Afghanistan. The graveyard of empires. We were lied to

Afghanistan war. Why should we be there?

Our government under Republican and Democratic administrations lied continually about how we were winning the Afghanistan war, when the reality was it was a disaster, and they knew it. The Washington Post just published Special Inspector General For Afghanistan documents they obtained after a three year FOIA court fight. The documents show everyone involved knew Afghanistan was indeed another graveyard of empire. Yet Administration and military lies about it never stopped. This includes Obama too.

Why did we even invade Afghanistan? What was the military plan that was supposed to dismantle al-Qaeda and remove the Taliban from power? Did our government not understand that fighting entrenched forces in mountainous areas is difficult at best. Or was it just the war pigs needed another war, which of course makes defense contractors happy too. Our invasion arguably had no legal justification but we went ahead and did it anyway. And it all went south rapidly.

“After a month of the U.S. bombing campaign rumblings began to reach Washington from Europe, the Mideast, and Pakistan where Musharraf had requested the bombing to cease. Having begun the war with the greatest imaginable reservoir of moral authority, the U.S. was on the verge of letting it slip away through high-level attacks using the most ghastly inventions its scientists could come up with.” said author Stephen Tanner.

The WaPo report is devastating. Incompetence and failure was covered up with lies. This is quite a lot like what happened in Vietnam and Iraq.

A confidential trove of government documents obtained by The Washington Post reveals that senior U.S. officials failed to tell the truth about the war in Afghanistan throughout the 18-year campaign, making rosy pronouncements they knew to be false and hiding unmistakable evidence the war had become unwinnable.

The interviews, through an extensive array of voices, bring into sharp relief the core failings of the war that persist to this day. They underscore how three presidents — George W. Bush, Barack Obama and Donald Trump — and their military commanders have been unable to deliver on their promises to prevail in Afghanistan.

Several of those interviewed described explicit and sustained efforts by the U.S. government to deliberately mislead the public. They said it was common at military headquarters in Kabul — and at the White House — to distort statistics to make it appear the United States was winning the war when that was not the case.

“Every data point was altered to present the best picture possible,” Bob Crowley, an Army colonel who served as a senior counterinsurgency adviser to U.S. military commanders in 2013 and 2014, told government interviewers. “Surveys, for instance, were totally unreliable but reinforced that everything we were doing was right and we became a self-licking ice cream cone.