Pundits on parade

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Rick Martinez just loves all the progress we've made in our trillion dollar war in Iraq and wants to see the same in Afghanistan. For a guy who fancies himself a friend of the military, he doesn't seem to know jack about war.

In an op-ed piece, David Price says the US should do something about Gaza, though it's not entirely clear what.

The Stagemanager reminds us about his magic plan for fiscal responsibility in North Carolina: build roads, gut schools and put more people in jail. Too bad he didn't include ending North Carolina's ridiculously wasteful participation in the so-called War on Drugs.

Adam Searing wonders why Blue Cross is rolling in profits while the State Health Plan could be coming up $800 million short this year.

Carter Wrenn says Cooper's Gene Boyce Skeleton could come back to haunt him if the AG decides to run for Senate against Rich Brrrrrrrr.


Two words

With respect to why the Soviets couldn't hold onto Afghanistan, two words: "Stinger missiles".

Three more words

Tribal militias, mountains

Don't tell me you're still living under the delusion that winning a war in Afghanistan has any serious probability of happening. And even it it were, at what cost? Would you like to spend another trillion dollars recruiting the next generation of terrorists?

On second thought, forget I asked. Of course you would. And if Obama moves forward with his insane rhetoric about a huge redeployment there, I'm sure you'll be among the first to heed the call to duty and join the fighting.

You need to learn a little history

During the Soviet invasion, much of the Afghani population had fled to Pakistan. It's true the Afghani's that remained were willing to fight to the last man, woman and child using their 1903 Enfield rifles against armored Soviet Hind helicopter gunships. And it's also true that the Soviets were perfectly willing to and capable of indiscriminately slaughtering every single one of them. They were well on their way to that goal. The Afghanis had already lost.

It was only with the introduction of the Stinger missiles, by your friends and mine, the CIA, backed by the Reagan administration, that the Soviets lost control of the airspace. After that, the Soviets had to fight a ground war against the Afghanis which they did lose.

You do, however, continue to entertain me. I remember when people like you were running around screeching that Iraq was lost, the surge in troop levels had no chance of success, and if only we had done things like we did in Afghanistan, Iraq would have turned out better.

I suppose you'd like to turn Afghanistan back over to bin Laden and the Taliban so they can organize the next 9/11? Remind me how much that cost again? If we abandon Afghanistan would you mind, at least, if I painted a great big bulls eye on your house so the bad guys can take out your family and not mine?

Turn Afghanistan "back" over to bin Laden and the Taliban

Sorry Loco Breath. There's no "back" there. The entire Afghanistan power structure is a fetid mix of local militias, crooked politicians, Taliban leaders and organized terrorists. And the only impact US policy has had on the latter is as a well-oiled recruiting machine.

And for the record, Iraq was and is lost. Do you really think it was worth a trillion dollars to get the illusion of democracy in Iraq? What exactly have we "won" there?

Bush leaves the stage still justifying his Iraq disaster on the grounds that prewar intelligence showed that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction. He acknowledges that this intelligence was wrong but maintains he relied on it in good faith. Who cares? What matters is whether there were WMD, not how sincerely he believed there were. WMD were how he justified the war. How do you explain to families of the war dead why a war must go on for years after even the man who started it thinks starting it was based on a mistake?


PS If you want to defend your family, feel free to enlist in the Marines. And if they won't take you, the Army might. But coming anywhere near my house with a paintbrush would be a mistake you really don't want to make. Seriously.


Let's look at history with regard to Vietnam and then with regard to our current debacle in Iraq. How much money? How many Americans dead? And...the justification? C'mon, man, a full-out initiative in Afghanistan like we have in Iraq just isn't in our country's best interests.

Now, I know damn good and well who the perp was in 911. And, from what I read and hear, he and his band of thieves are holed up somewhere across the Afghanistan boarder in Pakistan...or there-abouts. Hey, I'm no CIA agent, so kinda speaking only from what I see/read/hear on this issue. My point is, I truly believe we should do whatever we can to find and eliminate bin Laden and do whatever we can to crush the Taliban/al Qaeda. We should develop a strategic plan to do that. We should NOT just fall back into our "nation building" mode again in Afghanistan. We should now have learned that we can supply a country, train a country but past that, it's up to them to build their own safety and security and to choose their own kind of government...be it capitalist or socialist or whatever.

I say we don't lose any more of our own people and spend no more of our own country's resources trying to build other nations in our own image.

The best thinking is independent thinking.

The Republican neo-con fool who would be King?

I suppose you'd like to turn Afghanistan back over to bin Laden and the Taliban so they can organize the next 9/11? Remind me how much that cost again?*Locomotive Breath with bad neo-con republican Breath

It appears that you think bin and those camel drivers knew how to fly a 767 with one flight school session? Has it ever occured to you that 9/11 was a outside job and you were left out of it because of your lack of understanding history and cultures.......The only Bullseye you know about is a Targart store with a sell on neo-con republican myths of the 21 st century.

Martinez should know better

than to declare any kind of a victory in Iraq, or to even imply that we've averted a civil war. Like I've been saying, recruiting and arming militias in an effort to quell the insurgency might be a short-term fix, but will eventually fuel a civil war. Things are going to get nastier as the election looms:

Friday’s bombing occurred during a lunch meeting at the Yusufiya home of the tribal leader, Mohammed Abdullah Salih al-Qaraghuli, for nearly 1,000 members of the Qaraghul tribe, who had traveled from around Iraq to be there, guests said. The tribe includes Sunnis, Shiites and Kurds.

Some of those in attendance were former Sunni insurgents who had become leaders of Awakening Councils, groups allied with the government against Al Qaeda.

Relations have been tense between many of the predominately Sunni Awakening Councils and the Shiite government of Mr. Maliki, most notably with regard to the number of Awakening Council members who will be hired for the national police and army, and whether former insurgents will be prosecuted for previous crimes.

It was about then that one of the tribe’s members, Amin Ahmed Edan Hasoon, who is well known in the neighborhood, entered the yard without being searched by guards, guests said. Moments later, he detonated an explosive vest he was wearing.

And elsewhere:

At least 40 people were killed, many of them Iranians, and 72 wounded Sunday in Baghdad in a suicide bombing at the doorstep of one of the holiest Shiite shrines in Iraq, according to government and hospital officials.

The attacker, according to several witnesses and security personnel at the scene, appeared to have intentionally targeted a procession of Iranian pilgrims visiting the shrine in the northern Kadhimiya district of Baghdad. The blast followed an attack on buses carrying Iranian pilgrims to Kadhimiya earlier in the day. One of the buses hit a roadside bomb on the outskirts of Baquba, in Diyala Province northeast of Baghdad, wounding five Iranians, according to the Iraqi police.

Saheb Karim, a resident of Kadhimiya, blamed loyalists of the former regime - who they say believe that Shiites have usurped power - for the attack.


B-b-b-but we're winning!

Martinez should know better, but he has a huge blind spot about the political consequence of military action. A lot of ex-Marines do. Their mission in life is to kick ass, pure and simple. A hammer looking for nails.

Ahh. That explains a lot

I have a soft spot in my heart for Jarheads. They make Army Dogs like me seem intelligent and well-reasoned by comparison. :)