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Is the Afghan War lost?

I am not a consistent non-interventionist – as some people are fond of reminding me.

For example, I am no friend of the Slave Empire (sorry the “Slave Holding States of America” popularly known as the “Confederacy”), and I consider the struggle against the Axis Powers (National Socialist Germany, Fascist Italy, and the Empire of Japan) and the struggle against international Marxism, as two great achievements of the United States and Britain (and their allies) in the 20th century – not as shameful statism which should be condemned.

I even supported going into Afghanistan. It seemed the correct response to 9/11 and the other attacks by Bin Laden organization, to hunt him down and to hunt down his ally Mullah Omar, the creator of the Taliban – contrary to popular propaganda the Taliban was not created by the CIA to fight the Soviets.

However, it soon became clear that the Bush Administration was not making the hunting down of Bin Laden and Mullah Omar their top priority – which is most likely why the two men remain un-captured almost a decade after 9/11. Instead the Bush Administration fell in love with the Woodrow Wilson style “nation building” agenda of the “neo-cons”.

My attitude to the neo-cons is more nuanced than the attitude of most libertarians – in that I do not despise all of them. For example, I regard Frank Gaffney as a professional, I do not share some of his political opinions, but he is not a fool. Unlike most of the leading neo-cons who lined up to list the mistakes of the Bush Administration in Iraq and Afghanistan (mistakes often directly connected to their own wildly optimistic assumptions – a “detail” they tended to leave out) for Vanity Faire magazine in 2004 – in return for a promise that the article would not be published till after the election. That they were genuinely surprised when the magazine promptly broke this promise indicates a level of stupidity bordering on mental retardation. However, most neo-cons seem to believe that all cultures are fundamentally the same, and that all people everywhere would be happy democrats (small d democrats) if only the nasty dictators were removed and a lot of help given by the American (and British) taxpayer. To be polite this point of view is in error.

The Founding Fathers, like most political thinkers in Britain at the time – indeed even up to the First World War, were very wary of the word “democracy” (associating it with mob rule – whipped up by demagogues) and held that even a Constitutional Republic could only exist in a certain culture – a culture of mainly moral people capable of strong self control (thus making external control unnecessary), dominated by ideas of self help and mutual aid, not envy of those who had things they did not, and filled with a profound and stable religious faith – and not any old religion, but specific types of religion. This did not mean that they did not support freedom of religion (on the contrary they most certainly did), but they did not believe that, for example, a land where most people believed in a religion that justified the plundering of others would have a good polity.

In many ways a “Republican people” are the exact opposite of a “Democratic mob” – but such distinctions are utterly lost on most neo-cons, whose policy in Afghanistan ignored such ideas.

The regime of President Karzai in Afghanistan is, let us please be blunt, utterly revolting.

His drunk dealing brother, the rest of the endless corruption, the President speaking out of two sides of his mouth (attacking the West – and working with the enemies of the West, whilst demanding ever more aid) stinks to high heaven.

A debate should have been had long ago about whether President Karzai (and the rest of his regime) are typical products of a corrupt local culture (a culture that made “nation building” a non-starter as a policy) or whether the regime was made up atypical people, and that if they were not in office perhaps “nation building” might actually work.

Let us give the neo-cons the benefit of the doubt and assume that President Karzai and company are atypical (the scum has risen to the top – after all it often does in Britain and the United States), even with this assumption there is still a vast problem.

The rigging of the last Presidential election in Afghanistan. The Obama Administration both did nothing to prevent the rigging, and did nothing after the rigged results were announced. At that point many observers gave up all real hope for the Afghan war.

However, the neo-cons clung to their policy – we must “work with Karzai” (that Karzai was also “working” with the Sunni Taliban, to try and save his own skin, and with Shia Iran, caught taking vast sums in cash from Iranian representatives, did not seem to impress the minds of the neo-cons). Trusting the Karzai seems like a mistake straight out of “Carry on Up the Khyber” – but then I doubt the great minds who influence policy watch Carry On films (most likely they would think they are “racist” anyway).

The Taliban will, most likely, murder Karzai eventually – but that will not stop the man, as foolish as he is corrupt, desperately trying to make deals with them (especially as the Obama Administration has basically suggest this by saying they are going to draw down American forces – pretending victory as a 2012 election stunt). And the “hastener” Shia regime in Iran (working to cover the world in “fire and blood” so that the 12th Iman may return and exterminate all infidels – much like the Book of Revelations with the Anti-Christ winning) does not really think much of Karzai either, they most likely intend to give him the death of ten thousand cuts, but that will not stop them giving him money – or stop the man trying to please them by telling them everything he knows about Western political and military matters. The Taliban, being radical Sunni, reject the idea that the man on the white horse being the 12th Iman – to them, as with Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood generally, he will be the Mahdi – but they are happy with the exterminating the infidels all over the world bit.

We can not carry on like this – as recent events have made clear.

Contrary to what is being reported the news of the burning of a copy of the Koran in Florida did not at once set off severe trouble in Afghanistan (“where or what is Florida?” seems to have been the general response). It was President Karzai decided to whip up trouble that various UN aid workers (and so on) were cut to bits – and it was not the Taliban who did it, the attack was in the north (not in their southern strongholds) and was by a mob – not by a small team of terrorists.

After Karzai did his double dealing dance of (I am using more plain language than he did) “my beautiful warriors, we can not tolerate this insult – kill! KILL!” and “my dear Western friends, you see how difficult the people are to control – you must sent me more money, and get rid of those irritating auditors…” the scales should have fallen from the eyes of even the most stupid neo-con – but it was not “just” this.

The authorities in Pakistan (not just the intelligence organization the ISI – but elements of the military and the civilian government also) have been playing a double game from the start. Taking money from the West (endless billions) whilst trying to make deals with the Taliban at the same time – even though the Taliban has made it perfectly clear that it intends to exterminate anyone in Pakistan who does not accept its interpretation of Islam (not “just” Sufi Muslims – anyone). Of course this does not stop the Taliban taking money from the Shia regime in Iran (any more than it stops Hamas from taking support from the Iranian regime) – the man on the white horse will decide who are the true Muslims (and who is to be exterminated) when he arrives. Of course none of this stops the over “educated” people who make up the establishment of Britain and the United States thinking they can “talk to the Taliban” – what would such talks be about? The method of execution for all infidels (including moderate Muslims) in the world?

However, the double dealing of the Pakistani government has now come out into the open.

Indeed the Pakistani regime (not the ISI – but the civilian government itself) has ordered out CIA employees from the country – because one CIA contractor broke the “rules” (he killed the people sent to kill him).

Intelligence has already collapsed in Pakistan (and around the world) because of the Obama Administration’s failure to even try and question anyone captured. Indeed the drone policy of Obama Administration (if there seem to be enemy about – blow the place up, do not worry the media will give you a pass if civilians die, because you are a Progressive like them) has the unspoken “we do not want prisoners because we do not know what to do with them” message. CIA prisons (around the world) have been closed and everyone has been informed that Army Field Manual is to be followed in trying to get information out of prisoners.

Therefore a de facto “no prisoners” policy is in effect (partly because there is no where to put prisoners, and partly because the Army Field Manual means that no information can be got out of them anyway). I am not a soft hearted person so perhaps the humanitarian side of the de facto “no prisoners – blow everyone up with drones, and anyone who happens to be anywhere near as well” policy does not bother me as much as it should. But the fact that the United States government is now as blind and deaf (as lacking in any real information) as it was before 9/11 (indeed, if anything, it has less information than it did before 9/11 – when the info was there, but no one had “joined up the dots”) does bother me.

What also bothers me is that with Pakistan now openly in the enemy camp the war in Afghanistan is utterly hopeless.

“Oh you are just an non-interventionist trying to justify despair, Paul”.

Is Charles Krauthammer a “non-interventionist”?

No he is not – he is, in fact, the king of the interventionists, and has been for many years.

Yet I have seen Charles Krauthammer (on several television shows – i.e. quite openly) saying that is hopeless giving the Pakistani government any more money – because they are now clearly (as seen by the kicking out of CIA employees) a hostile power.

Think about that – Pakistan a hostile power. And the supply lines to Afghanistan go through…..

Would anyone still like argue that the Afghan war is not lost?

The struggle with both the Shia “hasterner” regime of Iran, and the Sunni Muslim Brotherhood will continue (inside Britain and the United States as much as anywhere else), but the operation in Afghanistan appears to be totally untenable.

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36 comments to Is the Afghan War lost?

  • John K

    We can only hope that the £650 million of our money which Dave the Tosser has seen fit to bestow upon Palistan will be wisely spent.

  • Matra

    most neo-cons seem to believe that all cultures are fundamentally the same

    As do most libertarians. If you disagree with either of them you are considered guilty of the racism of low expectations.

  • It was always lost, I think. An Osamaectomy would have been entirely justified and possibly quite successful. Anything involving any kind of invasion (regardless of motive) was doomed from the start, as history clearly relates.

  • Alsadius

    Well said. Foreign policy sucks sometimes…

  • John K: surely you jest?

  • PersonFromPorlock

    American government isn’t a place for serious people. Humorless, self-important people, yes, fine, lots of them in public life. But serious people, who act and keep acting in the same direction instead of blowing in the wind, no. Which is why out policies keep turning into mush and our wars into interminable farces. We lack application.

  • Ian F4

    Karzai has openly declared his model for Afghanistan – Saudi Arabia. The war was lost the day we allowed sharia to be penned into the new constitution. It’s as if France was liberated in 1944 and they put someone like Le Pen in charge.

    Let every nation know, whether it wishes us well or ill, that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe to assure the survival and the success of liberty.

    JFK had a clue.

  • AndyJ

    Afghanistan was -never- going to be a “win”. There is no way to win in a country with no education, no government, no civil institutions or “trust” societies beyond the local chieftain aka village head or clan head.

    We removed the Taliban who were/are merely the latest and most blood thirsty thugs to take over the country. Karzai owes his hold on his ability to reward the clan heads. He has no concept of democracy or even government. The Army is simply a place to go and earn some few dollars wile trying to stay alive. It has never been a potent force.

    The question is “Who wants Afghanistan-?” Pakistan likes the training ground for their insurgent war against India.
    China-? Maybe. They would be more bloodthirsty than the Taliban and bring some order.
    Russia-? Maybe, but not really.
    Iran-? Most likely as a playground and training pool for terrorist talent around the world. Plausible deniability is a wonderful thing when the only ones looking concerned are the UN.

    Pull Out-? OK. Then what-? Keep their borders sealed and allow none out or in-? Or welcome them to the brotherhood of mankind as equa people-?

    Pakistan and Saudi Arabia are the natural allies against Iran. Afghanistan looking to Saudi Arabia is only natural. The Saudi’s have a large educated and underemployed workforce. A few thousand aid workers, teachers and govt administrators would relieve the pressures in Saudi Arabia plus give a role model/hand holding demonstration of how to manage the details of government for 10-20-50 years

    It’s easy to spin scenario’s.

    Regarding American support; A Turkish General once noted that “America is your best friend, right up the moment when they turn and walk away.” American strengths and weaknesses are studied by ever serious leader, political, military and economic, around the world. Most know America better than the fools who think they run the countrys. Those fools work only on a short-term approval poll/election basis. It’s probably a good thing America does not take itself seriously for very long…

    All democracies have short attention spans and low tolerances for war, terrorism, or foreign adventures. Those who study us know that and expect a short burst of attention then glorious silence and darkness to have their way.

    Witness the Libya adventure.

  • 'Nuke' Gray

    Don’t the Americans already have some mastermind in Guantanamo? Declare the war won, pull out, and put a billion dollar bounty on Osama being handed over, alive, to the US. (Even his supposed wealth couldn’t outbid THAT!)
    Let Afghanistan do what it wants, whilst propping up Iraq, since we did set up that new system. If they tell us to pull out completely, do it!
    That’s as much of a win as we’re likely to get.

  • Laird

    Why do you want him alive, Nuke? I’d settle for his head on a pike.

  • 'Nuke' Gray

    If he is dead, he might be declared a martyr, and bring more jihadiots into the battle. If he simply dies of old age, in prison, he won’t inspire anyone.

  • Johnathan Pearce

    BTW, in my comment the other day about the Doug Feith book, I recall that he noted that while getting OBL would have been very welcome, it was never the central aim of the US administration of Bush to track him down at the expense of other, even more important aims, such as preventing such terror groups from striking at the West again. To that end, the key is to disrupt countries that harbour terrorists, put pressure on their leaders, kill as many terrorists as possible, cut off funding, etc.

    I think that in the first few months, even couple of years, after the Afghanistan move, the West had been successful in smashing up parts of the Taliban regime. However, the facts have to be faced that operating in that part of the world is incredibly difficult. However hard we try, Western forces will always be seen as alien occupiers, with all that comes with it. It might be easier to try and seal the borders, although that is not easy either.

    Sometimes we have to accept that certain parts of the world are irredeemably fucked, and likely stay fucked, for a long time. The least-worst option is to only hit them if they hit us, but the idea of trying to remake these places is folly.

    I can understand that the underlying problem in the MidEast is that you have loads of poor, young people who provide thugs and theocrats with easy targets for filling with ideas about jihad and all the usual nihilistic BS that exists. I can understand, even sympathise with, the neocon idea that we need to “drain the swamp” of poverty, hopelessness, oppression and the rest.

    The neocons are not bad people: they may be naive. But trying to spread a bit more liberty to places living under the most brutal regimes imaginable is not the worst thing that George Bush and co ever did. Not by a long shot.

  • michael

    The West and Islam are locked in a suicidal struggle. The only winners in this struggle will be the Chinese.

  • Paul Marks

    The Chinese have a “Muslim problem” also – and have had since the 8th century (when Islamic power spread into Central Asia – defeating Chinese influence).

    Areas of the “Wild West” of China have large Muslim populations. And in the past Muslims played key roles in Chinese history – such as the revolt that fatally weakened the Tang dynesty (led by a Muslim commander), and the betrayal of the Sung dynasty by a powerful Muslim merchant (that helped their extermination by the non Muslim Mongols).

    Whateve the links between the Chinese regime and the Taliban may or may not have been (and certainly China has close relations with elements in both Shia Iran and Sunni Pakistan), the regime fears Islam.

    Indeed this may one of the reasons the Chinese are encouraging Protestant (not Catholic – for political reasons) Christianity. Lack of belief may be correct (it is possible there is no God) but lack of belief can not hold back Islam – only an alternative (and strong) belief system can hold back Islam. Hence the Chinese regime’s interest in Christianity.

    They seem to believe (I think rightly) that just promising people lots of material goods and sensual pleasures just will not work. Nor will vague ethical systems (especially not with religious overtones – the non Christian “Christianity” of the Taiping rebellion cost 20 million lives in the 19th century).

    So the Chinese regime wants a nonpolitical (so Roman Catholics loyal to the Pope present a problem) but mainstream form of Christianity, at least as an element in the mix – to give people something other than Islam to adopt.

  • Paul Marks

    One of the main threats of Islam sounds so crazy that I will be denounced for even mentioning it – but it is very real.

    The man on the white horse – come to exterminate the infidels.

    According to the “hastener” version of 12er Shia Islam (not all “12ers” Glenn – how many times do you have to be told?) this is the correct interpretation of the comming of the 12th Iman (others hold that he comes to convert infidels by his example) and that the way to “hasten” the comming of this man on the white horse is the spread “fire and blood” all over the world.

    Now many (not all) of the Muslim Brotherhood Sunni Muslims also have a vision of this great figure come to take the whole world.

    But to them he is just “the Mahdi” (not the 12th Iman). However, these supporters still hold his comming can be hastened by (you guessed it) spreading fire and blood all over the world.

    Now this might be amusing for athiests – till you consider some facts.

    The President of Iran and the Supreme Leader are both “hasteners”.

    And many of the high ups in the Sunni Muslim Brotherhood are followers of the Mahdi “the expected one”.

    And many of these people dress in nice suits and have degrees from the top Western universities.

    So the struggle with them is not optional (as some Libertarians believe) it can not be avoided just by getting out of the Middle East.

    Because they are already right here – in Europe and North America.

  • Johnathan Pearce

    Paul, correct on the last point. As Glenn Reynolds puts it, you may not be interested in jihadi terrorists, but they are interested in you.

    That, by the way, is why the Antiwar.com crowd (Raimondo and the rest) are not people I take seriously from within the libertarian camp. I do have a lot of time for some anti-war libertarians who genuinely flag up the serious downsides of intervention (“Hayek does not stop at the water’s edge”) but some of these people are just in denial. That’s not really going to persuade the neutrals.

    And of course there is a debate that needs to be refined on how a minarchist, classical liberal state handles defence, while respecting Grotius-type principles on proportionality, when it comes to states using terrorists as proxies, as Iran does, for example, with Hezbollah, etc.

  • Paul Marks

    J.P. Agreed – but…..

    That does not mean that the antiwar people are not correct in certain tactical cases – for example they may well be correct about both Afghanistan and Iraq (which now has a pro Iranian regime government).

    They are just wrong in thinking that a fluffy peaceful life is an option.

    It is not an option because the bad guys really do exist (they are not just “innocent victims of Western Imperalism”) and they will not let a peaceful fluffy life be an option.

    It is much like the people who think that the Guatemala thing in 1954 was about the United Fruit Company.

    As if the Soviet Block arms shipments had not happened.

    And as if the Guatemalian goverenment was not full of Marxists (including the President himself) who wised to EXPORT Marxism everywhere.

    Of course if you mention any of that on “Wikipedia” the left gatekeepers delete it.

  • John K

    Alisa:

    Surely I do.

  • Paul Marks

    As for what do we do if we do not carry on the war?

    The war (around the world) would continue – it is not optional (the enemy of made that clear).

    We just would not be egaged in the failed mission of tryng to nation build in Afghanistan.

    “But they would use it as a training ground” – they already are, ten years of attacks on the place has not stopped that.

  • Mike Lorrey

    So, the alternative is to pull out of afghanistan and pakistan completely, pull diplomatic recognition, refuse all travel visas, cut off all aid… then what?

  • Paul Marks

    I would not refuse all travel visas – I would let people go there (just not come back).

    And I would let sincere Christians (or sincere Randian athiests come to that) being persecuted in Pakistan come to the United States (or Britain).

    Remember the colour of someone’s skin does not interest me – I am concerned (very concerned) with their beliefs, their loyalities.

    For example Justice Thomas is a black man – and I regard him as a brother (in the old sense).

    And Bill Ayers is a white man – and I think he is lower than shit.

    I think you feel the same way I do.

    By the way – if you are really asking “but would not Afganistan and Pakistan remain terrbile places if we did nothing”.

    Yes – I agree with you.

    Remember I am not one of the “libertarian left” (in fact I think they are nuts), I do not believe that the problems of the world are caused by Anglo-American or Western Imperialism.

    I just think there are a lot of problems we can not solve – and that we should admit that we can not solve.

    I believe that this is a fallen world – and that a belief that it can be transformed into a Heaven on Earth (other than by the second comming) is an error.

  • John K: phew…You never know these days:-)

  • Sigivald

    Think about that – Pakistan a hostile power. And the supply lines to Afghanistan go through…..

    The air, for the most part.

  • As do most libertarians {think all cultures are the same}. If you disagree with either of them you are considered guilty of the racism of low expectations.

    I do not think that is generally true. Certainly some libertarians think that but frankly I am rather a cultural chauvinist and have never made any bones about that. I think many cultures are barbarous, inferior and worthy of nothing but contempt.

    However I do also find that when you regress the views of a lot of people professing to be talking about ‘culture’ it turns out that their views of cultural superiority are in truth euphemisms for their racism, an intentional attempt to repackage said views in more ‘acceptable’ terms.

  • Gary

    Evil is simply the belief that the ends justify the means. Anyone who believes the ends justifies the means is morally bankrupt and untrustworthy.
    It is not what a man believes, it is what he is willing to do to make what he believes a reality, that defines him.
    This is why idealists are dangerous psychotic clowns whereas pragmatists are more rational and trustworthy.
    It is nothing to do with any specific belief, rather it is the equation of ends and means.

    Afghanistan and Iraq may well be disasters, but for the politicians who led us into them, they have been a huge success, lining their pockets with even more wealth. For the greedy weasels at the Pentagon who do it purely for the money (judging by their contempt for the taxpayer, this much is obvious), for the low-life Merc scum at Xe, its been a huge, fabulous success. The soldiers just get to die, but maybe it serves them right for being unthinking automaton slaves.
    The incompetent buffoons who failed in Iraq and Afghanistan will claim their fat pensions and sit on the board of JP Morgan. In politics, failure is its own financial reward.
    Bin Laden has done very nicely out of our wars; they have lent huge credibility to his ideology. Iraq, with Abu Ghraib and Blackwater’s child-raping Mercs, it was pretty much a big advert for why people should join Al Qaeda.

    Anyone who believes in Christianity, Islam, etc, is frankly a complete moron. If an omnipotent being created the universe, would “he” give a fat flying toss about humans? No. That’s like saying this being would care about ants.
    People who are too thick to try to understand the universe, time, gravity, entropy, consciousness embrace a stupid myth because it saves them the effort of thinking.
    Religion is a disease, it is stupidity given form. As Carl Sagan observed, science is open-minded whereas religion is close-minded.
    I see little difference between Christians and Muslims (they both believe in utter nonsense), I know examples of both who are thoroughly decent people, who have not been infected by ends>means.
    The thing with religion is it encourages people to be certain, to have “faith”. That’s very dangerous. The path to wisdom is doubt and questioning.

    Speaking of delusions, someone mentioned Justice Thomas, the man who thinks corporations are people.
    If you think a corporation is a “person” then you probably also have a pet rock.

  • Laird

    Nobody thinks that a corporations are a people; a corporation is merely a fictitious person. That’s simply a legal fiction used to describe certain attributes which are granted by statute to corporate entities. It’s just verbal shorthand.

    Anybody who thinks that Justice Thomas “thinks corporations are people” probably is a pet rock.

  • John B

    The first world arrogance that assumes everyone will adopt restraint and liberty if given the chance sadly lacks a basis in reality.
    The war will, unfortunately, be lost unless the resultant social situation can somehow be underpinned by an attitude of moderation and the ability to defer gain.

  • Paul Marks

    Gary.

    J.P. Morgan is actually a highly Progressive company – full of leftists at the highest level.

    Rumsfeld, Bush (etc) did NOT go into Iraq or Afghanistan for monetary gain.

    The idea that anyone who believes in Christianity or Islam is a “moron” could only be believed by a “moron”.

  • Paul Marks

    As for denying groups (corporations) freedom of speech.

    As I suspected you a totalitarian, Gary.

    You would deny every church, and every athiest society and club or society or association, the right to finance speech.

    Thus leaving a monopoly of opinion to the left.

    Totalitarianism.

    Of course churches are already forbidden (on pain of losing their IRS except status) to engage in support of political candiate – unless (for some reason) it is a leftist political candidate, then it is fine (as far as the IRS are concerned) to endorse a candidate BY NAME from the pulpit (as so many Progressive Churches did in 2008).

    By the way – would you allow UNIONS to finance political opinion?

    After all they are just as much a limited liability enity as the people from J.P. Morgan Chase, Goldman Sachs, General Electric….

    And the other top people who financed the BARACK OBAMA CAMPAIGN. See the book “Bought and Paid for”.

    You see this is the difference between us Gary.

    I support freedom – even the freedom of people to finance things I hate (such as the Barack Obama campaign).

    You, a totalitarian, do not.

  • Paul Marks

    “The supply lines go through the air”.

    Oh for Pete’s (or for Paul’s) sake – do people not know of the vast number of trucks that set out from Pakistan to Afghanistan?

    And as if Pakistan can be relied upon to allow airlift via its airspace – for ever.

    Pakistan is falling apart, politically, economically, in every way.

    “Racist”.

    I give up.

  • John B

    I’m afraid I have to respond to Gary, as well.
    It is simply to ask, very, very seriously as this question probes the religion of materialism (science, where it takes on belief), and the question is:
    Can order occur spontaneously in randomness?
    Things can change and evolve, fine.
    But can order self-start in an environment that is random?
    It just happened?
    Then what you are describing is also random.

  • Laird

    John B, don’t take this as agreement with anything Gary said, but yes, order can and does occur spontaneously in randomness. If the randomness is infinite, and is truly random, there will most certainly occur pockets of order within it. That’s inherent in the very nature of randomness. We live in a pocket of order. That’s the Anthropic Principle at work.

  • John B

    Then it’s random, Laird.
    (And in true randomness, there is nothing, no structure. Dissipation being the norm.)

  • Laird

    Then you don’t understand randomness, John. Sure, “dissipation is the norm”. However, if, over an infinity of time and space, you don’t have occasional pockets of order randomly occurring, but rather you insist on there being disorder everywhere, then you have in fact imposed a form of order yourself. That would not be truly random.

  • John B

    Laird, would like to follow up on this but I guess this is not the place.

    Re Afghanistan. The West seems to be dedicated to its own collapse.
    The defeat of western liberal democracy as the dominant world system (not geographically or demographically, but in terms of activity and influence) has been achieved with great difficulty and at vast expense, in my HO, based on my observation.
    It could so easily and simply have been avoided but seems to have been deliberately engineered, while at the same time being given a veneer of inevitability with all sorts of untrue excuses to back that up. (Oil is running out. Civilisations are cyclical, etc).
    The only line of reasoning that seems to make sense is that we are being deliberately steered away from liberty and back towards the 16/17th Century, undoing and destroying the advances made toward freedom over the last 300 / 400 years by enmeshing us in situations of defeat and social despair.

  • Paul Marks

    Laird and John B.

    The West is not dying a natural death – the result of the cycles of history, of the disorder from order idea in physics.

    The West is being murdered – murdered by an elite (academic, cultural, political – and even quite a few people in the world of business) whose minds are utterly devoted to (and twisted by) collectivist ideas.

    They do not want to take us back to 1700 (a period with quite a lot of freedom – although with primitive technology and, therefore, low living standards) or even 1600 (the time of “Good Queen Bess” was indeed actually rather nasty in many ways), – no it is worse than that.

    They wish to utterly transform the West (indeed the world) into a collectivist utopia.

    This fundemental transformation may (with some of the elite) owe more to Francis Bacon than it does to Karl Marx – but it still a form of radical collectivism alien even to 1600 (especially if one got away from the power hungry dreams of the Court and out into the more distant counties – although even as close as “south of the river from the City of London”, the Thames being the river, the write of the government was hardly iron).

    There are two problems with the vision of the elite. With their “Fabian Window” like view of heating up and hammering the world to make it “closer to [their] heart’s desire”.

    Firstly it is evil – it is evil for it is tyranny, tyranny for ever (the future being a boot slamming down on a human face – for ever).

    But there is another problem.

    It will not work.

    Collectivism will destroy the spontaneous order (the cosmos) on which civilization depends – taxis (statist order) will not do as a long term substitute for civil society (cosmos).

    So, yes, what starts in tyranny will end in chaos – savage, bloodsoaked chaos.

    A new Dark Age.

    It is our duty to prevent the tyranny and the chaos. It is our duty to save civilization.

    “But it is impossible Paul – it can not be saved”.

    Then it is our duty to die trying.

    After all – we are all ageing and dying anyway. We may as well devote what breath we have left (little in my case) to doing our duty.