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This group is about the War in Iraq, but I feel compelled to talk about other related wars. I have been reading and trying to sort our the facts regarding Afghanistan and Pakistan. It seems that as we draw down troops from Iraq, Gen. MacCrystal is requesting 40,000 more troops to add to the 65,000 already there. Once again, the cry of "another Vietnam is sounded."
I think it's important understand why we are in any of these places. As for Iraq, there never were WMD. What are we fighting for and getting our young men and women killed or injured? What have we accomplished there?
Why are we in Afghanistan? To destroy the Taliban? I read today that the Taliban is moving into Pakistan, with few left in Afghanistan. If that is the case, shouldn't we be concentrating on Pakistan? And can somebody please tell me why we can't find bin Laden? It's all very confusing to a Virgo who has a work history of being an analyst and also has been a political junkie. I'm accustomed to being informed and making decisions about these things based on my beliefs and values and the facts. It's difficult to know the facts in these situations.
It seems to me that somebody gets an idea, i.e. there are WMD in Iraq (or they make it up) and somewhere along the line the purpose of the war becomes the war itself and winning it, no matter the cost. Are we going to keep fighting in Afghanistan when it's really not the major problem and HOW DO WE KNOW? Folks keep saying that the "lessons" of Vietnam have not been learned, which may be true, but one that citizens learned and many still believe is that we cannot trust the generals and the government to tell us the truth.
Having expressed my opinion, albeit a bit scattered, and asked a number of questions, I have one more thought. With our country in economic chaos, health care changes being fought in a most partisan manner, and all else that needs to be addressed, should we be there at all?
Yelena Bonner, wife of Andre Sakarov, Nobel Peace Prize winner, and both activists for peace, once said, "We cannot pretend the rest of the world does not exist. It does." How do we balance that belief and the need to stop the Taliban and al Queda with those other needs and the fact that our efforts are costing billions of dollars and too many lives are being lost.
I'd really like to hear a hearty discussion of this. Jump in .....................