The 1842 Kabul Retreat remains as one Britain’s worst military disasters. At the time Britain was well into her “imperial century” and was unchallenged at sea, much like her successor the United States is today.
But that massacre at the hands of the Afghans was the first stark lesson for Western armies on the perils of meddling in a country whose people are fiercely independent and hostile to outside interference when they’re not busy fighting amounts themselves.
It should also have been a lesson the US learned after the CIA covertly supported the Mujahideen in their successful war against the Soviet Union, but apparently not.
Admittedly, the US’s intervention can hardly be compared in terms of negative consequences to those two conflicts, but after nearly sixteen years of continuing casualties it’s time the decision is made to withdraw all troops and leave the Afghans to their own incomprehensible devices – it appears that they no longer want to endure Western freedom.
Thus unfortunately it’s no surprise to see reports of coalition troops – in the latest case US – continuing to be treacherously killed despite an end to major combat operations in 2014. As reported by AP:
An Afghan soldier opened fire on American soldiers on Saturday, injuring at least seven, the U.S. military said. It was the second such insider attack by an Afghan soldier in the past week.
Abdul Qahar Araam, spokesman for the 209th Army corps, confirmed that an insider attack took place at a camp in Mazar-e Sharif. Araam said the soldiers returned fire and killed the attacker.
Gen. Dawlat Waziri, spokesman for the Afghan Defense Ministry, also confirmed the attack.
The Resolute Support mission announced on its Twitter feed that seven U.S. service members were wounded but said there were no U.S. fatalities. It said one Afghan soldier was killed and one wounded.
Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid praised the attack in a statement sent to the media. But he did not claim Taliban responsibility.
Last week three U.S. soldiers were killed by an Afghan soldier in eastern Nangarhar province. In that case Mujahid claimed that the shooter was a Taliban loyalist who infiltrated the army specifically to seek out opportunities to attack foreign soldiers.
Since the US and UK intervened in 2001 to oust the Taliban and deny al-Qaeda a safe base of operations – in other words blow up a few caves and tunnels, destroy some monkey bars and other invaluable jihadi training facilities with multimillion Dollar weaponry – and were subsequently joined by NATO forces in 2003, a total of 94 coalition soldiers have been killed in so called “green on blue” attacks, out of a total of 3535 fatalities.
Fortunately none of the seven “insider attacks” described above were fatal this time, but the fact that they continue, and the Taliban concurrently praise them, is a sign that not all is well in poppyland. So are coalition forces still in Afghanistan to safeguard and oversee the production of heroin as concluded by some or are there other reasons?
The answer to that question is yes, and it most likely has to do with a variation of “The Great Game” which saw world powers pit their forces against each other for control of central and Southern Asia in the nineteenth century.
It’s time for the US to scale back her empire and put her troops and resources to better use – namely Making America Great Again. The same goes for the UK and the rest of the Western coalition forces in a region which has been the nexus of an exodus of “refugees” that have invaded Europe under the auspices of NATO’s erstwhile partner Turkey.
It seems unlikely that this “refugee” crisis comprised of military aged men, with a penchant for violence and European women, would have materialised if those coalition troops had been patrolling the Aegean Sea, and stationed along the Greek border with the country whose leader has called for Turkish couples in the EU to have five children each. We ignore his veiled threat at our peril.
Our troops should be defending our nations, not Afghanistan – or for that matter Iraq. It’s time to pivot to a defence of the West.