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Sep 28th
Home Sections History Michael Steele Is Simply Telling that the War in Afghanistan Will End Up Like the Vietnam War
Michael Steele Is Simply Telling that the War in Afghanistan Will End Up Like the Vietnam War PDF Print E-mail
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Sections - History
Written by Bobby M. Reyes   
Tuesday, 20 July 2010 16:08

Michael Steele Says Simply that the War in Afghanistan Is a Losing Proposition and It Will End Up Just Like the Vietnam War


P erhaps American policy-and-decision makers have to go back to school and learn again World History 101. This appears to be the message that Republican Party Chairman Michael Steele seems to be telling indirectly his colleagues in the American corridors of power. Perhaps Mr. Steele wants also to tell his peers and other American leaders that Afghanistan is not worth dying for.


President Obama is ‘such a student of history, has he not understood . . .  that's the one thing you don't do is engage in a land war in Afghanistan . . . because everyone who's tried over a thousand years of history has failed?’—Michael Steele


In fact Mr. Steele should have expounded on the failures of foreign invaders to subdue the various Afghan tribes and subtribes. Alexander the Great and his Greek warriors invaded Afghanistan and failed. The Greeks left in 150 B.C. Even the Mongol Empire tried to rule over Afghanistan from 1220 to 1506 and at the end, they were defeated. The Mongolians departed after 286 years of trying to subdue the Afghan tribes. Then there were three Anglo-Afghan Wars and too-many proud British soldiers died in vain in Afghanistan.


Will the United States and its NATO allies commit to fight in Afghanistan even for half of the 286 years that the ancient Mongolian forces wasted in that country? In fact, it can be argued that the NATO forces and the American troops can fight in Afghanistan for a thousand years and suffer more-than one-million deaths and at the end, history will simply repeat itself. The foreign soldiers will leave, as they will be unable to win any decisive land war in Afghanistan.


The Modern-day Lesson of Vietnam


P erhaps President Obama, Mr. Steele and all politicians in Washington, DC, do not have to study the Afghani misadventures of Alexander the Great about two centuries before the birth of Jesus Christ. They have simply to remember the lessons that the United States painfully got in Vietnam.


There are lots of similarities between Vietnam and Afghanistan. Vietnam fought so many foreign invaders: China for almost two-thousand years, the Khmer kingdom of what became modern Cambodia (now Kampuchea), the Siamese kingdom (now Thailand), the Japanese (during World War II), the French (before and after WWII) and then the Americans.


Mr. Steele knows his history. Like in Vietnam, so many foreign invaders from the Greeks to the Mongols to the British to the Russians engaged unsuccessfully the Afghans in a land war. Even Afghan clans continuously fought – and still fight – among themselves for territory, the opium trade and what not. But when faced with foreign invaders, the Afghani tribes and subtribes “forge formidable alliances, among themselves and with other ethnic groups.”


The present government in Kabul is like the corrupt regime propped up by the American government in Saigon until the Central Intelligence Agency dispatched the Vietnamese despot. But South-Vietnamese President Ngo Dinh Diem was replaced after his execution by equally-corrupt leaders, who mostly came from the ranks of the Vietnamese military – as chosen by the CIA agents. So, it is granted that American-tainted history will simply repeat itself in Afghanistan as it happened in Vietnam.


Now Vietnam is a respected member of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). There are complete diplomatic-and-trade relations between the United States and Vietnam. So, the Vietnam War – with more-than 55,000 American dead, 500,000 American other casualties and perhaps two-million or more dead Vietnamese war victims and countless wounded – was an exercise in futility. It all amounted to the status quo – the same one-nation Vietnam before the French moved in and after the Americans took over and fled in 1975.


Afghanistan Is Probably a Worse Quagmire than Vietnam


A ctually from the viewpoint of tribes and subtribes, Afghanistan is perhaps a lot worse than Vietnam. Here is a description of the tribal system in Afghanistan:


The absence of recognized principles governing the assumption of leadership allows for intense competition. Rivalries within and between tribal segments and between tribes and subtribes consequently have always existed. It is these internecine feuds that have earned the Pushtun their reputation as an unruly and warlike people. Nonetheless, when outside forces threaten, the Pushtun are equally reputed for their ability to forge formidable alliances, among themselves and with other ethnic groups.


To read more about the tribes of Afghanistan, please click on this link,


A study of Afghanistan becomes a research of so-many warring tribes and equally-warring subtribes, among them of which are the following Ethnic Groups: Pashtun (approximately 42% of the population), the Tajik (27%), the Hazara (9%), the Uzbek (9%) and the remaining 13% is divided among the Turkmen and Other Groups: the Aimaq, the Arab, the Kirghiz, the Wakhi, the Farsiwan, the Nuristani, the Baluch, the Brahui, the Qizilbash, the Kabuli, the Jat and the Non-Muslims.



The Other Lesson of Iraq


S upposedly the United States and its allies will soon pull out their troops in Iraq, which will be left no better off than when the war was launched against the regime of Saddam Hussein.


This writer wrote in April 2007 about the Iraqi War in this article,

Iraq Is Not Worth Dying For (As Compared to Ninoy Aquino's Words)


Perhaps the American people must examine the real reason or reasons why American troops are shedding blood in Iraq, Afghanistan and other hostile countries supposedly in fighting international terrorism. I wrote these articles, which readers in the United States may browse with their thinking caps on:

A Message for Memorial Day: American Soldiers Must Stop Dying in Combat for Israel  

U.S. Taxpayers Must Force the End of American Subsidy for Israel’s Colonial Abuses and Criminal Conduct


More-than Religion Is the Afghan Problem


R emember "religion is the opiate of the people," which is one of the most-frequently quoted statements of Karl Marx? Alas, in Afghanistan, the problem is more-than religion. The country is probably the biggest producer of opium in the world. Its farmers have cultivated poppy and marijuana fields for millennia. So, opium is literally and figuratively the opiate of the Afghan people, isn’t it?


And for as long as drug addicts in the United States, Europe and other countries continue to buy opium, marijuana and other illegal drugs, no eradication efforts by foreigners will succeed in the poppy-and-marijuana fields in Afghanistan. Even the soldiers of Alexander the Great failed in that quest and they ended up probably using opium and its derivatives.


So, quo vadis, American and NATO policy-and-decision makers? # # #

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Last Updated on Thursday, 12 June 2014 13:46
Comments (2)
1 Tuesday, 20 July 2010 22:06
Let's just end the pointless wars and bring all of them back home. We will save billions and thousands of lives. Then, we will have money to jumpstart the economy and give the vets jobs.

2 Sunday, 25 July 2010 14:46
Reports: Leaked Papers Show Hidden Afghan War Details

As reported by Kimberly Dozier

AP WASHINGTON (July 25) -- Some 90,000 leaked U.S. military records amount to an blow-by-blow account of six years of the Afghanistan war, including unreported incidents of Afghan civilian killings as well as covert operations against Taliban figures, two newspapers with access to the documents reported Sunday.

The online whistle-blower organization Wikileaks was planning to post the documents on its website Sunday. The New York Times and London's Guardian newspaper, as well as the German weekly Der Spiegel, were given early access to the documents.

The documents - including classified cables and assessments between military officers and diplomats - describe U.S. fears that ally Pakistan's intelligence service was actually aiding the insurgency.

The Times said the documents suggest Pakistan "allows representatives of its spy service to meet directly with the Taliban in secret strategy sessions to organize networks of militant groups that fight against American soldiers in Afghanistan, and even hatch plots to assassinate Afghan leaders."

The Guardian said the documents show "how a secret 'black' unit of special forces hunts down Taliban leaders for kill or capture without trial" and "how the U.S. covered up evidence that the Taliban has acquired deadly surface-to-air missiles."

One U.S. official said the Obama administration was aware of the impending document release and had already told Pakistani and Afghan officials what to expect, in order to head off some of the more embarrassing revelations.

Another U.S. official said it may take days to comb through all the documents to see what they mean to the U.S. war effort and determine their potential damage to national security. That official added that the U.S. isn't certain who the source of the leaked documents is.

Both officials spoke on condition of anonymity in order to comment on the release of classified material.

Copyright 2010 The Associated Press -- as copied from an AOL news report. Active hyperlinks have been inserted by AOL.

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