Thingish Things

To Leave or Not to Leave?

Written By: William F. B. O'Reilly - Jun• 06•11

The New York Times reports that discussion is occurring within the Obama Administration about drawing down forces in Afghanistan earlier than planned. Sounds like a worthwhile deliberation.

If forced to be labeled dove or hawk, I would decidedly fall into the hawk category – I am a peace through strength believer – but Osama bin Laden’s removal changes everything.  It gives us the rhetorical justification to get out, and we may never get a better one.

But there is a catch, as always. What about the Afghans who have worked alongside us these past eight years?  Will they be executed if the country falls to the Taliban, like so many South Vietnamese were when we abruptly pulled out of Southeast Asia? And what will happen to Afghani women who have tasted a small measure of freedom? How will they be treated if and when the Karzai government falls? American honor is at stake. Do we again walk away from demonstrated allies and prove, as some have said since Vietnam, that the Americans can’t be trusted?

Or have we done enough damage to al Qaeda to justify an exodus?  After all, al Qaeda was the original target in Afghanistan, not the Taliban.  They just got in the way.  And besides, we are not exactly rolling in dough these days.  And this war is being waged on borrowed dollars.

These are all conversations that need to be had going into 2012.  It is healthy that the Obama Administration is beginning the discussion, whatever we ultimately decide to do.



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  1. Your Friend says:

    Laissez, verlassen, invia, dejar…

    Leave. Leave. Leave. Whatever the language – LEAVE!!

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