Under the Black Flag

Our Expensive Crock

At times I think they have to be doing it on purpose.  It’s simply not possible that such density of stupidity exists on such a high level.  Take Afghanistan, for example.  Like a hellfire and brimstone preacher who cannot prize his eye off the pouting dolly bird in the front row, Obama seems mesmerized by his chief political advisor Rahm Emanuel, who, Iago-like, is whispering in his ear that more troops and more money can win it for the good guys in the land that has humiliated both the British and Soviet empires, and is saving its best for poor old Uncle Sam.

Emanuel has an agenda of his own—Israel’s safety and all that—but that doesn’t mean that the rest of us should take this folly lying down.  What on earth is the aim of this futile, mad exercise?  More troops in Afghanistan will not lead to the capture of Osama bin Laden; on the contrary, they will just kill more innocent Afghan people.  The United States has no hope of subjugating the Afghanis.  The only certainty is that some future American president will withdraw from that distant land.

Hamid Karzai has presided over an anemic and semilegitimate central government whose twin signatures have been corruption and ineptitude.  Warlords predominate in the provinces, while opium production is flourishing.  The Taliban is resurgent in Pakistan, and staggering reconstruction funds have been misspent or have fled the...

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