March 15, 2012

I think they are trying to tell us something

You know how when you go visit somebody and after awhile your host starts mentioning how early he has to get up in the morning, and then yawning right in your face, and finally you figure it out and say, "I gotta go home now"?

Well, America doesn't seem to be getting the hint in Afghanistan. 

Headlines from the L.A. Times:
Afghan interpreter tried to kill Marines, U.S. officer saysBy David S. Cloud | 12:39 a.m.The man, who worked for Western troops, died of burns after trying to run down Marines meeting Panetta and then emerging from his vehicle in flames, the officer says.


Maybe I'm just imagining this, but I'm sensing that we've started to overstay our welcome in Afghanistan.

125 comments:

Zorro said...

It doesn't take a genius to see that Afghanistan has VietNam written all over it.

eh said...

It's more than sad.

And while I appreciate your viewpoint on this, I think the flip tone of some of your posts on this subject is not appropriate.

If you can stomach it, view the foto gallery here.

16 y/o Afghan girl killed by a marine mortar round

Anonymous said...

It doesn't take a genius to see that Afghanistan has VietNam written all over it.

Its already lasted longer than Vietnam. Time flies when you are no longer limited to three networks and also have computers and video games.

Peter A said...

Afghanistan has very little in common with Vietnam. In Vietnam we actually had some allies who wanted us to stay. There was a also some strategic rationale in trying to keep "Communist"(i.e. Soviet) influence out of the region. In Afghanistan we have no real allies, and no strategic rationale to be there. The Islamists who pose the greatest threats to the West are not in Kabul. They are in Riyadh, Cairo, Karachi, London and Berlin.

Anonymous said...

Afghanistan also has Afghanistan written all over it. Place is difficult and expensive to keep.

Anonymous said...

Just look at the place on the world map. If it is a truism to never get involved in a land war in Asia, possibly the worst place to try and hold in Asia is Afghanistan. In the game of Risk, it's hardly Australia when it comes to defensible territories.

europeasant said...

Our government's penchant for remaking the world into our own image precludes the U.S. from leaving.Many have tried but our elites think they can succeed. The brainwashing propaganda starts in the grammar schools and continues thru college.This will only end when we run out of money.

Brazilian said...

Afghanistan is worst than Vietnam(who is developing nicely), Churchill said himself that there is no more retrograde force in the world than Islam.

GMF Fan said...

The US and UK could have saved a great deal of money simply by purchasing a few copies of George MacDonald Fraser's first Flashman novel, which is set in Afghanistan. Gay warlords, Afghan tribalism, cruelty, treachery, and cunning meet western ignorance, incompetence and wishful thinking -- it's all there. Tragic farce repeats as farcical tragedy. Or vice versa.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flashman_(novel)

Fraser and Flashman are good on other Saileran topics, e.g. race relations.

Hunsdon said...

In the end, there's two ways we can stay in places like Afghanistan or Iraq. Neither of them are particularly palatable. We can (and of the two, I would say "should") adopt a policy of our explicit superiority, not only in terms of firepower, but in terms of culture. This is the policy the British used, back when they weren't effeminate fops. (They weren't, you know: they were some hard bastards, back in the day.)

An illustration is the famous story of the British political officer posted to some small Indian state. When informed that the sultan (or rajah, or whatever) had died, and that it was their custom to burn the wife of the sultan on said sultan's bier, the political officer coolly responded, "And we hang people that do such things, that is one of our customs."

The downside to this approach is that sometimes the uppity natives are quite fond of their local customs. You can, of course, kill it out of them, but sometimes it takes some killing.

The alternative approach is to bend over backwards to mollify local custom or whim. (See, e.g., our troops not being allowed to wear, or wear visibly, symbols of the Christian faith when stationed in Saudi Arabia.) This, too, leads to conflicts, conflicts between the local ROB (not rules of engagement, but rules of behavior) and our own allegedly enlightened beliefs and practices.

The calculus of which of the two options to endorse and undertake frequently ignores a third, and to my mind, vastly preferable alternative: interventions abroad should be limited to the punitive expedition, with crosses freely displayed on the breast of any American fighting man who wishes to do so, and tots of rum served out after the close of the duty day.

I am fond of paradox. It seems to me that we are far, far too damn quick to unsheathe the terrible swift sword of war, while at the same time we are pretty much sissies about wielding that terrible swift sword. This combination, to my way of thinking, will inevitably lead to ruin.

Carol said...

I'm disappointed in Obama...if anyone has license from his base to cut and run, it's him. I suspect he got the entire "Not in Our Name" vote.

Do the Dems think they have to play against type?

Anonymous said...

Why do all these little countries hate it so much when we invade them?

David said...

Not Steve's imagination.

NYT:

"Prospects for an orderly withdrawal of NATO forces from Afghanistan suffered two blows on Thursday as President Hamid Karzai demanded that the United States confine troops to major bases by next year, and the Taliban announced that they were suspending peace talks with the Americans."

Truth said...

Steve, come on. This is a childish thread. We have not overstayed our "welcome" in Afghanistan until we have secured the opium trade and established safe passage for an oil pipeline from the Caspian to the Arabian seas. You why is it that you buy all of the official, government-sponsored silliness on anything other than race?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Afghanistan_Oil_Pipeline

http://www.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://www.ringnebula.com/Oil/pipeline.jpg&imgrefurl=http://www.ringnebula.com/Oil/Pipeline.htm&h=317&w=396&sz=29&tbnid=n5ymrhS_96PbLM:&tbnh=90&tbnw=113&zoom=1&docid=bfExGW6Ra1FYKM&sa=X&ei=2SNiT5OLEMbg2AXVrdTSCA&ved=0CEgQ9QEwAw&dur=491

TodayInWhiteHistory said...

The war in Afghanistan is one of the biggest mistakes the U.S. government has ever made.

Afghanistan never attacked us or threatened us, and there were only some vague notions about how the Taliban supposedly "sheltered" Osama bin Laden.

Of course, that all turned out to be nonsense anyway. It was Pakistan that was sheltering Osama, and he was living right there among the Pakistani military and intelligence personnel. So why didn't our government go after Pakistan?

This whole episode makes no sense at all.

Kylie said...

I scrolled through the Daily Mail photo gallery of that massacre by the US soldier and I was really struck by the expressions on the faces of the Afghan survivors. I saw anger, grief and fear in their faces. No political mumbo-jumbo, no playing to the DWL peanut gallery (as Islamic Rage Boy was wont to do). Just the normal human emotions in response to a terrible tragedy.

I could plainly see that we have no business there, none at all. And though I'm not a bleeding heart by any stretch of the imagination, I really felt for those people. They have been violated in more than one way by our presence there. And that's not right. We need to get gone ASAP.

But then, I never thought we should have been there or in Iraq in the first place. (Ditto Viet Nam.)

Anonymous said...

Why is that sh"t hole, Afghanistan, such a magnet for western utopian fantasy expeditions? After 911, we could have just carpet bombed them 24/7 and show that we know how to retaliate. It would have been cheaper and more effective.

Anonymous said...

"If you can stomach it, view the foto gallery here.
16 y/o Afghan girl killed by a marine mortar round"

Sure we can stomach it. We saw the same sh't on 911.

Only we didn't start it.

Anonymous said...

OT, but this is pretty funny.

Guy sues Time-Warner for $5 million for missing "Linsanity":

http://www.nypost.com/p/news/business/time_warner_cable_customers_want_LDpnWpDisDPZ21tJL9rxxI

Anonymous said...

Afghanistan is the end game of Islam.

Just keep following Muhammed and your country can turn into Afghanistan.

Beecher Asbury said...

Why is that sh"t hole, Afghanistan, such a magnet for western utopian fantasy expeditions? After 911, we could have just carpet bombed them 24/7 and show that we know how to retaliate. It would have been cheaper and more effective.

Why carpet bomb Afghanistan or invade? 9-11 was an immigration issue. We let in 19 people from an alien culture and then let them overstay their visas. They did the crucial part of their training in the US. The easiest thing to do, control one's borders, was and is essentially off-limits.

Anonymous said...

Declare victory and leave.
Promise to carpet bomb anything that looks like a training camp in perpetuity

We accomplished our purpose: kill a lot of terrorists and put a stop to attacks on the homeland.

Let the muslims continue to rape their boys, oppress their woman and grow opium.

Unfortunately, policy will be dictated by Obama's reelection politics.

Anonymous said...

We have not overstayed our "welcome" in Afghanistan until we have secured the opium trade and established safe passage for an oil pipeline from the Caspian to the Arabian seas. You why is it that you buy all of the official, government-sponsored silliness on anything other than race?

Yes it seems geopolitics and resources are the main reasons for involvement.

NOTA said...

Steve,

This link might be of interest to the hbd-sphere. This provides objective evidence of affirmative action in medical school admissions.

Now, here's the problem: Suppose you are a Chinese guy right off the boat, with zero interest in racial struggles between different flavors of foreigners. You have a sick child, and need to take him to a doctor. You have a choice between a black pediatrician and a white pediatrician. Which do you choose?

AA doesn't just screw over the marginal white and Asian applicants in favor of marginal black ones, it devalues the real accomplishments of blacks. Even with relaxed admissions standards, the blacks who get into medical school are very smart, hard working, capable people. But AA produces an incentive to discriminate against blacks in people who have no inclination at all in that direction--like my hypothetical Chinese guy.

Anonymous said...

Don't forget--it was the Dems during the last part of Bush's admin and during Obama's campaign who kept screaming, "Afghanistan is the *good* war."

Anonymous said...

grow opium.

The Taliban had basically eliminated opium production when they were in power. Production zoomed up after US intervention and occupation.

Mark Hackard has written about this in Alt Right:

http://www.alternativeright.com/main/blogs/exit-strategies/heroin-and-u.s.-empire/

http://www.alternativeright.com/main/blogs/exit-strategies/liberty-equality-heroin/

Anonymous said...

Afghanistan is the end game of Islam.

Just keep following Muhammed and your country can turn into Afghanistan.


Contemporary liberalism is much more dysgenic compared to Islam or any other patriarchy.

Anonymous said...

Why carpet bomb Afghanistan or invade? 9-11 was an immigration issue. We let in 19 people from an alien culture and then let them overstay their visas. They did the crucial part of their training in the US. The easiest thing to do, control one's borders, was and is essentially off-limits.

Okay, you got me there.

Anonymous said...

The Islamists who pose the greatest threats to the West are not in Kabul. They are in Riyadh, Cairo, Karachi, London and Berlin.

You left out Dearbornistan and Toronto.

[And, of course, Washington DC, but that goes without saying.]

DFried said...

"If you can stomach it, view the foto gallery here.
16 y/o Afghan girl killed by a marine mortar round"

Sure we can stomach it. We saw the same sh't on 911.

Only we didn't start it.


Oh, but we did start it. Big Time. You seem to know nothing about the history of U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East. You might start by reading up on the forcing of Israel into Palestine and the U.S. role in aiding and abetting it.

beowulf said...

"9-11 was an immigration issue. We let in 19 people from an alien culture and then let them overstay their visas."

True but 9/11 casualties would have been reduced by 99.5% (there'd still be some dead flight attendants) if prior to 9/11 (instead of after) the FAA had ordered airlines to follow El Al's practice of fortifying cockpit doors and forbidding the pilots to open them under any circumstances, even if it means flight attendants and passengers getting their throats slit.
Even beyond the terrorist threat, its crazy airlines hadn't already fortified their cockpit doors. Salon reported in 2000 that in the prior 3 years there'd been a dozen cases of crazy people trying to storm the cockpit (and sometimes succeeding).
http://www.salon.com/2000/04/08/cockpits/

Anonymous said...

To the poster who said "Only we didn't start it."

Actually, we DID start it. We started it when American bombs and artillary were used in the Sabra and Shatila massacres.

As Osam bin Laden watched women and children burn to death, he vowed to get his revenge on American, and, indeed, he did.

9-11 was payback for evil committed by America. Now, why is it that that true fact has been hidden by the American media and government? Why did Bush lie 20 different times when he said that they attacked us because "They hate freedom and democracy." If you believe that, I have a time-share to sell you in Kabal.

Joe Six-Pack said...

Afghanistan and Iraq are unecessary wars, Osama was in Pakistan and most of the 9-11 guys are Saudis.

Iraq War was fought for Israel behalf there is no doubt in mind.

And Afghanistan? Less said the better.

Georgia Resident said...

Did we ever have a welcome?

Anonymous said...

Afghanistan is country of many millions, so who is this "they" you speak of?

Chicago said...

It's inevitable that when we leave the Taliban will reassert themselves over all the areas they controlled prior to the invasion. Only this time we'll see a new generation of Taliban that's more fanatical, more cut-throat than before. The war has bred a harder core of recruits who came of age while it was going on and managed to survive. We can all get ready for the coming of the Afghan refugees to the US, those who were compromised by having had some dealings with us and thus would be in line to be dealt with harshly, Afghan style.

Anonymous said...

"Steve, come on. This is a childish thread. We have not overstayed our "welcome" in Afghanistan until we have secured the opium trade and established safe passage for an oil pipeline from the Caspian to the Arabian seas. You why is it that you buy all of the official, government-sponsored silliness on anything other than race?"

Obama appoints Stringer Bell to the State Department?

Let's! said...

"Maybe I'm just imagining this, but I'm sensing that we've started to overstay our welcome in Afghanistan."

Our vibrant neighbors to the south have started to overstay their welcome here, as well.

SB1070...major hint, compadres...

Anonymous said...

Sorry to go OT, but Steve, have you been following Thomas Sowell's remarks on tv and in writing about Obama's AA Harvard prof, Derrick Bell?

http://www.nationalreview.com/articles/293539/racial-quota-fallout-thomas-sowell

RKU said...

The man, who worked for Western troops, died of burns after trying to run down Marines meeting Panetta and then emerging from his vehicle in flames, the officer says.

Actually, there was a far more intriguing detail in the NYT story about Defense Secretary Panetta's morale-building visit to that American military base. Before Panetta gave his morale-building speech to the crowd of U.S. Marines, all the Marines were forced to leave their weapons outside the area and none of them were allowed to remain armed in his presence. Nobody had ever heard of such a thing happening before. Presumably, this was intended to avoid forcing America's MSM propaganda organs to effectively spin the shooting dead of America's beloved SecDef by America's own heroic and loyal troops.

Hunsdon: In the end, there's two ways we can stay in places like Afghanistan or Iraq...You can, of course, kill it out of them, but sometimes it takes some killing.

This is the typical sort of stupid question posed by the sort of silly rightwingers who hang out on this blogsite.

Why do we want to be in Iraq or Afghanistan in the first place? None of our enemies are there. All of our real enemies are located in DC, Wall Street, and Hollywood, and once our troops wiped 'em all out, we wouldn't have to know or care what the Iraqis or Afghans did overseas.

Mo Deez said...

All of our real enemies are located in DC, Wall Street, and Hollywood, and once our troops wiped 'em all out, we wouldn't have to know or care what the Iraqis or Afghans did overseas.

Uhh, hello?!?

Komment Kontrol?!?

Anyone home?!?





[Get Brin on the phone - he owns Blogspot.

NOW, DAMMIT - not next week!

I don't give a shit if he's in Macau - get him on the goddammed phone.]

NOTA said...

RKU:

Can I just point out, as someone with no military experience or expertise at all, that having the defense secretary afraid to be in the same room with armed US soldiers does not come off as a ringing endorsement of how happy our troops are with their leadership?

Charlesz Martel said...

What I find most interesting about Afghanistan is the disconnect we have between a country and it's people. If we find that we can't change their culture-whether by force or consumerism- whether it's genetic or not- then why let them come here? If a culture is divorced from the race that created it, and still cannot be changed (by any actions we are willing to undertake), then what is our rationale for admitting these people to the US? Do we think we'll be successful on our own soil? Hello? Anyone home? Major Hassan and honor killings, anyone?

formerly no name said...

Why do we want to be in Iraq or Afghanistan in the first place? None of our enemies are there. All of our real enemies are located in DC, Wall Street, and Hollywood, and once our troops wiped 'em all out, we wouldn't have to know or care what the Iraqis or Afghans did overseas.

The ADL/SPLC thinks everyone here already knows that-but in an oversimplified/reductionist way.

Geoff Matthews said...

The initial invasion of Afghanistan had to happen. They were sheltering OBL and they refused to hand him over. We had enough contacts (Northern Alliance) to get things done quickly with only a few boots on the ground, and, for the most part, it worked out well.
If OBL didn't get away, it would have been a rounding success.
The problem was, "what next". Do you leave the place, putting the various warlords in charge, and allow a budding opium trade to develop, or do you try to make the place better?
I was one of the people who thought we could make it better. Given the absolute disintegration in trust between the Afghans, the US and Pakistan, I cannot rationalize a reason to stay that doesn't involve full-on massacres of towns that harbor the enemy.
And given US society today, I don't see us capable of doing that. If another 9/11 happens, particularly with similar culprits hiding out in Afghanistan, sure, but I imagine that if it were to come to that, the next campaign would involve more bombs and fewer building projects.

Anonymous said...

"Let the muslims continue to rape their boys, oppress their woman and grow opium."

Taliban stopped rape of boys, and for all the oppression of their women, men don't get away without restrictions on how they can dress, shave, etc. the difference being that feminist utopia would normalize topless women because it is in the name of equality. But hey, no pics or unwanted sexual attention!

cruel male world either way

Now if you recall the recent pic of a gay marine jumping in the arms of his lover, sensitivity training on cultural relativism of bacha-baazi or the recent fluke controversy..

Dumb Goy said...

How about leave the place and DON'T accept any Afghan immigrants in the US or Western Nations.

Svigor said...

Actually, we DID start it. We started it when American bombs and artillary were used in the Sabra and Shatila massacres.

That's a bit thin. A gun dealer isn't responsible for what his customers do with the guns they buy from him.

As Osam bin Laden watched women and children burn to death, he vowed to get his revenge on American, and, indeed, he did.

Well, no, so far you've only shown that he started some shit. You've described no wrong to be avenged.

9-11 was payback for evil committed by America.

What evil? Selling arms is not evil.

Now, why is it that that true fact has been hidden by the American media and government? Why did Bush lie 20 different times when he said that they attacked us because "They hate freedom and democracy." If you believe that, I have a time-share to sell you in Kabal.

False dilemma.

awake said...

So no invader ever triumphs in Afghanistan, through history. Yet there the U.S. is. You think "they" don't know that? The war profiteers? Don't people EVER freakin' learn? In 1935 General Smedley Butler admitted he'd been a war lord for corporations in the Spanish War, the Philippeans, and elsewhere. Bitter and weary he declared, "War is a racket; always has been, always will be."
Eisenhower warned us about the military industrial complex, and he would have added, the Congressional, but he was advised against that. The plan of these people is to keep the U.S. in eternal war so that they can profit. It is the only way now that the U.S. can profit for our industry is gone and even our agriculture--well. What else is there for young people with IQs below 110? The military.
Their evil is beyond belief, these creatures who run this planet. Our so-called leaders.
Open your eyes. They're not on our side. They have given no indication of giving a damn about us in a long time.

Rev. Right said...

You know how when you go visit somebody and after awhile your host starts mentioning how early he has to get up in the morning, and then yawning right in your face

Setting yourself on fire in front of Leon Panetta really puts an exclamation point on the sentiment.

Trying to turn Afghanistan (and Iraq) into New Hampshire was George Bush's way of justifying these wars to the Europeans and the Democrats who, despite his efforts, would never love him back. Clintonian nation-building didn't work under Clinton, and Bush's decision to pursue this strategy on a larger scale has been absolutely tragic. Obama has carried it on for reasons known only to Obama. As recent events are starting to indicate, it has has finally become too absurd to ignore.

It is easy to see now that we should have deposed the Taliban and then left Afghanistan to the Afghans, with the promise to return should any more of that terrorist-training stuff start up again. It would be much cheaper in blood and treasure to come back every five to ten years and kill the new crop of trouble makers than to stay there forever, trying to get the Afghans to mow their lawns and brush their teeth.

Hunsdon said...

RKU said: This is the typical sort of stupid question posed by the sort of silly rightwingers who hang out on this blogsite.

Hunsdon replied: Sir, I fear that you saw advocacy where I was only delineating options.

I have no desire to exterminate the Pashtun, and, indeed, regard as psychopathic those people who do posses such a desire.

I am, however, a silly right winger. (Just not in the modern sense.)

Anonymous said...

get ready for Imperial backwash - already happening - here in NY the muslim- and I mean habjib and burka wearing muslm- population is exploding.

Thanks neocons!

Anonymous said...

Interesting take, from a Canadian, and one Obama won't like:

http://fullcomment.nationalpost.com/2012/03/13/terry-glavin-canada-deserved-better-than-this-so-did-the-afghans/

jody said...

"The war in Afghanistan is one of the biggest mistakes the U.S. government has ever made."

as an ongoing presence there, yes. this is all on obama. but not going into afghanistan in the first place, though. that was somewhat understandable. for a while. g-dub made the right call there.

invading iraq remains the biggest military blunder in the history of the united states. it's not the biggest mistake the US government ever made, but certainly the worst screw up the US military ever made.

"Of course, that all turned out to be nonsense anyway. It was Pakistan that was sheltering Osama, and he was living right there among the Pakistani military and intelligence personnel. So why didn't our government go after Pakistan?"

obama is weak. he isn't going to confront a real opponent. he likes pushing buttons and sending missiles from a distance at rag tag independent forces, or ganging up with other first world countries to beat up on small nations that can't hit back.

pakistan absolutely shook down the US here, for years, and obama did...nothing. in case you haven't noticed, obama tends to apologize to foreign nations. not confront them. "Sorry about this." "Sorry about that." "Sorry, we're sorry." and a classic, remember this one? "Here's how many nuclear weapons the United States has has and where they all are." WTF? ridiculous. then obama goes on television a few years later with this whopper "I'm not in the habit of giving away my plans." LOL. so which is it, commander in chief? do you give away intel or not?

jody said...

"This whole episode makes no sense at all."

it makes plenty of sense if you accept that GW bush was one of the 5 worst US presidents of all-time, and literally said out loud that his prime suspect for 9/11, was not important anymore, and that he was going to stop looking for him.

i guess the thing that doesn't make sense is, why obama stays in afghanistan. maybe he is so weak, he has trouble even negotiating a military withdrawal. he made the iraq withdrawal only under the terms GW bush had already negotiated, when instead he could have instantly left iraq the day he was elected. yet he didn't. he screamed and hollered and stomped his feet along with the rest of the democrats about iraq for years, then he becomes commander in chief and...2 more years in iraq, completely copying all of bush's doctrine. i guess he's just too busy with basketball and golf to order the US military to leave afghanistan.

"most of the 9-11 guys are Saudis"

please, don't confuse neocons or the brain dead MORONS who supported GW between 2002 and 2008 that i had the extreme displeasure of debating on the internet all those years. it was bang your head against the wall excruciating how stupid they were.

Jody: All the guys who did this were saudis. The saudis are literally laughing at the americans from across the saudi-iraqi border, pointing their fingers at our troops and our leaders and barely able to breathe they are cracking up so hard because the US invaded the totally wrong country. Invading Iran was a total clusterF. The biggest US military mistake ever.

Bush supporting neocon mouth breather: Cut and run. You want us to surrender. You must be a democrat.

Jody: There's nothing to "win" here. There is no victory condition. It's like playing basketball...with no hoops. You dribble the ball around on the court for a while, then everybody gets bored and goes home.

absolute idiot: Kill them over there, so we don't have to kill them over here. Cut and run, weapons of mass destruction, are you for us or against us. God bless GW Bush.

Anonymous said...

Goeff Matthews wrote:

The initial invasion of Afghanistan had to happen. They were sheltering OBL and they refused to hand him over.

This is near-revisionism. If the US government really wanted Osama they could have tried number of different strategies (none involving a lengthy occupation or Trotskyisk nation building).

Primarily, I believe that *before* engaging in any military action, the US government should have simply offered a big reward for Osama's capture, giving his then hosts an opportunity to hand him over for some cash. Essentially the war was on before any efforts to exploit Afghani venality were made, and then they ended up paying Pakistan billions of dollars a year for their *supposed* allegiance in the already super-expensive war (and then our "allies" surreptitiously became Osama's new hosts!)

Anyway whatever sort of military intervention was merited, it should have been focused on getting Osama, not nation building.

jody said...

does nobody remember the ABSOLUTE BS the bush administration was peddling about iraq and afghanistan being like rebuilding germany and japan?

"Oh this will take a few years, like rebuilding Germany. Look up the Werewolves. It's like that. Things will calm down."

what a crock.

germany was MORE ADVANCED than the US, BEFORE the americans invaded. it's easy to "rebuild" a nation where the people have already been winning nobel prizes, building superior aircraft, and writing symphonies. they're smarter than their occupiers.

a minor HBD oversight from condoleeza rice and company on the potential of iraq, i would think. when does iraq get to the business of establishing a software company the size of SAP AG? bigger than all the software companies in asia...combined. maybe afghanistan will start manufacturing vehicles. volkswagen only made a mere 21 billion US dollars this year - that's almost 3 times as much as GM's "best year ever".

Anonymous said...

What I find most interesting about Afghanistan is the disconnect we have between a country and it's people. If we find that we can't change their culture-whether by force or consumerism- whether it's genetic or not- then why let them come here?

I think Afghan immigration into the US is pretty negligible.

Anonymous said...

If another 9/11 happens, particularly with similar culprits hiding out in Afghanistan

Has the claim that bin Laden "masterminded" the attacks ever actually been substantiated or justified? It's just been relentlessly insinuated for the past decade.

Anonymous said...

Wearing out our welcome? I don't know. I think we're providing the Afghans with an exciting and rewarding target-rich environment. For them it's like a hunter flushing a covey of quail. Of course they can get killed too, but they do that for each other too.

Anonymous said...

Promise to carpet bomb anything that looks like a training camp in perpetuity

According to that video clip they used to constantly loop on the news during the Bush years, a set of monkey bars constitutes a "training camp".

Mr. Anon said...

In disarming those marines for Panetta's visit, the military high command was telling our soldiers something too: You are just hired guns to us - we don't value you and we don't trust you.

Sassoon said...

What I find most interesting about Afghanistan is the disconnect we have between a country and it's people.

How peculiar of those Afghans to object to the invasion and occupation of their country by foreign troops.

Mr. Anon said...

Alexander the Great eventually left Afghanistan, deeming it to be unconquerable. What makes the President and the Joint Chiefs think that that they know something about conquering other countries that Alexander the Great didn't?

Mencius Moldbug said...

Why do we want to be in Iraq or Afghanistan in the first place? None of our enemies are there. All of our real enemies are located in DC, Wall Street, and Hollywood, and once our troops wiped 'em all out, we wouldn't have to know or care what the Iraqis or Afghans did overseas.

Okay, I officially take back everything bad I've ever said about RKU.

(I just hope he has some mad-genius way of getting his beloved Aztecs to help out with the coup. Taco trucks for the troops? An entire secret Panzer division, camouflaged as taco trucks?)

Mencius Moldbug said...

BTW, Panetta may well be our first Communist SecDef. If you don't count Louis Johnson, who replaced Jim Forrestal after the latter was pushed out the window at Bethesda Naval Hospital. Probably by Communists.

Not that any of the Marines in Panetta's audience would know any of this. But the guilty, you know, flee where no man pursueth.

Henry said...

The initial invasion of Afghanistan had to happen. They were sheltering OBL and they refused to hand him over.

Why would their sheltering OBL entail that we had to invade Afghanistan?

OBL was seeking peace. We could have and should have come to a negotiated peace agreement and settled their outstanding grievances with us.

(By the way, I don't think it is true that they refused to hand him over. But that is immaterial to my main objection, above, to your argument.)

Anonymous said...

Okay, I officially take back everything bad I've ever said about RKU.

He's argued in the threads here before that he thinks 9/11 was an inside job. He has cajones.

Anonymous said...

BTW, Panetta may well be our first Communist SecDef.

No wonder Greg Cochran says you're a fool.

Joe Six-Pack said...

Someone actually compared rebuilding Iraq and Afghanistan with Germany and Japan???

The last decade was possible the Worst in American History.

Charlesz Martel said...

Re: Jody's Comments

The thing that people never seem to get is that ALL this commenting about why the President doesn't do/didn't do this or that supposes that we have the same intelligence and knowledge available to us, as civilians, that the President does. Does this sound reasonable?

I was talking to a U.S. Air Force General I know socially about Obama (before he was sworn in) saying he'd close GITMO. My friend said, basically, "You don't have a Top Secret Security Clearance (I'm a civilian) so I can't tell you what I know. But I can tell you, that once Obama sees the intelligence, he won't close GITMO. These guys aren't little innocents we pick up on the way top Mosque- they're the real deal- it's not what the papers are saying".

He turned out to be right. (Whether it was because of the intelligence, obviously, I have no way of knowing.) Is it not possible that there were a ton of reasons for our government to act the way it did, that we know nothing about? In fact, I would be surprised if there weren't. Pakistan harbored Khan, the spread the nukes guy. The Russians, Germans, etc. were all trading with Iraq- who knew (or knows) how many Russian suitcase nukes went missing? There are so many unknowns that speculation is all we've got.

I will end this comment with a note to the Jew haters who claim the Iraq war was for Israel's benefit- I remember reading, before the Iraq war, that Israel was far more concerned with Iran than Iraq, and didn't really care for the Iraq invasion- they saw Saddam as a counterweight to Iran, who they saw (correctly, in my view) as a much bigger threat. But even Israeli intelligence believed the Saddam had WMD's- which he had used before, which certainly showed that he was capable of producing them, and/or resuscitating the programs to manufacture them. The retroscope is always 20/20.

guardian of history said...

@Geoff Matthews: No, the Taliban didn't refuse to hand OBL over. They said they'd do it if he would be tried on neutral territory. Well that wasn't good enough for cowboy us. Well; so, was indulging our rage worth it?

Anonymous said...

Truth mentions that oil pipeline in Afghanistan. This one has been doing the rounds since the invasion yet Im not aware of any activity on said pipeline. After ten years surely at least some work would have been done?

No rational person, however cynical, would build a pipeline there, it wouldnt last five minutes.

The only way to secure it would be to exterminate the entire local population. The will to do that wasnt there ten years ago, it certainly isnt there now. And if that really is the end game why muck about for ten years before doing it?

Anonymous said...

Having commented about the pipeline, I actually looked it up. Since it was last mentioned on isteve a few years ago various parties have signed bits of paper but physically nothing has happened.

Latest news is Russia wants to get involved, while the cynical hipsters said the whole point of the pipeline was to cut out the Russians!

Essentially the problem is the pipe will need to go through Taliban territory. The invasion being a pretext tooust them and build the pipe. Well a lot of money has been spent, lives lost and still no pipe. We could have just bribed them? We'll have to bribe every other faction there to keep the pipe intact anyway. Thats before we face the issue of all the freelance groups there, armed to the teeth.

Anonymous said...

Wow, a lot of geniuses amongst the commenters. Everything is just so damn clear! Why won't anyone listen to me??

Mr. Anon said...

"Anonymous said...

I think Afghan immigration into the US is pretty negligible."

The numbers may be small, but they are greater now than they were before, and they will be greater in the future than they are now. Whenever we screw around in third-world country, we end up importing a bunch of them over here. Somali immigration to the U.S. was just about nothing before 1993. Now, in places like Minneapolis, Lewiston, and Seattle, they teem like flies. Such a wonderful people, too.

David said...

>absolute idiot: Kill them over there, so we don't have to kill them over here. Cut and run, weapons of mass destruction, are you for us or against us. God bless GW Bush.<

Steve is right. Some people need to have their energies channeled into sports teams not war.

Talking to these people about the realities of geopolitical strategy is like trying to convert an Alabama fan into a Tennesse Vol fan, or the like. I once heard a sports show caller bray he wanted to "drink blood from Steve Spurrier's skull."

9-11 was blowback plus an immigration issue. The US has been murdering many thousands of people in the Mid East for a long time, decades. Half a million Iraqi children were starved to death under Clinton because "we" decided our asset Saddam Hussein should retire, for example.

When you screw a hornet's nest, don't be surprised if you get sore.

Marlowe said...

Svigor said: A gun dealer isn't responsible for what his customers do with the guns they buy from him.

So much for the Trading with the Enemy law and the others restricting the sale of whatever the government classifies as munitions. (At one point the definition included cryptographic systems.) The U.S. government just extradited a U.K. citizen to stand trial in its courts because his business arranged the sale of batteries to Iran which the U.S. claims would form part of a missile system. Not even one used in an actual attack on its citizens. Just a potential use you see. 20 years in the slammer for selling an Everready to a Persian no questions asked.

Remember the good old days of Ronnie when U.S. Marine Corps Lt. Col. Oliver North could sell 740 TOW anti-tank missiles to Iran (with the Israelis acting as a go-between & cut out - the weapons came out of their stockpile) and get away with it and have super patriots send him $1 million out of gratitude? Svigor must have been one of them. Who cares what the Ayatollah's people do with the missiles. That's their business. A contract is a contract.

Marlowe said...

"I went to work the next day, turning, so to speak, my back on that station. In that way only it seemed to me I could keep my hold on the redeeming facts of life. Still, one must look about sometimes; and then I saw this station, these men strolling aimlessly about in the sunshine of the yard. I asked myself sometimes what it all meant. They wandered here and there with their absurd long staves in their hands, like a lot of faithless pilgrims bewitched inside a rotten fence. The word 'ivory' rang in the air, was whispered, was sighed. You would think they were praying to it. A taint of imbecile rapacity blew through it all, like a whiff from some corpse. By Jove! I've never seen anything so unreal in my life. And outside, the silent wilderness surrounding this cleared speck on the earth struck me as something great and invincible, like evil or truth, waiting patiently for the passing away of this fantastic invasion."

Eric said...

The mistake we made was trying to be "welcome" at all. We ought to have bombed the ever-loving crap out of them for a month or so and then went back home.

Mencius Moldbug said...

No wonder Greg Cochran says you're a fool.

Yeah, Greg isn't too good at clicking on links either. We love him anyway, though.

[RKU]'s argued in the threads here before that he thinks 9/11 was an inside job. He has cajones.

He'd probably spell them right, though.

And hm - could be a connection here. Perhaps the taco trucks were trying (but failed) to save us from... the Mossad? I can't even imagine who was behind 9/11 as an inside job. (My first suspicions might fall on the Commerce Department - what exactly do they do over there, anyway?)

Alas, it's not enough to be very right 50 or 60 percent of the time. You have to be very right all the time. When you try to be very right and miss, you end up with very wrong. They use that to kill you - or worse, hold it in reserve, so they can kill you any time.

helene edwards said...

The brainwashing propaganda starts in the grammar schools and continues thru college.


Yeah, if only Obama's America allowed kids to major in something other than colonialism.

vinteuil said...

"I just hope he has some mad-genius way of getting his beloved Aztecs to help out with the coup. Taco trucks for the troops? An entire secret Panzer division, camouflaged as taco trucks?)"

Glad to see that The Moldbug is as funny as ever - and that he knows his Book of Proverbs!

pat said...

I told this story here before. Back then I looked like a wacko. Now I look prescient.

At the time I was newly single and attending Table for Six a dating service which arranged dinners for three boys and three girls.

One evening I decided to express my decisiveness in my weekly effort to attract women. I suggested that while Iraq may or may not have weapons of mass destruction (a big concern at the time) we the United States most certainly did. We should, I suggested, use them in Afghanistan.

I recommended dusting the mountains with anthrax spores. That would deny the hills to the bad guys. If they wanted to fight they would have to engage us on flat ground - their mountain refuges would be denied to them.

I knew that that prescription might be controversial but I wasn't quite prepared for the heated reaction. I went home alone that night.

Throughout history the population has grown and the war casualties have likewise grown - until lately. We had about fifty million dead as the price to halt Japanese and German imperialism. A straight line extrapolation would suggest that the coming war against the Muslims should cost about a hundred million lives. Time to get busy.

NOTA said...

The question we've needed to address in a sensible way for the last decade is, how should we respond to 9/11 style attacks in the future? Invading two countries and running covert wars in half a dozen others for a decade seems like it was a pretty unambiguously wrong answer. A decade of homeland security theater has created an unkillable, unaccountable bureaucracy where nobody quite knows where most of the money is going, and where the security measures probably impose thousands of dollars of cost for every dollar saved in prevented terrorist attack. US citizens are much less free now than pre 9/11, in the sense of stuff like being massively spied on (don't worry if that broke any laws--laws don't really apply to the guys who have the blackmail tapes on everyone important), or having bipartisan consensus policy say that the president can have any of us disappeared or murdered on his say so alone. Short of nuking ourselves or Cheney staging a coup, it's hard to see how we could have handled this worse. Indeed, it's clear that the attacks were very useful for some big power and money grabs.

But what the hell should we have done? If we ever get rid of most of the disastrous results of the first 9/11 attack, and then get hit with another one, how should we handle it differently? We've seen what we shouldnt have done, but what should we have done?

Anonymous said...

Yeah, Greg isn't too good at clicking on links either.

That's probably one reason why he thinks you're a fool. Your schtick involves linking to blocks of text that don't support your assertions.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps the taco trucks were trying (but failed) to save us from... the Mossad? I can't even imagine who was behind 9/11 as an inside job. (My first suspicions might fall on the Commerce Department - what exactly do they do over there, anyway?)

That's sort of the difference between you and RKU. His mind can go where yours can't if you find that you can't pin the blame somewhere else and things might start hitting too close to home.

formerly no name said...

The thing that people never seem to get is that ALL this commenting about why the President doesn't do/didn't do this or that supposes that we have the same intelligence and knowledge available to us, as civilians, that the President does. Does this sound reasonable?

I was talking to a U.S. Air Force General I know socially about Obama (before he was sworn in) saying he'd close GITMO. My friend said, basically, "You don't have a Top Secret Security Clearance (I'm a civilian) so I can't tell you what I know. But I can tell you, that once Obama sees the intelligence, he won't close GITMO. These guys aren't little innocents we pick up on the way top Mosque- they're the real deal- it's not what the papers are saying".

He turned out to be right. (Whether it was because of the intelligence, obviously, I have no way of knowing.) Is it not possible that there were a ton of reasons for our government to act the way it did, that we know nothing about? In fact, I would be surprised if there weren't. Pakistan harbored Khan, the spread the nukes guy. The Russians, Germans, etc. were all trading with Iraq- who knew (or knows) how many Russian suitcase nukes went missing? There are so many unknowns that speculation is all we've got.

I will end this comment with a note to the Jew haters who claim the Iraq war was for Israel's benefit- I remember reading, before the Iraq war, that Israel was far more concerned with Iran than Iraq, and didn't really care for the Iraq invasion- they saw Saddam as a counterweight to Iran, who they saw (correctly, in my view) as a much bigger threat. But even Israeli intelligence believed the Saddam had WMD's- which he had used before, which certainly showed that he was capable of producing them, and/or resuscitating the programs to manufacture them. The retroscope is always 20/20.


BS story. The clearance was irrelevant, the pertinent phrase is "need to know."

On the Iraq War see Stephen J. Sniegoski's The Transparent Cabal or numerous articles on the subject at Mondoweiss.

CJ said...

"Afghanistan has very little in common with Vietnam. In Vietnam we actually had some allies who wanted us to stay. There was a also some strategic rationale in trying to keep "Communist"(i.e. Soviet) influence out of the region. In Afghanistan we have no real allies, and no strategic rationale to be there. The Islamists who pose the greatest threats to the West are not in Kabul. They are in Riyadh, Cairo, Karachi, London and Berlin."

Very succinct -- I quote it because I can't improve on it. Obama will not leave before November because he doesn't want a Saigon rooftop helicopter scene messing his re-election campaign.

As for the other commenters, I beleive around 2003 John Derbyshire wrote that after 9/11 the quick military response in Afghanistan and the overthrow of Saddam Hussein had made America's point, and now it was time to go home. I think he described it as the "rubble doesn't make trouble" approach. Obama appears to agree with him at least to the extent that he prefers killing terrorist leaders in Pakistan and Yemen with Hellfire missiles when possible. Call me a crazy optimist, but I actually think we've all learned something here. Who actually still believes in "nation building" anymore?

Mencius Moldbug said...

His mind can go where yours can't if you find that you can't pin the blame somewhere else and things might start hitting too close to home.

- "Anonymous," sounding frighteningly like RKU after huffing an entire pack of Modafinil.

To be fair, I once spent almost a year living pretty much exclusively on tacos and Modafinil. It wasn't exactly my best year though.

Mencius Moldbug said...

From the link:

For more than 10 years, Mr. Panetta maintained a close friendship and regular correspondence with Hugh DeLacy, a long time Communist Party member and unrepentant Marxist-Leninist to his dying day. Panetta regularly supplied DeLacy with government reports and opinions on defense and foreign policy matters. A year before Panetta was elected to Congress and the correspondence began, his friend was in China as a guest of the communists meeting with several former and at least one reported active spy.

Mr. Panetta has apparently volunteered none of this information during any of his Senate confirmation hearings. Not one Senator has asked any questions about any of Panetta’s extensive history with communists and far left activists.


http://www.trevorloudon.com/2011/06/panetta-report-4-leon-panettas-communist-friend-and-the-chinese-spy/

Of course, we all know that since Tailgunner Joe's sudden liver failure, there are no Communists in America and never have been. You're only a Communist if you actually traveled to Moscow, broke into the Kremlin at night and buggered Lenin's corpse. Even then it's not true until you admit live on the air to Walter Cronkite, and even if it is true it might become untrue again at a later date.

Yeah. No pachyderms in this living room.

RKU said...

Charlesz Martel: The thing that people never seem to get is that ALL this commenting about why the President doesn't do/didn't do this or that supposes that we have the same intelligence and knowledge available to us, as civilians, that the President does...My friend said, basically, "You don't have a Top Secret Security Clearance (I'm a civilian) so I can't tell you what I know."...Is it not possible that there were a ton of reasons for our government to act the way it did, that we know nothing about?

Boy, that's a relief!! Here I just thought most of our recent leaders were corrupt idiots, but they obviously have super-secret knowledge which completely explains their decisions. We're lucky that all our presidents have been such real geniuses!

Now the commenters here mostly think Section 8 housing is a social disaster, but our polticians know it really benefits our society enormously. The Iraq War may have cost us something like $3 trillion and Saddam never had those WMDs, but Bush certainly made the right decision. Stupid people like us think the Housing Bubble was a national economic disaster, but Alan Greenspace did exactly the right thing and it saved our economy. We always complain about the massive bailout of all the Wall Street banksters, but Hank Paulson, former Goldman Sachs CEO, certainly made the correct call on that.

Thinking a bit more about it, I'm not sure our leaders have ever been wrong about a single thing. Surely they'd tell us if they were...

Anonymous said...

To be fair, I once spent almost a year living pretty much exclusively on tacos and Modafinil. It wasn't exactly my best year though.

Was that the same year you were sporting an earring on your right ear?

Anonymous said...

From the link:

Panetta probably also has family and friends that are mafioso and old-school traditionalist Catholics and right-wingers.

I think you've said that your parents and other family members were communists and CPUSA members. By your own logic you're a much bigger communist than Panetta.

RKU said...

He's argued in the threads here before that he thinks 9/11 was an inside job.

Ha, ha! I really don't recall ever suggesting that the 9/11 was an American "inside job." Among other things, the total panic and disorganization on the part of Bush, Cheney, and the other top leaders renders such a hypothesis quite implausible. If they had planned or known about it, why would they make themselves look so ridiculous?

Anonymous said...

I really don't recall ever suggesting that the 9/11 was an American "inside job." Among other things, the total panic and disorganization on the part of Bush, Cheney, and the other top leaders renders such a hypothesis quite implausible.

I'm using "inside job" in a general, colloquial sense i.e. that one is skeptical of the official story and suspects other perpetrators might have been involved.

Truth said...

"After ten years surely at least some work would have been done?

No rational person, however cynical, would build a pipeline there, it wouldnt last five minutes."

Hence the war. They will begin the pipeline once they subdue those damn persistent little Sand N-s.

Truth said...

"I recommended dusting the mountains with anthrax spores...I knew that that prescription might be controversial but I wasn't quite prepared for the heated reaction. I went home alone that night."

And I take it that was an exception?

Joe Six-Pack said...

Charlesz Martel

Former IDF Commander Moshe Ya'alon admits that he wanted Bush to handle Iran like Iraq.

By the end of the Article: http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/michaelweiss/100115386/is-israel-really-planning-to-strike-iran-soon/

Truth said...

"the total panic and disorganization on the part of Bush, Cheney, and the other top leaders renders such a hypothesis quite implausible."

What does panic and disorganizaion prove? Cheney and Bush couldn't organize a fly infestation at an outhouse.

TGGP said...

Where is it RKU is "prepared to go"? I get that he's prepared to go far on the basis of very little evidence, but that doesn't distinguish him from most of the internet. His restricted denial of an "American" inside job seems to implicitly suggest some other nation. Saudi Arabia would the most obvious choice, but I suppose too obvious. Israel is another that gets bandied about, but often that amounts to suggestions that they had intelligence on it which wasn't acted upon (not too different from the U.S, in fact). So RKU, what is your view.

I haven't read Sniegosky's book (just some columns at The Last Ditch and an old paper on Frank Lester Ward), but I have read Walt & Mearsheimer. As far as I can gather there were folks in D.C pushing for Saddam's removal for a long time, with PNAC in 95 being the most obvious example. Eventually they got their chance. Israel's role was to hear the footsteps of history determining what the U.S would do, and once that was decided to cheerlead. It can't actually contribute military force due to the shitstorm that would cause, so siding with boneheaded U.S decisions when the rest of the world is against us is their way of being a "good ally". Because we certainly don't show gratitude to France & Germany for pointing out what a stupid idea it was.

MM, I checked out your link. It contains very little info about Panetta. Was any of the information he passed along classified? If so, it's a serious matter to pass it off to a civilian and possible security risk. If not, who gives a damn. DeLacy's wikipedia page doesn't categorize him unambiguously as a communist, but notes Harvey Klehr's book stating he was secretly a member of the communist party. Mr. Loudon describes him as an "unrepentant Marxist-Leninist to his dying day", but was he openly Marxist-Leninist? I say this not to claim that he was not a communist, but that Panetta's relationship with him looks different depending on the openness of his communism.

Anonymous said...

"Who actually still believes in "nation building" anymore?"

I'm sure some of the neocons tricked themselves into believing it as a rationalization but it was never their prime motivation and that prime motivation remains - which imo is that they want to stay in Afghanistan as a launch pad for an eventual attack on Pakistan after Iran.

It's dragged out so long because Iraq took so long to finish. Initially they thought each country might take less than a year each.

.
Mencius
"But the guilty, you know, flee where no man pursueth."

Whatever the details behind Panetta's decision that proverb will apply somehow.

.
Charlie martel
"I will end this comment with a note to the Jew haters who claim the Iraq war was for Israel's benefit...[stuff]...But even Israeli intelligence believed the Saddam had WMD's- which he had used before"

You see what you did there?

That's not a personal criticism as innate honesty is a good thing imo.

RKU said...

TGGP: Where is it RKU is "prepared to go"?...I haven't read Sniegosky's book (just some columns at The Last Ditch and an old paper on Frank Lester Ward), but I have read Walt & Mearsheimer.

What in the world does our analysis of the 9/11 attack have to do with the Walt/Mearsheimer book? I'll admit I haven't read it nor the somewhat similar Sniegorski book, but I did read the long W/M article when it originally came out, and supposedly the book just covers the same ground in more exhaustive detail. Although I found the article quite good, it didn't tell me a single thing I hadn't previously known, often for decades, though some of the items had slipped my mind and it was useful to have them call collected in one convenient place by prominent academics.

Comments like this remind me that the Internet is filled with total idiots, and quite a few of them tend to drop by this blogsite now and again.

Harriet said...

@TGGP

As far as I can gather there were folks in D.C pushing for Saddam's removal for a long time, with PNAC in 95 being the most obvious example. Eventually they got their chance. Israel's role was to hear the footsteps of history determining what the U.S would do, and once that was decided to cheerlead.

"folks in DC" and PNAC = Israel

Harriet said...

I'm using "inside job" in a general, colloquial sense i.e. that one is skeptical of the official story and suspects other perpetrators might have been involved.

"Inside job" does not have that general sense to it. Your use of it, which suggests the specific meaning it has, therefore subverts your purpose of arguing for skepticism of the official story.

Mencius Moldbug said...


MM, I checked out your link. It contains very little info about Panetta. Was any of the information he passed along classified? If so, it's a serious matter to pass it off to a civilian and possible security risk. If not, who gives a damn. DeLacy's wikipedia page doesn't categorize him unambiguously as a communist, but notes Harvey Klehr's book stating he was secretly a member of the communist party. Mr. Loudon describes him as an "unrepentant Marxist-Leninist to his dying day", but was he openly Marxist-Leninist? I say this not to claim that he was not a communist, but that Panetta's relationship with him looks different depending on the openness of his communism.


This is you applying the standard test: you can't call a man a communist unless he went to Moscow and fucked Lenin's corpse in the ass. And you have video. No video == unsubstantiated slanderous allegation. Even then, Lenin is on the bottom, so can you really be sure?

Imagine if Panetta was friends with, say, Peter Brimelow. Or David Duke.

Actually the reality is that this is a bad analogy, because I'm sure Peter Brimelow has lots of liberal friends. When you're in the movement, you don't have time for the unenlightened.

There's an easier way to know that Panetta's a communist: his connection with the Congressional Progressive Caucus. Only a fool doesn't know that "progressive" means "communist" - it's been the universal euphemism since the '30s. On both sides of the Iron Curtain. Try "site:cpusa.org progressive."

Of course America is a communist country, so calling this is out is like being shocked by the gambling in Rick's Cafe. But still.

Anonymous said...

As for the other commenters, I beleive around 2003 John Derbyshire wrote that after 9/11 the quick military response in Afghanistan and the overthrow of Saddam Hussein had made America's point, and now it was time to go home.

Uh, what point was "necessary" to make? As another person has written, 9/11 should have prompted us to to instead start peace talks with the Arab peoples. "Thanks, guys, for bringing to our attention the cruelty, murder, and injustice that is being perpetrated in your homelands by our federal government."

No need for "quick military responses" (a pie in the sky notion anyway) or overthrowing governments.

Bin Laden wanted peace.

Mr. Anon said...

"Anonymous said...

Truth mentions that oil pipeline in Afghanistan. This one has been doing the rounds since the invasion yet Im not aware of any activity on said pipeline. After ten years surely at least some work would have been done?"

"Truth" views the world through conspiracy theories - essentially a comic-book way of thinking - because that is all that can be grasped by a 12-year-old's mentality. Why he thinks oil is so important, given that he believes cars can be fueled with water, I don't know.

Truth said...

"Why he thinks oil is so important, given that he believes cars can be fueled with water, I don't know."

Even the barrels the water will be transported by will be made of oil, Einstein.

RKU said...

Moldbug: There's an easier way to know that Panetta's a communist: his connection with the Congressional Progressive Caucus. Only a fool doesn't know that "progressive" means "communist"...Of course America is a communist country

Communist, Communist! Communist, Communist, Communist! Communist!

I really wonder if this "Moldbug" fellow is actually some sort of satirical performance-artist or something. Anyone who pays even the slightest attention to reality knows that an astonishing fraction of America's wealth and virtually all of its political power these days is concentrated in the 1%, or more accurately the 0.1%, or even more precisely the 0.01%. We're living under the rule of an exceptionally corrupt and greedy plutocracy. What in the world does that have to do with "Communists"?

Offhand, I'd never heard been taught that Plutocracy=Communism, so I can't figure out what he's ranting about. Maybe he's just using "Communist" as a synonym for "bad", in which case I'd agree that America has a very "Communist" government. But since "Communist" has three syllables, so why not just say "bad" instead?...

Mr. Anon said...

"Truth said..
What does panic and disorganizaion prove? Cheney and Bush couldn't organize a fly infestation at an outhouse."

Now wait a minute there, boy. You're always telling us that Obama must be a lot smarter than us because he's President and we're not. But all of a sudden, YOU are smarter than Bush and Cheney, because......why, again? Because they got elected to high office, whereas you are a snarky, anonymous poster on someone's website, and moreover one who has demonstrated nothing but the self-inflated ego of a braggart - the kind of personality that, as Steve has pointed out, is so beloved by car salesman.

TGGP said...

MM, if America is "communist" then the word has lost most of its useful meaning and you are not telling us anything about Panetta. Brimelow & Duke (who was openly a member of the KKK and wore a Nazi uniform) are a lot more well known than DeLacy, so I wouldn't think it a great analogy. Pat Buchanan is again more well known but also relatively connected politically despite being associated with a disliked political fringe, and Chris Matthews has fared just fine expressing affection for him.

RKU, someone else mentioned Sniegoski, and since M/W cover some similar territory, that's why I mentioned them.

Mencius Moldbug said...

Anyone who pays even the slightest attention to reality knows that an astonishing fraction of America's wealth and virtually all of its political power these days is concentrated in the 1%, or more accurately the 0.1%, or even more precisely the 0.01%.

Same with China. Same even with the late Soviet Union.

Now, neither of these countries was Communist by communist standards. They never achieved Communism! Nor have we. Which is why you see communists bitching about this so much.

American communism has always been the ideology of the 0.01%. See under "Frederick Vanderbilt Field." There's a great bit in the memoirs of Samuel N. Harper where he talks about how he used to have lunch with John D. Rockefeller Sr., then party all night with Emma Goldman and her friends.

The only workable definition of whether a country is communist is genetic rather than phenotypic - ie, whether all its major traditions are descended from communism. In America the major intellectual traditions are neoconservatism (Trotskyist), Old Leftism (Stalinist), and New Leftism (Maoist).

There is no significant faction whose intellectual pedigree descends from the anticommunists of the mid-20th century, eg, Birchers or the Old Right. Ergo: the anticommunists lost. Ergo: the communists won.

This is why we don't have a HUAC, a Senate Internal Security Committee, or a Subversive Activities Control Board. It certainly wasn't because all these (unjustly maligned) agencies completed their work and certified a communist-free America.

It's also why I see streets named after Cesar Chavez and "Martin Luther" King, rather than Joe McCarthy and Martin Dies. You can figure out a lot about history just by looking at who won and who lost.

Yes, it's very interesting to hear rich people bitching about the "1%." Reflects some kind of serious psychological trauma, I fear.

TGGP said...

Not dispositive, but it's amusing that in the late 1950s "progressive" suggested opposition to Brown v. Board and free speech for communists.

TGGP said...

"The only workable definition of whether a country is communist is genetic rather than phenotypic"
Phenotype is what we actually care about.

TGGP said...

Bill King at Enter Stage Right dissents from the common assocation of neoconservatives with Trotskyism. I don't know if Burnham is counted as a neocon, but I've heard he was associated with Bukharin's "right opposition" which wound up allied with Trotsky's "left opposition, before eventually splitting. Of course they were still Bolsheviks, and King's account still features socialists of various sorts, but interesting nevertheless.

RKU said...

Moldbug: American communism has always been the ideology of the 0.01%...Samuel N. Harper...used to have lunch with John D. Rockefeller Sr., then party all night with Emma Goldman and her friends...There is no significant faction whose intellectual pedigree descends from the anticommunists of the mid-20th century, eg, Birchers...Ergo: the communists won.

Hmm... So America's top 0.01%---the ultra-wealthy---have always been supporters of Communism, and this apparently included John D. Rockefeller...

And weren't the Birchers always accusing Eisenhower of being a Communist? Since DC is about to get a big Eisenhower Monument, I guess that means the Communists have decided to celebrate their final victory in a public fashion...

I suspect we'll be getting an increasing flow of these sorts of commenters since government funding cutbacks are forcing mental institutions to release more and more of their less-violent patients....

Anonymous said...

I think this guy has point.

Truth said...

"YOU are smarter than Bush and Cheney, because......why, again? Because they got elected to high office, whereas you are a snarky, anonymous poster on someone's website"

I didn't say that I was smarter than Bush and Cheney.

And as you wrote, I am an anonymous posters, they are VP and POTUS. There's a bit of a different expectation. No one voted me into my position.

Anonymous said...

Imagine if Panetta was friends with, say, Peter Brimelow. Or David Duke.

Actually the reality is that this is a bad analogy, because I'm sure Peter Brimelow has lots of liberal friends.


Yes, that is a terrible analogy, because it's a wrong notion altogether.

Brimelow has written about his liberal friends and neocon friends like David Frum before. He's worked in mainstream journalism (and still does in financial journalism) so he probably has lots of these friends.

He probably has more liberal or politically apathetic and mild friends and acquaintances than hardcore immigration-restrictionist ones.

Anonymous said...

"Inside job" does not have that general sense to it.

In the context of 9/11 it does.

TGGP said...

Speaking of genotype/descent though, Santorum is literally descended from Italian communists. What does that tell us? Not much of anything, really.

NOTA said...

So what term would you use for someone who is skeptical of the official story on 9/11, not because he suspects deep dark conspiracy by the powerful, but rather because he suspects deep, impenitrible incompetence and ignorance of the powerful? I mean, controlled demolition or grand Jewish conspiracy sort of stories sound goofy to me, but I have pretty limited faith in the folks who have provided us the broad "official story" on the 9/11 attacks. Like, was KSM really the mastermind? Or is he a mentally ill loser who was fairly easy to beat into confessing to being the mastermind, between his confessions of secretly being Elvis, the Easter Bunny, and Santa Claus? Was OBL and Al Qaida primarily behind this, or did they have help from, say, Saudi or Pakistani intelligence? Was that dude convicted of being the 20th hijacker really in on the plot? Did flight 93 really go down because the passengers fought back, or did the room-temperature-IQ jihadi flying the plane just screw up? What was up with the FBI agents who couldn't get anyone to listen to the warnings of the middle eastern dudes who took flying lessons but didn't want to learn how to land?

I have no conspiracy theory to offer. But the folks in charge between then and now have been repeatedly and demonstrably willing to lie to us when it worked for them poliically, and they've often taken actions based on later-clearly-wrong beliefs. Their incompetence and lack of knowledge about what's going on in various dark corners of the world is perhaps even more impressive than their dishonesty. The alleged watchdogs in the respectable US media lost even what little bite they had after 9/11, and it was years before they seemed to be willing to question the official story even when it was obvious it was horseshit.

So, while I assume the official story of 9/11 is probably more or less true, I don't have great confidence in it. It would be entirely consistent with other things I have seen if important parts of the story were either intentionally made up, or just gotten wrong via confusion and incompetence.

Mencius Moldbug said...

And weren't the Birchers always accusing Eisenhower of being a Communist?

You should read The Politician someday. It's actually kind of magnificent, though not without limitations.

I also strongly recommend the Reece Committee hearings, which are actually online. Anything produced by anyone associated with any of the anti-Communist committees is worth reading. I have an actual volume of McCarthy's speeches - it's wonderful. (Though not as wonderful as R.L. Dabney.)

And of course, there's always Stalin's kiss.

Ignorance is always pardonable. But history has a special place for those who prefer to throw their predecessors under the bus. It ain't the winner's circle, that's for sure...

Mencius Moldbug said...

Incidentally, there's some great Commie material from the mid 20th century that some freak has posted on his private website, "unz.org."

It's pretty hard to read through an issue or two of New Masses from the '40s, for instance, without realizing that "PC," "the progressive movement" and "communism" are exactly the same thing.

And then there's more highbrow, educated type stuff, like the Anglo-Soviet Journal - a bit difficult for me, because of all the big words and my medication. However I don't seem to detect a lot of hostility in this "Anglo-Soviet" relationship. Of course this was before we were at war with Oceania...