Trillions of Dollars for This?

The GOP continues to deride Obama administration attempts to stimulate the floundering economy or fix the broken U.S. healthcare system, but they’ll have no problems in passing billions for the next Iraq / Afghanistan supplemental request.

Commentary By: Richard Blair

We can’t have single payer, universal health care. It costs too much.

Economic stimulus in the form of aid to states for infrastructure repair (government buildings, roads, and bridges) is “pork” and “unnecessary earmarks” – well, at least as long as it’s a Democrat requesting the funding, and not a GOP stalwart such as Ted “Bridge to Nowhere” Stevens.

But pouring good money after bad, into two Islamic theocracies that will never be able to stand on their own? Priceless. I’m starting to wonder if those are Wall Street wizards and bankers hiding under the burquas. Oh, and your “head exploding moment”? Check out the caption for this photo…

Women's Week in Kabul

Afgahn women wear blue scarves symbolizing justice during a ceremony to mark international Women’s Day in the Kandahar province. Women worldwide rallied to demand equal rights and protest against domestic violence and growing poverty in the global economic crisis.

Afghanistan. Women. Equal rights. Domestic violence. Poverty.

Whoever wrote that caption needs to read this book.

Tuesday, August 2nd, 2011 by Richard Blair |

Musharref Resignation: Bush’s GWOT Just Got More Interesting

The world that the next president of the United States inherits is going to look very different than the current model. Global geopolitics are changing fast – Russia / Georgia, and now Pakistan’s Pervez Musharref resigns. Instability within the membership of the global nuclear club isn’t a good thing.

Commentary By: Richard Blair

I’m going to go out on a limb and make a prediction:

Before the next president takes office on 1/20/2009, the world is going to be a much different place. It’s almost starting to seem like the Bush regime is going out of their way to scorch them some earth, and leave a huge pile of crap for the next administration to sort through.

First, we have Russia and Georgia, a situation which isn’t going away anytime soon. The instability in the region will remain, and all parties will be nervously fingering a cocked trigger. But at least Condi Rice finally decided to leave the Feragamo store, quit vacation early, and head for the region. Bush himself delayed his two week vacay a day or two to “monitor developments”, but he’s now busy with brush clearing in Crawford.

Today comes word that BushCo / Cheney LLC’s lapdog, Pervez Musharref, has ended months of speculation and is resigning as president of Pakistan. There’s not much that I can add to this piece of news, other than what this means is even more instability in an already unstable member of the global nuclear club.

Georgia has nukes and ground forces. Russia has nukes and ground forces. The U.S. has nukes and essentially no uncommitted ground forces. Pakistan has nukes and ground forces, and a military which is not (apparently) answerable to the country’s civilian leadership.

The world that the next POTUS inherits just five short months from now will be very different than that which the Bush regime has operated with relative impunity. I’m not smart enough to know what that world might look like, but unfortunately, I am tuned into what’s happening just enough to be ve

Tuesday, August 2nd, 2011 by Richard Blair |

Laura Bush Dances a Little Sidestep

One expects Rove or Rice or Cheney to play fast and loose with the facts when it comes to defending the Bush Administration and its record. To see Laura Bush do so, well, is also not shocking. Not when she gets those softball questions from FauxNews. Big mentions of Afghanistan from Laura, none of why we went there, to get Osama.

Commentary By: Steven Reynolds

Laura Bush was dancing a little Sidestep yesterday on FoxNews, defending her husband’s wreck of a Presidency. . .

Fellow Texans, I am proudly standing here to humbly see.
I assure you, and I mean it- Now, who says I don’t speak out as plain as day?
And, fellow Texans, I’m for progress and the flag- long may it fly.
I’m a poor boy, come to greatness. So, it follows that I cannot tell a lie.

Ooh I love to dance a little sidestep, now they see me now they don’t-
I’ve come and gone and, ooh I love to sweep around the wide step,
cut a little swathe and lead the people on.

Now my good friends, it behooves me to be solemn and declare,
I’m for goodness and for profit and for living clean and saying daily prayer.
And now, my good friends, you can sleep nights, I’ll continue to stand tall.
You can trust me, for I promise, I shall keep a watchful eye upon ya’ll…

Ooh I love to dance a little sidestep, now they see me now they don’t-
I’ve come and gone and, ooh I love to sweep around the wide step,
cut a little swathe and lead the people on.

Now, Miss Mona, I don’t know her, though I’ve heard the name, oh yes.
But, of course I’ve no close contact, so what she is doing I can only guess.
And now, Miss Mona, she’s a blemish on the face of that good town.
I am taking certain steps here, someone somewhere’s gonna have to close her down.

Ooh I love to dance a little sidestep, now they see me now they don’t-
I’ve come and gone and, ooh I love to sweep around the wide step,
cut a little swathe and lead the people on.

I just couldn’t resist a little whorehouse reference when talking about the Bush White House. Pardon that moment of weakness.

We’ve got less than a month to go before President Bush, the worst President in US history, leaves office, and to that end the time for people defending him is dwindling. Oh sure, Rush Limbaugh will still try to defend Bush, blaming either Clinton or Obama for everything from the Hurricane Katrina response to the real estate mortgage crisis to the failure to apprehend Osama bin Laden. The media whack jobs like Rush will continue to distort the blame game in trying to burnish the image of George Bush. Still, time is running out for the ones who were on the Bush payroll. Who is going to listen to anyone connected to the Bush Administration after January 20th, after all? Well, Laura Bush got in her licks yesterday, and the result was quite ludicrous. She appeared on Fox News Sunday, and talks about George Bush’s noble work in Afghanistan:

WALLACE: I want to pick up on Afghanistan, because I know it’s one of your most heartfelt causes. It’s not just women – a lot of men feel very keenly about this as well.

There’s been substantial progress over the last seven years. Women can now participate in the parliament. Little girls can go to school. But with the Taliban on the march again, do you ever worry that we could go back to the days of the burqa and to that terrible oppression of women in that country?

L. BUSH: Sure, and the days of the burqa aren’t over. Many women in Afghanistan still cover because they want to, partly, because it’s part of their tradition and their culture, and also because they’d be afraid not to.

But that is a worry, and I met with a group of parliamentarians, women parliamentarians, from Afghanistan last January or so, and they said they were afraid, that their – that this is their only chance, and if they can’t make it now, then they just don’t know if they ever would be able to.

And I think that’s all the more reason the international community needs to stay involved in Afghanistan and do what we can.

Afghanistan and Iraq both have the opportunity, if they can seize the moment, to build real democracies where the rights of every person in those countries is respected, and a lot of that is because of the United States, because of our policies of liberating them from the Taliban in one instance and the tyranny of Saddam Hussein in the other.

And it’s very, very important for the people of these countries to stand up and to take this opportunity to build their countries.

But let me say about Afghanistan, they don’t have a lot of capacity. They’ve been in the conflict for 30 years, and most of their population is younger than 30. They don’t have the human capital.

It’s very important for the international community to stay involved, to try to make education as fast and as broad-reaching as possible so they can build the kind of human capital they need to build the infrastructure of laws and of civil society that they’ll need to build a democracy.

Laura’s sidestep, of course, is to burnish Bush’s record in Afghanistan without mentioning the distraction that is Iraq, a distraction that siphoned off hundreds of billions of dollars and tens of thousands of troops which could have been devoted to the cause in Afghanistan, whether that cause was the plight of women, of democracy, or of getting the guy who was actually responsible for 9/11, Osama bin Laden. I swear, in their youth Republicans must train or something to answer questions while simply bypassing the biggest issue in the room, like who was actually responsible for 9/11. There’s the big news of this interview, that Laura Bush spent oodles of time lamenting 9/11 and then the status of women in Afghanistan, the vital need for us to support their democracy, etc., etc. No, she never mentioned Osama bin Laden once.

But Laura Bush isn’t the only one guilty of this manuever. Check out Condi Rice in her defense of the Bush Administration, especially on the subject of the Middle East. And then there was Dick Cheney’s defending his decisions about torture. Yes, this is the season for defending George Bush, no matter the tenuous connection to reality those defenses take.

Monday, December 29th, 2008 by Steven Reynolds |

Winning Hearts and (Dirty) Minds in Afghanistan

The Washington Post this morning brings humor to the discussion of the Afghanistan War, but they also bring a depiction of life in Afghanistan that feeds into stereotypes. Sure, it is interesting to know what the CIA is using to gain influence, but an article about giving away viagra just emphasiszes the notion of the arabic “other,” to our moral detriment.

Commentary By: Steven Reynolds

OK, maybe the guy’s mind isn’t quite so dirty. He’s got a big job at 60+ years old with four wives who are much younger. Think, think. . . how could the CIA appeal to this guy for his help? From the Washington Post:

The Afghan chieftain looked older than his 60-odd years, and his bearded face bore the creases of a man burdened with duties as tribal patriarch and husband to four younger women. His visitor, a CIA officer, saw an opportunity, and reached into his bag for a small gift.

Four blue pills. Viagra.

“Take one of these. You’ll love it,” the officer said. Compliments of Uncle Sam.

The enticement worked. The officer, who described the encounter, returned four days later to an enthusiastic reception. The grinning chief offered up a bonanza of information about Taliban movements and supply routes – followed by a request for more pills.

For U.S. intelligence officials, this is how some crucial battles in Afghanistan are fought and won. While the CIA has a long history of buying information with cash, the growing Taliban insurgency has prompted the use of novel incentives and creative bargaining to gain support in some of the country’s roughest neighborhoods, according to officials directly involved in such operations.

I’m not complaining about this practice by the CIA of handing out the little blue pill in exchange for valuable information. Oh, I suppose the guy wasn’t prescribed the drug, and if he dies from the pill, he’s not going to be much use. Hey, and if he gets one of those four hour boners it might be a long way to his doctor.

I suppose that’s what’s got me going this morning. This is a topic that just invites jokes rather than a serious discussion of the lengths to which we will go in gathering intelligence. The WaPo article is full of double intendres, so much so that this feels like a “feel good” magazine section piece. OK, it IS a “feel good” piece, at least from one point of view, but. . . just look at this wry comment from the second page of the article in the WaPo:

Two veteran officers familiar with such practices said Viagra was offered rarely, and only to older tribal officials for whom the drug would hold special appeal. While such sexual performance drugs are generally unavailable in the remote areas where the agency’s teams operated, they have been sold in some Kabul street markets since at least 2003 and were known by reputation elsewhere.

“You didn’t hand it out to younger guys, but it could be a silver bullet to make connections to the older ones,” said one retired operative familiar with the drug’s use in Afghanistan. Afghan tribal leaders often had four wives – the maximum number allowed by the Koran – and aging village patriarchs were easily sold on the utility of a pill that could “put them back in an authoritative position,” the official said.

Maybe we can call this the dumbing down of journalism, now designed to appeal to a 7th grader’s intellectual level and not to someone serious about the situation in Afghanistan and about learning how we’re solving that situation. Oh, I know this is a small example, and that the article contains far more information than that the CIA uses boner medicine as a way of inducing cooperation. Certainly, though, the viagra is the focus of the long article, when the focus should be the analysis of what’s going right and wrong with CIA tactics in Afghanistan. Afghanistan is, after all, going to be the focus again in the War on Terror very soon.

Perhaps even more troubling is what this story does to depict the exotic (now erotic) life of the Afghan Chieftain. I am reminded of Edward Said’s Orientalism, his chronicle of the history of the depiction of asian people’s in western culture, a depiction as culturally “other,” and a depiction that often used differing sexual practices as a way of emphasizing oriental “otherness.” Said uses a painting of Jean-Leon Gerome on the cover of his book, so I daresay you can find examples of late 19th century orientalism. I think the harm pictures most instructive in this discussion.

Sure, the little blue pill may certainly help in the gathering of intelligence in Afghanistan. But this is a battle for hearts and minds both in Afghanistan and in this country, and if the media keeps consciously depicting the people of central asia as so extremely “other,” that does little for our sense, I suspect, that these people are just as deserving as us to live a full and prosperous life. The more we depict the Afghanis (or the Khazakhs or the Iraqis or the Iranians) as so extremely “other,” the less likely we are to have an American populace willing to do the job right over there without torture and with far more care towards the lives of innocent civilians.

Friday, December 26th, 2008 by Steven Reynolds |
Category: Afghanistan,Media

The Stark Contrast: Repubs and Sane People on Terror

Today brings us contrasting opinions on the War on Terror. The WingNut view is given by an immature Benjamin Shapiro, who wishes for the annihilation of all Muslims. The mature, moral view is represented by a man assigned to interrogate prisoners for the US military, Matthew Alexander. I applaud the military’s striving towards morality.

Commentary By: Steven Reynolds

Two articles strike a chord today. One, from WingNutDaily, recommends a scorched earth policy against all Muslims. Yes, they published an essay that recommends death to all Muslims. The other story is about an interrogator in the US Military and his take on how to treat prisoners. the contrast could not be more stark. First, the essay by Benjamin Shapiro, who runs what he calls an “ultra-Ortho Blog” of his own, from WingNutDaily:

Enough with the lies. Stop telling us that Islam is a religion of peace. If it is, prove it through action. Stop telling us that President-elect Obama will fix our broken relationship with the Muslim world. They hate Obama just as much as they hated President George W. Bush, although they think Obama is more of a patsy than Bush was. Stop telling us that we shouldn’t worry about the Islamic infiltration of our economy. If the Saudis own a large chunk of our banking institutions and control the oil market, they can certainly leverage their influence in dangerous ways.

Enough. After the World Trade Center, the Pentagon, the plane downed in Pennsylvania, the endless suicide bombings, shootings and rocket attacks in Israel, the Bali bombings, the synagogue bombing in Tunisia, the LAX shootings, the Kenyan hotel bombing, the Casablanca attacks, the Turkey synagogue attacks, the Madrid bombings, the London bombings, and the repeated attacks in India culminating in the Mumbai massacres – among literally thousands of others – it’s about time that the West got the point: We’re in a war. Our enemies are determined. They will not quit just because we offer them Big Macs, Christina Aguilera CDs, or even the freedom to vote. They will not quit just because we ensure that they have Qurans in their Guantanamo cells, or because we offer to ban “The Satanic Verses” (as India did). They will only quit when they are dead. It is our job to make them so, and to eliminate every obstacle to their destruction.

So enough. No more empty talk. No more idle promises. No more happy ignorance, half measures, or appeasement-minded platitudes. The time for hard-nosed, uncompromising action hasn’t merely come – it’s been overdue by seven years. The voice of our brothers’ blood cries out from the ground.

Wow! Sometimes we forget that it isn’t just the extremist Christian movement that produces whack jobs. There are extremist fanatics in Judaism as well, and it is important that we recognize them. Hey, there are extremist fanatics in the Muslim religion, in the Hindu religion, and in most other sects, and we all need to be vigilant against such fanatics. Benjamin Shapiro, the darling of WingnutDaily and assorted other extremist right wing web sites, and the O’Reilly Show as well, is one to condemn. That he is young and fanatical is no excuse for his blatant bloodlust. Surely any God would condemn such words.

What is important is that there are good Americans who understand strong moral values, who understand that torture and fanaticism are not an answer. The Washington Post today gives us just such a moral American. His name is Matthew Alexander. For those of us based in reality rather than on the fanatical fantasy of the extremist religious right, Matthew Alexander is a blessing. He stands for our values, of respect for humans. His essay is about how disgusted he was with the regime of torture that still held in Iraq when he served as late as 2006. Yes, we’ve got a witness to the Bush regime of torture that held sway as late as 2006. From the Washington Post:

Amid the chaos, four other Air Force criminal investigators and I joined an elite team of interrogators attempting to locate Zarqawi. What I soon discovered about our methods astonished me. The Army was still conducting interrogations according to the Guantanamo Bay model: Interrogators were nominally using the methods outlined in the U.S. Army Field Manual, the interrogators’ bible, but they were pushing in every way possible to bend the rules – and often break them. I don’t have to belabor the point; dozens of newspaper articles and books have been written about the misconduct that resulted. These interrogations were based on fear and control; they often resulted in torture and abuse.

I refused to participate in such practices, and a month later, I extended that prohibition to the team of interrogators I was assigned to lead. I taught the members of my unit a new methodology – one based on building rapport with suspects, showing cultural understanding and using good old-fashioned brainpower to tease out information. I personally conducted more than 300 interrogations, and I supervised more than 1,000. The methods my team used are not classified (they’re listed in the unclassified Field Manual), but the way we used them was, I like to think, unique. We got to know our enemies, we learned to negotiate with them, and we adapted criminal investigative techniques to our work (something that the Field Manual permits, under the concept of “ruses and trickery”). It worked. Our efforts started a chain of successes that ultimately led to Zarqawi.

Perhaps there could be no more stark contrast between strategies and ideologies. One, backed by a raving bloodlust and enumerated by a young fanatical orthodox Jew, advocates annihiation of his enemies. The other advocated by a man in the field, Matthew Alexander, in all other ways an ordinary American, but today shows himself as extraordinary, shows respect for his fellow man.

Surely there is no mistake about how I feel here. I was raised Christian and believe in loving one’s fellow man. I will be raising my child Jewish, and will use the same God’s moral guidance to raise him. Surely I will need to teach him that there are bad people who speak trying to back their opinions with the zeal of false religiosity. Benjamin Shapiro is such a man. I will teach him instead the value of life and of the soul, and how when we respect those values, as does Matthew Alexander, virtue will prevail.

WingNutDaily should be ashamed to publish the ugly and racist drivel that came from Benjamin Shapiro. At the same time, I commend the Washington Post for showing us a man enlightened by true morality, Matthew Alexander.

Wednesday, October 8th, 2008 by Steven Reynolds |

Afghanistan: Gates Calls UK Negotiation Remarks “Defeatist”

It’s tiring that anyone seeking political solutions in either Iraq or Afghanistan is framed as waving the white flag of surrender. There will be no “victory” in Afghanistan, any more than there will be in Iraq. The violence will cease when there’s a negotiated settlement between the internal warring factions, and even that settlement will probably hold only as long as foreign troops remain.

Commentary By: Richard Blair

The Bush administration’s Secretary of Defense, Robert Gates, has responded to UK press stories over the past couple of days in which the senior UK military leadership, the UK Ambassador to Afghanistan, and others have termed a military “victory” as not achievable.

Britain’s military commander and ambassador in Afghanistan are being “defeatist” by thinking the war cannot be won, U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates said, as Washington seeks more troops for the conflict that started exactly seven years ago.

The comments by the officials from Britain, a key ally to the United States in Afghanistan and Iraq, were echoed by the top United Nations official in Kabul, who said success was only possible through dialogue and other political efforts.

Did you expect anything different from the war dogs in the Bush regime? I guess Sarah Palin must be feeling pretty jingositically smug today.

On Monday, it was widely reported that various leaders in Great Britain were saying it was time to work toward a political solution in Afghanistan. Clearly, the resistance by the Taliban and other insurgent factions in the country can continue for as long as they want. Years ago, they showed the Soviets, as they’re now showing the Western world, that they can hold out forever.

I really don’t pretend to know the answer to the quagmire in Kabul, anymore than I knew the answer to the one in Baghdad. NATO forces have been bogged down in Afghanistan since the U.S. invasion in 2002. There’s no end in sight.

Apparently, the Brits are looking forward a bit. Like Iraq, much blood and treasury has been spilled in Afghanistan, with the end result after 6 years being that Kabul is about the only marginally secure area in the country. The Taliban still control large swaths of every other area, and any semblance of religious or social freedom outside of the immediate environs of Kabul simply don’t exist.

The reconstituted Afghan military is every bit as corrupt as their Iraqi counterparts. Bottom line: it’s every man for himself.

I’m very tired of anyone seeking political solutions in either Iraq or Afghanistan being framed as waving the white flag of surrender. There will be no “victory” in Afghanistan, any more than there will be in Iraq. The violence will cease when there’s a negotiated settlement between the internal warring factions, and even that settlement will probably hold only as long as foreign troops remain.

It’s been said that war with the Afghans essentially bankrupted the Soviet Union, and directly led to perestroika in the U.S.S.R. and the eventual dissolution of the country. At least they could make the argument, even when their Afghan policy fell apart, that they had a strategic interest in the region. With bin-Laden, Mullah Omar, and crew freely roaming the mountains in the Pakistan border region, the U.S. and its allies can no longer credibly make the same claim.

All parties have been making back channel overtures to the warlords in Afghanistan for quite some time. For Gates to term political negotiation as “defeatist” is to completely ignore the reality on the ground, and to ignore the Bush regime’s past efforts aimed at bringing hostilities to a negotiated conclusion.

His remarks aimed at the Bush regime’s closest ally in the global war on terror are not only misplaced, but disingenuous. Just the other day, the New York Times reported that Afghan President Hamid Karzai has repeatedly sought intervention and talks with the Taliban via facilitation by Saudi Arabia. This proxy negotiation would not have happened without the direct blessing of the Bush administration.

The whole world is basically on hold until Bush and Cheney vacate their Washington residences. If Gates is trying to bolster John McCain’s cred by terming the overt desires of the UK leadership as “defeatist”, it’s not going to carry much weight in the international community.

It’s time for administration officials to STFU, and work on getting their moving vans ordered up. I’m sure they can all be in a safe, non-extraditable location by the middle of January, 2009.

Wednesday, October 8th, 2008 by Richard Blair |

Vets of Iraq and Afghan Wars Give McCain His Report Card

John McCain may be good at inciting his followers to yell obscenities and “terrorist” in a crowd, but the real people fighting terrorists think McCain is a fraud, at least in promising to support veterans and failing to come through. The fact is that McCain was AWOL when it came time to support the troops, time and again.

Commentary By: Steven Reynolds

While John McCain (video link) and Sarah Palin (video link) whip their crowds into a frenzy, inciting ugliness not seen in Presidential elections in some time, a more sane group is letting its views be known concerning John McCain’s support of men in uniform. That group is the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America, and nonpartisan group of veterans who are working for the benefit of our soldiers on those two fronts. They have released their report cards on all Seantors and Members of Congress, and that includes Biden, McCain and Obama. John McCain follows up his truly awful grades at Annapolis with stunningly bad grades by the IAVA. Here’s a report

Tuesday, October 7th, 2008 by Steven Reynolds |

The White Flag of Surrender – In Afghanistan

In the U.S., the neocon uberhawks only think in shades of black and white. No war has ever been won against non-state sponsored actors. It always – always – comes down to a negotiation process, and finishing up business in both Iraq and Afghanistan will be no different. A report this morning from the U.K. makes it clear that the Brits understand this. The PALIN / McCain ticket does not.

Commentary By: Richard Blair

In the U.S., most people don’t even discuss George Bush’s two-front “global war on terrorism” anymore. The topics of Iraq and Afghanistan have largely fallen down the memory hole and off the political radar screen in this presidential election year, regardless of the fact that both countries are still in a state of turmoil, and low-level insurgencies loom over any time horizons for withdrawal. Bush has been quietly busy rearranging the deck chairs on the Lietanic, proposing some troop withdrawals in Iraq (conditions permitting), and essentially redeploying those troops to the Afghan theater.

The change of venue hasn’t escaped the U.K. press, largely because they’re now out of Iraq, and are redeploying British units to Afghanistan. Today, the U.K. Daily Mail reports that both the U.N. envoy to Afghanistan and British military leadership agree that the ongoing war in Afghanistan “can not be can not be won militarily”.

What does this mean?

The UK’s most senior commander in Afghanistan, Brigadier Mark Carleton-Smith, admitted yesterday it was unrealistic to think there would be a decisive military victory.

He went on to suggest that international forces may end up striking a deal with the insurgents about security.

Brigadier Carleton-Smith, commander of the 16 Air Assault Brigade, said it was necessary to –lower our expectations’.

He added that there was likely to be –low but steady’ levels of rural insurgency once international troops eventually leave Afghanistan.

…In an interview with the Sunday Times, Brigadier Carleton-Smith said: –We’re not going to win this war. It’s about reducing it to a manageable level of insurgency that’s not a strategic threat and can be managed by the Afghan army.

–We want to change the nature of the debate from one where disputes are settled through the barrel of the gun to one where it is done through negotiations.

–If the Taliban were prepared to sit on the other side of the table and talk about a political settlement, then that’s precisely the sort of progress that concludes insurgencies like this. That shouldn’t make people uncomfortable.’

…His assessment follows the leaking of a memo from a French diplomat who claimed that Sir Sherard Cowper-Coles, the British ambassador in Kabul, had told him the current strategy was –doomed to fail’.

…Last week, Gulab Mangal, the governor of Helmand, said the Taliban controlled more than half the province despite the increased presence of British forces.

The Brits are being pragmatic. They’re not waving Sarah Palin’s “white flag of surrender”, but if anyone on this side of the pond were to express the same opinions, they’d be shouted down by the few remaining adherents of the Bush Doctrine and the administration’s failed policies in the region. What the Brits are proposing is borne from hundreds of years of experience with colonial imperialism in the region. They know from where they speak.

In the U.S., though, the uberhawks only think in shades of black and white. No war has ever been won against non-state sponsored actors. It always – always – comes down to a negotiation process, and finishing up business in both Iraq and Afghanistan will be no different.

Sarah Palin and John McCain might not be too fond of a diplomatic solution for the issues in either country. Heck, Barack Obama might not find such solutions as very politically palatable, but at least he can cast whatever path he choses as a result of bad choices left to him by the most despised regime in U.S. history – that of George W. Bush.

Monday, October 6th, 2008 by Richard Blair |