Friday, October 24, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Love and rockets

Love and rockets

How many more hearts -- and minds -- were lost with this Valentine's Day fiasco:

MARJA, Afghanistan — An errant American rocket strike on Sunday hit a compound crowded with Afghan civilians in the last Taliban stronghold in Helmand Province, killing at least 10 people, including 5 children, military officials said.

Avoiding such civilian deaths, which came on the second day of a major allied offensive around Marja, has been a cornerstone of the war strategy by the top American commander, Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal. He apologized to President Hamid Karzai, saying, “We deeply regret this tragic loss of life.”

Me too. Look, the theory behind military operations like the one underway in Marja -- clearing out a town and once it's been "pacified," pouring in reconstruction dollars -- is sound...on paper. It breaks down in reality because so many civilian casualties simply creates a new generation of jihadists against America and the West. This war has gotten so far away from its original purpose of finding Osama bin Laden and his top lieutenants and eliminating their safe haven in Afghanistan. Shame on President Obama for not doing what could have been done last year, and that is to rethink Afghanistan.

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Will Bunch
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