"DEATH TO AMERICA!"
The biggest casualty of Afghanistan is a mortally wounded US Empire.
The jig is up. A brief token skirmish for Kabul city gave way to Taliban soldiers, almost all young provincial men, merrily enjoying the combination of foreign direct investment and regime corruption like this theme park. Kabul, and with it Afghanistan, is theirs. It has the eternal feel of revolution. The ‘Afghan government’ now in exile has no options but a doomed LARP in the Panjshir Valley, which Russia and China will not entertain, and the US Government is scrambling to finish evacuations and embassy security during negotiations.
Back in the Columbian Imperium, Washington, D.C., every emotion but fear is running high—a luxury of being nowhere near Afghanistan; nowhere near the shrapnel, nowhere near the looting and street crime, nowhere near the blackouts (my readers in SFBA are encouraged to shelter in place), nowhere near the chaos that comes with world historical change borne on the truck beds of Toyota Hilux technicals driven by men on a mission from Allah.
The US Government has finally become realistic about its own power—“US forces can’t help American’s flee to Kabul Airport” says that changeable link:
The Pentagon on Wednesday acknowledged that it does not currently have the capability to safely escort Americans in Kabul to the airport for evacuation as the Taliban consolidate control in Afghanistan’s capital.
“I don’t have the capability to go out and extend operations currently into Kabul,” Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said when asked about those who cannot reach the gates of Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul because they are behind Taliban checkpoints.
In March: “Pentagon chief speaks of ‘responsible end’ to war”. Ouch, Lloyd.
On American news, a certain type of stunned female anchor does her best to enunciate like other Serious People—is it our hysteria she wants to quell, or hers?—“What we’re seeing now is”, “an evolving” then “deteriorating situation”, “Intelligence assessments”, “official reports”—and now, “what comes next” and “the new government”. My favorite from August 15th was official reports. The same global Overstate petite bourgeoisie caste who affect schoolmarm voices when lecturing us with Expert-American inflected wisdom on COVID-19 now haplessly sputter about whose fault this all is. They are quite right to be afraid.
All games of Jenga end the same way
Leaving aside the hysteria of Officialdom’s favorite organs (okay okay, I’ll stop, this is a Christian server), the Big Men on Campus currently occupying the heart of Afghanistan will, without question, get a full transfer of power. Regime optimists had rumored a transition be ‘led’ by Ali Ahmad Jalali, who had an interesting discussion with the Red Cross International Review in 2011.
In the face of the current armed opposition, how would you, based on your experience both as a former member of the Mujahideen and as former Minister of the Interior, compare the two types of armed groups?
On the ground, the fighting is maybe the same, but politically and strategically these two conflicts are two different things. When the Mujahideen were fighting the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan, the majority of the international community was with them, supporting the armed opposition of the time. The Soviet invasion actually tried to prop up an unpopular regime, against which the people were fighting. Even before the invasion, there was an uprising against the attempt by the communist government of Afghanistan to impose its lame ideology on the country. It was a kind of nationwide uprising. Therefore, that invasion was very different from the one you see today. The Mujahideen were popular.
The Soviets tried to prop up an unpopular regime, you say? There was an uprising against the attempt by the official, legal government of Afghanistan to impose its ideology (received from the USSR) on the country, you say?
He continues, with what one can only suppose was a favorite line to give rapt audiences of US politicians, his fellow think tankers, and the official press:
While the Soviets came to prop up an unpopular regime against which people were fighting, in 2001 the international community came to remove an unpopular regime against which people were fighting, or against which part of Afghanistan was fighting.
That emphasis wasn’t added. Simply put, it’s myopic to think the Taliban weren’t popular in Afghanistan. Were they popular with, say, foreign educated Hazara lesbian atheists in Kabul? No, they were not. But how many Afghans—a centuries old collection of Muslim peoples—could truly not reconcile themselves to a Muslim government, even a strict one? Democracy, we intone these days, especially with the new US census, cannot accept minority rule.
Any serious survey of Afghanistan will show you, 99% of them want Sharia. Even if all of Kabul were gay Anglophone atheists, that’s just ten percent of a nation of nearly 40 Million people who very much aren’t—more on that later.
But couldn’t we have withdrawn differently? Were we always going to be treated to footage of some jubilant but mostly terrified Afghans running alongside and under, even clambering onto, a moving C-17 Globemaster, cutting to small dots of humanity falling like remoras detached from a whale?
Was John Kirby always going to deliver briefings looking and sounding like Droopy the Dog (hey, you Google it, tell me what you see), going from “not in an imminent threat environment” to the Taliban forcibly penetrating Kabul?
Consider, if you’re a man, or a woman familiar with our member, screwing a hornet’s nest. There is a single best way, or at least several good enough ways, out of all possible ways, to maximally minimize damage done to the penis as you withdraw it the last time, pulling out all the way, from the opening you’ve been using. But isn’t there an underlying, primary problem with this situation?
Forget every discussion about how we should’ve withdrawn from Afghanistan. Most of that talk is just Monday Morning quarterbacking, from people who have never even heard of USTransCom or Air Mobility Command. They are talking about finishing with the beehive. Let’s think about why we entered it.
The road to Kabul, paved with expertise
America went from being a nation that felt contrition over returning Vietnam GIs being spat on in their uniforms to one that engaged in non-stop sycophancy. “Support the troops!” While it’s been chronically unwilling or incapable of providing a decent standard of healthcare for American service members, past and present, the US political culture hasn’t skipped a beat in turning the security apparatus into a civic religion. The caste divisions which define American society also have sectarian divisions, more intense perhaps, among its ‘Brahmins’ than India’s Vaishnavites and Shaivites, namely, Red and Blue Government. Occasionally, these divisions between Arlington and Georgetown, between Lockheed Martin cum Sikorsky and Harvard Kennedy School of Government rear their head in foreign policy in pretty funny ways. But everyone is on the same team, and that team is bilking the US taxpayer and feeling smart and good and responsible while being nothing of the sort.
Let’s look at Blue Government. I draw your attention to one Jennifer Cafarella:
Jennifer Cafarella is the inaugural National Security Fellow at the Institute for the Study of War (ISW), a position created to sponsor rising national security leaders. Ms. Cafarella’s work focuses on U.S. defense strategy including how the U.S. must adapt to current and future threats. She is an established expert on Syria, the Middle East, and jihadism.
Ms. Cafarella regularly briefs senior policy and decision-makers as well as U.S. and allied military units. Her written work has been featured across major media outlets including Foreign Affairs Magazine, the Washington Post, the New York Times, and others. She frequently appears in the media and in public events to discuss the evolution of national security threats and their consequences for how the U.S. must engage.
Wow—she’s an established expert on jihadism, one who is responsible for educating our government’s civilian and military executives, concerned with national security threats and their consequences. She sounds pretty legit!
What you actually NEED to know about the situation in Afghanistan?
Let’s get it out of the way, alright? Ms. Cafarella is a real cutie pie. But there are many pretty girls and we can’t ignore a glaring flaw; she’s dumb. Now, she isn’t mentally slow or whatever; but she is dumb, a moral flaw, not a cognitive one. What do we mean? While she appears to be a well spoken, highly educated, silken haired, flawlessly complexioned, petite, lithe—oh, uh, jeez, I mean, thoughtful woman, she is dumb, committing the intellectual sin of hubris. This is a result of a huge chip on her shoulder and need to feel like she matters and can hang with older, powerful men, alongside whom she delights in appearing at event panels, speaking with great authority about warfare.
America’s institutions are filled with Cafarellas. Healthcare may be the most concentrated; from TikTok nurses showing us battle hardened faces, youthful collagen indented by PPE fit too snugly, endlessly patting themselves on the back (when they are not twerking, sometimes quite expertly) for saving all of us from certain doom, all the way to the menagerie of flightless birds we know as Masters of Public Health, Licensed Clinical Social Workers, and Therapists.
But the National Security industry certainly gives Healthcare a run for its money (notice how these are institutions in America which don’t work well).
This pièce de résistance, this spoken word poetry, this ART from the CIA (you should be using the definite article, don’t let them get away with that stupid shit), is just the latest in a long line of the same mistake being repeatedly made. But let’s not pretend this is an entirely gendered problem, either; the Blue US Government, stretching from Universities to the Civil Service, affords endless opportunities for the Expert-American archetype of all 47 genders.
These are the inheritors of the Brain Trust. The managed production of beets in the Anglo-aristo created USSR came first from Frederick Winslow Taylor, and eventually refluxed back into Albion-Columbian empire through former Communist sympathizers we have come to know and love as neoliberals. The mantra of Expert-Americans everywhere: in this house, we believe in Science.
It’s hard to properly state how intellectually insecure and yet completely up their own assholes these people are. Let’s try. Here’s the American Foreign Service Association (State Dept. and USAID’s club) on the relationship of the civil service to special forces troops in prosecuting the war in Afghanistan;
U.S. special operations expertise is unparalleled and highly sought after by foreign militaries, police forces and internal security organizations. Our elite special operators possess skills, tactics, specially designed equipment, and intelligence gathering know-how that can transform a foreign government’s own capabilities.
Like the ethos of career diplomats, the SOF philosophy recognizes the value of nurturing ties to foreign cultures, and acknowledges the stability value of addressing the critical needs of civilians.
Pure professionalism; one team, one mission, mutually esteemed, no doubt!
Despite attempts to enhance their political awareness through specialized training, SOF personnel can sometimes be tone-deaf to the foreign policy context in which they operate in so many different countries, and to the consequences for broader U.S. objectives. Career diplomats serving in those countries, who understand the local history and political culture—as well as POLADS themselves, who often have experience in the same regions or countries—are uniquely qualified to provide the necessary guidance.
Some indirect activities by special operations units overlap materially with what State and USAID programs are designed to accomplish in a country. Especially when working in the areas of economic development, public health and humanitarian assistance, SOF efforts inevitably stray into the space traditionally occupied by U.S. civilian foreign affairs agencies. For many, this kind of work is an essential part of diplomacy and therefore should stay under the control of civilian agencies. But the unfortunate reality is that while the special operations community has ample and growing resources, State and USAID have always labored within significant budget constraints and now face the threat of massive outright cuts.
Some fear that the expansion of well-funded U.S. special operations activities into nearly 70 percent of the countries of the world will somehow overwhelm traditional civilian diplomacy and render it obsolete. This concern overlooks the fact that SOF is ill-equipped to replace many of the key functions of embassies: maintaining a high-level dialogue with host governments on vital bilateral issues, reporting and analyzing political-economic developments, providing assistance to U.S. citizens abroad, and conducting the public outreach and educational and cultural exchanges that embody U.S. public diplomacy. Special operations teams will not usurp these roles.
Like I said, it’s not a gendered problem. It’s clear why State’s men feel this way:
Two generations of academic careers, houses bought, families started, have been paid for by your withholdings unto the defense industry, bankrolling decades of justification for an unjustifiable war—Glorified Raytheon Flacks. To read the white papers and slide decks and conference transcripts produced in the last twenty years of Expert-American analysis and strategery-izing concerning Afghanistan would probably take two centuries. What good did any of it do? These are people who will authoritatively tell you all about Jalaluddin Haqqani, but don’t speak a word of Pashto. People who go on taxpayer funded holidays via the State Department in between college and graduate school to turn out more gussied up book reports, yet leave the US with two people being taught the language after a decade of investment.
Here’s a job listing for a company that’s contracted by CENTCOM (sounds cool to say right? Try it out. CENTCOM. Powerful) to produce analysis, that on August 17th was ‘Posted: 2 days ago’, just before the Fall of Kabul crystallized:
BTS is seeking Mid-Level All-Source Analyst (Afghanistan POL/MIL) to support the CENTCOM J2 Joint Intelligence Center, to include, in some cases, 24/7 shift work for situational awareness and warning. Analysts support some or all of the following subject areas: Analysis, Production, Application and Dissemination – Current and Term, Daily Production, Graphics and Visual Information, Write for Release, Current Intelligence Support, Political/Military, Terrorism, Cyberspace, Human Terrain/Socio-Cultural, Geospatial Intelligence, Weapons of Mass Destruction, Energy/Environmental, Ballistic Missiles, Compromise Mitigation Support, Open-Source, Order of Battle, Target Intelligence Analysis, Target Materials Analysis, and Target Discovery and Network/Systems.
Bachelor’s or master’s degree with 4-6 years of intelligence analysis experience, or
Proficient in ODNI analytical standard, AND
Specialized training, 4-8 years intelligence analysis experience and recent equivalent intelligence/academic experience.
Current Top Secret/SCI w/CI Poly!!
Such serious stuff (two exclamations for the polygraph) and this is mid-level! Think about the structural enormity of a security apparatus and budgets required to produce these esteemed economic opportunities. For Blue Government, reality, even foreign policy, even the warfare that dainty Ms. Cafarella is such an expert about, is but an exercise in academic masturbation.
Sadly OnlyFans is banning regular masturbation, which would have been a better remunerating, more enjoyable, less destructive use of Jenny’s time.
Enough about them, let’s look at Red Government, at the Pentagon’s Finest.
Thank you for your Service!!
Mark Milley is Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Look at that bling! Now this is a man who ‘puts on his jewelry just to go to the bodega’. Legion of Merit, with two oak clusters. Both Distinguished Service medals, with three oak clusters. Army Special Forces and Army Ranger tabs, the Special Operations Diver medallion, even a French Parachutist Badge. The weird thing is that Mark has never actually been in combat. He has never raised a weapon and aimed and shot at other people in order to kill them, while himself being shot at. His sole brush with ‘combat’ came when he was a Lieutenant in the invasion of Panama in a unit that experienced combat. He did not. Has he been close to the results of combat? He sure has—but so have countless civilian war correspondents, often facing far greater personal dangers.
Said bluntly, Mark is another politician in a uniform. He’s a product of Princeton and Columbia university. His undergraduate thesis was 185 pages on “A Critical Analysis of Revolutionary Guerrilla Organization in Theory and Practice”. Perhaps an IB reader can acquire and share it—I’m sure it’s funny.
In fact, Mark Milley’s most lasting visible contribution to the US Army is the one occupying space on his Wikipedia page in between altering the physical fitness test to ensure more women pass and delaying the publication of the Iraq War Study report; the reintroduction of World War Two style uniforms.
Waitaminute, Bronson—you ask—isn’t this an overly long essay on America’s failure in Afghanistan? Why the fuck are you talking about uniforms?
The United States Army wanted a spiffy new service uniform, one that would stand out in a tough recruiting environment and polish the Army’s image after a generation of grinding and divisive wars.
It chose a new uniform that looks almost exactly like the old green gabardine wool field coat and khaki trousers that officers wore in World War II. Probably not by coincidence, that’s what the Army was wearing the last time the nation celebrated total victory in a major war.
“We went back and asked, when is the most prominent time when the Army’s service to our nation was universally recognized, and the answer came very quickly,” said Daniel A. Dailey, the sergeant major of the Army, the highest-ranking enlisted soldier in the service. “That victory, that impact on the nation, is still felt today by the sons and daughters and grandsons and granddaughters of the ‘Greatest Generation.’”
You see, old men like Max Boot, or Bill Kristol, or Paul Wolfowitz, or David Frum are no good in combat. If you must sprint across fields with an M240B,
or pull yourself up over a wall and lift a friend with his own heavy assault pack,
or rappel down from a helicopter dodging bullets and RPGs, into the hard dirt,
or raise a rifle up repeatedly and shoot to kill, exhausted, no sleep & no food,
, it helps to be a young man, and the younger the better. You can sign up at 18.
That Greatest Generation which Dailey invoked—the one indeed, whose sons, grandsons, and great grandsons swear oaths, fight valiantly, and die by the thousands—was 90% White. The 2020 Census shows America is only about 58% White and has been a minority for some time in the youth generations.
But there is one final place America is still about 85% non-Hispanic White:
Why do people like Mark do this? What ideology or mission drives them? Where Jenny is assuaging a pathological need to be taken seriously which we induce among the overeducated, late to marry, near universally childless professional class of Expert-American women who run our institutions, what is Mark after? Sure there’s pride, but what else? Bueller? Bueller? Bueller?
The answer is money. Almost two million bucks for a no-show board seat gig. Not bad! Our friend Lloyd “Austin’s ethics agreement, is a standard part of a post-Watergate process intended to give lawmakers and taxpayers assurances that public officials follow conflict of interest standards.”, we are told. Oh, so it’s very legal, very cool, then! So much of the American military’s senior leadership are like the bacchas who get bazi’d—but they choose to do it.
You may have noticed I’m not blaming the Afghan military one bit for the loss. I don’t! I think every reason for capitulating was valid. An estimated 75,000 Afghan police and military alone have died in unrelentingly brutal combat against the Taliban. It's their comrades who have said “fuck this”; an outcome that was baked into the cake—as Sailer notes—perhaps because the MIC whores are incensed that Biden really finally ordered them to withdraw, and wouldn’t roll over like a good dog (like the last president) and thus wanted the conversation to be about how awful it is we’ve withdrawn, rather than examining why we stayed for twenty years. It looks as though they are getting their way. The Afghan military and political establishment just bilking the US taxpayer is like the kid smoking weed, discovered by his father, in the greatest drug PSA ever:
It cannot be understated how venal these Sikorsky Sluts are. Literal prostitutes don’t get anyone killed or steal from America and at least make people happy. It’s actually unfair as a comparison. Take this article, from 2010;
The Globe analyzed the career paths of 750 of the highest ranking generals and admirals who retired during the last two decades…From 2004 through 2008, 80 percent of retiring three- and four-star officers went to work as consultants or defense executives. Thirty-four out of 39 three- and four-star generals and admirals who retired in 2007 are now working in defense roles — nearly 90 percent.
Is it any surprise that the US Military has been so thoroughly defeated?
In 2010 it was announced the weapon elevators of the USS Gerald Ford would be ultra high tech, allowing the new class of ship to reload various attack capabilities faster than ever before. After many delays and failures, the ship was finally slated for late delivery in 2017. None of the mechanisms worked. Like a file suffixed _final_FINAL_2.pdf , this past month, the Navy has let us know, this time, it’s ready. If the Pentagon were an employee, you’d fire them.
Nobody gets fired over this stuff. If you dare notice the repeated, expensive, lethal failures of vetus nobiles in our Praetorian caste, as Tucker Carlson did, the Pentagon will claim you’re a racist and that our military is the best. Is it?
Enablers & the addicts who love them
Americans aren’t blameless in this conspiracy between Jenny and Mark to get Uncle Sam to drop trou and begin pumping away at the Hymenoptera. They are like the rapt audience piling into the Rio night after night for decades to watch Penn and Teller fool them. Instead of the Bullet Catch or the silver dollar fishbowl, the show is ‘MURICA, FUCK YEAH for the Red States, and “global leadership” for the Blue States. In both cases the impulse is covered up with notions about spreading freedom, enlightened values, and ‘decency’:
It couldn’t be clearer. Could it be clearer? Consider this story delivered by…
Afghanistan's 'coming out' for LGBT rights can pave the road to peace
NEW YORK CITY — A year ago gays didn’t exist in Afghanistan. They were simply invisible — never mentioned in the national discourse — until I applied liberal constructivist theory from international relations when I spearheaded an ongoing queer narrative that eventually gained traction and cemented a gay Afghan identity….Six months ago, I endorsed Dr. Ghani while the LGBTIQ community of Afghanistan mobilized their underground network (which includes atheists, feminists and humanists) to vote en masse for the former academic…I started a position as a professor of political science at the American University of Afghanistan (AUAF) and contributed to segments on Afghan and international broadcast news.
I then used creative writing to push my political agenda. I posted risqué stories like the one about two engaged Afghan men on the verge of a breakup due to one partner’s hemorrhoids ruining their sex life. I also shared a diary about my homoerotic ordeal at Kabul international airport, when I snuck alcohol into the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan on the Mujahedeen holiday.
To complement my rhetoric, I uploaded photos of me cross-dressed as a transgender from the “Gilgamesh Rising” play I performed at Oxford, England last May.
I escalated the situation by posting a barrage of sexually explicit poetry during the month of Ramadan. But the real game changer happened on August 22nd with my pioneering coming out on Facebook and soon news about the proud gay Afghan man, who desires a husband, went viral and traveled the world.
Since Afghanistan received a gay makeover, the collective memory of a blighted nation has been transformed. But, while my initiative and the launch of a cultural revolution is a great start, more needs to happen to engineer progressive change to secularize Afghanistan.
Even as a depraved millennial, I must ask, like, what the actual fuck?
In the early days of the War on Terror, American politicians would stay stuff like “They hate us for our freedoms”, and people nodded along. Eventually, people started to get wise and say things like “they hate us for destabilizing their countries through war”. But why do we do that? Well, we violently desire to export Liberal Secular freedoms—and the Afghans really, truly hated it!
There’s a certain brand of midwit shitlib, people who became atheists because Richard Dawkins told them so, who breathily exclaim the fall of Kabul is just like the Insurrection of January Sixth, and Republicans are like the Taliban.
Outside the region, you can find the Taliban wherever people gather in the name of rejecting modern politics in favor of tribal affiliations, decrying the permissiveness of liberal culture, and elevating religious dogma to the single principle governing society. When homophobes decry gay marriage and “family values” activists complain about gender fluidity, the Taliban is there. When Christian fundamentalists launch their own jihad against abortion, the Taliban is there. When right-wing extremists devise conspiracy theories about “globalists,” the Taliban is there. So, let’s stop all the hand-wringing about the barbarians massing at the gates of the West. Whether it’s Steve Bannon, Robert F. Kennedy Jr., or Jim Dobson, the barbarians have been inside the gates all along.
But these midwit shitlibs are basically right.
The US didn’t fail because Afghans are fundamentally different from Americans, but because they are a related branch of a common Humanity which is simply far less compromised than we are.
21st Century Secular Western Liberalism was injected at only a slightly lower dosage than is administered to compliant Americans, who have built up quite a tolerance, but it was the same drug being given to straightedge Afghans.
Speaking of drugs:
“From late 2000 and the year that followed, the Taliban enforced a ban on poppy farming…Though Afghan poppy growing returned to previous levels after the fall of the Taliban government, this may have been the most effective drug control action of modern times.”
“Having furtively experimented with every possible approach to Afghan poppies since 2001…today the ground-combat branch has made peace with poppies, viewing them as a potential good thing for Afghanistan and the Army.”
It doesn’t end there, either. Aware of how hard it is for some older men to properly rape children, the Central Intelligence Agency started handing out Viagra; NBC News - Viagra helps CIA win friends in Afghanistan.
The Afghan chieftain looked older than his 60-odd years, and his bearded face bore the creases of a man burdened with duties as tribal patriarch and husband to four younger women. His visitor, a CIA officer, saw an opportunity, and reached into his bag for a small gift.
Four blue pills. Viagra.
"Take one of these. You'll love it," the officer said. Compliments of Uncle Sam.
The key, Smith said, is to find a way to meet the informant's personal needs in a way that keeps him firmly on your side but leaves little or no visible trace.
Is this surprising to you? Is it shocking that the Taliban would be the side which rose to power by opposing drug use and child rape, but the US military would be the side reviving and promoting Afghan’s drug use and child rape?
For years ‘conservative’ Republicans slandered Afghans while declaring the left in general and Obama in particular wanted to impose Sharia, Islamic Law. But look into the US with ‘freedom’ as its central value; Desmond is Amazing.
And it’s not fringe! It’s feted in mainstream American news.
Our elite class, our courts, show no opposition to this, our culture ever more defined by maximal individual freedom and lesser social limitations around sex. Trans dilation is from here, not Afghanistan.
What would you do to stop your kids from being subsumed by this culture? Would you move to a new school district? Maybe you’d vote for Republicans? Thousands of Afghan fathers picked up a rifle instead, shouting praise for Allah.
But what about 9/11 and Osama?
It’s true. Osama bin Laden was in Afghanistan, before he fled to Pakistan, a Muslim country with Sharia the US has maintained a relationship flush with aid money for decades without invading to improve the lives of its women.
But the Taliban didn’t invite him there. Osama came to Afghanistan during the Soviet invasion, along with many other faithful Muslims from around the world. The United States didn’t just fund people like Ahmad Shah Massoud, it also funded people like Osama bin Laden. Sometimes, during the last twenty years of war in Afghanistan, you’d hear a particularly stupid person say “the US funded the Taliban in the 1980s” or some such, compressing ethnicities and generational cohorts of brown to medium beige Muslims in Afghanistan into the same thing. In fact, after their formation, the Taliban fought a brutal Civil War with the people we supported, some of whom had also previously supported the Soviets, like General Dostum, Vice President of the erstwhile Afghan government, whom the US supported protected and reinstalled:
After more than a year in exile, Gen. Abdul Rashid Dostum returned to his native Afghanistan on Sunday facing criminal charges of rape and kidnapping, as well as accusations of brutality, human rights abuses and killing his first wife.
General Dostum also remains the country’s first vice president. An array of top officials met his plane and, despite the criminal charges against him, they gave him safe passage — not to jail, but to his office and home
Here’s what his home looks like. Ever wonder where the aid money goes?
Unlike Osama, who had consistent enemies, Dostum was actually part of the Soviet government before defecting to the winning team at the last moment. He also did this during Afghanistan’s various civil wars between the deposed government and the Taliban. What a guy we’re backing, huh?
Dostum, a former plumber, wrestler and oil refinery worker from Sheberghan, the capital of the northwestern province of Jowzjan, rose to prominence as a pro-Soviet commander fighting the Afghan mujahideen in the 1980s. Switching sides multiple times during the ensuing years of civil war and Taliban rule, Dostum developed a reputation for treachery and siding with the winner. When the United States went to war in Afghanistan after Sept. 11, 2001, U.S. Special Forces and CIA officers worked with Dostum and his Uzbek militiamen to direct bombs onto Taliban front lines. During that period, Dostum was accused of letting hundreds of Taliban prisoners die, baked alive in the shipping containers in which they were held. He has denied responsibility for the deaths.
Oh, and those charges of rape?
Around midnight Feb. 2, 2008, some of Dostum’s men burst into the Kabul home of a political rival, Akbar Bai. They abducted Bai and his 20-year-old son and took them to Dostum’s house, where Bai was beaten and allegedly sexually assaulted, according to Afghan officials. (The U.S. Embassy described the incident in a cable at the time as the “latest of Dostum’s drunken fits.”) In the morning, Afghan police surrounded the house. Dostum’s militiamen fired at the police, who were under orders not to shoot back.
This is the government we’ve backed against the Taliban who supported Osama. They did support Osama, right? After all, the news media said so.
The Taliban, even in 2021, are not impulsive international Muslim terrorists:
Here is a talk between Abdul Salam Zaeef, Taliban ambassador to Pakistan in 2001 and former CIA officer Robert Grenier, the Islamabad Station Chief:
Were you aware the Taliban had repeatedly offered to cooperate with the US bringing Osama Bin Laden to justice, and had members who didn’t appreciate Arab radicals wandering around their country doing what they pleased? Think about this—if you dare—from a perspective besides stupid American jingoism:
On 9/11, a terrorist attack was committed, it’s alleged, on the United States by agents of a man who has been in your country, which you have just come into possession of after a brutal civil war. He is also a Muslim, and has some allies within your organization, and many sympathizers in the Ummah. The United States is demanding that you immediately comply with its edicts and turn him over, while your basic sovereignty in Afghanistan goes totally unrecognized.
The Taliban since coming to power, had repeatedly been trying to act like a normal polity. As early as 1998, Pakistan and Turkey were making appeals to the UNSC when the Taliban was sending its representatives to New York to meet with other governments. By late 2000, about a year before 9/11, still no progress; “Taliban Open A Campaign To Gain Status At the U.N.”
''We're here to challenge the United Nations on their reason for not recognizing us,'' the delegaton leader, Deputy Foreign Minister Abdur Rahman Zahid, said in an interview. ''How can they recognize that band of thugs sitting beyond our borders?''
Mr. Zahid, taking the Taliban on the diplomatic offensive for the first time, was referring to the loose coalition of mostly exiled holy warriors whom the United States once supported in their war against the Soviet Union.
The mujahedeen alliance controls less than 10 percent of Afghanistan. Its president, Burhanuddin Rabbani, is in exile, and its legacy to the country, United Nations officials say, was the destruction of the capital, Kabul, and much of the nation's public works in interfactional war.
Throughout the recent summit meeting here, the Taliban have had no opportunity to speak officially, even though they have been excoriated from the General Assembly podium for supporting terrorism, exporting opium and abusing human rights, especially those of women. Yet the United Nations is the organization, Mr. Zahid said, that is trying to teach the Taliban cooperation, tolerance and democracy.
''This is the world that we live in,'' he said. ''A government is recognized that does not exist. Its president does not have an address. But they have the U.N. seat, all the Afghanistan embassies, everything.''
Secretary of State Madeleine K. Albright, speaking on Monday at a program sponsored by the White House Project, an organization that supports women in politics, repeated Clinton administration [Bronson Note: *Hohoho, did they also support politicians in women?*] demands that the Taliban agree to a broad-based democratic government. To the Taliban, that amounts to giving part of the country back to the armed opposition and rekindling the war, Mr. Zahid said, adding, ''If the U.N. at least vacated the seat, the opposition would have an incentive to talk.''
Meanwhile, weapons flow in. ''We are up to our necks in arms,'' Mr. Zahid said. ''What we need are pencils and books.''
The Taliban leadership were, and are, intensely serious-minded people who have suffered tremendous hardships, personally fought in unbelievably vicious combat for decades, for the dream of their Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan.
The self-aware Taliban even addressed the issue of women, head on:
On human rights, Mr. Zahid, who is meeting United Nations officials and other diplomats, said Taliban officials now let women work in health services, the Interior Ministry, at airports and for certain United Nations agencies like the World Food Program. But he said demands for a representative government and elections were unrealistic in a country destroyed by two decades of war, a drought and almost no foreign aid.
''How do they expect us to be in a position to hold elections?'' he asked. ''In all of Afghan history, there has never been an election. After 20 years of war, when we are only beginning to create institutions, when we are the first Afghan government to try to stop opium production, how can they expect us to do this now? They are demanding of us what they never before expected of this country.''
“A future Afghan government that upholds the basic rights of its people, that doesn’t harbour terrorists, and that protects the basic rights of its people, including the basic, fundamental rights of half of its population – its women and girls – that is a government that we would be able to work with,” Price said during a news briefing.
But the Taliban had done just that before. And they’re doing it again now;
Freedom and independence seeking is a legitimate right of every nation. The Afghans also use their legitimate right after 20 years of struggle for freedom and for emancipating the country from occupation, this was our right and we achieved this right.
And we would like to express our gratitude to almighty God for having brought us to this stage. I would like to thank God for giving freedom to this nation. The Islamic Emirate, after freedom of this nation is not going to [seek] revenge [on] anybody, we don’t have any grudges against anybody.
We know that we have been undergoing really challenging periods and crises, a lot of mistakes that were made that were an advantage to the occupiers. We want to make sure that Afghanistan is not the field of conflict, a battlefield of conflict anymore.
We have pardoned anyone, all those who had fought against us. We don’t want to repeat any conflict anymore again. We want to do away with the factors for conflict. Therefore, the Islamic Emirate does not have any kind of hostility or animosity with anybody; animosities have come to an end and we would like to live peacefully. We don’t want any internal enemies and any external enemies.
Other countries also have different rules, different policies, different viewpoints, different approaches and policies they use and different rules and regulations. In the same way, Afghans also have the right to have their own rules and regulations and policies so that their advantage from the profit of the nation of the people, so that they’re in accordance with our values, so nobody should be worried about our norms and principles.
The issue of women is very important. The Islamic Emirate is committed to the rights of women within the framework of Sharia. Our sisters, our men have the same rights; they will be able to benefit from their rights. They can have activities in different sectors and different areas on the basis of our rules and regulations: educational, health and other areas. They are going to be working with us, shoulder to shoulder with us. The international community, if they have concerns, we would like to assure them that there’s not going to be any discrimination against women, but of course within the frameworks that we have. Our women are Muslim. They will also be happy to be living within our frameworks of Sharia.
If Apostle Paul’s letter to the Ephesians is read at a wedding, do you scowl?
There are objections to this, typically made by people who look and sound like Jenny. They remain dumb objections. But they’re also racist colonialist ones.
If you’re not yourself an Afghan in Afghanistan what gives you the right to intervene on behalf of Afghan women, almost exclusively serious Muslims?
The attacks of September 11th were an immense tragedy, there is no room to doubt this. I’m glad Osama bin Laden was killed, and I wish he’d been killed sooner—and that we’d simply withdrawn after killing him—But think back:
It was a different world, and what did we do with that worldwide good-will?
We reintroduced heroin, mass child rape, and indiscriminately bombed the fuck out of an incredibly poor country whose fledgling government had nothing at all to do with the terrorist attacks.
The world has changed since 2000. Look at the US demographics, our debt to GDP ratio, the relative strengths of Russia and China.; this is a transformed planet and it’s not going back to where we were. The hubristic vision of a global order where the US has the right—or the ability—to traipse around the world and install or depose leaders as seen fit is decidedly over. The end of America as we know it is coming, for reasons unrelated to Afghanistan. But Afghanistan, I believe, will function as a catalyst for all kinds of changes.
China is going to recognize the Taliban led government of Afghanistan, and very likely, Russia and perhaps even Hindu dominated India will follow suit. Even if every last member of the former Afghan government and collabor—assistant to the US is evacuated (which they won’t be), what does this mean?
It means China absolutely will reclaim Taiwan, and it means Russia will further deepen energy ties in Europe. It means India will not have to take US admonitions about Hindu fascism seriously, even if it manages the Talibans’. Almost certainly the same rhetoric of ‘freedoms’ and ‘liberty’ and America’s ‘role in the world’ will be invoke. Will the Sardaukar care? And should they?
This ability to question having sex with a hornet’s nest spells the doom of the US Imperial project abroad, and as the State’s organs begin making the case their funding and authority should turn inward, we can hope that perhaps, like the dissolved Soviet Empire, it may have also doomed its mission at home.