Sunday, July 11, 2010

RECOMMENDED! The lost cause in Afghanistan

Pulitzer-Prize winner Douglas Brinkley on why Afghanistan is a "lost cause":
To win the war in Afghanistan, the United States must turn a nation that stands as a model of bald-faced thievery into a clean, honest institution that cares for its people, now the most neglected in the world.

It can't be done.

America's self-mythologizing, on which so many of us were brought up, imbued us with a sense that we Americans - and especially, the American military, the military of that "Greatest Generation" era - can do anything, can fix anything, will always prevail.  Why?  "Because we're Americans!"  Like a mantra . . .

I have to wonder: how many of our Congressmen and women (or, for that matter, Fox News "all-stars" and Limbaugh/Beck wannabees) have adopted this mantra - completely, totally unquestioningly - as some sort of existential truth?  How many of them insist on pressing on in Afghanistan, simply out of the belief that America can and must always prevail, and that no sacrifice of American blood and treasure is too much?

Have they never cracked a history book of any depth beyond heroic accounts of men in battle?

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