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Posted: 9/8/2013 11:23:46 PM EDT
Hindsight being what it is, were we right to help the Mujahideen in Afghanistan back in the 80s?
Link Posted: 9/8/2013 11:48:24 PM EDT
Nope. None of our business. Should have stayed out of it. BTW Korea and Vietnam too.
Link Posted: 9/8/2013 11:50:09 PM EDT
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Quoted:
Nope. None of our business. Should have stayed out of it. BTW Korea and Vietnam too.
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Yup, although I'm pretty sure we only got in it because the Ruskies were there. Cold War and all.
Link Posted: 9/8/2013 11:53:50 PM EDT
I think we looked at it as "enemy of my enemy", but I doubt that anyone making the decisions to ally ourselves with them had ANY CLUE just how whacked some of the people we were buddying up to were.

I mean, its probably downright  hard for someone in DC to contemplate / understand some cave-dwelling guy in the mountains of A-stan who thinks its the 13th century and acts accordingly
Link Posted: 9/8/2013 11:57:24 PM EDT
I once saw a man get off his horse, take off all his clothes and roll around in a cactus patch. When I asked him why he did it he said "It seemed like a good idea at the time."
Link Posted: 9/8/2013 11:59:16 PM EDT
At the time, yes, so that's how I voted.

In hindsight, hell no.
Link Posted: 9/9/2013 1:02:08 AM EDT
It depends, or both yes and no.

We provided indiscriminate help to all players, both "good" and "bad", fighting the communist Afghan government (and by proxy, the Soviets).

That help was also channeled to and through Pakistani-based (pronounced bad) groups (the ones we are still fighting today) who withheld as much of said aid as possible from their rival ("good") groups.
Link Posted: 9/9/2013 3:57:50 AM EDT
We helped kill communists.

That's never a bad thing.
Link Posted: 9/9/2013 4:00:40 AM EDT
The muj were not the taliban.

The biggest threat to the US remains communist ideology.

goat herders can't kill us, only hurt us.

communism will destroy this nation.

fighting the soviet union, taking away the biggest support of US Communism was and is the best COA.
Link Posted: 9/9/2013 4:04:23 AM EDT

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Quoted:


We helped kill communists.



That's never a bad thing.
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When do we start here?
Link Posted: 9/9/2013 4:04:45 AM EDT
It broke the back of the Soviet Union, the greatest menace to individual freedom in the last 100 years. This isn't even a question.
Link Posted: 9/9/2013 4:06:16 AM EDT
Despite the popular meme that we are fighting the people today that we supported ysterday, the biggest real reverse in policy came when the Russians decided to support Massoud after Kabul fell to the Taliban.

Is the Wahabbist demon a bitch to keep managed?  yes.

Is the popular narrative even close to capturing the reality and complexity of the threat?  no.

Link Posted: 9/9/2013 4:08:16 AM EDT
Perfect opportunity for the back of a gung-ho magazine I saw at work a guy brought in:

Link Posted: 9/9/2013 4:15:34 AM EDT
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Quoted:
Perfect opportunity for the back of a gung-ho magazine I saw at work a guy brought in:

http://imageshack.us/a/img560/3236/39042796225912307317885.jpg
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Gung-ho magazine............ haven't seen that in a LOOOOOOOOOONG time!
Link Posted: 9/9/2013 4:17:35 AM EDT
As has already been said in this thread, the mujahadeen did not "morph" into the Taliban or Al Quaeda.  That is a lie spread by the liberals and the Paulistinians.  What was left of the muj became mostly the Northern Alliance that aided us in our invasion of Afghanistan.  The Taliban was created by the Pakistani ISI and Al Quaeda was financed by the oil producing Middle Eastern nations.
We were completely right to aid the mujahadeen in Afghanistan and ending the Cold War was much more important and significant than the threat of terrorism.
Link Posted: 9/9/2013 4:20:12 AM EDT

Having just recently done some summary reading (Wikipedia mainly) on the Saur Revolution and the Soviet Intervention, the Soviets were trying to push their influence farther south than we were comfortable with and pushed back - just like the British did back in the day with the Russian Empire.  The oversimplified version is that the Russians supported a client government that siezed power in a coup, the government was unpopular and begged for help from the Soviets after major rebellions.  The Soviets knew it would end up badly and resisted for a while, but finally went in.  Even with hindsight, it's hard to imagine us letting the Soviets run wild over the area and gain a foothold that close to the Persian Gulf.  It would also be terribly hard to resist getting some revenge for what they did to us in Vietnam.

Even without our help, things would have gotten ugly in Afghanistan and heightened the radicalism that was already there.  The people who hindsight should have helped were the Afghanis.  The Saur Revolution truly was TEOTWAWKI; once the nation became ungovernable and the Soviets rolled in, they bombed villages and infrastructure, destroying irrigation and water resources and caused chaos throughout the society.  Afghanistan was a poor and uneducated country even before that, but given all that happened to it directly because of that coup, it's not surprising it's turned into the current mess.

Link Posted: 9/9/2013 4:21:45 AM EDT

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Quoted:


As has already been said in this thread, the mujahadeen did not "morph" into the Taliban or Al Quaeda.  That is a lie spread by the liberals and the Paulistinians.  What was left of the muj became mostly the Northern Alliance that aided us in our invasion of Afghanistan.  The Taliban was created by the Pakistani ISI and Al Quaeda was financed by the oil producing Middle Eastern nations.

We were completely right to aid the mujahadeen in Afghanistan and ending the Cold War was much more important and significant than the threat of terrorism.
View Quote
Wow, for once I see somebody besides myself that understands the difference between who we supported and the Taliban.



you win 1000 Internets!



We fucked up on the follow through after Russia pulled out.



 
Link Posted: 9/9/2013 4:26:29 AM EDT
RikWriter for the win
Link Posted: 9/9/2013 4:31:37 AM EDT
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Quoted:
Wow, for once I see somebody besides myself that understands the difference between who we supported and the Taliban.

you win 1000 Internets!

We fucked up on the follow through after Russia pulled out.
 
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Quoted:
Quoted:
As has already been said in this thread, the mujahadeen did not "morph" into the Taliban or Al Quaeda.  That is a lie spread by the liberals and the Paulistinians.  What was left of the muj became mostly the Northern Alliance that aided us in our invasion of Afghanistan.  The Taliban was created by the Pakistani ISI and Al Quaeda was financed by the oil producing Middle Eastern nations.
We were completely right to aid the mujahadeen in Afghanistan and ending the Cold War was much more important and significant than the threat of terrorism.
Wow, for once I see somebody besides myself that understands the difference between who we supported and the Taliban.

you win 1000 Internets!

We fucked up on the follow through after Russia pulled out.
 


Things were fucked up, but do you think Congress would have approved boots on the ground to help us stabilize that country?  We could have sent more aid, but with the Pakistanis a physical presence trying to radicalize the government, I think it would have taken troops to set things right.
Link Posted: 9/9/2013 4:31:40 AM EDT
Remember the ads in SOF during those times about buying a round of .303 Brit for a dollar. "Spend a dollar, kill a Commie" or some such.
Link Posted: 9/9/2013 4:32:41 AM EDT
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Quoted:
The muj were not the taliban.

The biggest threat to the US remains communist ideology.

goat herders can't kill us, only hurt us.

communism will destroy this nation.

fighting the soviet union, taking away the biggest support of US Communism was and is the best COA.
View Quote


+1
Link Posted: 9/9/2013 4:38:09 AM EDT
The real question is "should the US have considered Pakistan its ally in the post 9/11 world and given it billions of $ so that it could continue to aid and shelter the Taliban and AQ?"

It'll take another couple years for this "chess not checkers" scheme to sort itself out but I'm not as optimistic as some who claim that the long term plan is working quite well. I don't see the ANA and ANP having anything close to control of  much outside of Kabul by this time next year when the bulk of NATO forces are gone
Link Posted: 9/9/2013 4:39:12 AM EDT
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Quoted:


+1
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Quoted:
Quoted:
The muj were not the taliban.

The biggest threat to the US remains communist ideology.

goat herders can't kill us, only hurt us.

communism will destroy this nation.

fighting the soviet union, taking away the biggest support of US Communism was and is the best COA.


+1


Yup. It probably wouldn't have hurt to have stuck around a little bit and supported a side in the civil war.

But the Paki ISI wasn't having any of that and our focus was shifting.
Link Posted: 9/9/2013 4:39:26 AM EDT

Quoted:


Hindsight being what it is, were we right to help the Mujahideen in Afghanistan back in the 80s?
View Quote




 
The goal in the 80's was to limit the expansion of communism and to pressure the Soviet Union.  So yes, back then it was a good decision totally in keeping with our objectives.  The unintended consequence was we trained and armed people who would later become our enemies.  




A better question is how does forcing other countries, with no history of democratic rule, to become democracies fit into our current objectives in the war on terror.   Not to mention the unintended consequences of doing so.






Link Posted: 9/9/2013 4:40:00 AM EDT
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Quoted:

  When do we start here?
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Quoted:
We helped kill communists.

That's never a bad thing.

  When do we start here?

next Thursday...
It is always proper to kill communists.
Link Posted: 9/9/2013 4:40:39 AM EDT
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Quoted:
The real question is "should the US have considered Pakistan its ally in the post 9/11 world and given it billions of $ so that it could continue to aid and shelter the Taliban and AQ?"

It'll take another couple years for this "chess not checkers" scheme to sort itself out but I'm not as optimistic as some who claim that the long term plan is working quite well. I don't see the ANA and ANP having anything close to control of  much outside of Kabul by this time next year when the bulk of NATO forces are gone
View Quote


We should have rolled through Afghanistan right into Pakistan.
Link Posted: 9/9/2013 4:41:29 AM EDT

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Quoted:


The real question is "should the US have considered Pakistan its ally in the post 9/11 world and given it billions of $ so that it could continue to aid and shelter the Taliban and AQ?"



It'll take another couple years for this "chess not checkers" scheme to sort itself out but I'm not as optimistic as some who claim that the long term plan is working quite well. I don't see the ANA and ANP having anything close to control of  much outside of Kabul by this time next year when the bulk of NATO forces are gone
View Quote
The Stan will make the current situation in Iraq look fucking tame, I see the ANA basically going after the ANP to gain control over who has authority.  Lots of ANP being killified in the process.



 
Link Posted: 9/9/2013 4:56:23 AM EDT
"The enemy of my enemy, is my friend" At that time lending assistance to a backward people to drive  the USSR into a 9 year war helped bring the fall of the Empire... Now though, hell no we should stay out ot their shit. They are now our MAIN enemy...
Link Posted: 9/9/2013 5:51:53 AM EDT
Not sure if the connection had been made between radical mindset of the PLO terrorists in Munich and the rest of the muslim world. But that being said, Reagan was completely focused on defeating communism during his administration so he may still have supported them without a second thought.
Link Posted: 9/9/2013 5:57:44 AM EDT
I said no but it has nothing to do with what the mujahedeen may or may have not become, its based on we shouldn't be the worlds police force.

We are never backed with any financial support. Hell look at NATO even though today has 38 countries we are the only active country for them and its the American people who fund it.

After WW2 our government has seemed in most (not all) wars and conflicts that our boys had less meaning of life than someone who is fighting in their own country.

I would be for it if we were directly compensated instead of indirectly, meaning being paid for our a equipment, troops or any addition support.

My tax dollars doesn't = worlds charity even though that's how a lot of countries and people we elect treat it
Link Posted: 9/9/2013 6:00:51 AM EDT
Whatever one does to have to kill communists, count me in....twice.
Link Posted: 9/9/2013 6:38:39 AM EDT
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Quoted:
Whatever one does to have to kill communists, count me in....twice.
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Link Posted: 9/9/2013 6:40:58 AM EDT

First, I just want everyone who believes that we supported anything approaching the current Taliban in its current form to clearly identify themselves.
Link Posted: 9/9/2013 6:55:00 AM EDT
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Quoted:
The real question is "should the US have considered Pakistan its ally in the post 9/11 world and given it billions of $ so that it could continue to aid and shelter the Taliban and AQ?"

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Give me two viable COAs that didn't require Pakistani support to the Taliban.

The hint is that we needed some level of Pak buy-in in order to do ANYTHING in Astan.
Link Posted: 9/9/2013 7:04:52 AM EDT
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I said no but it has nothing to do with what the mujahedeen may or may have not become, its based on we shouldn't be the worlds police force.
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Spoken like someone who didn't live through the Cold War.
Link Posted: 9/9/2013 7:05:19 AM EDT
We were absolutely right.  The Soviet military's failure to pacify Afghanistan helped bring about the downfall of the USSR more than any other single event.
Link Posted: 9/9/2013 7:07:28 AM EDT
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We were absolutely right.  The Soviet military's failure to pacify Afghanistan helped bring about the downfall of the USSR more than any other single event.
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I'd non-concur. First, Afghanistan wasn't a single event, even to the Soviets.

It was important, but I'd argue the Mathias Rust event, as a single event was more important.

However, it was absolutely essential that we made Soviet Adventurism pay as dearly as possible.
Link Posted: 9/9/2013 7:08:21 AM EDT
if all of that effort was to stop the spread of communism, why are we knee deep in it now in our own country?
Link Posted: 9/9/2013 7:13:44 AM EDT

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First, I just want everyone who believes that we supported anything approaching the current Taliban in its current form to clearly identify themselves.
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Depends on what you mean.




Were the Muj preaching what the Taliban preaches now?  No.




Were the Muj made of people (both individuals and tribes) some of whom make up the current taliban?  Yes.




Does that mean we created the taliban? No.




It was an unintended consequence of aiding people fighting our primary enemy at the time.






Link Posted: 9/9/2013 7:17:08 AM EDT

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I'd non-concur. First, Afghanistan wasn't a single event, even to the Soviets.



It was important, but I'd argue the Mathias Rust event, as a single event was more important.



However, it was absolutely essential that we made Soviet Adventurism pay as dearly as possible.
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Quoted:



Quoted:

We were absolutely right.  The Soviet military's failure to pacify Afghanistan helped bring about the downfall of the USSR more than any other single event.




I'd non-concur. First, Afghanistan wasn't a single event, even to the Soviets.



It was important, but I'd argue the Mathias Rust event, as a single event was more important.



However, it was absolutely essential that we made Soviet Adventurism pay as dearly as possible.




 
agreed, especially the last sentence






Link Posted: 9/9/2013 7:18:33 AM EDT
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Quoted:


I'd non-concur. First, Afghanistan wasn't a single event, even to the Soviets.

It was important, but I'd argue the Mathias Rust event, as a single event was more important.

However, it was absolutely essential that we made Soviet Adventurism pay as dearly as possible.
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Quoted:
Quoted:
We were absolutely right.  The Soviet military's failure to pacify Afghanistan helped bring about the downfall of the USSR more than any other single event.


I'd non-concur. First, Afghanistan wasn't a single event, even to the Soviets.

It was important, but I'd argue the Mathias Rust event, as a single event was more important.

However, it was absolutely essential that we made Soviet Adventurism pay as dearly as possible.


"Event" wasn't really the word I wanted to use there, but it's Monday morning and I couldn't think of a better one.  

As for comparing Afghanistan to the Rust incident... very possible you're right, that's a tough call.
Link Posted: 9/9/2013 7:24:04 AM EDT
Yes, but only because FUCK MOTHER RUSSIA!

We should have nuked them after they were done being our bitches.
Link Posted: 9/9/2013 7:24:32 AM EDT
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First, I just want everyone who believes that we supported anything approaching the current Taliban in its current form to clearly identify themselves.
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Supported intentionally or supported financially?  We didn't really have control over the funds we funneled into Afghanistan through the ISI.  
Link Posted: 9/9/2013 7:25:25 AM EDT
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Nope. None of our business. Should have stayed out of it. BTW Korea and Vietnam too.
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This +100 on all three.
Link Posted: 9/9/2013 7:25:36 AM EDT
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Quoted:

As for comparing Afghanistan to the Rust incident... very possible you're right, that's a tough call.
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The most hard-over Generals within the Soviet power structure were PVO-Strany, and Rust gave Gorbachev the excuse to purge them.

I'm just pissed I didn't buy that -172 when I had a chance in 2000.
Link Posted: 9/9/2013 7:28:46 AM EDT
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Supported intentionally or supported financially?  We didn't really have control over the funds we funneled into Afghanistan through the ISI.  
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Quoted:

First, I just want everyone who believes that we supported anything approaching the current Taliban in its current form to clearly identify themselves.


Supported intentionally or supported financially?  We didn't really have control over the funds we funneled into Afghanistan through the ISI.  


if you get a chance, read "Understanding Terror Networks" by Sageman.
Link Posted: 9/9/2013 7:30:11 AM EDT
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if you get a chance, read "Understanding Terror Networks" by Sageman.
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Quoted:
Quoted:

First, I just want everyone who believes that we supported anything approaching the current Taliban in its current form to clearly identify themselves.


Supported intentionally or supported financially?  We didn't really have control over the funds we funneled into Afghanistan through the ISI.  


if you get a chance, read "Understanding Terror Networks" by Sageman.


I read Ghost Wars. How close are they?
Link Posted: 9/9/2013 7:44:08 AM EDT
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Quoted:
As has already been said in this thread, the mujahadeen did not "morph" into the Taliban or Al Quaeda.  That is a lie spread by the liberals and the Paulistinians.  What was left of the muj became mostly the Northern Alliance that aided us in our invasion of Afghanistan.  The Taliban was created by the Pakistani ISI and Al Quaeda was financed by the oil producing Middle Eastern nations.
We were completely right to aid the mujahadeen in Afghanistan and ending the Cold War was much more important and significant than the threat of terrorism.
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One should carefully consider this post before voting yea or nay.

RikWriter is absolutely correct.
Link Posted: 9/9/2013 7:46:37 AM EDT
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I read Ghost Wars. How close are they?
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Quoted:

First, I just want everyone who believes that we supported anything approaching the current Taliban in its current form to clearly identify themselves.


Supported intentionally or supported financially?  We didn't really have control over the funds we funneled into Afghanistan through the ISI.  


if you get a chance, read "Understanding Terror Networks" by Sageman.


I read Ghost Wars. How close are they?


Ghost Wars is the blue force. The Looming Tower is a pretty easy read for the Red.

Understanding Terror Networks gets down to the cell and individual level on the AQ side. I really can't recommend it enough. I'm sad it took me so long to get around to it.
Link Posted: 9/9/2013 7:49:27 AM EDT
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Ghost Wars is the blue force. The Looming Tower is a pretty easy read for the Red.

Understanding Terror Networks gets down to the cell and individual level on the AQ side. I really can't recommend it enough. I'm sad it took me so long to get around to it.
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First, I just want everyone who believes that we supported anything approaching the current Taliban in its current form to clearly identify themselves.


Supported intentionally or supported financially?  We didn't really have control over the funds we funneled into Afghanistan through the ISI.  


if you get a chance, read "Understanding Terror Networks" by Sageman.


I read Ghost Wars. How close are they?


Ghost Wars is the blue force. The Looming Tower is a pretty easy read for the Red.

Understanding Terror Networks gets down to the cell and individual level on the AQ side. I really can't recommend it enough. I'm sad it took me so long to get around to it.


I'll check it out, thanks.

In the meantime, does it refute the idea that our funding which was given to the ISI was funneled into radical Pakistani madrassas or Taliban-aligned warlords?  I swear I remember reading that before.

Edit: The direct support we provided, which we had control over, didn't go anywhere near the Taliban from what I understand.
Link Posted: 9/9/2013 7:53:43 AM EDT
With hindsight better than my eyesight, no, we shouldn't have gotten involved.

However, (pause for effect) the majority of our experience with terrorists up until that point were a few highjackings and the iranian hostage crisis.  We had no idea how middle eastern terrorism was going to kick up the jams.
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