President Obama hasn’t committed to an Afghan strategy yet, but for now troop levels will not be reduced substantially.
From my admittedly limited perspective – I was only 2 years old when the North Vietnamese launched their Tet Offenseive – the recent attacks on American troops in Afghanistan are reminiscent of that earlier war. 10 Americans have been killed in the last few days alone there, causing many to wonder if the war against Islamic radicals can be won. The Russians lost, after all; why do we think we’ll have more success?
I wonder if the real truth is that we can’t. The opportunity was there, several years ago, to secure the Afghan borders and keep the Taliban from returning in numbers. Needless to say, that opportunity is gone.
The question before the president is whether the Afghan people will ever value freedom and democracy enough to purge the radicals from their midst. Frankly that seems unlikely.
Another point to ponder is whether radical Muslims should have a homeland of their own and whether that should be Afghanistan. This is not to say that their world view is legitimate – it is not – but there are large numbers of Muslims who want to live according to their own barbaric rules. It seems to me that they need a place to do that.