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Showing posts from August 15, 2021

sloppy imperialism 2: what it means to be objectively anti-taliban

  When you criticize someone for using a shabby, cultish product to cure cancer, you are not being objectively pro-cancer. Similarly, if you criticize the shabby cultish foreign policy that got the U.S. into Afghanistan, you are not being objectively pro-Taliban. I don’t speak Pashto and have never set foot in Kabul. But I have noticed a few things about the U.S. and imperialism in general. I’ve noticed how the American brand of sloppy imperialism is bad for peasants and good for strongmen. I’ve noticed that, in the years since the Cold War ended, the U.S. has tried to transform its sloppy imperialism into remote control imperialism. Bring out the drones, exert total control over the battlefield sphere, yadda yadda. To this I say: give me a fucking break. The moral and political rubicon was crossed when the U.S. refused the Taliban’s offer to either try Osama bin Laden or send him to a moslem country for trial. As American then did not notice, but the Middle East did, when Osama bin La

The end of sloppy imperialism? The Afghanistan experience

  For thirty some years, I have had my ears filled with Americans - mostly white guys who of course never fought there - saying that we were winning goddamit in Vietnam. That we lost must be due to some evil stab in the back. These peeps evidently think that the 388,000 tons of Napalm dropped on Vietnam was just not enough - another spoonful of sugar and we woulda won! A similar crackbrained meme has sprung up, inevitably, about the 20 year Afghanistan war. Another thousand soldiers, brave Americans, put on the mountain passes and presto chango, the wonderful democratic government of Afghanistan, our ally (or ventriloquist dummy) who we respect so much, but did exclude from our negotiations with the Taliban, would have shown the world that it could eliminate illiteracy in another measly half a century, or maybe seventy five years. I've grown old, I've grown old/I shall keep the cuffs of my trousers rolled, or something like that. And so it goes - nothing is more dangerous than

America - if we pretend it is so, it must be so!

  America's idiocracy rolls on. This NYT sub is a great expression of the lack of reality that has seized this country, from the anti-vaxxer Trump won contingent to the Trump was Putin's puppet we must support our freedom lovin' pals, like Saudi Arabia contingent. "After 20 years of diplomacy and support, American officials are now contemplating the harrowing question of whether — and how — they might engage with a Taliban government in Afghanistan." Here, lets pick that header apart: after twenty years of supplying massive aid to the chief ally and host of the Taliban, Pakistan; after supervising the entry into the Afghanistan government the worst of the corrupt - and very anti-women - jihadis that the U.S. supported as freedom fighters in the 80s - after suppressing the poppy crop unsucessfully while providing nothing else - while watching successive U.S. puppets in Kabul do all they can to enrich themselves while earning zip loyalty from an armed force that onl

Look back in Anger - Afganistan November 25, 2001 to August 15, 2020

  Ah, how it all comes back! Long before “fake news” was a cry to rally the yahoos at presidential candidate rallies, it was a quite m.o. of the media during the Bush golden years. My blog, limited inc, which goes back twenty years, contains a treasure of fools gold culled from the asinine, warmongering, fakin’ and lyin’ press – mostly in the realm of print. I am not and never have been a listener to news on the radio or a viewer of news on tv. Eccentrically, I consider tv one of the worst platforms for news, and radio is, to me, best when playing music, second best when doing drama or standup or some funky shit, and bottomlessly bad doing news. Of course, I’ve heard that in its time, Pacifica radio was primo, but that’s hearsay. NPR, though, I did hear enough of in the Bush golden years to realize that it viewed its job as transforming hysterical America ueber alles-ism into dulcet toned America ueber alles-ism. So much of news is in the non-reporting. What were the headlines on

Jack Shafer, immortal moron, and our last twenty years

  I have a long memory for stupid media. Luckily, in the 2000-2003 period, it was all gathered together in one place: Slate! Today, let us celebrate Jack Shafer. Frankly, Shafer is an idiot and a valient member of the uncancelable media club. He goes from place to place within the DC circuit, always wrong, always smug, always promoted. In 2003, Shafer presented his own greatest hits as he lambasted a much better reporter, Johnny Apple of the NYT. Johnny Apple had the unpatriotic instinct that the Afghanistan war fought in 2001 was going to lead to quagmire. The heresy! As Shafer unforgettably put it, Apple's view was" "The United States has bitten off more than it can chew; the allied war effort is underpowered; we’ve underestimated the enemy—again!; air power is overrated; and guerrillas can do U.S. forces great damage as they did in Vietnam." As Shafer contemptuously showed, what rot! "Apple’s fear that dropping bombs on civilians wouldn’t “win Afghan ‘hearts