In its determination to remake Iraq into whatever it’s actually trying to create in Iraq (rhetoric aside), the Bush administration has clearly
diverted its attention abandoned the legitimate war it entered. From Afghanistan:
Taliban insurgents carried out 103 suicide bombings in Afghanistan in the first eight months of 2007, a 69 percent increase over the same period last year, according to a United Nations report that is expected to be issued publicly on Monday. The record number of attacks killed more than 200 people, 80 percent of them civilians.
We had a clear chance in Afghanistan. There was no guarantee that continued dedication to the war we accepted¹ would end in a stable democracy. The seeds were there, as our stabilization efforts have apparently provided some results. But the Bush administration abandoned that war to fight the perpetual war, with Iraq the next, illogical frontier.
When the Bush administration says we need to stay and fight in Iraq because we started it, they lie. They don’t care about that. If they did, we’d be in Afghanistan to win, not to pursue the appearance of winning. And based on these numbers – remember, the Wall Street Journal’s editors believe this statistic to be a valid measure of success – we’re losing ground in Afghanistan. Heckuva job.
¹ “Accepted” isn’t really the word I want here, but I can’t think of a concise way to say that we were attacked with the support and protection of the Taliban. We didn’t start that war. Afghanistan was merely the battleground of a legitimate national security threat. We had to accept the rude invitation, for want of a less crude explanation.