05 March 2011

Time to pull out of Afghanistan

I heard a brief radio interview the other day with former Marine commander and counterinsurgency expert, Bing West, author of The Wrong War; Grit, Strategy and the Way Out of Afghanistan. No liberal, Mr. West, but his thesis is that the strategy of counterinsurgency and buying off the Pashtun tribesmen in Afghanistan is a miserable failure, and that, moreover, the war is fatally flawed in that it has no coherent objective.

This is exactly right, it seems to me, and is a powerful case for the most rapid withdrawal and disengagement, consistent with safety of our troops, feasible. West presents other options, but the objectives of nationbuilding in Afghanistan that these strategies presuppose is, I believe, not in our national interest.

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