Wednesday, May 28, 2014

What We Accomplished in Iraq and Afghanistan

Retired Army lieutenant general Daniel Bolger, discussing his new book, Why We Lost:
“We’ve basically installed authoritarian dictators.” The U.S. wanted to keep about 10,000 troops in Iraq post-2011...and a similar sized force is being debated for Afghanistan once the U.S. combat role formally ends at the end of 2014. “You could have gone to that plan in 2002 in Afghanistan, and 2003 or ’04 in Iraq, and you wouldn’t have had an outcome much worse than what we’ve had,” Bolger says.
So, twelve years of fighting, a trillion dollars spent, 5,000 men lost, pretty much for nothing. I hate to mention it, but the most prominent person saying in 2003 that we should just install dictators and get out was Donald Rumsfeld. He was overruled by people who wanted to revolutionize Iraq and energize Arab democracy, but would his Ahmad Challabi plan have been any worse than what we ended up with?

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