The Establishment Will Never Say No to a War
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The question before us is a relatively simple one: What would be the criteria for removing our remaining troops from the Iraqi, Syrian, and more general Middle Eastern conflicts? Or, for that matter, from Afghanistan, where we have been trapped for more than 17 long years of still open-ended occupation?
If the answer to that question is that only when each of these countries is a healthy pro-American democracy, and Islamist terrorism has ceased to be an “enduring” threat to the West, then the answer, as the old Bob Mankoff joke has it, is “How about never — is never good for you?”
Or consider what a shocked Lieutenant General Kenneth F. McKenzie Jr. of the Marines, the incoming commander of Central Command opined after hearing the news of Trump’s withdrawal of 7,000 troops from Afghanistan yesterday: “If we left precipitously right now, I do not believe [the Afghan forces] would be able to successfully defend their country. I don’t know how long it’s going to take. I think that one of the things that would actually provide the most damage to them would be if we put a timeline on it and we said we were going out at a certain point in time.”
Get that? After 17 years, we’ve gotten nowhere, like every single occupier before us. But for that reason, we have to stay. These commanders have been singing this tune year after year for 17 years of occupation, and secretaries of Defense have kept agreeing with them. Trump gave them one last surge of troops — violating his own campaign promise — and we got nowhere one more time. It is getting close to insane.
December 21, 2018 at 1:09 PM #3318elias39Participant
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“The Syrian occupation is not a minor thing. The Washington Post reported a week ago, long before Trump’s tweet, that “US troops will now stay in Syria indefinitely, controlling a third of the country, and facing peril on many fronts.” A third of an entire country! How many Americans knew or know this? Very, very few. I didn’t.”
People need to remember that we weren’t invited onto Syrian soil. We weren’t asked for help against ISIS. But Russia WAS. You win some, you lose some. Lets cut our losses.
December 21, 2018 at 3:30 PM #3370RufusTFireflyParticipant
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According to Paul Jay, CEO of The Real News Network, this also explains the revival of Cold War rhetoric regarding Russia, which is a mere shadow of its old Evil Empire self.
December 21, 2018 at 4:11 PM #3389
December 21, 2018 at 8:21 PM #3536YanathParticipant
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in which Russia is a global hegemon, at competition with the US for supremacy. The underlying implication, is that Russia or ‘Putin’ has committed crimes similar to those routinely committed by the US. I don’t know how people can do that with a straight face.
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