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Even a whack-o like Rohrabacher gets it.
But the neocons will never be happy until they’ve dropped a bomb on every Muslim from Mindanao to Morroco.
Rohrabacher’s right. No more good can come of this. We’re done, so let’s bring them home.
Did he talk like that when Bush was in power? I’d like to see Royce vote to get our troops out of there too, but I think the defense contractors are making too much money selling weapons to bring anyone home soon.
It’s not just defense contractors. It’s also the vast War on Terror security state apparatus that sucks at the teats of paranoia, xenophobia, and anger.
And it sucks long and hard.
In 1988, shortly after winning his first term in Congress, Dana Rohrabacher dabbled briefly in another vocation—freedom fighter. With Afghanistan’s anti-Soviet insurgency a cause célèbre for conservatives, he traveled to the front lines. Sporting a thick beard and traditional Afghan attire, the congressman-elect joined up with a rebel infantry unit whose mission included laying siege to a Soviet position………………..
Rohrabacher’s Afghanistan history dates back to his days as a speechwriter and presidential adviser in the Reagan White House, where he helped shape the Reagan Doctrine—the policy of arming resistance movements to undermine Soviet influence, with the mujahideen serving as Exhibit A. “I’d be there with guys in full Afghan garb in the executive dining room of the White House,” he recalls. Michael Scheuer, the former chief of the CIA’s bin Laden unit, says Rohrabacher was one of the few lawmakers who were “interested in Afghanistan to an extent that surpassed how many dead Soviets there were.”
In the years after the Soviets fled Afghanistan in 1989, Rohrabacher says, his “passion” was to bring back the country’s exiled king, Muhammad Zahir Shah, the only figure he believed could unite Afghans. Instead, by 1996, the Taliban had captured Kabul, and Rohrabacher began actively working to undermine them. At one point he hitched a ride in a UN supply plane to the northern city of Mazar-i-Sharif with the aim of organizing a coalition of anti-Taliban warlords such as Massoud and the Uzbek militia commander Abdul Rashid Dostum. “I was flying all over the world,” he says. “And I was on my own. You know, I was a real freelancer on that one.”
Indeed, the congressman “was seen as having his own foreign policy,” says Marvin Weinbaum, a former Afghanistan and Pakistan analyst at the State Department and now a scholar at the Middle East Institute. “He saw all sorts of nefarious plots that we were hatching with the Taliban. He was certainly out to discredit the [Clinton] State Department.” Following a 2001 meeting with the Taliban’s foreign minister in Qatar, US critics accused Rohrabacher of breaching the Logan Act, which prohibits American citizens from making unofficial diplomatic overtures.
In the fall of 2001, Rohrabacher’s friend Massoud was assassinated by a pair of Al Qaeda operatives. Upon hearing the news, Rohrabacher wept in his office. Then he phoned the Bush White House in a frenzy: He believed Massoud’s murder was the prelude to a major terrorist attack and requested an immediate audience with then-national security adviser Condoleezza Rice. He got an appointment for the next day—September 11.
In the aftermath of the attacks, Rohrabacher was in demand. In meetings with Rice, as well as Pentagon and CIA officials, he says, he argued that the Northern Alliance and a small US team should oust the Taliban—the more heavy-handed operation favored by some military leaders wouldn’t work. Rohrabacher’s aides, meanwhile, worked the phones with their Afghan contacts, gathering intelligence on the Taliban’s movements. “I had everybody’s sat-phone number,” says Al Santoli, a former foreign policy aide to Rohrabacher. “I spent as much time at the Pentagon as I did in the congressional office.”
Even now, Rohrabacher grins when recalling the overthrow of the Taliban. “Everything was ours,” he says. “We had the total faith of the vast majority of Afghans.” But, he adds, it all went sour when the administration decided to shift gears. “The turning point was when George W. Bush through his hubris decided he was going to—I can just see him saying, ‘We’re on a roll, let’s go into Iraq.’ We didn’t have the ability to sustain large-scale military operations in Iraq and still rebuild Afghanistan.” Still, Rohrabacher was a steadfast backer of the war during the Bush years, a stance he now considers “a mistake.”
Today, Rohrabacher vows to vote against any funding for Obama’s surge in Afghanistan. Instead he favors……. http://motherjones.com/politics/2010/03/dana-rohrabacher-afghanistan-war
Surprise, “Still, Rohrabacher was a steadfast backer of the war during the Bush years, a stance he now considers “a mistake.”
Whatever he once believed is irrelevant. The point is he’s right now–we need to get out now, and the Bin Laden killing gives Obama even more cover–from all sides– to do it. If we’re out by 2012, his re-election is secured.
@3&4: Sounds like the same ol tired argument we made in the ’60s — except then it was called the “military industrial complex”.
Except that it’s only “tired” to old fools who grew weary and decided it was easier to just go along.
Have heard Eddie(Haskell) recently on a couple of “local” radio talk shows… HE is obviously in REelection mode… TIME… To find… HIS… replacement!!!!!!!!
cynicism aside, rohrbacker correctly and succintly sums up the outcome of the war on terror. It has been our longest war, a war of attrition won by Afghanistan president karzai’s loyalty and support for al qaeda. Karzai inc. notoriously uses the billions of $US to fund our enemy while surreptiously schmoozing iran’s ahamdinejad. here is the irony, the only group that can bring down karzai is the taliban and in a strange twist of events, the US will turn to the taliban to aid overthrow of karzai who was put into power and sustanined by US $ and military. this looming scenario shows US folly of importing democracy in a box to a region that only knows and respects the tribal hierarchy. the domino theory of communist takeover of the world that justified the Vietnam war is the same theory used to justify war in afghanistan. if US removes our troops and US$ afghanistan will not fall to al qaeda as it already is in the hands of al qaeda via its proxy karzai. what will happen it will return to the taliban. nothing accomplished except the loss and maiming of our brave troops and the loss of trillions of precious tax dollars
As long as US military involvement fulfills Isreal’s agenda of war and instability in Arab and Muslim countries, Congress will never muster the votes to get us out by stopping the endless funding for our “volunteer” forces. The same old simple patriotic reasons will always be there. Getting out of Vietnam was easy. Unfortunately, the Zionist ideology (thru the control of the media and financial markets) has now captured the unsophisticated Christian minds of the American majority. As long as the American Jewry fails to see the racism, hatred and fallacy of Jewish nationality that is Zionism, the US will be waging this “War on Terrorism” until kingdom come and America will die a slow economic death as Isreal’s mercenary state.
native son, with your anti-zionist diatribe, I may safely assume you hope to win an award next year from Rusty Kennedy executive director of the Orange County Human Relations Commission for your efforts to foster understanding between diverse groups within our community. Is your name siddiqi 2?
it’s truly fascinating seeing the shifting of policy from Republicans when it comes to the war on terror. I guarantee you that if a fellow party member were still in the White House, you would never see this floor speech.
We blindly followed our GOP President with the hopes that he was taking us the right way. Perhaps we can use this time to repent for losing our limited government ways and make sure we don’t screw up in 2012.
not all of us blindly followed the GOP president bush, just as it is an evergrowing minority that does not blindly follow obama. what is obvious is obama merely follows the footsteps of bush when it comes to foreign policy;. obama continues bush’s practice of using our precious tax dollars to buy the loyalty of our enemies, pakistan, afghanistan, egypt and turkey who use these $ to buy better weapons and more recruits to kill our brave troops. obama does what bush did best, and that is occupy a hostile land for what purpose?
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