Sunday, April 5, 2009

opinions of readers on Obama's plans

Many thanks to everyone who sent answers.
Is Obama doing the right thing in Afghanistan? 

opposed on principle:

PAM -I do not support it. The human race cannot continue to survive nor can the earth, if we do not find ways other than war to resolve conflicts. I hope Obama hasn't been sucked into the military/industrial complex evildoers who will drive us all to death. I was reminded the other night that Martin Luther King said the issue isn't violence vs. non-violence. It's non-violence vs. non-existence. Let's follow the example of the Prince of Peace.

PAT - There are several reasons why his decisions concern me
1. I don't remember candidate Obama saying he would do this.
2. The Russians failed in Afghanistan. We failed there. Why will this effort be any different?
3. I am very much against war. I believe it leads to even more world chaos.
4. Isn't our "intelligence" good enough to find OBL without escalating war?

DASHMANN - On one hand, it looks like another Viet Nam or Iraq.
Send troops into another attempt at building a nation in our image.
On the other hand is this necessary to stop Al – Queda ?
They knocked the Trade Center down and have never been avenged.
Maybe Bush (et al) was smart enough to know we might never succeed there.
How far must we go in trying to make The World like us ?????

in favor

FELIX - There seems to be some feeling of 'spinning our wheels'. If something doesn't change, the wheels will keep spinning. I'm for an attempted 'brief' increase with the hope of getting the wheels some traction...and, hopefully bringing the wheels home victorious.

against for very practical reasons:

STEVE - ...I believe that is where we should have been in the first place and that if we want to pursue a "war on terror" Afghanistan is the front line. I feel confident that we will never win militarily in Afghanistan since we have been unable to do so in Iraq which is a relatively hospitable place relative to the Afghan mountains. Therefore we should try to win by providing the people with a comfortable lifestyle that helps them to love us. If we provide clean water and good, safe schools the people might accept us. However if the people providing those services are carrying guns they will get shot and if they are not, they will probably get kidnapped and decapitated.

We need to make sure that we do not appear to be invading Afghanistan and that is a tricky case to make when you show up in tanks and bombers and airplanes armed with warheads. The Afghans don't want democracy and that is a very difficult thing for us to swallow. As Bill Maher says "They would rather live in shambles with the Taliban than to see their sister in a mini-skirt" and it's true. Muslim cultures are different in one important way...their religion and their government are one and the same. They can not make laws politically because they believe the Koran provides all the laws they need and if we truly believe in freedom of religion than we must respect that as long as it is done peacefully.

Generally "NO" I don't support it. I don't want to pay for expansion of another war. I don't want to hear about another war. I worry that increasing efforts in Afghanistan might be just the catalyst that the Muslim world needs to turn this into a widely accepted "holy war" like the one in Gaza. And I don't see the wisdom in trying to keep some Afghans from killing other Afghans by killing some of the later Afghans on purpose and mistakenly killing some of the former Afghans in the process.

Two people have essentially the same opinion on Obama's move, that it's no longer a good idea:

MARSHA - Truthfully, I was 100% in favor of this before the Iraq debacle. Now I am not sure we can accomplish anything in the Mideast beyond further miring ourselves in insolvable situations.

SPARTY - I supported an aggressive military presence in Afghanistan in the wake of 9/11, but the previous occupant of the White House decided to invade Iraq instead. At this point, however, I don't see much to be gained and a lot to lose by sending more troops into the great void that is Afghanistan.

DIG S - expresses the opinion that Pakistan itself should be expected to take care of the Al Qaeda problem.

I think Obama is heading in the right direction and getting America's eye back on the ball. Pakistan may have denied the terrorist act in Mumbai a few months ago was not originated from Pakistan
despite a ridiculously amount of evidence - and the only terrorist survivor - saying so. After the [violent] acts on the Sri Lanka cricket team, and yesterday's act on their police academy, its time for Pakistan govt. and people to stop being in a state of denial and reflect seriously on their own problems.

Frankenstein is loose in their country, its not just against India that it acts anymore. They have no control over these elements they have trained and fostered for so long. Its time for Pakistan ISI (military intelligence) to hunt down the elements they created and destroy the terrorist apparatus they invented, before it destroys their country's image abroad permanently.

IRISH MIKE - I do not believe we should be the police for Afghanistan or any other third world off-the-map country. Now, that said, I do believe we should go after those who do us harm. What GW should have done was go into Afghanistan, found Ben Laden and his cronies, beat up Al-Qaeda and left. I still believe this should be the goal... If Al-Qaeda grows back, use those $60 million dollar war planes to take them out.

As far as the Taliban goes, they are Islamic Fundamentalist bad guys, but they are home grown with evidently local support. Alone, their treatment of women is offensive to our way of life. As bad as that may be, I don’t think the U.S. is cabable of propping up governments and changing the cultures of people around the world.

Should we send in more troops? Only if it is to meet my stated objective. Find Ben Laden and his cronies, beat up Al-Qaida and then leave.

Bud: I tend to agree most with Mike. The mission in Afghanistan was a proper use of power, but the execution of that purpose by the Bush government was incompetent. At this time, if we have a good handle on where Bib Laden and the Qaeda are located, we should go get them. Otherwise, get out.


Dashmann said...

For the acronym - challenged persons like me, in Pat's entry, what is OBL ?????

Jeez I hate acronyms -------

PAT said...

Osama Bin Laden

Dashmann said...

Duh !

Felix J said...

I think I would add that I'm in favor of it as opposed to keeping things the same. The way it is now is more than likely never going to 'gain' anything. Pulling out completely would save lives (in theory) and billions of dollars. Boosting the troops and actually 'winning' the 'war'...there should be some gains there, too. so, I guess my point is...we need a change...the way it is ain't workin'!

Alice said...

Maybe we should send coal miners over there, flatten all those mountains and then there will be no where to hide and we'll have more energy in the process.