10A022 Nine Years, No Gain by Jim Davies, 9/11/2010

It's been an expensive war, and it has lasted twice as long as WW-II, and there is nothing to show for it.

On September 20th 2001 George W Bush told us "Americans should not expect one battle, but a lengthy campaign unlike any other we have ever seen." He also said "It will not end until every terrorist group of global reach has been found, stopped and defeated" and that could mean for ever. Funny thing, but those are two promises he and his successor are keeping. As suggested in the Endless War blog here, perhaps the Feds want these wars for their own sake, for the extra power it gives them, rather than for the sake of winning specific victories. But we can't say they didn't warn us. Bush made it plain as day. And got re-elected.

Bush also said Al Q'eda is "a fringe movement that perverts the peaceful teachings of Islam." Maybe; if Pastor Jones decides to burn Q'rans today in Gainesville, we'll see how peaceful the bulk of it remains.

The alleged perp of 9/11, Osama bin Ladin, has not been captured.

The nation of Iraq, which had nothing to do with 9/11 but on which Bush said we needed to impose a democratic government, still does not have a democratic government - or any other kind. That's not to say it's anarchist; far from it, alas. On the contrary, a whole crock pot of factions are struggling for the power to rule the rest and there's no telling who may win. The option of None of the Above is, as here, not on offer.

That of Afghanistan has a government but its forces and ours are, currently, losing to those of the previous government, which declined to give up bin Ladin when so requested.

That of Pakistan may be playing both sides, having passed money to the Taliban. It is currently also facing a massive flood crisis, and the two crises may bring chaos (again, not anarchy) to that nation too.

It's said that the waging of war is what governments do best, or at least what they do less badly than anything else; on this showing, that does not seem likely - though to be fair, it may still be that everything else it does, it makes into an even worse mess than this. Either way, the conclusion - that reasonable people ought at least to give serious thought to the possibility of doing without this massive obstruction to peace and prosperity - is abundantly obvious.

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