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Ear to the Ground

The Charge of the Light Brigade

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Posted on Nov 30, 2009
U.S. Air Force / Staff Sgt. Marie Brown

Perhaps inspired by reports that President Obama plans to send 30,000 more troops to Afghanistan, Gordon Brown said Monday that Great Britain would deploy an additional 500 soldiers to the region.

We’ve come to expect these sorts of proportions as American presidents have dressed their wars in the costume of multinational cooperation—not to diminish the efforts of the two troops deployed by Iceland to Iraq or the 40 Estonians in George W. Bush’s coalition of the willing.

The NATO effort in Afghanistan, now Obama’s war, is made up mostly of Americans—nearly seven of every 10 soldiers.

That disparity will only grow if America sends 60 times as many reinforcements as its allies.  —PZS

BBC:

The moves come as British Prime Minister Gordon Brown said he would send 500 more soldiers to the country.

According to US media reports, Mr Obama is set to formally announce that a further 30,000 troops are to be sent to Afghanistan in a televised address on Tuesday.

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Blackspeare's avatar

By Blackspeare, December 1, 2009 at 12:24 pm Link to this comment

Obama will say he intends to end the war in three years, but not the US presence.  The US will maintain viable outposts in both Iraq and Afghanistan for a long time——it’s just good strategy that Clauswitz would admire.  Surround and contain the enemy which nominally is Iran.

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Hulk2008's avatar

By Hulk2008, December 1, 2009 at 9:28 am Link to this comment

To melpol:

    Does that mean that God actually favored Cain over Abel ? 
    Does that mean that the rock Cain used was the first divinely-inspired weapon of mass destruction ?  ......the first product of the military industrial complex ?

Of course, that was Old Testament stuff.  Somebody else much later came along with “Blessed are the peacemakers…..”.

Instead of proposing a surtax to keep this failed pair of debacles going, how about sur-credit instead ?  i.e. Congress has to keep refunding money to taxpayers until the wars are all over and the soldiers are all back home.

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By melpol, December 1, 2009 at 9:19 am Link to this comment

The president has finally come to his senses. He is going to fortify the Kabul
garrison. They will arrive in time to stop an Afghan uprising. Thousands of speedy
camels ridden by angry tribesmen are preparing to attack. Most are armed with
automatic weapons, the rest carry swords imported from Damascus. Their blades
are capable of slicing off a mans head with a single blow. The camels and their
riders are not easy to stop. They are injected with pain killers before the bugles
sound the charge.

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By Jim Yell, December 1, 2009 at 9:00 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

What would we do with the money if we didn’t spend it in Afghanistan? We could avoid living with crumbling infa-structure, we could provide continuing education, we could have national health care, we could not be guilty of un-necessary cruelty and murder.

Yes, we could.

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By faith, November 30, 2009 at 9:32 pm Link to this comment

Well said, Patrick Henry.
The topic indicates that Britain is sending 500 soldiers to Afghanistan.  If the
global community wants a war there, should the ratio be 1:1 ?  For every
man/woman/or child we send then each country should match the troop.  Truly, it
is an outrage, if it is true, that President Obama is sending more soldiers to
Afghanistan.  The attack is illicit.  What will 30,000 troops do in a cavernous,
unfamiliar terrain?  Why are we wasting our national treasure on foreign soil? 
These soldiers are our children, husbands, wives.  It is wrong.  Wrong.  Wrong. 
President Obama should be recalled if it is true that he intends to continue Mr.
Bush’s foreign policy of attacking independent sovereign nations without cause.

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By melpol, November 30, 2009 at 8:18 pm Link to this comment

We must all be on guard for defense budget cutters and peaceniks. They want to
take away our guns and leave us with only baseball bats to defend ourselves.
Keeping Americans safe at home and abroad costs money. Soldiers and policemen
have to be paid and weapons have to be made. There is no better way to spend a
dollar than on our defense. Wars might never end, but real Americans do not fear
a long fight.

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PatrickHenry's avatar

By PatrickHenry, November 30, 2009 at 5:13 pm Link to this comment

Afghanistan is an insurgents war of attrition.  If it takes 1000 years the Afghanis will die trying to kill occupiers up until the last soldier leaves, then they will turn on themselves.

Rudyard Kipling wrote over 100 years ago:

“When you’re wounded and left on Afghanistan’s plains,
And the women come out to cut up what remains,
Jest roll to your rifle and blow out your brains
An’ go to your Gawd like a soldier.”

It was true then as it is now.

If the economy was vigorous the all volunteer “army” wouldn’t have any volunteers.  If all the TARP monies were spent on job creation, every street in America would be paved and all the states educational and federal mandates would be funded.  The tax base would be funded and the banks would do better in they way they were meant to serve society.

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Blackspeare's avatar

By Blackspeare, November 30, 2009 at 2:06 pm Link to this comment

Don’t make aspersions against the Afghan war——it’s the only one the USA has.  You can’t have the most powerful military in the world without some outlet and Afghanistan serves that purpose very well.  The enemy is underfunded,  inadequately trained and poorly armed, and the casualty rate is low——what more could one ask for in a war.  Afghanistan serves as a training ground for troops, a proving ground for equipment, and a venue to train operators and test new weapons such as rocket laden drones.  The Afghan War offers a win-win situation for all parties except for the Afghan people, but then again they’re a world away and they wear such silly hats!

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