Afghan troops keep killing US troops
"That brings the total so-called green on blue killings in Afghanistan to six since an Afghan witnessed US soldiers dumping Qurans into a burn bit at Bagram Air Base a week ago.
There are growing, not decreasing, numbers of Afghans angry at the foreign occupation. Corruption and thuggery within the Afghan government installed and protected by NATO remain rampant and the Taliban remain active across large parts of the country.
Though much of the blame for the failings of the Afghan government lie with Afghans like President Hamid Karzai, who owes his current position to a fraud-marred election two years ago, the large presence of foreign troops and the vast cultural gulf between them and most Afghans, make them convenient targets for public ire.
And the willingness of Afghan soldiers to turn their guns on US forces, usually in heavily fortified installations in what amount to suicide missions, is a dark indication of the fragility of the local forces being built – and of their loyalty to the state. For every Afghan soldier who takes such a drastic step, there are surely more who are sympathetic with their aims.
To be sure, NATO press releases and embedded reporters continue to pump out anecdotes of steady progress, like this piece from a few days ago titled "Stability takes root in Kandahar." In the article, Capt. Widmar Roman explains: "The amount of security down here is unparalleled compared to what people have seen in the past."
Perhaps. But stories of "slow but steady progress" have been common over the past decade of war. And it's natural that mission-focused soldiers and officers report progress in the areas under their control.
The Pentagon wants to present a view of progress to maintain support for the war, and the can-do qualities of soldiers inculcates in them a bias towards optimism, particularly when talking to the press.
But quantitative analysis is something else again. Anthony Cordesman at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, who has been mining data on both the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan since their inception, has a far grimmer outlook."
The real results of Iraq shows
"If you think the Iraq war is over, you haven't met Casey Owens. We first met him in 2004 after a roadside bomb had torn off both his legs. We caught up with him again in 2009 undergoing a pressurized oxygen treatment in an effort to cure his blinding headaches. When he walked out of that clinic, he seemed ready to get on with his life."
"the Institute for Economics and Peace says that war expenditures create as much of a bubble as the housing or stock markets, providing short-term gains while creating massive long-term problems."
The report compared the economic conditions for every major U.S. war since World War II. In each case, it said, "the positive effects of increased military spending were outweighed by longer term unintended negative macroeconomic consequences."
The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have "contributed to the U.S. having severe unsustainable structural imbalances in its government finances," the report said. While some of the financial trouble has resulted from other factors, such as rising energy prices, the current conflicts have been financed entirely by debt unlike other wars they studied, the authors noted."May 15th Prophecy written at LastDayWatchers
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