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07:48 AM on 01/21/2012
The up side in all this is:
1 it helps keep the world population down.
2 All the money spent keeps people employed who would other wise be claiming money for being unemployed
3 Lets the armed forces test their new shiny experimental equipment.
4 reminds us of the the stupidity of war.
5 shows us the very real danger a religions ability to be used to subvert intelligence and common sense.
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schatsie
Reality is not disney world
11:59 AM on 01/21/2012
If only we would apply this principle here: the very real danger a religions ability to be used to subvert intelligen­ce and common sense, that is exactly how Bush sold this CRUSADE....to profit the MIC.....
07:36 AM on 01/21/2012
qw
06:29 AM on 01/21/2012
YO!, Whoa whoa whoa wait a sec, we did not enter this war to get shot at this is BS, lets get out of here
05:52 AM on 01/21/2012
Reading through many of the comments by Americans here offending the French soldiers I can only say that I am deeply disappointed. As an officer of the German army I had the good fortune to serve with both French and US comrades alike in several foreign missions. Had we worked together to the tune of this derogative comments, nothing would have been achieved.

I mourn any of our soldiers loosing his or her life there, no matter the nationality. Does anybody here who tries to ridicule the French soldiers really think it is any different a feeling for a 20yo from Marseilles, from Fayetteville, from Augustdorf or from any other place when they leave camp to conduct their mission? Do you really think one of them is for reasons of nationality more or less brave in doing so?

If it was not for the election of President Obama, Europe would - and I add rightly so! - have already withdrawn from there: The overwhelming majority of our public/ electorate is since many years opposed to continue it; especially because pretty much the only rationale given today is "we stay because the US stays".

Yes, we soldiers/ veterans of all NATO nations like some good- natured bickering and teasing about the qualities of our/ the others' army/ies. But never in death.
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uk progressive
He took a face from the ancient gallery
03:02 AM on 01/21/2012
Old colonialist super powers France and britain hanging on to the coat tails of a fading hyper power theUS in the graveyard of empires.
07:53 AM on 01/21/2012
As a German, I am not quite sure about the validity of your statement. I'd not "accuse" the French , or the British or my own people for that matter of going into it with a sort of "hurrah- patriotism". It was a legitimate strategic reason to oust the Mullah Omar regime and put an end to the training camps. It was a legitimate humanitarian reason to not just end it then and there but to try giving the AFG population a chance to alter their destiny.

But then came lot of mistakes, misperceptions and over-confidence. Who in his right mind would try to impose a centralized, presidential democracy on a tribal, regionally tied people? If anything, only a very federal system could have worked.
The other point was: commitment. The Balkans are - despite all shortcomings - a success because of a simple troops/ people, troops/km^2 ratio. Kosovo was pacified because we could exert power and give security into every corner very quickly. To achieve the same in AFG we would have needed to commit hundreds of thousands troops. Instead, we committed less than in Kosovo.
Last but not least: Yes, there is a cultural gap we cannot bridge. There are core principles each of our soldiers is charged to uphold, principles that cannot be subdued by orders and commands. To uphold them against any opposition, foreign or domestic, we are sworn upon. They are not negotiable ... but alien to the fabric of AFG society.
uk progressive
He took a face from the ancient gallery
08:51 AM on 01/21/2012
Who runs Afghanistan is nobody's concern other than the afghan people,mullah Omar and the taliban had nothing to do with 9/11 and is of no threat to Germany,UK or the US nor are the Taliban otherwise the US wouldn't have supported the Taliban opening a office in Qatar for direct peace talks.
10:10 AM on 01/21/2012
Michael, well put. Good analysis. Insightful and thoughtful a rare combination here on Huff. Keep up the good work.
07:53 AM on 01/21/2012
This has been clear to most soldiers and officers serving there since long. But, it seems, only now it made its way into the official papers of high command.

Enter: President Obama. After eight years of Bush, Rumsfeld e.a. and despite the weariness of the European electorates I can understand why many of our governments didn't want to start relations with him by announcing: "Enough is enough". Had the other Presidential ticket won, I am sure that by now most Europeans would have left theater. The date of 2014 for withdrawal is entirely political given the election cycles in the US and in Europe.
uk progressive
He took a face from the ancient gallery
02:40 AM on 01/21/2012
It's not fair these afghans shooting back at us,why can't the people of Afghanistan just let the invaders kill and occupy in peace.
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ideaville
I have sexdaily, I mean dyslexia, Danm!
01:06 PM on 01/21/2012
You missed the point, the Afghans doing the killing are being trained by NATO at the request of the "elected" Afghan government. Sadly there half been many Afghans that will train alongside NATO and befriend their colleagues, just to get a chance to betray them and murder them.
We should not be giving them any training.
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HUFFPOST SUPER USER
ABDUL KADER
02:25 AM on 01/21/2012
Still understand the sentiments of local peoples against the occupant cruel forces in Afghanistan.
Please get lost early, peace prevail itself.
HUFFPOST SUPER USER
SickOfBarf
11:57 AM on 01/21/2012
Your screen name sounds familiar -- like defendants in the Holy Land trial -- funding terrorism.
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HUFFPOST SUPER USER
ABDUL KADER
11:32 PM on 01/21/2012
Idiot,
it pronounce loudly and clearly,
ISLAM IS PEACE.
Your mind is full of garbage and having bankrupt mentality for which I don't have any remedy.
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ideaville
I have sexdaily, I mean dyslexia, Danm!
01:49 PM on 01/21/2012
The "occupant cruel forces" are there at the request of the people of Afghanistan.
The whole country is not worth another drop of British blood.
If we want to fight the Afghans and other Islamic extremists, we can do it here at home.
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HUFFPOST SUPER USER
ABDUL KADER
11:37 PM on 01/21/2012
TOTALLY WRONG.
YOU OCCUPIED THERE FORCEFULLY,
under the wrong perception that so called terrorists are hiding there.
You cruels get lost early like British and Russians etc.
The Afghan people are capable enough.
HUFFPOST SUPER USER
bbomb187
12:26 AM on 01/21/2012
Bring all the soldiers home. These Afghans are not worth the loss of one life.
12:10 AM on 01/21/2012
France and Sarkozy obviously did not learn their lesson from Viet Nam , and Algeria. History repeats itself once again for the cretins.
HUFFPOST SUPER USER
pomeria
02:25 AM on 01/21/2012
Apparently France is not the only country that did not learn their lesson. The U.S. has Korea and Vietnam. I guess the sayings that "history repeats itself" was not taught in the schools.
05:19 AM on 01/21/2012
Vienman is now at peace and by coincidence there are no european colonial troops there - do you suppose that is a coincidence or maybe the explanation ?
08:26 AM on 01/21/2012
When the French and American invaders were there all you had was prostitution and drugs..... Today it 's not only peaceful but clean.
10:40 PM on 01/20/2012
May God give all these soldiers peace and comfort during their time of loss. May God give the USA the wisdom to come home and restore order here at home. God bless our soldiers.
HUFFPOST SUPER USER
SickOfBarf
10:19 AM on 01/21/2012
May God give America another George Patton.
11:37 AM on 01/21/2012
Sadly those days are over "BARF". Most of todays Generals are only worried about their pensions and the private industry contracts they can get when they retire.
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11:49 AM on 01/21/2012
Because Patton would have done what exactly?
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Chopin
Multiply the truth. Speak truth through power.
10:32 PM on 01/20/2012
.
Français et Françaises­, pourquoi avez-vous abandonné le colonialis­me français jusqu'à maintenant pour renforcer l'impérial­isme américain ?

Frenchmen and Frenchwomen, why have you relinquished French colonialism until now to reinforce American imperialism ?
.
HUFFPOST SUPER USER
SickOfBarf
10:20 AM on 01/21/2012
America has nothing to do with your idiots who run the EU, Chopin.
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HUFFPOST SUPER USER
Jimmy Gitz
Independent - and it shows...
09:33 PM on 01/20/2012
"Very careful vetting" on the recruitment side? And how do they get into the minds of potential recruits? If polygraph (3X) is not part of the process -- it's vetting, wasted. A recruit who fails the exam because of loyalty issues - but believes he beat the system - could still be enlisted, but shadowed by intel personnel.....jcg
11:20 PM on 01/20/2012
What the HELL are you smoking; or are you off your mrds. again
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HUFFPOST SUPER USER
Jimmy Gitz
Independent - and it shows...
01:06 AM on 01/21/2012
Heinz, you sound like one of the great minds currently involved in this limited action war. Shadow = keep track of. Quit smoking long ago. Please be specific.
06:28 AM on 01/21/2012
in all seriousness, i really cant figure out what your trying to say
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HUFFPOST SUPER USER
Jimmy Gitz
Independent - and it shows...
07:59 PM on 01/21/2012
German Brig General Carsten Jacobson, Coalition Spokesperson, indicated confidence in the vetting of new recruits for the Afghan Forces. Vetting, checking background, public records, etc. cannot tell recruiters what is in the mind of potential recruits, A more significant "test" of the mind could and should involve polygraph examination (3x).This may appear to be extra work -- but as long as we and our allies have troops in country and risking death daily, it should be so done. The Afghans recruit -- we give guidance. Hope I did a better job this time - if not, let me know. Thanks........jcg
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darter22
Very funny, Scotty. Now beam down my clothes.
09:17 PM on 01/20/2012
Other countries have tried to pacify Afghanistan without success for the last 1200 years, but hey, this time it's different.
08:38 PM on 01/20/2012
its so unlike the French to cut and run.......
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08:15 PM on 01/20/2012
WHERE WARS ARE WON OR LOST

Wars are waged by older men
In battle rooms in countries apart.
Who call for greater firepower
And troops for the combat chart.

While out among the shattered flesh
The dreams of all have turned gray.
So young and determined their faces were
Till on the battlefield they lay.

Unable to overcome their pride
The politicians cast their vote.
For this or that or something else
As the rage of war sounds its note.

Wherever wars are won or lost
The soldiers fall like toys.
Down through history it remains the same
Most who die are hardly more than boys.

Like monkeys in a revolving cage
Man squabbles for the peanuts of power.
When will we rise above our greed
And become as a beautiful flower?

Death to death, dust to dust
The wrath of war is a horrible crime.
It’s the beast within that still prevails
As it has through the torments of time.

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02:17 AM on 01/21/2012
windbag