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Should we have just carpet bombed Afghanistan?


KAOSkins

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I'm thinking there's a chance we'd be in a whole lot better of a place today. Roughly the same amount of civilians killed I'd bet if we centered on Al Queda and Taliban operation. Just putting it out there I'm not overly committed that that's what we should have done.

I'm getting tired of these wars that aren't really wars. I don't feel at war with Afghanistan as I assume most don't just the remnants of a political organization that we could have just crushed to begin with. Hindsight is 20/20, I know.

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Maybe if we'd not supplied them with weapons in the first place this **** storm wouldn't be so big to clear up.

Hail.

Those were different times and different "enemy". Least that one was identifiable even if we spent an ungodly amount preparing to never fight them. Not that it didn't crush them in the end but what a tremendous cost it was.

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Those were different times and different "enemy". Least that one was identifiable even if we spent an ungodly amount preparing to never fight them. Not that it didn't crush them in the end but what a tremendous cost it was.

Correct me if I'm wrong, which is entirely possible, but invariably a whole host of those weapons and CIA training through the Afghan's war with the Soviets ended up fuelling Bin Laden and his Al Qaeda network. I guess we just never expected it would be used against us.

Hail.

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I'm thinking there's a chance we'd be in a whole lot better of a place today. Roughly the same amount of civilians killed I'd bet if we centered on Al Queda and Taliban operation. Just putting it out there I'm not overly committed that that's what we should have done.

I'm getting tired of these wars that aren't really wars. I don't feel at war with Afghanistan as I assume most don't just the remnants of a political organization that we could have just crushed to begin with. Hindsight is 20/20, I know.

Carpet bombing was my original philosophy also.... hoping a unmerciful attack would force the people to turn on the leaders and Taliban..... carpet bombing is basically what we did in its first Iraq war and the world was quite happy that they no longer have to see war on their TVs even though we just left the innocent Iraqis to rot....

George Bush chose a much more difficult approach in trying to establish some resemblance of a democracy and one of the most caveman like mentalities in the world......

So though it's much more difficult in the long run if successful it is more merciful for the people and the Middle East...

establishing sanity where insanity exists is difficult.... but much of the world and peace lovers just prefer to leave them to rot and put them back in a place where TV cameras will no longer be permitted..... the abuse of the innocents could continue behind closed doors as the peace lovers drink their wine and champagne and act like a righteous group

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History will Judge George Bush/Dick Cheney's policies. I think it's far too soon for any claim of victory there in that nation building thing. But since when is it conservative to go that extra measure spending US tax dollars on this massively expensive experiment to benefit some poor people across the world when now our own people that we put under the rug might suffer?

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No.

Damn. That's not ten characters.

Okay, no, the better option would have been to use special forces and CIA/NSA/etc. units to fight an asymmetrical war against an asymmetrical enemy, rather than using hundreds of thousands of troops to fight two conventional wars that each lasted weeks, then being surprised that they're ill-prepared to handle the slow bleed of constant guerrilla tactics.

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Correct me if I'm wrong, which is entirely possible, but invariably a whole host of those weapons and CIA training through the Afghan's war with the Soviets ended up fuelling Bin Laden and his Al Qaeda network. I guess we just never expected it would be used against us.

Hail.

OK. You're wrong. :-)

First of all let me say that I have had direct correspondence with experts on this. (you would be surprised how easy it is if you simply write a respectful intelligent email). But the resistance was not one homogeneous group. There were factions friendly to the US and those who were not. BinLaden was in the later group. We had no contact with him. We provided him no training or weapons. If you want to get very technical, he may have indirectly received some small arms from Pakistan which were provided with help from the US. That's it. Bin Laden was at the time still very wealthy and had not yet been cut off from his wealthy family. He gained followers among outsiders who traveled to Afghanistan for jihad because he paid for his own weapons and supplies, but among Afghan tribes he was considered an outsider and there was very little contact with him. Later there was a great deal of animosity between Afghan heroes like Ahmad Shah Massoud whom we did support and bin Laden. Which is why he was assassinated by al Qaeda two days before 9/11.

And KAO. I understand the frustration that drives your question but NO. It would have been an insanely wrong response to carpet bomb Afghanistan.

For more information on this great man read:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ahmad_Shah_Massoud

And absolutely, you must read his letter to America in 1998:

http://www.afghan-web.com/documents/let-masood.html

Massoud's Letter To The People Of America

Date: 1998

A Message to the People of the United States of America

I send this message to you today on behalf of the freedom and peace-loving people of Afghanistan, the Mujahedeen freedom fighters who resisted and defeated Soviet communism, the men and women who are still resisting oppression and foreign hegemony and, in the name of more than one and a half million Afghan martyrs who sacrificed their lives to uphold some of the same values and ideals shared by most Americans and Afghans alike. This is a crucial and unique moment in the history of Afghanistan and the world, a time when Afghanistan has crossed yet another threshold and is entering a new stage of struggle and resistance for its survival as a free nation and independent state.

I have spent the past 20 years, most of my youth and adult life, alongside my compatriots, at the service of the Afghan nation, fighting an uphill battle to preserve our freedom, independence, right to self-determination and dignity. Afghans fought for God and country, sometime alone, at other times with the support of the international community. Against all odds, we, meaning the free world and Afghans, halted and checkmated Soviet expansionism a decade ago. But the embattled people of my country did not savor the fruits of victory. Instead they were thrust in a whirlwind of foreign intrigue, deception, great-gamesmanship and internal strife. Our country and our noble people were brutalized, the victims of misplaced greed, hegemonic designs and ignorance. We Afghans erred too. Our shortcomings were as a result of political innocence, inexperience, vulnerability, victimization, bickering and inflated egos. But by no means does this justify what some of our so-called Cold War allies did to undermine this just victory and unleash their diabolical plans to destroy and subjugate Afghanistan.

Today, the world clearly sees and feels the results of such misguided and evil deeds. South-Central Asia is in turmoil, some countries on the brink of war. Illegal drug production, terrorist activities and planning are on the rise. Ethnic and religiously-motivated mass murders and forced displacements are taking place, and the most basic human and women�s rights are shamelessly violated. The country has gradually been occupied by fanatics, extremists, terrorists, mercenaries, drug Mafias and professional murderers. One faction, the Taliban, which by no means rightly represents Islam, Afghanistan or our centuries-old cultural heritage, has with direct foreign assistance exacerbated this explosive situation. They are unyielding and unwilling to talk or reach a compromise with any other Afghan side.

Unfortunately, this dark accomplishment could not have materialized without the direct support and involvement of influential governmental and non-governmental circles in Pakistan. Aside from receiving military logistics, fuel and arms from Pakistan, our intelligence reports indicate that more than 28,000 Pakistani citizens, including paramilitary personnel and military advisers are part of the Taliban occupation forces in various parts of Afghanistan. We currently hold more than 500 Pakistani citizens including military personnel in our POW camps. Three major concerns - namely terrorism, drugs and human rights - originate from Taliban-held areas but areinstigated from Pakistan, thus forming the inter-connecting angles of an evil triangle. For many Afghans, regardless of ethnicity or religion, Afghanistan, for the second time in one decade, is once again an occupied country.

Let me correct a few fallacies that are propagated by Taliban backers and their lobbies around the world. This situation over the short and long-run, even in case of total control by the Taliban, will not be to anyone�s interest. It will not result in stability, peace and prosperity in the region. The people of Afghanistan will not accept such a repressive regime. Regional countries will never feel secure and safe. Resistance will not end in Afghanistan, but will take on a new national dimension, encompassing all Afghan ethnic and social strata.

The goal is clear. Afghans want to regain their right to self-determination through a democratic or traditional mechanism acceptable to our people. No one group, faction or individual has the right to dictate or impose its will by force or proxy on others. But first, the obstacles have to be overcome, the war has to end, just peace established and a transitional administration set up to move us toward a representative government.

We are willing to move toward this noble goal. We consider this as part of our duty to defend humanity against the scourge of intolerance, violence and fanaticism. But the international community and the democracies of the world should not waste any valuable time, and instead play their critical role to assist in any way possible the valiant people of Afghanistan overcome the obstacles that exist on the path to freedom, peace, stability and prosperity.

Effective pressure should be exerted on those countries who stand against the aspirations of the people of Afghanistan. I urge you to engage in constructive and substantive discussions with our representatives and all Afghans who can and want to be part of a broad consensus for peace and freedom for Afghanistan.

With all due respect and my best wishes for the government and people of the United States,

Ahmad Shah Massoud.

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Interesting letter, MM. I'll have to look up a few things regarding our aid to the Afghan fighters, because I think focusing solely on bin Laden is a bit too narrow if we're going to talk about the long-term effects of our involvement. But the letter is damn interesting.

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Meh, I often am Mike when it comes to politics. No surprise there, lol. But maybe I didn't put that across too well.

The point I was trying to make, rightly or wrongly, was not that we had direct contact with the evolving Bin Laden; but indirectly many of his followers born out of the Afghan/ Soviet troubles were both CIA trained, and the weapons we supplied to other fractions invariably ended up, however indirectly, in Taliban hands.

Interesting to read about Massoud though and what he stood for. Thank you.

Hail.

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History will Judge George Bush/Dick Cheney's policies. I think it's far too soon for any claim of victory there in that nation building thing. But since when is it conservative to go that extra measure spending US tax dollars on this massively expensive experiment to benefit some poor people across the world when now our own people that we put under the rug might suffer?

There was tremendous success in Iraqi freedom..... Saddam Hussein is not only gone but most importantly men and women have the freedom to vote!!!!......Thats Tremendous success

the biggest reason for not claiming greater victory is politics .......

who in the world of politics or the media is going say Bush did good with Iraqi freedom

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There was tremendous success in Iraqi freedom..... Saddam Hussein is not only gone but most importantly men and women have the freedom to vote!!!!......Thats Tremendous success

the biggest reason for not claiming greater victory is politics .......

Success can be very reasonably measured in terms of the ostensible motivations for acting. By that standard, the Iraq War was nothing like a "tremendous success." It was a failure on many levels.

Not to take away from the fact that Iraq has, and may yet keep, its newly representative government. That is one very positive, noteworthy outcome to place in the otherwise sparse "success" pan of the Iraq War balance. But that's not how the war was sold in advance to a trusting, fearful, terrorism-minded public. And once the goalposts start moving, almost anything can be called a "tremendous success." Truly, almost anything.

Any attempt to separate politics from this war is totally impossible. It was a political war, politically conceived, politically selected, politically sold, politically executed. And its one major positive outcome to date has been enabling a more acceptable style of Iraqi ... politics! ;)

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Success can be very reasonably measured in terms of the ostensible motivations for acting. By that standard, the Iraq War was nothing like a "tremendous success." It was a failure on many levels.

Not to take away from the fact that Iraq has, and may yet keep, its newly representative government. That is one very positive, noteworthy outcome to place in the otherwise sparse "success" pan of the Iraq War balance. But that's not how the war was sold in advance to a trusting, fearful, terrorism-minded public. And once the goalposts start moving, almost anything can be called a "tremendous success." Truly, almost anything.

The ultimate reason for acting was given in the name by those that acted... Operation Iraqi freedom.... regime change was also a popular theme....... so let's not pretend that there has not been major accomplishments towards the ultimate goal of operation Iraqi freedom.......

desperately named the Iraq war by those not supporting freedom for this region.......

as far as weapons of mass destruction was clearly used to persuade other countries and the UN to get on board..... which the vast majority of countries did......

let's not be oblivious to the fact of bringing major changes to the region has always been the major goal....

Any attempt to separate politics from this war is totally impossible. It was a political war, politically conceived, politically selected, politically sold, politically executed. And its one major positive outcome to date has been enabling a more acceptable style of Iraqi ... politics! ;)

oooo,oooo irony made me laugh! :ols:

As I stated earlier I was for carpet bombing at first.... I easily can look back and see how dumb my mentality was about the situation..... I hope you two can understand how dumb it is to think that the authoritarian dictatorship of Saddam Hussain is a form of politics.....

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Carpet bombing would have accomplished nothing but retribution and punishment in Afghanistan,I'm not sure our efforts there will be fruitful ,but that is the way we wage war now.

Say what you will of Iraq,but it exposed AQ and other extremists in a way that continuing our prior policy or carpet bombing would never do....and removed a evil man.

Too soon to say if either are truly a success.

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We should have not went to war in the first place.

This was pretty much a epic fail war for us. We are fighting a guy we put weapons on his hands and gave him power. We are now fighting against a american born white convert muslim who right now takes care of all the operations.Adam Gadahn.

talk about epic fail

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We should have not went to war in the first place.

This was pretty much a epic fail war for us. We are fighting a guy we put weapons on his hands and gave him power. We are now fighting against a american born white convert muslim who right now takes care of all the operations.Adam Gadahn.

talk about epic fail

Epic fail??? Really??? You are so clueless its funny...man where do you get your information? We had this deal locked and ****ed until we got hooked on Iraq (which i both supported and fought in), the SF and others had things in line but we lost focus. The U.S. did not put weapons in UBL's hands (see MM's post) and douchbag Gadahn is not in charge of anything other than making sure the ****ters are clean, his fat ass would die on a operation. As to the original topic I know my opinion might not be popular but we could have saved the lives of a lot of great Americans by turning the whole area (including Pakistan) into a glass parking lot. My 2 cents.

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We went to Afghanistan to beat taliban end result nothing happened they are still there.

We went to iraq because saddam had "weapons of mass destruction". Oh wait later we found out he didnt.

Looks pretty epic fail to me. Because all the other countries are looking and laughing at us.

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Well I guess your not looking hard enough, lets see what countries are laughing??? Not Germany, Australia, France, New Zealand, England, Italy, Lithaouna(sp), and many others who are involved in A-Stan ...again you do not know of what you speak....try to learn something before you put it out there you won't seem so clueless.

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Hubbs, check out "Ghost Wars" by Steve Coll. It covers Afghanistan/Pakistan from the Soviet invasion to 9/11. Really good read (not too dry) and beyond informative. SHF recommended it to me a few years back and I'm so happy he did.

But yeah, Mad Mike's post is dead on. Not a single thing I would contend. I really think the assassination of Massoud is one of the great tragedies of our time. He was that type of character. I would have loved to see him properly supported in a leadership role in his homeland. He kinda reminds me of a Che Guevara minus the whole rigid Communism bit. A transformative figure. Talked the talk and walked the walk.

I saw a documentary not too long ago about a reporter who had been embedded with Massoud when he was fighting the Soviets. He hadn't been back to Afghanistan in decades and he went and revisted his path and visited where Massoud had been killed. It was striking how much he thought of him. Pure emotion.

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Well I guess your not looking hard enough, lets see what countries are laughing??? Not Germany, Australia, France, New Zealand, England, Italy, Lithaouna(sp), and many others who are involved in A-Stan ...again you do not know of what you speak....try to learn something before you put it out there you won't seem so clueless.

lol your funny

United States (47.085)

United Kingdom (9.500)

Germany (4.415)

France (3.750)

Italy (3.150)

Canada (2.830)

Poland (1.955)

Netherlands (1.940)

Australia (1.550)

Spain (1.070)

Denmark (750)

yes very involved.

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