Afghanistan, Graveyard of Empires
In the first days after 9/11, I emailed other New Yorkers that I was opposed to any invasion of Afghanistan. I said that the last thing any country should do is what their enemy clearly wants them to do. And it was obvious, at least to me, that bin Laden was doing everything possible to provoke Bush to invade Afghanistan? Why? Because bin Laden thought it would spark an Islamist revolution against the US and other Western governments.*
Bush, of course, was too incompetent and bloodthirsty to resist bin Laden's bait. So sure enough, he invaded Afghanistan. This is the result:
All told, the cost of nearly 18 years of war in Afghanistan will amount to more than $2 trillion. Was the money well spent?
There is little to show for it.
Could an American president, after 9/11, not invaded Afghanistan? That is, was it politically feasible to do so? In my opinion, yes, but it would have taken a great statesman to make the non-invasion case to the American people.
But assuming an Afghanistan invasion to be inevitable (as stupid as it would be), there were surely ways to avoid the catastrophe Bush, Cheney Rumsfeld, and the rest of that sick crew created. But incompetence was rampant in foreign and military policy under Bush. And here, $2 trillion dollars later, we are.
*By the way, many of the New Yorkers I was in contact with agreed that invading Afghanistan was the height of stupidity back in September 2001. They included people who lived less than 10 blocks from the World Trade Center.