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Gosh, George W has kept us all so busy trying to deal with his disastrous Iraq war and with his build-up for a whole new war in Iran – that I’d forgotten about his war in Afghanistan! How’s that going?
It’s an important question, since – unlike Iraq and Iran – the Taliban thugs who ruled this country actually had direct ties to Osama bin Laden and the crashbombers who attacked us on 9/11. Our military quickly retaliated by bombing the bejeezus out of the place, routing the Taliban, and installing our guy, Hamid Karzai, as the new president.
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That was that, right? Well… not exactly. Osama bin Forgotten is still out there somewhere in Afghanistan’s mountain caves, our man Karzai can’t venture outside the protective bubble of his capitol city, the economic revitalization that Bush promised was never delivered, unemployment and poverty are rampant – and the Taliban is now resurgent.
When the commander of U.S. forces traveled recently to the southern provinces, a shopkeeper told him what he didn’t want to hear: “The Taliban and al Qaeda are everywhere.” They are big in numbers, flush with money, brandishing weapons… and in control.
Karzai and the Bushites are pinning their hopes on a new governor they’ve installed in the province, Maulavi Munib. But he has problems. First, our previous governor there sold all of the province’s police vehicles, guns, and ammunition! Second, he is a former high official in the Taliban government and remains on the United Nations’ wanted list. Karzai has now requested that the U.N. drop him from the list, but Russia opposes this.
Meanwhile, the Bushites have announced that they’ll soon withdraw U.S. troops from Southern Afghanistan – a move that is emboldening the Taliban and weakening the public’s support for the U.S. backed government.
This is Jim Hightower saying… Before Bush takes on another country, shouldn’t he finish what he started in this one?
“Taliban Threat Is Said to Grow in Afghan South,” The New York Times, May 3, 2006.