You know something? We're just going to have to take a big bite out of this shit sandwich we call Afghanistan. Eight years we've been over there fighting to keep this gaggle of sick bastards in power and we can stay another eighty and they're not going to change. They're religious fanatics and warlords and drug lords and common criminals and corrupt bureaucrats and cops.
The Afghan legislature passed a law that allowed a man to beat his wife if she didn't put out on demand. Boy didn't we raise a fury over that! We gave them one up alongside the head, didn't we? For sure. That's why the legislature passed an alternative measure. This time it's "no sex-no food." If a wife doesn't meet her husband's sexual whims, he can deny her food and sustenance.
From The Guardian:
The new final draft of the legislation also grants guardianship of children exclusively to their fathers and grandfathers, and requires women to get permission from their husbands to work.
"It also effectively allows a rapist to avoid prosecution by paying 'blood money' to a girl who was injured when he raped her," the US charity Human Rights Watch said.
You see the problem is to make Afghanistan a viable government we can't just take on the Taliban. We have to crush our friends too. They're every bit as vile. That means we'd be fighting both sides of the civil war that went into intermission when the Americans bombed the Taliban out of Afghanistan in 2001. Fighting both sides - that's what the Soviets tried, and how well did that work out for them.
So kiddies, including all you Afghan war supporters, here's the deal. We're not going to change these people - not the Taliban and not their Northern Alliance counterparts. You can't change one without changing both and we're not interested in doing that are we?
A telling remark this week from Obama's special envoy to Pakistan and Afghanistan, Richard Holbrooke in response to reporters' questions about how the United States would know that it has won in Afghanistan. From the Washington Post:
Holbrooke said he preferred to use the word 'succeed' rather than 'win.' So what's success?
"It's really hard for me to address [the question] in specific terms," he said, "but I would say this about defining success in Afghanistan and Pakistan. In the simplest sense, the Supreme Court test for another issue: We'll know it when we see it."
Okay, if after eight years of waging war in a country you can't muster a coherent definition of "success" that's because success is nowhere on the horizon and you don't know if it ever will be. If you can't figure out what you're fighting for, if you can't point to the end zone or even the direction it's in, you're not in it to win and you're not going to win. Eight years, my God.