Afghanistan: $2 Billion a Week for Hatred is Too Much, FBI Says Now It's Coming Here
By Ralph Lopez
March 18, 2012 "War Is A Crime" - - I want a better deal on the hatred we are buying. The subway service in my town (Boston) is about to increase fares, again, and cut back service in a semi-yearly ritual of crapping on the poorest in Gov. Duval Patrick's state, in a week when the US will toss another $2 billion at military operations in Afghanistan which seems only to keep generating more hatred for Americans.
At $2 billion every week, I say that's too much. I'm sure there are better deals on hatred. And thanks to a fearlessly outspoken line officer, Lt. Col. Daniel Davis, we now know what we don't know about Afghanistan.
In his bombshell report which is to Afghanistan what the Pentagon Papers were to Vietnam, "Dereliction of Duty II: Senior Military Leaders’ Loss of Integrity Wounds Afghan War Effort," Davis all but calls his top commanders skilled, habitual, wouldn't-know-truth-if-it-hit-them-in-the-head bald-faced liars about the situation in Afghanistan. His opening thesis, which has received much of the attention surrounding the report, is actually among the mildest to be found in the report, saying merely that:
Lest one miss what Lt. Col. Davis is driving at, he sums it simply by saying:
"We seem significantly challenged to tell the truth in almost any situation."
Of the spin-master Petraeus during his tenure as commander of US forces in Afghanistan, Davis points out:
...in numerous speeches during his 12 months in command of ISAF troops, General Petraeus often stated...that since the arrival of US surge forces, ISAF has taken away Taliban strong holds, killed or captured hundreds of his senior and mid-level leaders; thousands of foot-soldiers have been removed from the battle field (killed or captured); ISAF has interdicted enemy lines of communication; discovered untold numbers of weapons and ammo caches, and beaten the enemy on battlefields throughout the country
Davis brings to bear as evidence the words of officers in charge of safeguarding and refining what can only be called a culture of deception among the top military command, in which the American public is seen as just another opponent against whom to conduct psychological operations. Davis quotes an article by Colonel Richard B. Leap ("Strategic Communication: An Imperative for the Global War on Terrorism Environment"), in which Leap says:
"the US Government must clarify the roles, responsibilities, authorities and relationships between Public Affairs, Public Diplomacy and Information Operations to not only influence foreign target audiences, but to safeguard US national will."
It seems not to have occurred to the Colonel that the drop in American public support...might have had something to do with the actual deteriorating battlefield conditions and not a "failure" on the part of PA to accurately "frame" the matter....what's to say the implication isn't that we can "frame" only the positive information while suppressing the negative - or to manufacture positive information if none exists.
Colonel Leap concludes his article by recommending several actions designed to strengthen "Military Information Operations," such as specifically addressing "all prior legislation beginning with the Smith-Mundt Act that is limiting the effectiveness of Information organizations in the GWOT environment."
Davis gives invaluable insight into the convenient flexibility of the very terminology used to describe progress:
in the waning days of World War II, Germany launched its last gasp, final attempt to return to the offensive: Operation "Wacht am Rhein" - or the Battle of the Bulge, as we came to know it. The allies went on the defensive and employed a number of counter-attacks to break the German offensive momentum....
Now not only are the tragic events which occur as a part of the occupation endangering the mission in Afghanistan, ostensibly to produce a stable ally in the region which will foreclose the return of the Taliban. They are, according to the FBI, endangering Americans in the "homeland" as it warns of the possibility of domestic attacks spurred by the foreign atrocities.
Excuse me. Hold up. For this we are paying $2 billion every week? My subway is about to put another 30,000 cars a year onto the roads because people will abandon the commuter rails as a result of fare increases and start taking their cars to work again. Gov. Patrick, can you give Obama a call please and explain this to him?
The MBTA's (Boston's local public transit authority) budget shortfall is $159 million. That's - let's see - less than 10 percent of what we spend on generating hatred in Afghanistan in one week. In other words, kick one single day of that military spending to Boston, and the local economy keeps booming along because the most productive and skilled are moving here instead of looking to move out, because they are not about to spend three hours behind the wheel each day, or pay exorbitant train fares for crappy service.
The answer: Combat troops out of Afghanistan now, to be replaced by reparations in the form of funding for the honest and competent Afghan National Solidarity Program, which will hire men so they won't have to work for the Taliban. This insurgency is fueled by econiomics, not political ideology. The Talibanpays $10 a day in a place where unemployment is 50% and higher outside of Kabul.
It has been determined that the US Department of Defense is likely the biggest funder of the insurgency, through payments made to insurgent groups to allow military supply convoys to travel unhindered. Therefore this war is a farce which could be ended tomorrow.
Reparations for 30 years of being a pawn of the US in what Zbigniew Brzezinski calls "the Great Game" is the best bulwark against the return of the Taliban, which is still roundly despised in Afghanistan. What is taking place now is what is endangering national security. Right here.
The author is co-founder of Jobs for Afghans.