Originally posted on August 20, 2019.
At The American Conservative, Pat Buchanan asks how many of the battles and wars America is embroiled in around the world involve the vital interests of the United States. Buchanan asks this question in light of criticisms of the President’s attempts to make peace with the Taliban in Afghanistan, where, as Pat notes, they “control more of the country than they have at any time since being overthrown in 2001.” He writes (abridged):
Friday, President Donald Trump met in New Jersey with his national security advisers and envoy Zalmay Khalilzad, who is negotiating with the Taliban to bring about peace, and a U.S. withdrawal from America’s longest war.
U.S. troops have been fighting in Afghanistan since 2001, in a war that has cost 2,400 American lives.
Following the meeting, Trump tweeted, “Many on the opposite sides of this 19 year war, and us, are looking to make a deal — if possible!”
Some, however, want no deal; they are fighting for absolute power.
Saturday, a wedding in Kabul with a thousand guests was hit by a suicide bomber who, igniting his vest, massacred 63 people and wounded 200 in one of the greatest atrocities of the war. ISIS claimed responsibility.
Monday, 10 bombs exploded in restaurants and public squares in the eastern city of Jalalabad, wounding 66.
The Taliban control more of the country than they have at any time since being overthrown in 2001. And time now seems to be on their side.
The Brits released the Iranian tanker they seized at Gibraltar, which had been carrying oil to Syria. But when the Americans sought to prevent its departure, a Gibraltar court ruled against the United States.
Iran presents no clear or present danger to U.S. vital interests, but the Saudis and Israelis see Iran as a mortal enemy, and want the U.S. military rid them of the menace.
We are still committed to go to war to defend South Korea. And the North has lately test-fired a series of ballistic missiles, none of which could hit the USA, but all of which could hit South Korea.
Around the world, America is involved in quarrels, clashes and confrontations with almost too many nations to count.
In how many of these are U.S. vital interests imperiled? And in how many are we facing potential wars on behalf of other nations, while they hold our coat and egg us on.
Read more here.
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