When, If Ever, Can We Lay This Burden Down?

Opinion

New World Order
When, If Ever, Can We Lay This Burden Down?

USA -(Ammoland.com)- Last friday, President Donald Trump met in New Jersey with his national security advisers and envoy Zalmay Khalilzad, who is negotiating with the Taliban to bring about peace, and a U.S. withdrawal from America's longest war.

U.S. troops have been fighting in Afghanistan since 2001, in a war that has cost 2,400 American lives.

Following the meeting, Trump tweeted, “Many on the opposite sides of this 19 year war, and us, are looking to make a deal — if possible!”

Some, however, want no deal; they are fighting for absolute power.

Saturday, a wedding in Kabul with a thousand guests was hit by a suicide bomber who, igniting his vest, massacred 63 people and wounded 200 in one of the greatest atrocities of the war. ISIS claimed responsibility.

Monday, 10 bombs exploded in restaurants and public squares in the eastern city of Jalalabad, wounding 66.

Trump is pressing Khalilzad to negotiate drawdowns of U.S. troop levels from the present 14,000, and to bring about a near-term end to U.S. involvement in a war that began after we overthrew the old Taliban regime for giving sanctuary to Osama bin Laden.

Is it too soon to ask: What have we gained from our longest war? Was all the blood and treasure invested worth it? And what does the future hold?

If the Taliban could not be defeated by an Afghan army, built up by the U.S. for a decade and backed by 100,000 U.S. troops in 2010-2011, then are the Taliban likely to give up the struggle when the U.S. is drawing down the last 14,000 troops and heading home?

The Taliban control more of the country than they have at any time since being overthrown in 2001. And time now seems to be on their side.

Why have they persevered, and prevailed in parts of the country?

Motivated by a fanatic faith, tribalism and nationalism, they have shown a willingness to die for a cause that seems more compelling to them than what the U.S.-backed Afghan government has on offer.

They also have the guerrillas' advantage of being able to attack at times and places of their own choosing, without the government's burden of having to defend towns and cities.

Will these Taliban, who have lost many battles but not the war, retire from the field and abide by democratic elections once the Americans go home? Why should they?

The probability: When the Americans depart, the war breaks out anew, and the Taliban ultimately prevail.

And Afghanistan is but one of the clashes and conflicts in which America is engaged.

Severe U.S. sanctions on Venezuela have failed to bring down the Nicholas Maduro regime in Caracas but have contributed to the immiseration of that people, 10% of whom have left the country. Trump now says he is considering a quarantine or blockade to force Maduro out.

Eight years after we helped to overthrow Col. Moammar Gadhafi, Libya is still mired in civil war, with its capital, Tripoli, under siege.

Yemen, among the world's humanitarian disasters, has seen the UAE break with its Saudi interventionist allies, and secessionists split off southern Yemen from the Houthi-dominated north. Yet, still, Congress has been unable to force the Trump administration to end all support of the Saudi war.

Two thousand U.S. troops remain in Syria. The northern unit is deployed between our Syrian Kurd allies and the Turkish army. In the south, they are positioned to prevent Iran and Iranian-backed militias from creating a secure land bridge from Tehran to Baghdad to Damascus to Beirut.

In our confrontation with Iran, we have few allies.

The Brits released the Iranian tanker they seized at Gibraltar, which had been carrying oil to Syria. But when the Americans sought to prevent its departure, a Gibraltar court ruled against the United States.

Iran presents no clear or present danger to U.S. vital interests, but the Saudis and Israelis see Iran as a mortal enemy, and want the U.S. military rid them of the menace.

Hong Kong protesters wave American flags and seek U.S. support of their demands for greater autonomy and freedom in their clash with their Beijing-backed authorities. The Taiwanese want us to support them and sell them the weapons to maintain their independence. The Philippines wants us to take their side in the dispute with China over tiny islets in the South China Sea.

We are still committed to go to war to defend South Korea. And the North has lately test-fired a series of ballistic missiles, none of which could hit the USA, but all of which could hit South Korea.

Around the world, America is involved in quarrels, clashes and confrontations with almost too many nations to count.

In how many of these are U.S. vital interests imperiled? And in how many are we facing potential wars on behalf of other nations, while they hold our coat and egg us on?


Pat Buchanan
Patrick J .Buchanan

Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of the new book “Nixon's White House Wars: The Battles That Made and Broke a President and Divided America Forever.”

  • 20
    Leave a Reply

    Please Login to comment
    7 Comment threads
    13 Thread replies
    0 Followers
     
    Most reacted comment
    Hottest comment thread
    11 Comment authors
    WillWild BillahhiyawaloveaduckKeep-On-Trumpin Recent comment authors
      Subscribe  
    Notify of
    ahhiyawa
    Member
    ahhiyawa

    As long as America remains a Great Power she will always be involved in hot, cold or proxy wars either in this hemisphere or on the other side of the world. Pat wants America to return to its pre-WW II parochial interests in our neck of the woods. I wish it too, but know its not possible. For approximately 160 years of America’s existence Great Britain was the world’s global cop balancing out the interests of other imperialist powers, a power we gladly rode on as others today ride on our backs for their security. Unfortunately, these empires annihilated themselves… Read more »

    Wild Bill
    Member
    Wild Bill

    Too long. Too many unsupported implications. Too many wrong definitions. Too much stream of conscientiousness writing.

    American Patriot
    Member
    American Patriot

    You’ll get peace in the MidEast when this country controls the drug problem!…..Oh wait the Libs are giving out needles & safe spaces to get jacked up. So peace will come when their all dead.

    loveaduck
    Member
    loveaduck

    The vast majority of the drugs in the US come from Latin America.

    Wild Bill
    Member
    Wild Bill

    @duck, Do you mean comes through Latin America?

    Will
    Member
    Will

    @loveduck,the vast majority of illegal drugs coming into the US come through Mexico !

    ahhiyawa
    Member
    ahhiyawa

    We’ll never control the drug trade wherever it arises domestically or internationally.

    Wild Bill
    Member
    Wild Bill

    @ahh, Of course we could extinguish the illicit drug trade. We would just have to kill a few people.

    ScottMc
    Member
    ScottMc

    I find Pat’s viewpoints interesting at times, but this article frivolously conflates Afghanistan, where we are indeed fighting a never ending war, where the US has marginal national interests at best, to other conflicts where the US does have a vital national interest like Hong Kong and Venezuela.

    Ryben Flynn
    Member
    Ryben Flynn

    Do you know what Afghanistan’s cash crop is? Poppies. Opium Poppies. 90% of the World’s heroin comes from Afghanistan.

    Wild Bill
    Member
    Wild Bill

    @RF, Yes, the stupid bastards are surrounded by gold deposits, silver deposits, rare earth metals deposits, and all that they can produce is Opium Poppies.

    ahhiyawa
    Member
    ahhiyawa

    The US totally bails on Afghanistan, 330 million Americans will find out just how big of a national policy interest countries like Afghanistan have become.

    Wild Bill
    Member
    Wild Bill

    @ScottMC, Live targets are hard to recruit! Did you know that during our time in Afghanistan, Americans have discovered gold deposits, silver deposits, and rare earth metals deposits enough to enrich those bastards more than the Saudi Arabians? Do you know how much terrorism the Afghanis could export if they got rich. I don’t think that those are marginal national interests.

    GAMtns
    Member
    GAMtns

    Dow and others made millions during Vietnam Nam while our soldiers had to fight with on hand tied behind their backs. The profiteering is still going on. This is the mercantilism that Eisenhower warned us about in his farewell address. Listen to it. We need a strong military. But we also need to heed the words of George Washington: “Avoid entangling alliances.” The only alliance I know that was necessary was in WWII. WWI started because of multiple entangling alliances between nations that dragged the whole world into it. It’s the same principle as concealed carry on the micro scale.… Read more »

    cav2108
    Member
    cav2108

    Still up to the same old sly Trump-bashing, eh, Pat? You are part of the problem.

    ahhiyawa
    Member
    ahhiyawa

    Buchanan is not a never Trumper or mindless basher. Being a conservative of the OLD RIGHT, a political philosophy the founders would have recognized, he merely disagrees with some of Trump’s policies regarding foreign affairs. The octogenarian remembers a more simpler and innocent time and wishes America would jettison the destructive delusions of globalism, empire, neo-liberalism, neo-conservatism, deep state traitors, corrupt establishment politicians and the curse of some 100 years of leftist, progressive, marxist/leninism that has plagued the country. Being a decade younger I remember the last days of that age and wish it had not ended too, but I… Read more »

    Vern
    Member
    Vern

    Nothing on the face of this planet will stop what is going to happen in the near future that is going to start in the middle east and make its way quickly around the whole world.
    What has been written, will come to pass.

    Wild Bill
    Member
    Wild Bill

    @Vern, I hate these vague, pessimistic predictions. Have the courage of your convictions to give “…what is going to happen.. ” a name.

    nrringlee
    Member
    nrringlee

    Please note that none of this deal making involves any of our Islamic Nation “allies” taking up the burden of nation building and internal security in the cluster also known as Afghanistan. Meanwhile, our war machine treats this as routine. We have to break the cycle. If we cannot find muslim allies who will take up the burden the only viable alternative is a Sword of Damocles defense. You step out of the sand box and we turn on the lights at 2 am over Kabul. Semper Fi

    Wild Bill
    Member
    Wild Bill

    @nrr. I have to disagree. Those Islamic nation knuckleheads can’t fight worth a shit. We, on the other hand, need to stay in practice. Real practice. Real targets. And the jihadists in Afghanistan volunteer and work for free.