16 December 2008

Tough Times in Afghanistan Call for...Rowdy Roddy Piper

The Talking Point du jour seems to be that we need to "negotiate" with the Taliban to supervise a "peaceful" exit. This goes beyond the stabilization operations of talking with the little "t" Taliban that Gen. McKiernan emphasizes, and has more to do with freeing up more revenue to fund domestic social programs (those votes aren't bought for cheap). But, Sarah Chayes, who runs a co-op out in Kandahar, notes that this would be a lousy idea. She's been there for 7 years, so I'm guessing she knows more about the situation than the rest of us. A snippet from yesterday's WaPo:

We and our friends in Kandahar are thunderstruck at recent suggestions that the solution to the hair-raising situation in this country must include a political settlement with "relevant parties" -- read, the Taliban. Negotiating with them wouldn't solve Afghanistan's problems; it would only exacerbate them. Ask any Afghan what's really needed, what would render the Taliban irrelevant, and they'll tell you: improving the behavior of the officials whom the United States and its allies ushered into power after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.
For some further insight into Afghanistan, I recommend Troy's blog and Old Blue's blog (both have combat experience in that forgotten part of the world). For everyone who wants to just give up and see Afghanistan become another failed state, I can only offer you this classic line from They Live:

Anyone got a master plan?