Yesterday was a sad day for this country. The House had the opportunity to stop the war in Afghanistan in its tracks. Instead it voted to continue to fund the war approving the $58.8 billion war funding bill.
There was some resistance with more than a hundred Democrats voting against the measure, but the vote wasn't close with the final tally being 304 to 114. So this unnecessary war escalated by Obama will drone on literally and figuratively. And make no mistake; this is Obama's war, just like Viet Nam was Lyndon Johnson's war.
Even the "Wikileaks" revelations that were released over the weekend confirming the overall brutality of the war, the wanton killing of innocents by our troops, the duplicity of the Pakistani intelligence services (the ISI) that often works at cross purposes, mollifying the Americans to go after the insurgent Taliban in Pakistan yet clandestinely informing and maintaining close ties with the various Taliban groups. It confirmed the corruption of the Afghan government and the incompetence of the Afghan military and the national police, often at odds with each other, even kill each other.
So here is Obama escalating a war in the graveyard of empires, no longer content that al Qaeda is no longer operating in the country (hiding as they are in some redoubt in the Pakistani Tribal belt). He's taken on the Taliban, the indigenous, mostly Pashtun ethnic group that is not only the majority of the Afghan population, but is closely aligned with the Pakistani Taliban with both groups crossing the porous border freely between the two countries.
The Taliban is not one single entity operating under one hierarchy, but many independently led groups which often act independently and for their own purposes. They are allied in their shared opposition to our presence, the Afghan puppet government that we prop up and any officials that work closely with us. They fight on their own terms (often in classic guerilla style), often choosing when to confront the enemy (us), withdrawing when it's to their advantage or melting back in with the general Afghan population. They are in this for the duration however long it takes, bleeding us slowly until we realize the futility and eventually leave. This is Viet Nam Redux!
There is little doubt they can and will outlast us, fighting as they are on their soil, their country and we are just the latest invader and occupier that they will resist until we eventually do as all foreign would be conquerors have done in the past, withdraw and go home.
That Obama has stepped into this quagmire, acceding to his generals and hard line conservatives who thirst for war, desire victory (and who will never accept defeat) and who never learned and accepted the lessons and defeat in Viet Nam. It is a testament to their stubbornness and hubris, but a wrenching reality.
So yesterday, the House sycophants acted as expected and took the easy road of assuring the continuance of this unnecessary war.
One can only hope come November, those who cast these votes for more war will face a public that sends them packing. That would be their just dessert.