Operation Enduring Freedom ~ Down and Dirty

A Down and Dirty History of Operation Enduring Freedom

or

BOHICA ~ Bend Over Here It Comes Again

or

Operation Enduring Freedom ~ War Without End

On 11 September 2001, the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center came tumbling down in an immense cloud of smoke.  Osama bin Laden hiding in his base camp in the mountains of Eastern Afghanistan had planned one of the most audacious attacks in American history.  Two commercial aircraft flew into the World Trade Center buildings, one flew into the Pentagon and, finally, a final hi-jacked commercial airliner went down in a field in Pennsylvania after the passengers onboard regained control of their 747 from the Arab terrorists.

A few months later, American CIA and US Army Special Forces, on the orders of George W. Bush, invaded Afghanistan.  The US CIA and Special Forces teams linked up with Rashid Doostum and other commanders of the Northern Alliance.  They used US Military technology to bombard the Taliban and their mercenary Pushtoon allies back to Southern Afghanistan finally defeating the Taliban in Qandahar.

The invasion of Afghanistan was a “good war.”  We were making the world safe for democracy.  We were bringing humanity, women’s right and freedom to the people of Afghanistan.  We were liberators.  This was no war on Islam or the religious principles or culture of Afghanistan and it’s people.  America was leading the world in the fight against a new darkness.  The old propaganda was pulled out of the dust bins of history.  Communism and fascism were replaced by Islamic extremism.  This was a Global War on Terror.  It was a war that Don Rumsfield and Dick Cheney said might last forever.  It was an endless war that would bring light and democracy to the dark, unwashed masses of the Central Asia, the Middle East and Africa.

What most of the US Public weren’t told was that many of the Pushtoon commanders who fought with the Taliban up to 2001 were bribed into switching sides.  Afghan Warlords have always been quick to abandon a losing cause.  During the Mujahideen Wars that followed the 1988 Soviet withdrawal from Afghanistan, Warlords such as Birhanuddin Rabbani, Rashid Doostum and Hektmetyar Gulbuddin switched sides so often that American Intelligence officials following the war could not keep up with who was on whose side.  After being targeted by massive bombing runs by US Military Aircraft guided by US Special Forces soldiers, the North fell swiftly.   These Warlords were not willing to fight against aircraft from which they had no defenses.  With the writing on the wall, Warlords who had jumped to the Taliban cause a few years earlier accepted massive bribes to join the Coalition cause.

These were the same Warlords who believed in the message of the Taliban.  The burqa, sharia, harsh punishments for petty crimes, honor killings, tribalism were the calling cards of these men.  These men were no different than Mullah Omar who founded the Taliban movement.  Later, Barack Obama would re-define these men as “moderate Taliban.”  The only difference between these Warlords and the minions of Mullah Omar were a willingness to take million dollar bribes and to smile at Western cameras.  These same men fought alongside the Taliban in the dark of night while treating with us in the light of day.

The plan that got us into bed with these Warlords was initially designated  Operation Infinite Justice.  The “Muslim street” was outraged again.  Infinite justice could only be provided by Allah.  The idea of the West providing infinite justice in the Muslim world was another manifestation of the crusader ethos that so offended the Muslim mind.  Infinite justice was only possible with Allah.  George Bush, whose crusader remarks earlier in the year had caused protests throughout the Muslim World, caved to Muslim sentiment.  Ironically, the crusades were a reaction to Islamic Imperialism brought on by the original caliphates wars of conquest against the West.  Now, Osama bin Laden and his al Qaeda were fighting to bring about a New Caliphate resulting in a similar military backlash from the West.  Revisionist history and political correctness resulted in the invasion of Afghanistan being re-designated Operation Enduring Freedom.

Enduring Freedom was an immediate tactical success.  US and Coalition forces rolled up the taliban within a few months.  However, it’s strategic success was short lived.   President Bush, fearing American reaction to flag draped caskets on the evening news, tried to outsource the war to the Afghans and failed to provide covering forces to block the escape of al Qaeda and Taliban leadership.  Bin Laden and Mullah Omar trotted out of Afghanistan and into mountains of Pakistan on horseback with the aid of the Musharraf’s Inter Services Intelligence.  Rumors at the time had bin Laden slipping into the wild and unruly autonomous Northwest Frontier Province minutes ahead of US Special Forces.  The border problem was compounded by the fact that many of the Taliban were Pakistani soldiers in mufti.  The Pakistan Army refused to fire on fleeing taliban soldiers and leadership.  The Paki Mullah Generals had beefed up Taliban forces in the years before 9-11 with it’s own soldiers.   Pakistani soldiers feared firing on fleeing Taliban as they may well have been killing brothers or cousins.  Apparently, the only person in the world who didn’t know this was George Bush.

By the time I arrived in Bagram in November of 2003, the Taliban had been defeated and were fighting a low level insurgency that would wax and wane over the next decade.  American and World resolve to see through the mission of building democracy was lukewarm despite the glorious rhetoric of the Bush administration.   Democracy, women’s rights and equality for ethnic and religious minorities would never get off the ground.  By November of 2003, Islamic Law (aka Sharia) would be enshrined into Afghan constitutional law.  The Women and Minorities of Afghanistan became victims of the great American military tradition of BOHICA — bend over here it comes again.

George and Laura Bush talked a good game concerning Human Rights.  Barack and Michelle Obama gave equal lip service to these ideas.  As soon as Sharia was voted into the Afghan Constitution, women and minority rights became a lost cause.  In the end, we traded lofty goals and humanity for support from the same warlords who had only months earlier fought with the Taliban.  Operation Enduring Freedom would ultimately become Operation Epic Failure.

Please Do Not Sell Your Women — Daughters, Wives or Mothers.

Sex Slavery

A great problem in Central Asia and India, among other places, is the selling of women into slaver.  Usually sex slavery.  Happens quite frequently in Iran as well from what I’ve read.

Women in this part of the world are seen as property.  A daughter or a “disobedient” wife can bring a family out of debt or help a family purchase a tractor or other items which can enhance a Father or Husbands wealth or standing in the community.  Daughters are not seen as contributors to a family estate.  They’re more a nuisance or a drain on resources.  A man who has only daughters can be taken deep into debt for dowries.

It’s not seen as fortunate on this side of the planet to have a daughter.

They’re expendable or worse.

We, in the West, find this attitude abhorrent.  At the top of the world, it’s merely a fact of life.

There are several excellent books which touch on this subject.  Sold, by Patricia McCormick, is an excellent fictional account of a young girl who is sold into slavery in order to bring her family out of debt and deceived into thinking that she will be a house servant in order that she go willingly.

This is a horrible fact of life for women in this part of the globe.  A less mentioned facet of the sex slave trade is the number of these women who end up in the West in back alley rooms and decrepit hotels on the wrong side of town.  They’re kept prisoner and when used up, murdered and tossed out like so much waste.

Islamic Sharia and the Rights of Muslim Women

After being kidnapped at the age of 16 by a group of thugs and enduring a year of rapes and beatings, Assiya Rafiq was delivered to the police and thought her problems were over.

Then, she said, four police officers took turns raping her.

The next step for Assiya was obvious: She should commit suicide. That’s the customary escape in rural Pakistan for a raped woman, as the only way to cleanse the disgrace to her entire family.

Instead, Assiya summoned the unimaginable courage to go public and fight back. She is seeking to prosecute both her kidnappers and the police, despite threats against her and her younger sisters. This is a kid who left me awed and biting my lip; this isn’t a tale of victimization but of valor, empowerment and uncommon heroism.

“I decided to prosecute because I don’t want the same thing to happen to anybody else,” she said firmly.

Assiya’s case offers a window into the quotidian corruption and injustice endured by impoverished Pakistanis — leading some to turn to militant Islam.

“When I treat a rape victim, I always advise her not to go to the police,” said Dr. Shershah Syed, the president of the Society of Obstetricians and Gynecologists of Pakistan. “Because if she does, the police might just rape her again.”

Yet Assiya is also a sign that change is coming. She says she was inspired by Mukhtar Mai, a young woman from this remote village of Meerwala who was gang raped in 2002 on the orders of a village council. Mukhtar prosecuted her attackers and used the compensation money to start a school.

Mukhtar is my hero. Many Times readers who followed her story in past columns of mine have sent her donations through a fund at Mercy Corps, at www.mercycorps.org, and Mukhtar has used the money to open schools, a legal aid program, an ambulance service, a women’s shelter, a telephone hotline — and to help Assiya fight her legal case.

The United States has stood aloof from the ubiquitous injustices in Pakistan, and that’s one reason for cynicism about America here. I’m hoping the Obama administration will make clear that Americans stand shoulder to shoulder with heroines like Mukhtar and Assiya, and with an emerging civil society struggling for law and social justice.

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/07/26/opinion/26kristof.html?_r=2&em

Free Tibet Now!!!

Tibetans and their supporters are on the move throughout the free world. It’s the perfect time to move against the communist human rights violating monolith that is China.

China . The Host of the 2008 Summer Olympics. It’s sacrilege. The Olympics are supposed to be symbolic of peace,cooperation and harmony among nations. Amongst peoples. China, the megalithic Communist Monster. China the world devourer. China of Tienanmen Square fame–Tanks to squash a student protest. China who allowed millions to perish so that a few well fed maniacal murderers could retain power. China. Led for nearly 3 decades by Mao Zedong. The greatest mass murderer to walk the earth. The man who oversaw the murder of 70 Million Chinese so that he could frighten the rest into obeisance. Mao Zedong.

In 1950, China invaded Tibet. Extending the Maoist carnage and murder spree into the worlds most peaceful province. China rolled into Tibet and commenced to torturing and murdering Monks and ordinary citizens in the thousands and hundreds of thousands.

Why did Mao want Tibet? What was his claim?

It was simply a matter of Chinese prestige. Mao thought that all of the peoples of the area should have the opportunity to be murdered in his evil grasp and under his failed leadership.

In 1246, a Mongolian annexed Tibet into the greater Mongolian Empire. That Mongol Ruler was Khubalai Khan. Great Grandson of Genghis Khan. Khubalai Khan eventually conquered and united what we know today as China. This is the first instance in history of a united China. Khubalai founded the Yuan Dynasty. This is considered the first Dynasty of modern China. The China that we know today.

The China we know today was created by a Mongolian. Don’t tell the Chinese this. For some reason, it angers them. They see the Mongols as a primitive people. But it took a Mongol Emperor to bring China together. it was a Mongol Emperor who first brought Tibet into the Chinese sphere of influence.

China’s claim to Tibet is as ridiculous as a Mongolian claim to China.

China has brought herself these troubles. The Chinese want to join the Global scene as a full and respected partner. Yet, they still want to carry on as belligerent neighbors. Taiwan is another example of Chinese over-reaching and trouble making. Taiwan is a separate nation. Yet, China continues to want to claim it as part of mainland China. China wants a peaceful partnership with the free world. BUT they don’t want to be held to the standard of peaceful nations. China wants to make money off the West even as they terrify and cow their own citizens. Even as they deny many of their citizens basic human rights.

The Taiwanese have built a country based on capitalism and free markets. It’s people were thriving even as Mao was murdering millions in his failed Cultural experiments (revolutions). Yet, China demands the right to rule over the island nation as if China were the author of Taiwan’s successes.

Now that the Olympics have given the enemies of China a world wide forum, expect the Tibetans and other groups to surface. As the Olympics draw closer, it will be more and more difficult for China and the governments of the participating nations to ignore their demands.

Tibet has international support. I’m interested to see where the pressure on China leads. Will China react as they have in the past with violence and severe punishments? Will they cave to international pressure? Will China be forced to stop murdering innocent folks for the crime of desiring freedom and liberty? Will the world stand up and be counted? Or will the same eyes which refused to see the genocide in Darfur be willfully blind still?

Will Tibet finally gain their independence or at least autonomy? Or will Chinese hypocrisy and murder be rewarded yet again by it’s eager accomplices in the West?

Of course, we all want our cheap electronics, tennis shoes and t-shirts from Walmart via cheap Chinese labor. Therefore, the chances of China being held to any real standard of human rights is slim to non-existant. It’s the same with oil. We want our cheap products. And Hell! We’re free. We have our liberty. Why should anyone care about those damn Chinese or Tibetans? Or anyone else for that matter.

I’ve met a few Tibetans along the path of my life. They have always been nice, peaceful people. Exactly what you would expect. As if each Tibetan were an emissary of the Dalai Lama himself. Poised. Perfectly composed. Even when the subject of the mighty Dragon arose.

Peace.

Questions or Comments are always welcome.