As a military family member where some have done recent tours, I have given a lot of thought to war, why we go and why we stay. I am against political wars – meaning we go in and make so many mandates on our military they can’t defend themselves or protect the folks they are there to help. I am for a war to win. We go in, kick down doors, take names, do our job and come home. I think the wars where we quit trying to win and putting our men at risk began in Viet Nam. It became a political war – which I am against and what I think we are dealing with now.
Many ask why we are in Afghanistan? To me it’s simple. We’re there because if we leave – we are leaving a country that depended on us to help them win democracy – as they’d like to pursue it. Afghanistan has been called the crossroads of Central Asia. We’re there because if we leave, our bases and intelligence we’ve gathered will be for not. To leave and just close up shop and go home makes no sense. We have to have bases for our military – and we need to own our bases to insure our men are protected while they are on them. Due to the current environment to leave makes us vulnerable on the home front. You better believe this war of Terror does not stop at their borders. We need to be able to have a base where our planes, men and equipment can go in and out to keep a pulse on the politics of the country.
Do you know what we’ve done while we’ve been in Afghanistan? Let me share some facts you won’t find in any newspapers.
• Four thousand plus paved roads now cross the country compared to when the Taliban ruled
• 16 million children have been vaccinated against childhood disease – 1 in 4 children die before the age of 5.
• 2,000 public schools have been built and girls are now attending – in 2001 less than 1M children (all boys) had school opportunity.
• There are five Universities open
• Over one hundred hospitals are operational
• 68 of Afghans 249-member Parliament are now women (27%). Compared to only 18% in the US House and Senate combined.
How was much of this possible? Our military, British, French and Afghan troops worked tirelessly – not only defending the Afghan people but helping to rebuild. President Karzai (A Philadelphia Liberty Medal Winner) is responsible as well. While not wanting occupation they do want Democracy. He has said he will not seek a third term due to conflicting rumors he wants to change the constitution. He has been a big proponent of women’s issues as his wife, a doctor, spent years helping women and children in refugee camps .We did help them against the Russian invasion, and we are helping them now and to pull out prematurely is not something we can do as we did before. They need help training their security forces, they continue to need help in the rebuilding of their country.
The Afghan people want our help and don’t want us to leave, they want us to help them continue with their fight. They want to win. Ask the troops. Without us they lived in rubble, with us they have clean drinking water, electricity, schools, hospitals and pride.
References: Priority Projects, Wikipedia, UK Telegraph, Inside the Revolution – Joel Rosenberg.