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Saturday, July 17, 2010

Another Vietnam

Many American veterans of foreign affairs and veterans of military service tried to warn us years ago that we were making a mistake by going to war in Iraq, and that even though going to Afghanistan was probably more necessary, we shouldn't try to engage in nation-building there, or try to stay too long. But the neo-cons, led by Dick Cheney and Bill Kristol disagreed, and they got their way. Now, almost a decade later, the news coming from Afghanistan is sounding worse and worse, and many more people in the top ranks of politics, the military and the media are beginning to sound the trumpet that it's time to leave Afghanistan. An upcoming issue of Newsweek Magazine has an interview with the very well-respected Richard Haass, President of the Council of Foreign Affairs, and he makes a very effective argument that it's time to start drawing down in Afghanistan. Also on tomorrow's "This Week", Arianna Huffington and George Will make the same point. Yes, that's right, Arianna Huffington and George Will agree that it's time to get out of Afghanistan. It won't be easy to get out, we can't just get up and leave in a day's time, and even when we try to pull out, the neo-cons will continue to fight us every step of the way. And that's the part of this political situation which intrigues us the most. We can remember a time in America when political leaders who made horrific mistakes were completely discredited, afterwhich they usually slinked away in shame and more often than not, slid into obscurity. But Dick Cheney and Bill Kristol, who have been proven wrong on almost every foreign policy decision they made during Bush's administration, and which led to disastrous consequences, not only don't slink away, but they continue to think that they deserve a voice in forming American foreign policy. Wow. Now that takes some balls. It's like a high basketball team losing by 50 point to another team, but then still trying to make the argument that they're the better team. Cheney and Kristol, let us spell it out for you, you got it wrong. Terribly wrong. And it's time for you go away. You no longer have any credibility on the topic of American foreign policy. It's time to slink away. Oh, and Dick, please take that harpy of a daughter with you. Not the lesbian one, the crazy one. .(richard haass)

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