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Merry Xmas Jarheads!! The Man of Peace, Nobel Laureate-to-be President Barack Obama, your latest commander-in-chief, is going to be shipping you out as a holiday gift to the people of Afghanistan.
You will be delivering bullets and bombs, with my name and the name of other American taxpayers on them, to the long-suffering people of Afghanistan by December 25, according to press reports ahead of the Mr. Hope and Changes planned nationwide speech tonight.
Back here in America, the land of the free and brave, come the holidays, we will be scraping together the cash to buy small gifts for our kids, hopefully without having to miss a rent payment or a mortgage payment. Fortunately, weve got Food Stamps, which are now, we are told, flooding the suburbs, and are no longer a stigma, so we wont be hurting too much for Christmas dinner though you still cant use the stamps to buy eggnog.
It will be interesting to hear what your commanders tell you your mission is. The president is saying we need to keep Al Qaeda out of Afghanistan, but from what I hear, there are no Al Qaeda operatives in the country. They all upped and left for greener pastures a long time ago to places like Pakistan, Somalia, and maybe Europe and the USA. Hell, they can go anywhere. How do you spot an Al Qaeda guy anyhow? The fellows getting on the plane in Boston on 9-11 were clean-shaven and wore Brooks Brothers shirts, looking more like bond traders than bombers.
No, you will be targeting the Taliban. But the Taliban are Afghans, and look just like the people who are not Taliban, so what youll most likely be doing half the time or more is shooting up ordinary struggling Afghani peasants and shopkeepers, or members of weddings or funerals, whose angry relatives will then seek revenge by setting traps or ambushes for you.
From what I hear, we taxpayers will be forking over about $1 million for each of you for each year you are rotated into Afghanistan. You wont see much of that money yourself of course, (most of the dough will flow to the war-profiteers who make your uniform, your gun, your ammo, your truck, etc.), but maybe it will feel good knowing that theres that big an investment being made in you.
Youll be called our heroes, too. Im not sure why. I mean, it takes a certain amount of guts just to sign up for an outfit like the Marines, I know (my dad volunteered to be a Marine in WWII). But I just find it hard to see whats so heroic about being part of the best-armed, best-trained fighting force in the history of mankind and fighting a group of poor, uneducated peasants armed at best with AK rifles and home-made bombs especially when you guys reportedly outnumber your enemy by better that 10:1, and have the backing of completely unchallenged air support F-16s, helicopter gunships, fixed-wing gunships and B-1 bombers.
Thats not a fight. Its a slaughter.
I had a taste of this when I brought my son and a friend of his to the Army Experience Center, an recruiting experiment in Northeast Philadelphia where we were able to man a mock-up Humvee and race through a simulated village, firing our mounted machine guns at supposed Taliban fighters who would jump out at us, or plant IEDs in our path. At the end of the run, we were congratulated by the attending Iraq War vet/recruiter, for our number of kills and our low (25%) error rate that was the number of civilians, usually women or kids, that we shot up in our haste to shoot first. We were told that such collateral damage was to be expected in war.
December 2, 2009