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BarkellWH

Posts: 3239
Joined: Jul. 12 2009
From: Washington, DC

RE: Afghanistan! (in reply to Kaloguitarist

quote:

I see people who will not wear a mask and will not get the vaccine because they talk about their freedom.


As I noted in my post concerning my assignment to the American Embassy in Sofia, Bulgaria, Kalo, the fools who prattle on about how vaccines and mask mandates infringe upon their "freedom" haven't got the slightest idea of what freedom, or more importantly, lack of freedom, really means. These fragile little tulips have never been deprived of freedom in their entire lives.

When you hear ignorant yahoos in the US talk about masks being an infringement upon their "freedom," what they are saying is they want the "freedom" to infect other people with the virus. They have no sense of civic responsibility, and their lack of consideration for others in the face of a public health crisis is appalling.

Bill

_____________________________

And the end of the fight is a tombstone white,
With the name of the late deceased,
And the epitaph drear, "A fool lies here,
Who tried to hustle the East."

--Rudyard Kipling
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 23 2021 16:33:34
 
Kaloguitarist

 

Posts: 109
Joined: May 12 2020
 

RE: Afghanistan! (in reply to rombsix

quote:

Hopefully the aliens will obliterate planet earth soon


In the mean time we play flamenco to protest
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 23 2021 16:50:43
 
mrstwinkle

 

Posts: 441
Joined: May 14 2017
 

RE: Afghanistan! (in reply to estebanana

Happy to take the tiny risk. I'm capable of looking at mortality stats by age group and making a decision. Yet clearly you know more about my health and age than I do.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 23 2021 18:07:06
 
estebanana

Posts: 8324
Joined: Oct. 16 2009
 

RE: Afghanistan! (in reply to JasonM

quote:

Hopefully the aliens will obliterate planet earth soon


The lizard head aliens ( Larry King’s lizard tribe) or the prawn heads from District 9?

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 23 2021 18:36:14
 
estebanana

Posts: 8324
Joined: Oct. 16 2009
 

RE: Afghanistan! (in reply to mrstwinkle

quote:


Happy to take the tiny risk. I'm capable of looking at mortality stats by age group and making a decision. Yet clearly you know more about my health and age than I do.


WTF is wrong with you? Go see a f-ing doctor and stop acting like a whiny paranoid baby.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 23 2021 18:38:59
 
Piwin

Posts: 3296
Joined: Feb. 9 2016
 

RE: Afghanistan! (in reply to rombsix

I don't know. I'd just say that, of all the things that it sucks to be right now, a human being in North America is probably one of the better draws.

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"Anything you do can be fixed. What you cannot fix is the perfection of a blank page. What you cannot fix is that pristine, unsullied whiteness of a screen or a page with nothing on it—because there’s nothing there to fix."
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 23 2021 19:23:24
 
ernandez R

Posts: 484
Joined: Mar. 25 2019
From: Alaska USA

RE: Afghanistan! (in reply to BarkellWH

A few thoughts. In regard to the gloom and doom Ramzi mentions up thread.

I feel it's all in the hands of the Taliban leadership and keeping their groups in check. I fear on misstep by them and President Biden will be forced to unleash American air power in a decisive stroke that could include surgical strikes in Pakistan. The phrase biblical comes to mind. I trust Biden to do what he feels is necessary rather then politically expedient but whatever his choice it might not align with my feelings on the matter.

In a more positive note we need ask ourselves what we can do with the incoming refugees? I don't know. We have a property next to our home we acquired through a living escrow and the owner had recently passed away and I was wondering if we couldn't host a family from Afghanistan in it? Not even vaguely sure how or who one contacts to initiate such a process.

The other idea is how this will be brain drain for Afghanistan and how do you correct that? I wanted to ask Ramzi, in a well meaning rather then contentious manor, how do you go about taking all the knowledge and privilege and and other wealths you acquired through your American experience and take these qualities to your home country to share? Set up your own clinic? Do you sponsor others to come to America with the caveat that they return? And in this vain, should we ask theses Afghan refugees after things have stabilized to take the tools they acquire here and bring them back to their homeland?

I know, a lot of questions but see world wide everyone pointing fingers and complaining but little talk about moving forward. Seems we need focus on the immediate needs of the humanity now and save the political finger pointing and hand waving for afterwards.

HR

_____________________________

I prefer my flamenco guitar spicy,
doesn't have to be fast,
should have some meat on the bones,
can be raw or well done,
as long as it doesn't sound like it's turning green on an elevator floor.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 23 2021 20:18:08
 
ernandez R

Posts: 484
Joined: Mar. 25 2019
From: Alaska USA

RE: Afghanistan! (in reply to Kaloguitarist

quote:

ORIGINAL: Kaloguitarist

quote:

Hopefully the aliens will obliterate planet earth soon


In the mean time we play flamenco to protest



Olé!

_____________________________

I prefer my flamenco guitar spicy,
doesn't have to be fast,
should have some meat on the bones,
can be raw or well done,
as long as it doesn't sound like it's turning green on an elevator floor.

www.instagram.com/threeriversguitars
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 23 2021 20:20:55
 
Brendan

Posts: 244
Joined: Oct. 30 2010
 

RE: Afghanistan! (in reply to mrstwinkle

quote:

Happy to take the tiny risk. I'm capable of looking at mortality stats by age group and making a decision. Yet clearly you know more about my health and age than I do.


It’s not just about you. It’s about the threat that your unvaccinated body poses to people around you. If you think it’s just about you, then you don’t understand how vaccines work.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 23 2021 20:46:18
 
ernandez R

Posts: 484
Joined: Mar. 25 2019
From: Alaska USA

RE: Afghanistan! (in reply to Brendan

quote:

ORIGINAL: Brendan

...snip-a-roo...

It’s not just about you. It’s about the threat that your unvaccinated body poses to people around you. If you think it’s just about you, then you don’t understand how vaccines work.



Or freedom.

Brendan,
What you have written is so on point, an easy way to convince without belittling, it removes the political, and it takes the cause for freedom and reframes it, not as a selfish act, but as the inclusive; we are at war and our freedom is at stake but the enemy is not our brother regardless of his medical knowledge, this virus cares not whether you lie on your left or right, unvaccinated it will lay you on your belly with a tube down your throat.

HR

_____________________________

I prefer my flamenco guitar spicy,
doesn't have to be fast,
should have some meat on the bones,
can be raw or well done,
as long as it doesn't sound like it's turning green on an elevator floor.

www.instagram.com/threeriversguitars
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 23 2021 22:06:13
 
estebanana

Posts: 8324
Joined: Oct. 16 2009
 

RE: Afghanistan! (in reply to ernandez R

quote:



Or freedom.

Brendan,
What you have written is so on point, an easy way to convince without belittling, it removes the political, and it takes the cause for freedom and reframes it, not as a selfish act, but as the inclusive; we are at war and our freedom is at stake but the enemy is not our brother regardless of his medical knowledge, this virus cares not whether you lie on your left or right, unvaccinated it will lay you on your belly with a tube down your



Or the person who keeps bringing it up is just a stupid troll.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 24 2021 1:20:46
 
Morante

 

Posts: 1760
Joined: Nov. 21 2010
 

RE: Afghanistan! (in reply to ernandez R

quote:

I trust Biden to do what he feels is necessary


The withdrawal from Afganistan was a disaster which seemed completely unplanned. Does Biden suffer from senile demencia?
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 24 2021 15:14:02
 
mrstwinkle

 

Posts: 441
Joined: May 14 2017
 

RE: Afghanistan! (in reply to Brendan

https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.nationalgeographic.co.uk/science-and-technology/2021/08/evidence-mounts-that-people-with-breakthrough-infections-can-spread-delta-easily/amp
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 24 2021 15:56:40
 
Richard Jernigan

Posts: 3122
Joined: Jan. 20 2004
From: Austin, Texas USA

RE: Afghanistan! (in reply to mrstwinkle

quote:

ORIGINAL: mrstwinkle
Happy to take the tiny risk. I'm capable of looking at mortality stats by age group and making a decision.


The mortality tables by age group are changing rapidly due to the delta variant of the virus. Here in Austin medical personnel report that many more people in their twenties and thirties are becoming seriously ill and dying.

I haven't tried to find mortality tables plotted as a function of time, but local physicians and public health officials emphasize that the delta variant is differrent in contagiousness, the seriousness of illness and virulence for younger people.

RNJ
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 24 2021 16:01:35
 
mrstwinkle

 

Posts: 441
Joined: May 14 2017
 

RE: Afghanistan! (in reply to Morante

After the endless mis-steps in Middle East 'intelligence' over the years? Bad advice and an age impaired president in equal measure.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 24 2021 16:02:44
 
Ricardo

Posts: 12957
Joined: Dec. 14 2004
From: Washington DC

RE: Afghanistan! (in reply to ernandez R

quote:

Brendan,
What you have written is so on point, an easy way to convince without belittling,


Actually he just told the guy he doesn’t know how vaccines work. That is about as condescending as it gets. This type of approach to many issues is the reason for push back and divide. Rather than try to explain things matter of factly (as Richard did earlier). Ignorance and stubbornness are not the same as stupidity or being knowingly reckless.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 24 2021 16:14:27
 
Brendan

Posts: 244
Joined: Oct. 30 2010
 

RE: Afghanistan! (in reply to Ricardo

I was aiming for condescension, and HR had me worried for a moment there that I’d missed the mark. So I’m grateful to Ricardo for restoring my confidence that when I set out to condescend to some guy on the internet, I hit that tone.
That said, I’m pleased to see that the argument-by-link is now about the effectiveness of vaccines for the protection of others, which is where it ought to be. A public health crisis is not just an aggregate of individual health risks.

Looking at that National Geographic story, the link is to a single study that has not yet gone through peer review.

https://www.medrxiv.org/content/10.1101/2021.07.31.21261387v3.full.pdf

The juice is on page three, where the authors note various limitations of their study and end their discussion by insisting on the importance of vaccination for public health. I think they’d be surprised and dismayed to find their work cited in support of vaccine refusenikery.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 24 2021 17:54:36
 
Escribano

Posts: 6252
Joined: Jul. 6 2003
From: England, living in Italy

RE: Afghanistan! (in reply to Ricardo

This is one of the "buchette del vino" in Northern Italy. It was used to safely sell wine and food to passing travellers during the plague of the early 17th Century. They would disinfect the money in vinegar.

Quite a few of those poor souls would be amazed at vaccines (dating back to the first 1796 for smallpox, in England) and aghast at anyone's reluctance (on principle) to have one.

This particular window is in my house and it's a timely reminder, as I received my EU Covid pass just today.



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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 24 2021 18:42:28
 
BarkellWH

Posts: 3239
Joined: Jul. 12 2009
From: Washington, DC

RE: Afghanistan! (in reply to Ricardo

As I have noted in previous posts in this thread, those ignorant yahoos who refuse to get vaccinated and wear masks because they think such public health measures violate their twisted definition of "freedom" really mean they want the "freedom" to infect others with the virus. They lack any sense of responsibility and have no consideration for others in their solipsism.

The Peterson Center on Healthcare and KFF (Kaiser Family Foundation) have partnered to monitor how well the U.S. healthcare system is performing in terms of quality and cost. A report on Covid-19 published August 20, 2021, offers the following highlights. I will spare you the detailed analysis of how they reached cost figures.

For June and July 2021, the estimated share of adults hospitalized with COVID-19 who were unvaccinated was 98.3 percent.

For June and July 2021, over 100,000 Covid-19 hospitalizations could have been prevented by vaccination.

For June and July 2021, Covid-19 hospitalizations among unvaccinated adults cost the U.S. health system over $2 billion.

These findings no doubt will mean nothing to those ignorant yahoos who think health care is all about them and no one else, but their "freedom" is adversely affecting the entire U.S. health system. Another thing that will not matter to them is that when hospitals fill up with patients suffering from the Delta variant of Covid because their "freedom" dictated they not take vaccines or wear masks, they fill up beds that could be used by patients who have life-threatening conditions like heart attacks and strokes. But it is all about the exercise of their twisted definition of "freedom." God forbid that they recognize a public health emergency staring them in the face, or that they have the slightest idea of what it means to really lack freedom.

Bill

_____________________________

And the end of the fight is a tombstone white,
With the name of the late deceased,
And the epitaph drear, "A fool lies here,
Who tried to hustle the East."

--Rudyard Kipling
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 24 2021 18:59:32
 
mrstwinkle

 

Posts: 441
Joined: May 14 2017
 

RE: Afghanistan! (in reply to BarkellWH

State forcing you to wear a mask / take a medicine, or be excluded from society? It is Orwellian grade evil.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 24 2021 19:00:01
 
BarkellWH

Posts: 3239
Joined: Jul. 12 2009
From: Washington, DC

RE: Afghanistan! (in reply to mrstwinkle

quote:

State forcing you to wear a mask / take a medicine, or be excluded from society? It is Orwellian grade evil.


Only to someone who is ignorant of both Orwell and good public health measures.

Bill

_____________________________

And the end of the fight is a tombstone white,
With the name of the late deceased,
And the epitaph drear, "A fool lies here,
Who tried to hustle the East."

--Rudyard Kipling
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 24 2021 19:13:29
 
Fluknu

 

Posts: 102
Joined: Jan. 11 2021
 

RE: Afghanistan! (in reply to BarkellWH

I agree with Kaloguitarist, that it's a difficult time to reach a conclusion about the whole vaccine scene. There is the Politcal side of it, and the research-in developpment part of it.

Here in Switzerland they're pushing the vaccines for young people now. But Pfizer had to warn Swissmedic and all swiss doctors that Myorcaditis was an adversary effect of the vaccine, specially for the under 30 y.o. According to datas at that age, the benefice/risk of the vaccine is not in favor of the vaccine. Which is not the case for people starting 50 y.o.

The goal of vaccinating young people to protect older ones is the idea here. But on the other hand, the Delta is certainly making breaktrhough with the Vaccine. Many reasercher are now voicing their mistrust in the possibility of reaching herd immunity - even if all where vaccinated. And adaptation of the vaccine for their mutation, as for the flu, seems to be more realistic to them.

This push for vaccinating youngster is relayed by the medias here - saying it's more dangerous for them. But by chance the swiss government is publishing all the datas and if you take some time, you see that it's definitely not the case. A blunt lie.

What the evidence suggest is that, at least here in Switzerland, the Delta, even in not vaccinated, is less virulent and more mild, but more contagious.

And as was said before, what is also known now is that vaccinated transmit also.

So my point is that the political agenda does notnecesserily follow research developpment. Or better said, only one strategy is seen as an exit: lockdowns and/or vaccines.

If that is the only solution that we come up with...that's sad.

The discussion on the subject is polarized: anti or for. This seems so immature to me.

I fear the the people who are sure of what to do as much as the others who refuse to do it.

I'm gratefull for pharmas trying to produce vaccines rapidly, for researchers trying to find solutions. And I'm also gratefull for the people saying "wait wait...no, I'm not taking it..I wait".

It's just so obvious that we need both - and all the inbetweens. Nature needs both.

Imagine the whole planet getting vaccinated without a reaction!!! No dissent, no counter power! What kind of humainity would that be?
Not mentionning a thing going wrong later on with the vaccine!

We need both. And it's certainly not by forcing people that it will go forward. It will be by convincing people with evidence.

When people are forced, mistrust appears.

A certain tolerance for uncertainty and chaos is the only reasonnable position for me at the moment. And an aknowldgement that we might be proven wrong (no matter the side we're on) with time should be cultivated.

Olé
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 24 2021 19:28:47
 
BarkellWH

Posts: 3239
Joined: Jul. 12 2009
From: Washington, DC

RE: Afghanistan! (in reply to Fluknu

I appreciate your wanting to give both sides of the vaccine and mask issues a hearing, Fluknu, but there is no equivalency between them. The statistics tell the story. The vaccines are highly effective, and mask-wearing definitely helps prevent transmission. Of those hospitalized for Covid in the U.S. during June and July this year, 98.3 percent were unvaccinated. When practically all hospitalizations for Covid were unvaccinated, and almost none were vaccinated, there is no equivalency in the debate. That is science, not someone's distorted definition of "freedom"

Bill

_____________________________

And the end of the fight is a tombstone white,
With the name of the late deceased,
And the epitaph drear, "A fool lies here,
Who tried to hustle the East."

--Rudyard Kipling
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 24 2021 19:49:45
 
Mark2

Posts: 1643
Joined: Jul. 12 2004
From: San Francisco

RE: Afghanistan! (in reply to BarkellWH

I was unsure about taking the shot so I asked my Dr. I have had the same Dr. for 30 years. She knows me and my health history. I had a bad reaction to the shingles vaccine so I didn't know if I should take the covid shot. I can't remember ever getting a flu shot. She said please take the vaccine. Discussion over. I took the shot. Got the J&J as that is what they had that day. Got pretty sick for two days. Fine ever since.

I'll take the booster too when and if it's recommended. I've got two little grandkids who can't take the shot yet. I'm not wanting to pass it to them, anyone else, or die from covid if I can avoid doing so.

I put on a mask when I go into a store. I put it on when I visit clients. I don't see it as a political issue. OTOH, when I'm surfing, often in somewhat close proximity to others, no mask. I'm not going to concerts, or want to be among any large groups of folks. I do go to restaurants. Some risks I'll assume, others not. I do understand why some people don't want the vaccine, and I'm hesitant to ostracize them for their choice. I don't see how the government can mandate it.

The city of San Francisco has mandated that their employees get vaccinated. They are getting pushback. A friend of mine has a son who is an SFPD cop. He applied for a religious exemption and it was granted. I was told another 200 officers who applied were denied the exemption. No idea how many were granted.
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 24 2021 20:58:09
 
estebanana

Posts: 8324
Joined: Oct. 16 2009
 

RE: Afghanistan! (in reply to BarkellWH

To use a popular philosophy quote re: Orwell

Orwell didn’t write in the circumstances we are experiencing now. If you want to make a 20th century literary correlative with British writers try Huxley.

It’s a Brave New World and rejection of the vaccine is messing with the overall well-being of the countries that do not have your US privileges.



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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 25 2021 0:36:41
 
estebanana

Posts: 8324
Joined: Oct. 16 2009
 

RE: Afghanistan! (in reply to BarkellWH

I’ve copied this from the daily summary of US news by Heather Cox-Richardson.

She writes ‘Letter from an American’ everyday to sum up current events and contrast them with US history and world history. She is an important American historian who specializes in the eras of the Revolutionary War, Civil War, Reconstruction/Jim Crow and The Civil Rights Movement. Her comparisons between past histories and what’s happening now put the frenetic pace of our hot take news cycle in historical perspective.

I highly recommend her daily breakdown for if nothing else her insightful history lessons. You can google Search her and subscribe to her Letter from an American

I would implore those who dismiss Biden as senile to rethink that position. Considering the Sh/t Sandwich he took on it could be worse. There’s no guarantee that would Trump have won the 2020 election his administration would have even bothered with conducting an airlift. It’s been uncovered that his advisers led by Stephen Miller had no intention whatsoever of removing Afghan translators who served with US and NATO troops. But that’s another story.


—————————————————-
This is from August 22, 2021
Heather Cox Richardson

A week after the Taliban took control of Kabul, the capital of Afghanistan, as the U.S. was withdrawing the forces that have been in the country since 2001, the initial chaos created by the Taliban’s rapid sweep across the country has simmered down into what is at least a temporary pattern.

We knew there was a good chance that the Taliban would regain control of the country when we left, although that was not a foregone conclusion. The former president, Donald Trump, recognized that the American people were tired of the ongoing war in Afghanistan, which was approaching its 20th year, and in February 2020, his administration negotiated with the Taliban to enable the U.S. to withdraw. In exchange for the release of 5000 Taliban fighters and the promise that the U.S. would withdraw within the next 14 months, the Taliban agreed not to attack U.S. soldiers.

Trump’s dislike of the war in Afghanistan reflected the unpopularity of the long engagement, which by 2020 was ill defined. The war had begun in 2001, after terrorists affiliated with al-Qaeda attacked the United States on September 11 of that year. Taliban leaders in control of Afghanistan sheltered al-Qaeda, and after the attacks, the U.S. president, George W. Bush, demanded that Afghanistan hand over the terrorist leader believed to be behind the terrorist attack on the U.S: Osama bin Laden. In October, after Taliban leaders refused, the U.S. launched a bombing campaign.

That campaign was successful enough that in December 2001 the Taliban offered to surrender. But the U.S. rejected that surrender, determined by then to eradicate the extremist group and fill the vacuum of its collapse with a new, pro-American government. Al-Qaeda leader bin Laden escaped from Afghanistan to Pakistan, and the U.S. project in Afghanistan turned from an anti-terrorism mission into an effort to rebuild the Afghan government into a modern democracy.

By 2002 the Bush administration was articulating a new doctrine in foreign policy, arguing that the U.S. had a right to strike preemptively against countries that harbor terrorists. In 2003, under this doctrine, the U.S. launched a war on Iraq, which diverted money, troops, and attention from Afghanistan. The Taliban regrouped and began to regain the territory it had lost after the U.S. first began its bombing campaign in 2001.

By 2005, Bush administration officials privately worried the war in Afghanistan could not be won on its current terms, especially with the U.S. focused on Iraq. Then, when he took office in 2009, President Barack Obama turned his attention back to Afghanistan. He threw more troops into that country, bringing their numbers close to 100,000. In 2011, the U.S. military located bin Laden in Abbottabad, Pakistan, and launched a raid on the compound where he was hiding, killing him. By 2014, Obama had drawn troops in Afghanistan down to about 11,000, and in December of that year, he announced that the mission of the war—weakening the Taliban and capturing bin Laden—had been accomplished, and thus the war was over. The troops would come home.

But, of course, they didn’t, leaving Trump to develop his own policy. But his administration’s approach to the chaos in that country was different than his predecessor’s. By negotiating with the Taliban and excluding the Afghan government the U.S. had been supporting, the Trump team essentially accepted that the Taliban were the most important party in Afghanistan. The agreement itself reflected the oddity of the negotiations. Each clause referring to the Taliban began: “The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan which is not recognized by the United States as a state and is known as the Taliban will….”

It was immediately clear that the Taliban was not living up to its side of the bargain. Although it did stop attacking U.S. troops, It began to escalate violence in Afghanistan itself, assassinated political opponents, and maintained ties to al-Qaeda. Nonetheless, the Trump administration put pressure on the leaders of the Afghan government to release the 5000 Taliban prisoners, and they eventually did. Before Biden took office, Trump dropped the U.S. troop engagement in Afghanistan from about 13,000 to about 2500.

When he took office, Biden had to decide whether to follow Trump’s path or to push back on the Taliban on the grounds they were not honoring the agreement Trump’s people had hammered out. Biden himself wanted to get out of the war. At the same time, he recognized that fighting the Taliban again would mean throwing more troops back into Afghanistan, and that the U.S. would again begin to take casualties. He opted to get the troops out, but extended the deadline to September 11, 2021, the twentieth anniversary of the initial attack. (Former president Trump complained that the troops should come out faster.)

What Biden did not foresee was the speed with which the Taliban would retake control of the country. It swept over the regional capitals and then Kabul in about nine days in mid-August with barely a shot fired, and the head of the Afghan government fled the country, leaving it in chaos.

That speed left the U.S. flatfooted. Afghans who had been part of the government or who had helped the U.S. and its allies rushed to the airport to try to escape. In the pandemonium of that first day, up to seven people were killed; two people appear to have clung to a U.S. military plane as it took off, falling to their deaths.

And yet, the Taliban, so far, has promised amnesty for its former opponents and limited rights for women. It has its own problems, as the Afghan government has been supported for the previous 20 years by foreign money, including a large percentage from the U.S. Not only has that money dried up as foreign countries refuse to back the Taliban, but also Biden has put sanctions on Afghanistan and also on some Pakistanis suspected of funding the Taliban. At the same time it appears that no other major sponsor, like Russia or China, has stepped in to fill the vacuum left by U.S. money, leaving the Taliban fishing for whatever goodwill it can find.

Yesterday, Josh Marshall of Talking Points Memo flagged tweets showing that members of the Afghan government, including the brother of the president who fled, are in what appear from the photos posted on Twitter to be relaxed talks about forming a new government. Other factions in Afghanistan would like to stop this from happening, and today Biden’s national security adviser Jake Sullivan warned that ISIS-K, another extremist group, is threatening to attack the airport to destabilize the Taliban.

Meanwhile, there are 10,000 people crowded into that airport, and U.S. evacuations continue. The Kabul airport is secure—for now—and the U.S. military has created a larger perimeter around it for protection. The U.S. government has asked Americans in Afghanistan to shelter in place until they can be moved out safely; the Qatari ambassador to Afghanistan has been escorting groups of them to the airport. Evacuations have been slower than hoped because of backlogs at the next stage of the journey, but the government has enlisted the help of 18 commercial airlines to move those passengers forward, leaving room for new evacuees.

Yesterday, about 7800 evacuees left the Kabul airport. About 28,000 have been evacuated since August 14.

Interestingly, much of the U.S. media is describing this scenario as a disaster for President Biden. Yet, on CNN this morning, Matthew Dowd, who was the chief strategist for the Bush-Cheney ticket in 2004, noted that more than 20,000 people have been evac 000 people have been evacuated from Afghanistan without a single loss of an American life, while in the same period of time, 5000 Americans have died from Covid-19 and 500 have died from gunshots.


Notes:

https://www.npr.org/2020/02/29/810537586/u-s-signs-peace-deal-with-taliban-after-nearly-2-decades-of-war-in-afghanistan

https://www.washingtonpost.com/investigations/2021/08/12/obama-afghan-war-ending-afghanistan-papers-book-excerpt/

https://www.factcheck.org/2021/08/timeline-of-u-s-withdrawal-from-afghanistan/

https://talkingpointsmemo.com/edblog/you-wouldnt-know-it-from-the-us-news-coverage-but

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2021/aug/16/kabul-airport-chaos-and-panic-as-afghans-and-foreigners-attempt-to-flee-the-capital

https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/2021/08/22/afghanistan-biden-evacuations/

https://www.cnn.com/2021/08/21/politics/kabul-airport-terror-warning/index.html

Link to Dowd:
https://www.mediaite.com/tv/matthew-dowd-defends-biden-on-afghanistan-withdrawal-says-media-coverage-way-over-the-top/

_____________________________

https://www.stephenfaulkguitars.com
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 25 2021 1:50:22
 
BarkellWH

Posts: 3239
Joined: Jul. 12 2009
From: Washington, DC

RE: Afghanistan! (in reply to estebanana

quote:

Orwell didn’t write in the circumstances we are experiencing now.


Even given the circumstances at the time Orwell was writing, he was not against legitimate public health measures. He was not, and would not be today, an anti-vaxxer against mandated measures to stop transmission. For someone to think that Orwell's writings against totalitarianism (primarily directed against the Soviet Union) encompassed legitimate public health measures during a pandemic is to deliberately or inadvertently misunderstand the thrust of his pen. Ironically, to read Orwell that way is to twist his language in a way that we would call "Orwellian."

Bill

_____________________________

And the end of the fight is a tombstone white,
With the name of the late deceased,
And the epitaph drear, "A fool lies here,
Who tried to hustle the East."

--Rudyard Kipling
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 25 2021 12:36:22
 
BarkellWH

Posts: 3239
Joined: Jul. 12 2009
From: Washington, DC

RE: Afghanistan! (in reply to BarkellWH

Staying on point with the subject of this thread (Afghanistan), news reports have just confirmed Mark Twain's observation: "Suppose you were an idiot, and suppose you were a member of Congress; but I repeat myself."

Two Congressmen flew into the Kabul airport unannounced on a charter flight without consulting either the Pentagon or the State Department. Representatives Seth Moulton (D. Mass.) and Peter Meijer (R. Mich.) claimed they were exercising "Congressional oversight" over the Executive Branch, but their little caper forced State Department and military personnel to provide last-minute security measures for the two legislators, taking them away from their pressing duties working the evacuation. The Congressmen stayed a few hours and departed on a U.S. military flight meant to carry U.S. citizen and Afghan evacuees. Whether or not they took seats away from evacuees is uncertain.

That one was a Democrat and one a Republican is evidence that both parties have their Neanderthals. On second thought, that is an insult to Neanderthals.

Bill

_____________________________

And the end of the fight is a tombstone white,
With the name of the late deceased,
And the epitaph drear, "A fool lies here,
Who tried to hustle the East."

--Rudyard Kipling
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 25 2021 17:34:58
 
estebanana

Posts: 8324
Joined: Oct. 16 2009
 

RE: Afghanistan! (in reply to BarkellWH

quote:


Even given the circumstances at the time Orwell was writing, he was not against legitimate public health measures. He was not, and would not be today, an anti-vaxxer against mandated measures to stop transmission. For someone to think that Orwell's writings against totalitarianism (primarily directed against the Soviet Union) encompassed legitimate public health measures during a pandemic is to deliberately or inadvertently misunderstand the thrust of his pen. Ironically, to read Orwell that way is to twist his language in a way that we would call "Orwellian."

Bill



True. After I wrote that I thought of Orwell living in the time of polio. The people who cite vaccine mandates as ‘Orwellian oppression’ clearly haven’t read Orwell, but are simply mimicking the misappropriation of his work by extremist political pundits and other fools.

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  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 26 2021 2:08:22
 
estebanana

Posts: 8324
Joined: Oct. 16 2009
 

RE: Afghanistan! (in reply to BarkellWH

quote:


Staying on point with the subject of this thread (Afghanistan), news reports have just confirmed Mark Twain's observation: "Suppose you were an idiot, and suppose you were a member of Congress; but I repeat myself."

Two Congressmen flew into the Kabul airport unannounced on a charter flight without consulting either the Pentagon or the State Department. Representatives Seth Moulton (D. Mass.) and Peter Meijer (R. Mich.) claimed they were exercising "Congressional oversight" over the Executive Branch, but their little caper forced State Department and military personnel to provide last-minute security measures for the two legislators, taking them away from their pressing duties working the evacuation. The Congressmen stayed a few hours and departed on a U.S. military flight meant to carry U.S. citizen and Afghan evacuees. Whether or not they took seats away from evacuees is uncertain.

That one was a Democrat and one a Republican is evidence that both parties have their Neanderthals. On second thought, that is an insult to Neanderthals.

Bill


Oh, yeah, there are dumb dumbs on both sides of the aisle. However I speculate, and feel free to contest with prejudice, that today Twain would foist more sarcasm toward one party than the other. But I repeat myself, again.

One can alway rely on AOC ( Always On Camera) to take up airspace with non essential liberal brain fodder to the media who eat out of her hand. But there is always room for more camera hungry congressmen to perform non essential dances in an attempt to get more Twitter followers.


Staying on with Afghanistan- once the media stops over blowing the way the Biden admin is conducting the departure, they will turn completely to the next step in Afghanistan. I’ve been thinking for a long time that in order for the Taliban to continue, that it will have to evolve into a political actor with compromised values. I think that in order for them to be successful, whether they retook them country or not, they would have to be a more moderate political party instead of a religious cult army.

The history of the area before westerners interfering was that Afghanistan has always been like pre unification Italy or Japan, it’s conglomeration of fiefdoms. The balance between them was always worked out over and over by trade, skirmishes, taxes and pride in regional self sufficiency. Perhaps without meddlers over the years Afghanistan will evolve by itself?

As I see it, the only people in Afghanistan who really suffer inequality are the women. Afghan men more or less have the same rights whether it’s Taliban ruled or overseen rule by the West ( US or Britain) the rights of men under either government style are not radically different. But women are subjected to extreme shifts in visibility and participation in society.

There is a theory in social science that to reform Islam in its oppressive extreme doctrinal forms that the education of women is the long incremental path. The Taliban aims to set a ceiling on how much and which type of education women can have, but it’s going to be near impossible for them to stop the secret transference of feminist thought among women in urban Afghanistan. It will be like the Soviets trying to stop rock and roll tapes and recordings from being passed hand to hand. Afghan women will risk reading the books and transmitting the knowledge that they as women live under unequal circumstances. Eventually they will demand emancipation, it take a long time or it could happen swiftly, but when it does, the women in the west will support them. As women in Afghanistan have children under the Taliban rule, there will be strict gender role adherence, boys will be indoctrinated with the teaching of the Taliban or whomsoever in societal control, but some women will also be subversively teaching their sons and daughters to observe the inequalities and understand it from a vantage point outside the religious dogma.

Afghan women have had two decades of progress even though Afghan men on the whole don’t support more autonomy for women. Nevertheless the women are not going to forget the gains. The other prediction I’ll make is that European and US media will overlook this situation and do everything they can to make it worse because western media is inherently misogynist.

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https://www.stephenfaulkguitars.com
  REPORT THIS POST AS INAPPROPRIATE |  Date Aug. 26 2021 2:14:59
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