- Peace Garden: Wisdom

Wisdom

Friday, July 18, 2008

No One Wins in a War

Barack Obama and John McCain continue to argue about war. McCain says to keep the troops in Iraq until we “win” and supports sending more troops to Afghanistan. Obama says to withdraw some (not all) troops from Iraq and send them to fight and “win” in Afghanistan.
For someone like myself, who fought in World War II, and since then has protested against war, I must ask: Have our political leaders gone mad? Have they learned nothing from recent history? Have they not learned that no one “wins” in a war, but that hundreds of thousands of humans die, most of them civilians, many of them children?
And yet we are looking to increase the tenor of war in some areas. Including Pakistan it seems.
In Afghanistan, the United States declared “victory” over the Taliban. Now the Taliban is back, and attacks are increasing. The recent US military death count in Afghanistan exceeds that in Iraq. What makes Obama think that sending more troops to Afghanistan will produce “victory”? And if it did, in an immediate military sense, how long would that last, and at what cost to human life on both sides?
We should be asking the presidential candidates: Is our war in Afghanistan ending terrorism, or provoking it? And is not war itself terrorism?
Zinn is asking. I am asking. Where are the other voices raising their cries for peace and sanity. Surges in Afghanistan are not the answer.

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