I put Middle Earth Journal in hiatus in May of 2008 and moved to Newshoggers.
I temporarily reopened Middle Earth Journal when Newshoggers shut it's doors but I was invited to Participate at The Moderate Voice so Middle Earth Journal is once again in hiatus.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Afghanistan just keeps getting worse

Looks like the plan to get Afghans to “stand up so we can stand down” isn’t going all that well. Not so much because the Afghans aren’t standing up, but because they seem to be standing up against the NATO forces rather than with them.

Most joint U.S.-Afghan military operations have been suspended following what authorities believe was an insider attack Sunday that left four American soldiers dead, officials told NBC News.

“We’re to the point now where we can’t trust these people,” a senior military official said. So far this year, 51 NATO troops have been killed in these so-called blue-on-green attacks. Sunday's attack came a day after two British soldiers were shot dead by an Afghan policeman, Reuters reported.

Such attacks are far from new, but as the BBC helpfully shows, they have been accelerating considerably:

2007 - 2 attacks, 2 Isaf soldiers dead
2008 - 2 attacks, 2 dead
2009 - 6 attacks, 10 dead
2010 - 6 attacks, 20 dead
2011 - 21 attacks, 35 dead
2012 (so far) - 36 attacks, 51 dead

It is unfortunate that the war in Afghanistan has barely been mentioned so far in the presidential campaign, mainly due to the fact that there really isn’t much difference between the two parties policy in regards to the situation there, rhetoric notwithstanding. The above is only the latest in a series of signs that NATO has long overstayed its welcome in the country. The war has become a festering wound far removed from its original purpose. We’re now not only involved with the continual killing of innocent Afghan civilians, like the eight women and children killed while gathering firewood last week as noted in the first story, but also bombing the border regions of Pakistan, and stirring up more than a little internal strife in that country as well. All of which colours and impacts the alliance’s relations with the other powers in the region and Muslim countries around the world, and generally not for the better.

I’d say it’s long past time to leave.


  1. There is a very good reason it's not mentioned in the campaign - both candidates know it's become a very unpopular war.

  2. Well, that didn't stop Iraq from getting mentioned in 2004 and 2008. Of course, in those cases there was at least the premise going in that the non-incumbant was not actually in favour of escalating America's involvement, which isn't the case this time around with Afghanistan. And Obama is probably quite happy about that since he can't exactly run against a war he's spent the last four years escalating himself.


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