.

I’d be willing to bet that for a large number of Americans it’s been ancient history for a while. I’d like to know how many people were surprised by this withdrawal because they thought it had happened a long time ago.
Now this is interesting. It piques my interest. I would bet that a vast majority of Americans haven't paid Afghanistan much attention if any. Not until the withdrawal, evacuation became headline news anyway. Our casualties have been very low there, something like 2300 plus over 20 years. That averages out to 11-12 a year. A far cry from 58,000 over basically a 5 year period for Vietnam. Vietnam was a daily headliner in the news, Afghanistan relegated to the back pages if that.

I went googling to try to find how important the war in Afghanistan was or if it made the list of most important issues, issues that people care about, no luck. Perhaps I didn't phrase the question right. Afghanistan in July didn't make Gallup's list of the 25 most important issues facing America.

It seems you're correct, for most Americans, Afghanistan was just an after thought if that. Even from this lifelong military man, Afghanistan really didn't seem like a war after the first couple of years of nation building and the hunt for UBL. Now WWII, Korea, Vietnam, Desert Storm, those were wars. Afghanistan, Kosovo, Somali, Bosnia, Libya all seem more like pin pricks than a real war. Even the second Iraq war, after the first month or two ceased to be a war and more like an occupation. Just because we have troops in any country and sometimes involved in military action doesn't mean that's a war. At least in the normal sense.


It's high past time that we start electing Americans to congress and the presidency who put America first instead of their political party. For way too long we have been electing Republicans and Democrats who happen to be Americans instead of Americans who happen to be Republicans and Democrats.
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I think police action was closer although I suspect "utter waste of time, lives, and treasure" might be closer to the truth. When it comes to nation building I have noticed that nobody in gov has ever called it that as they deny that they would do such a thing. I really only have one problem with this stuff and that's because I think its really important that those in charge, or responsible, for this kind of stuff admit they screwed up. Right now, as far as I can tell, nobody has actually admitted that we might have screwed up. The only time you hear that is when somebody who had something to do with it, is now retired, and gifting us with their thoughts on it all. Very rarely one of those might even almost suggest that an error might have been made.

Oh, "Nation Building" seems to be a universal bad thing. its something both sides could get together to rank on, in their ongoing effort to almost work with one another.

I remember when a friend of mine got a job in Afghanistan building a hospital for Afghanistan. This was something between 8 and 10 years ago. He said he built an 5 million dollar hospital and it was never going to be used. When it was done it also had all the equipment necessary to be a hospital. Lasted, empty, for a couple of years, never opened and, eventually, somebody blew it up. Its almost impossible to wonder at how our tax dollars get spent.

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LOL, yeah, I seen stuff like that. In your example, probably no one ever thought the hospital might need doctors, nurses and staff. Build the hard infrastructure, But never realize you also need the soft or the people to run and work it. In Laos I seen basically the same. USAID came into a mountain village, built a school and provided text books in Lao. But forgot you needed school teachers. Or having USAID go into a rice farming village, give them a couple of tractors and plows, then leave. Problem was no one in the village knew how to operate the tractor which even if they did, would get stuck in the rice paddy mud. Worthless.

The problem in Laos was a USAID guy would fly into a village, take a look around, make a few notes, leave. Then return a month later with some stuff, hand it off and leave again.

Now USAID had a guy name Mac Thompson, a good friend of mine. He would go into a village and live with them for months and sometime years at a time. He would know what they needed and what was worthless to them. We need more people like Mac. Then we may not waste all these tax dollars on worthless stuff and buildings we think will help them on a couple of hours visit.

I think the bottom line is we have very little respect for other folks culture and traditions. Always wanting to force ours on them. Even when they don't want it. As for Afghanistan, we should have listen to the wants of the leaders of the thirteen tribe Northern Alliance instead of trying to force our system on them which they didn't want. The rest is history as they say.


It's high past time that we start electing Americans to congress and the presidency who put America first instead of their political party. For way too long we have been electing Republicans and Democrats who happen to be Americans instead of Americans who happen to be Republicans and Democrats.
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Just part of our insistence to 'help' (just before we blow the hell out of them) ON the up side we were only responsible for about 70,000 of them. In Iraq the toll was much bigger. I don't know whether to say we are getting better or worse. In Vietnam the toll was 2 freaking million civilians! (took both sides to get that one done).

Anybody who asks us to 'help' with troops have to be out their minds!

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You want to look at a death total, look at Cambodia after Pol Pot and his Khmer Rouge took over, Between 2-3 million Cambodians killed under his regime in just a little over 2 years and some months until the North Vietnamese came in and took over the country in December of 1978. That put at end to Pol Pot's killing fields. The thing here is Cambodia was a country of only 7 million prior to Pol Pot. Having served 10 years in Southeast Asia, I could have kissed everyone of those NVA troops.


It's high past time that we start electing Americans to congress and the presidency who put America first instead of their political party. For way too long we have been electing Republicans and Democrats who happen to be Americans instead of Americans who happen to be Republicans and Democrats.
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That only proves that there are others that can do slaughter. The Cambodians worked their wonder on themselves. We haven't gone that far, yet. The miracle, in the entire thing is the forgiveness that comes after a while. The Cambodians, for instance, actually had some problems when it came to dealing with the atrocities. Oh, take a trip to Viet Nam! (its a pretty great place, at least before covid). I once asked one what they thought about Americans and only heard praise. I actually know somebody who moved there and is a happy camper (figuratively speaking)

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It's the Despair Quotient!
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It's the Despair Quotient!
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Originally Posted by jgw
That only proves that there are others that can do slaughter. The Cambodians worked their wonder on themselves. We haven't gone that far, yet.

Rwanda.
We have been observing the Americanized version of the Rwanda playbook
for better than five years.


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