Last week, President Barack Obama flew to Afghanistan and met with Afghan President Hamid Karzai. They discussed the current war that the US was waging against al-Qaida and continued US support which Obama promised would continue for the next twelve years.
During those meetings, Obama promised Karzai that the US would no longer launch any attacks against al-Quaida from Afghan soil. This also includes any drone attacks launched from bases in Afghanistan.
The agreement signed by Obama and Karzai was eight pages long but what seems to be the most significant statement contained in those eight pages is found in paragraph 6b. The statement reads,
“The United States further pledges not to use Afghan territory or facilities as a launching point for attacks against other countries.”In the past few years, the drone attacks have successfully eliminated a hundreds of al-Qaida leaders and fighters as well as destroying supplies and munitions. The drone attacks are quite popular with Americans since they are unmanned missions that keep our pilots out of harm’s way.
Even more interesting is the fact that Obama has been bragging about the raid that killed Osama bin Laden and using it for his campaign image, but his new agreement would ban similar raids from ever taking place again.
If you look on a map of the area, that leaves the US very little opportunity to launch missions against al-Qaida leaders and strongholds in Pakistan. Basically, this amounts to giving al-Qaida free reign to set up bases and camps all along the border between Pakistan and Afghanistan. These camps can be within a mile of the Afghan border and US troops will not be able to do anything about them.
The al-Qaida bases can launch missiles and rockets aimed at US troops stationed in Afghanistan and they won’t be able to do anything to stop them. US bases such as Camp Dwyer could be negatively impacted by this agreement. The base sits in the Helmand River Valley in Afghanistan, fairly near the Pakistan border. Camp Dwyer is designated as a forward operating Marine base and airfield. How are the Proud and the Few supposed to defend themselves from al-Qaida attacks launched from Pakistan? They will no longer be able to strike back or to do anything to destroy the enemy positions attacking them. It’s going to be just like Viet Nam when US troop were not allowed to fire upon Vietcong attacks in Cambodia or Laos and our servicemen were nothing more than helpless sitting ducks.
Yet, Obama pledges continued US support to help Afghanistan fight against al-Qaida forces who have vowed to overthrow the Afghan government. He may have set a timetable for the withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan, but as long as there is a single American serving in Afghanistan, military or civilian, they will be in eminent danger from Pakistani based al-Qaida attacks.
Obama’s actions are deplorable and reprehensive. He is needlessly placing our men and women in a no-win position. If they are to be stationed in Afghanistan to fight an enemy, then let them fight no matter where the enemy tries to hide. If our troops cannot strike back at the enemy they are fighting, then bring them all home and let Afghanistan fend for itself. You can’t have it both ways.