Wednesday, March 14, 2012
Iran, Afghanistan and Iraq
It makes sense that we are seeing such an anti-American attitude in Afghanistan. The United States has completed withdrawing from Iraq. The intention of withdrawal from Afghanistan has been made clear. President Obama did not want to go into either Afghanistan or Iraq. It is evident from what President Obama has said and the actions that he has taken that he believes that the United States is the problem in both countries. He believes that if the U.S. were to withdraw, both countries would leave us alone. You know, like Vietnam did after we left. Many in the U.S. and indeed, the entire West believe this to be the case. We are going to find out if this is correct. The United States is committed to withdrawal from Afghanistan. I am surprised that it has not already happened. I am guessing that President Obama has found it not so easy, like he has found that closing Gitmo has not been practical. (YET) President Obama does not believe that the ‘surge’ really worked in Iraq, but he went along with this ‘strategy’ in order to say that he is making an effort to win the war in Afghanistan. With all of the restrictions on combat, the numerous changeover in commanders, and all of the talk about withdrawal, President Obama is making it clear to Afghanistan that the days of our full and direct support are coming to an end. He never really wanted to be there in the first place and after seeing him work for the past 3 years, I find it no surprise that he will take the first real political opportunity to get out. The problem is, this is NOT in United States best interest. The Afghans are ready for us to leave. The history of the region suggests that our influence there is minimal at best. In fact, now that we HAVE been there with our military, it is likely that a new Afghan government will be at least covertly hostile to the U.S. The culture of the entire region is resistant to assimilation. Immigrants are NOT assimilating with other cultures. It makes sense that on their ‘home turf’ that this resistance to assimilation would be much stronger, if not openly hostile. Throughout history, nation building has generally been difficult, but not unsuccessful. In most cases, a transfer of culture takes place. The longer the time of ‘occupation’ the greater the changes. In many cases, the changes are for the better. Some examples are newer or different technology, new additions to the food supply or simply other ways of doing things. Most cultures adapt and absorb at least part of the new culture and tend to pick what they believe to be improvements over the way that things were done in the past. The problem with this culture is that the resistance to this impact is much greater than normal. So our withdrawal after just a decade (Not even one half of a generation) is just a goad to help push us out and punish those who cooperated with us. Remember what happened after the fall of South Vietnam? Or how about after France was liberated from the Germans? Now Afghans have Iraq to look at. I expect that we are going to find out that a great deal of our former allies and friends are now dead and were killed shortly after we left Iraq. On top of this, 9/11 was basically launched from Afghanistan. And we don’t expect that Afghanistan will come after us after we leave? How naive can we be? The likelihood of a major regional war is going up. With Iran on the verge of obtaining nuclear weapons, it is much more possible that Israel will launch some type of military venture. While the U.S. was still in Iraq, Iraqi airspace was far less hostile to Israel than it is today. In other words, the very fact that the U.S. bases in Iraq (And Afghanistan) have been lost is a major influence in enabling Iran to pursue a more aggressive posture. Toss in nuclear weapons and you can easily see why I am saying that the possibility of a regional war is much higher today. What is really scary is that the potential of this war ‘going nuclear’ is likewise much higher. We are getting CHANGE, just like President Obama promised. A problem here is that change in and of itself is not necessarily a good thing.