America's Longest War / by kevin murray

I suppose if you asked most Americans which war was our longest, you might get answers such as our Revolutionary War or the Vietnam war, both of which are meaningful answers andnearly correct, but in actuality it is the ongoing war with Afghanistan that started in October of 2001.  Afghanistan?  Give me a break.  We went to war in Korea and Vietnam to help prevent or contain the spread of communism, but Afghanistan?!  We've been told that the reason we went to war with Afghanistan is because of al Qaeda.  That reason certainly doesn't seem fair to Afghanistan, or to its people, or to the people of the United States.  You should not, nor do you not, need to attack a sovereign nation for the unproven crimes of a few.   You certainly don't need to be at war with this country for over twelve years and counting.  It doesn't make any sense and it can only make matters worse.


The United States claims it is fighting against al Qaeda and the insurgents, on behalf of the Afghan people.  Really?  That seems not only highly unlikely but very doubtful in the real world.  Afghanistan can take care of its own people and its own governance and in the event that it has difficulties in ruling its people, it can call upon many resources such as neighboring countries, historical precedents, or the United Nations.  Al Qaeda was the rallying point for United States intervention into a sovereign nation and incredibly after twelve years we still haven't completed our mission.  The fact of the matter is if al Qaeda is hanging out in caves and mountains, isn't that exactly where we want them?!  Why do we need to hunt them down or to chase them if they are far away from civilian populations and their size is so puny?   If al Qaeda and the Taliban are interfering, subverting, or running government and/or paramilitary agencies within Afghanistan bordersisn't that an Afghanistan issue and not ours?  Is Afghanistan really and realistically a country that we need fear for anything?


If there are any al Qaeda operatives in Afghanistan that were part and parcel of the 9/11 attack upon American soil, they should be brought to justice, and I suspect that they already have in one way or another.  Any new al Qaeda operatives created since then have a lot more to do with our meddling into Afghanistan affairs, killing civilians, disrupting their economy, and invading their country.  Besides the unnecessary destruction and deaths of Afghanistan people, we have also put our own resources and troops into harm's way.  For what?  Is the world really safer, is the United States more respected, more feared, than it was twelve long years ago, or is the United States more despised internationally with certain foreign countries that have felt our unending wrath.


Of course, the more cynical pundits believe that the Afghanistan war has been waged so that we can get access to the invaluable minerals that Afghanistan has such as gold and lithium, and a deep desire to see an oil pipeline and possibly a natural gas pipelined extend from the Caspian Sea to the Arabian Sea.  Sad to say, there is more truth in this previous sentence than anything the US administration has been shoving down our throats for the past twelve years.