The War in Afghanistan
This page is currently under revision. Historical facts are below for reference.
- 1196 U.S. troops have been killed in Afghanistan since 2001. It took 2,520 days for the war to take 500 American lives; it took just 627 days for it to take the next 500.
- The United States has spent $285 billion on war in Afghanistan. $100 billion this year alone.
- The War in Afghanistan is the longest war in U.S. history.
- Last October the President's National Security Advisor, Gen. Jim Jones, estimated there were 100 al Qaeda in Afghanistan. This June, CIA Director Leon Panetta estimated there could be as few as 50 al Qaeda left in Afghanistan.
- A majority of Afghans want the United States to leave their country and see us as occupiers. After the recent US military offensive in Marja, 71% of residents said they wanted NATO forces to leave - a higher percetage tha before the operation begain.
- A December 2009 study by the US Army in Kandahar found 94% of the local people support reconciliation between the Afghan government and the Taliban.
- The Karzai regime is fraught with corruption and Afghanistan has been ranked the second most corrupt nation in the world. A study by the United Nations found that corruption accounts for nearly 25% of Afghanistan's GDP. According to Integrity Watch Afghanistan, corruption has doubled since 2007.
Recent Polls Show:
- 65% of Americans want the United States to begin withdrawal from Afghanistan no later than July 2011.
- 60% think the US should stick to withdrawal beginning in July 2011 even if the country is still as unstable as it is today.
- 55% think that if Congress and the President have to reduce government spending, it should reduce spending on the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.
About the War in Afghanistan
The war in Afghanistan began on Oct. 7, 2001. It was started in retaliation to the al Qaeda backed terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001. The Bush administration's justification for the war at that time was that Afghanistan had become a safe haven for al Qaeda. Afghanistan, at the time, was ruled by the Taliban, which had come to power after decades of warfare and civil unrest. The U.S. kicked the Taliban out, and installed a national government. Since then, the U.S. has been bogged down in a quagmire of epic proportions.
During President Barack Obama's campaign for president in 2008, seven years after the war began, he argued that Afghanistan was the "right" war. He was elected President and went on to push for an escalation of 21,000 and then another 30,000 troops in Afghanistan. In announcing his second surge of troops in December of 2009, Obama said troops would begin to come home in July 2011. The president and others in his administration have since undercut that promise, saying that date is simply the time when a "process begins." Depending on conditions in Afghanistan, we might not bring any troops home at the beginning of that "withdrawal." Our military commitment to the corrupt Government in Afghansitan remains open-ended.
Conditions in Afghanistan are only getting worse. Increasing the US troop presence has resulted in the deadliest months of the war in Afghanistan, and the much touted first operation of the surge in Marjah only increased Afghan opposition to our presence there. it's time to end the war in Afghanistan