When our troops leave Afghanistan, what will have been our legacy there?

It was a success, highlighted by the capture and death of Osama bin Laden.
2% (31 votes)
It's too early to tell. Check back in 20 years.
14% (175 votes)
A mixed bag, there were numerous successes and failures.
22% (282 votes)
We exacted revenge on Bin Laden but did not significantly improve Afghanistan.
57% (718 votes)
Other. Explain in comments.
5% (62 votes)
Total votes: 1268

 

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Bob Blaszkiewicz

November 7, 2013 - 2:36pm

Very unfortunately we thought that we could go into this country and change their beliefs, culture and actually form a democratic government. Within months, if not weeks after our departure the Taliban and all of their 'spin-off' organizations in Afghanistan and neighboring Pakistan will revert back to the way they were before we entered and occupied their country. I really feel sorry for the minority of the population that had hoped for positive changes and now see them disappear.

Eloy Palacios

November 7, 2013 - 4:08pm

To: Bob Blaskiewocz, (permalink)

It is more unfortunately, that our country has gone broke helping other countries and where it will take decades to clear that depth. The only people who have benefitted from past wars from; vietnam to now, are our politicians and those in the oil business. As usual, the middle class (working people), will have to fork out the bill. Even more unfortunate, that our war veterans get very little recognition for their great effort in serving our country, and even less, when our veterans apply for health benefits, for medical,physical and mental desease, acquired while doing so.

Eloy Palacios (Vietnam Vet)

Crider

November 7, 2013 - 11:17pm

I agree 100% and they have to continue to fight for everything they have earned while fighting. Especially health care the VA Dr's don't really care unless they themselves are veterans, my husband died while under Dr.'s care because they didn't look for answers past his heart, he lung cancer but they hadn't done chest x-rays in 7 years he was a Vietnam vet 18 months driving truck over there.

Joy (Widow of Vietnam Vet)

Tom Lockhart (Vietnam era vet)

November 8, 2013 - 1:42pm

The VA has a shameful record when it comes to our wounded servicemen. It denied coverage for PTSD and Agent Orange for years. My son-in-law is a veteran of the 1st Gulf War and is suffering with symptoms of chemical exposure during his tour there. He is still fighting with the VA. Rates of suicide, depression and joblessness are higher among vets than most other groups in the country. Politicians wring their hands and the general population laments our problems, but very few people step up and try to do anything.

Steve Karalexis

November 8, 2013 - 10:31am

If our leaders knew a little History we would've never have gone into that Hell hole. Start from Alexander the Great until now!! need I say more..

Steve Karalexis

November 8, 2013 - 10:32am

If our leaders knew a little History we would've never have gone into that Hell hole. Start from Alexander the Great until now!! need I say more..

Jim Gibson

November 8, 2013 - 12:09pm

Bob, You took the words right out of my lips. The only things we will gain from this venture are some more graves in Arlington.

Tom Lockhart (Vietnam era vet)

November 8, 2013 - 1:33pm

I've been reading through these posts, and unfortunately, I can't find much to disagree with. I'm glad we finally got Bin Laden, and we did destroy some traing grounds in Afghanistan. In Iraq and Afghanistan we gave people some false hopes that will continue to be dashed after we leave. As far as retribution for 9/11, we didn't go after the country that supplied most of the hijackers - Saudia Arabia. I guess their oil is too precious to mess with.

JLP45

November 8, 2013 - 11:01pm

I thought after wasting 58,000 in Vietnam we might have learned something. After straight forwardly kicking Saddam out of Kuwait and then later out of power we might have learned something. But we have learned nothing. We were dying to get in Syria before Putin spoiled that idea. I want our veterans to get what they were promised from the VA and the us to pump oil until we don't have to talk to another country that hates us. It seems so easy, we have accomplished nothing in the mid-east, except Kuwait likes using our ARMY and pays for it. Smart People !

David Jay Crispin

November 7, 2013 - 2:46pm

It was a failure. Most nation building exercises are failures. Our tenure in Afghanistan will leave no better results then the Soviet Unions and very possibly much worse.

Don Mcknight

November 8, 2013 - 8:32am

David, you are absolutely right. Our legacy is the same as Russia's after their failed occupation.

Bruce Lundgren

November 7, 2013 - 2:55pm

I believe we should keep our nose out of other countries business. Let those countries settle their own tribal wars. Spend our money at home where it is sorely needed.

SGT Andrew Jaeger

November 7, 2013 - 3:16pm

I believe that it will go down as a humanitarian success. For the first time in almost 40 years, in parts of Afghanistan, schools are being built, women are gaining rights, we have almost completely cleared out 75 % of the mines in the most mined country in the world. We have given Afghan males a sense of price in their country as they continue to bravely serve in the ANA and ANP. Not to mention that we toppled one of the most evil regimes in out time, aside from the regime of our current president.

Ken Meyers

November 7, 2013 - 3:19pm

It once again shows what happens when politicians think they can do the job of military commanders and refuse to listen what needs to be done to win. If we are going fight a war, we have to stop worrying about being politically correct so we can get the job done.

Bob Philbrook

November 7, 2013 - 3:22pm

Afghanistan was a complete failure if you ask me. Just add that country to our failures in Korea, Iraq, and Vietnam.

Bush and Cheney opted to attack Iraq -- without justification -- when Bin Laden and his followers were alive in Afghanistan. Remember Cheney telling any and all that WMD were hidden in Iraq and Iraq was responsible for 9-11? More lies and deceit old Dick needs to address in his wanning years. Our attacking Iraq resulted in years of conflict in Iraq taking valuable resources that could have been used to go after Bin Laden in Afghanistan.

We pulled out of Iraq after suffering over 4,000 killed and 30,000 seriously wounded. So much for Bush and Cheney saying we would be welcomed in Iraq with Iraq citizens tossing flowers in our path. Instead of flowers these same people exploded IUD's. Who is fool enough to say we won in Iraq?

Same for Afghanistan. The Taliban are ready, willing, and able to retake control of that country when the US leaves. Locals have no faith in the Krazi government. Another military failure to add to Korea, Vietnam, Iraq, and soon Afghanistan.

bpd659

November 13, 2013 - 9:08pm

You know what Bob..... First of all. We are supposed to support each other. We have served our country and our boys do not choose to fight or not! We volunteered to serve, for the most part.. Except for draftees... However, I was in the first gulf war. We did find Chemical Weapons in Iraq! We blew up a shit load of them! He had more and sent them to Syria. Hence, the issue with Chemical Weapons in Syria! This should not be a political thing Bob! We need to support one another who have served, hands down. Forget the damn politicians!

Paul Donahue

November 7, 2013 - 3:22pm

It was an utter failure.

Itwas1933

November 7, 2013 - 3:27pm

I agree with Permalink. The Soviet Union was unable to do it, why should we think we could. We can't change cultures of nations who have been in existence much longer than we. Especially in the middle east. We should stay home, mind our own business, and take care of the problems we have. Maybe we wouldn't be so far in debt.

Pop

November 7, 2013 - 3:35pm

We had no business over there to begin with. Money could have been beeter used in the US

hugh Brolly

November 7, 2013 - 3:45pm

It was a huge waste of blood and treasure with negligible positive results.

Billyjack

November 7, 2013 - 3:45pm

I agree with all previous comments. If we couldn't accomplish in 2 or 3 years what we wanted to accomplish, we should have left then!!

Michael Paque'

November 7, 2013 - 3:48pm

A complete waste of our good people and money. so very sad. Our leadership in Washington failed our country.

Michael Paque'

November 7, 2013 - 3:50pm

A complete waste of our good people and money. so very sad. Our leadership in Washington failed our country.

David Killeen

November 7, 2013 - 3:54pm

That part of the world has been fighting for thousands of years. A complete waste of time, money, and most importantly Allied lives to think we could make a difference. In 5 years, it'll be as if we'd never been there.

Ken Jones

November 7, 2013 - 5:11pm

Afghanistan has been under attack by outsiders for thousands of years and no one has succeeded in conquering the nation! They are not a major threat other than a training ground for terrorist! I'm sure with the technology that we have now, we can keep track of their movements without using ground troops,if our country would do such a thing! Just watch and see, you may learn a lot!

Linda Moore

November 7, 2013 - 5:14pm

Bin Laden was killed in Pakistan. Every American who died in Afghanistan died in vain. We serve no purpose there and accomplished nothing except getting our children killed.

Dale Leeper

November 7, 2013 - 5:53pm

Our mission was on the way to completion when President Obama showed the world that he is a coward and ran away.

Joe Schneider

November 7, 2013 - 10:09pm

Iraq wanted us out, and if Afghanistan would do the same we'd be much better off

John alden

November 7, 2013 - 6:21pm

We entered that place dumber than rocks. The Taliban are expert ground soldiers. Our military leaders should have pressed their positions with 50,000,000 bombs and I mean big ones in the beginning and continued until they were pretty much defeated and then mopped them up with our troops.

ArmyAngel

November 7, 2013 - 7:05pm

I believe that being the cops of the world, and the humanitarian mumbo jumbo, is what get's the old the U.S. of A. in trouble at home and overseas. I say spend our money at home where it is sorely needed.
Medicare, and youth programs sorely needed too.

Timothy Jacobs

November 7, 2013 - 7:09pm

What a waste of American Lives, America should have learned from history of the past and from Russia`s weak impact on the country years ago. Replacements are growing all over the world faster than we can take them out, a no win for America when we pull out. Just a thinning of the herd.

Ex Vietnam Combat Marine.

Bob95490

November 7, 2013 - 7:26pm

What has been accomplished is better left to the future to discuss. However, our decision to arm opposition to the Russians, armed the very people that now have sworn to defeat us. If anything has been accomplished in Afghanistan it might be the realization that the enemies of our enemies are not always our friends. Beyond that, as far as Afghanistan is concerned, we haven't done much more than prolonged the return of the Taliban by our presence and the moment we leave those that have opposed us from the beginning (pre-9/11) will continue to oppose us and reoccupy the positions we were supposed to remove them from permanently.

From where I sit this amounts to, what one would refer to in Blackjack as, "a push". No one has won in this "table action"; the winners and losers will be determined following the next deal of the cards. This isn't a win, it isn't a loss and it isn't a draw; all it amounts to is a complete waste of lives and money without any real desire, upon the part of those that put our military in harms way, to achieve even a limited victory.

When all is said and done our nation's leaders have allowed us to be slapped around by the school yard bully and then tucked their collective tail between their legs and are now prepared to run away. The troops are solid, but our political leaders are cowards with no will to do anything that requires effort and sacrifice.

SSGT D. R. Ward,USAF (1968-1980)

November 7, 2013 - 7:28pm

Look at Viet Nam today!!!

Guest

November 7, 2013 - 8:37pm

Nothing but a wholesale waste of lives. Simply, we should only fight to win. Then real, long-term changes can and would be effected. All we are doing is giving our 'Precious American Blood' for short term "successes", if any. Band Aids and duct tape is not worth one American Life.

Korea ('67-'69)

LieutenantCharlie

November 7, 2013 - 9:31pm

We lost thousands of American lives to find and destroy WMD's, that had been moved to Syria months before our attack.
So we took down a Brutal Dictator, Saddam Hussein, which will soon be replaced by another Brutal Dictator.
The LEGACY here is that we must stop electing stupid Leaders, like the Moron Brothers; George Bush, and Barack Obama.

Ed. Orr

November 7, 2013 - 9:43pm

If we had just flown air missions over the mountains and dropped a bunch of bunker busters, and maybe a small nuke that was enough. We can't forget the terrorists that flew the airliners into WTC Towers, Pentagon, and the other attempted target all came from Afghanistan & Pakistan. We should pull all support out of Pakistan as well. Yes, I know girls won't be able to go to school, or women work probably but we can aid those who have left the two countries. I would hope that Malala and her friends who have left Pakistan will stay out and become citizens of either GB or US and maybe work from outside of country of Pakistan to effect some change.

RIchard Barden

November 8, 2013 - 8:28am

Afghanistan and Iraq were a waste of time and lives. This is the theme that I see in this posting of others. I agree to what everyone is saying. Our elected officials are out of touch with reality but then what do you expect, most of them probably were not around during Vietnam, definitely not Korea or WW2. The mentality of Washington D.C. is "We the elected are the experts and we WILL run this nation." It is time all of us stop talking and vote every elected that is running for reelection OUT! Start sending the message to elected officials..."If you do not listen to us, the ones that put you there, then you WILL be FIRED!!!"

Miguel Romero

November 8, 2013 - 9:03am

It is another waste life that cut be avoided if politician that never beam in the arm forces embarrass the military personnel. Whose star President George Bush Senior. The military has one mission cut orders and it will be done do not interfere or stop them at the middle of finish the mission, Media is no to be in the middle. moralist do not interfere at word American soldier are torture plus or you think for one second the enemy put as in the best hotel or best restaurant and to finish all politician should be serve in the arm forces to be teach respect, pride, morality.

Don De Villez

November 12, 2013 - 9:46am

For me personally no matter what the outcome for them (Afghanistan), it is not worth the lives of all my brothers and sisters who have paid the ultimate price.

7X OEF

November 14, 2013 - 7:43am

We invaded Afghanistan when the 9/11 Hijackers trained in West Palm Beach - likely none of them ever travelled to Afghanistan (9/11 Comission never found any evidence of them in Afghanistan.) Afghanistan's mineral wealth is going to the Chinese, money spent for contracts goes straight to off shore bank accounts in Dubai. The Afghan bank system (patterned after the US and GB) failed thanks in part to the Karsai's brother. Pakistan ISI and Iran IRGC-QF are paying off Afghan Govt Officials for their support when the USA leaves. Then there's the TAPI pipeline that's almost complete. What's that? You've never heard of it? That's because you're not suppose to just like the other oil company projects around the world. There are still children beggers in downtown Kabul -all over the place- the corruption is so bad the Special Inspector General for Afghan Reconstruction (SIGAR) is overwhelmed.

With all that - our brave young men and women serve without question. They sacrafice their lives daily - they are attacked every day with indirect and small arms fire. They fear for insider attacks, but they serve proudly and are always the first to volunteer.

When the US finally leaves - Afghanistan will return to pre 10/02/2001, but it won't be the fault of America's Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, and Marines

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