The troops may finally be coming home from Afghanistan after Joe Biden reluctantly has agreed to proceed with President Trump’s plan to pull troops out of the country. As former Congressman and presidential candidate, Dr. Ron Paul tells it in LewRockwell.com, a generation of war in Afghanistan has been a disaster for the United States, wasting $2.26 trillion of American money and nearly 2,400 American lives, and injuring over 20,000 American service members. Paul writes (abridged):
Even if “won,” endless wars like our 20 year assault on Afghanistan would not benefit our actual national interest in the slightest. So why do these wars continue endlessly? Because they are so profitable to powerful and well-connected special interests. In fact, the worst news possible for the Beltway military contractor/think tank complex would be that the United States actually won a war. That would signal the end of the welfare-for-the-rich gravy train.n
As Orwell famously said, “the war is not meant to be won, it is meant to be continuous.” Nowhere is this more true than among those whose living depends on the US military machine constantly bombing people overseas.
How many Americans, if asked, could answer the question, “why have we been bombing Afghanistan for an entire generation?” The Taliban never attacked the United States and Osama bin Laden, who temporarily called Afghanistan his home, is long dead and gone. The longest war in US history has dragged on because…it has just dragged on.
So why did we stay? As neocons like Max Boot tell it, we are still bombing and killing Afghans so that Afghan girls can go to school. It’s a pretty flimsy and cynical explanation. My guess is that if asked, most Afghan girls would prefer to not have their country bombed.
Indeed, war has made the Beltway bomb factories and think tanks rich. As Brown University’s Cost of War Project has detailed, the US has wasted $2.26 trillion dollars on a generation of war on Afghanistan.
But the fact is this: Afghanistan was a disaster for the United States.
Ron Paul, MD
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