Friday, April 30, 2010

30,000’s Too Many And 100,000’s Not Enough

The Pentagon submitted a report on Wednesday about our progress in Afghanistan. You’ll never guess what its primary conclusion is. Never in a million years.

ARLINGTON, Va. — Despite the addition of more than 50,000 U.S. troops to Afghanistan over the past year, there still aren’t enough forces to conduct operations in the majority of key areas, according to a congressionally mandated report released Wednesday on progress in Afghanistan.

Coalition forces have decided to focus their efforts on 121 key districts in Afghanistan, but right now, NATO has enough forces to operate in only 48 of those districts, the report said.

There are currently 86,000 U.S. troops in Afghanistan, up from about 30,000 when President Barack Obama took office. By August, there will be 98,000 U.S. troops in Afghanistan.

Just as there’s never enough smack for a junky, there’s never enough troops for the Pentagon, and there never will be. As long as we keep shoveling money and soldiers into this monster’s gullet, it will continue demanding more. It’s built into the nature of the institution.

So we’ve gone from 30,000 troops in Afghanistan to 86,000 since Obama took office, and we’ll have roughly 100,000 there by the end of summer. So what results have this massive troop increase yielded so far? The insurgents regard 2009 as their “most successful year.” The Insurgency, we’re told, still has a “robust means of sustaining its operations” and draws a steady supply of recruits from a “frustrated population.” There’s more:

The 150-page progress report said that Afghanistan’s deteriorating situation has leveled off, but violence still increased 87 percent between February 2009 and March 2010. A senior Defense official attributed the increase to the presence of more troops in Afghanistan moving into tougher areas.

There it is, straight from the horse’s mouth (or straight from the horse’s ass, depending on your point of view). An increase in troops has directly led to an increase in violence. Naturally this is spun as a consequence of our overall success — there’s more violence now because we’re able to move into tougher areas, Jack. Okay, but why do such ‘tough’ areas exist after the Greatest Military The World Has Ever Seen has been fighting there for almost nine years? Who knows? Why is the sky blue? Why is a pig’s ass pork? These are piddling questions that have no meaning. The important thing is that we keep our eyes on the big picture, which that the deteriorating situation in Afghanistan has “leveled off.” How do we know that it’s leveled off? Because violence has increased 87 percent, dummy!

Did I mention that Goldman Sachs is just an honest fiduciary?

I think I’ve written this post before. In fact, I may even have written some of these sentences word for word. My apologies, but bloated and corrupt institutions that do the same thing over and over again just don’t inspire original writing; they inspire nausea, disgust, and even a little despair: Won’t this bullshit ever end? If you have a child that is eight and a half years old or younger, they haven’t lived a single day without this war going on. Make whatever you want about that fact, it doesn’t speak to our success.

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