Last week I read two interesting news items concerning the war in Afghanistan. The first one is that the US is going to start arming Afghan civilians so that they can help in the fight against the Taliban. We did something similar in Iraq when we armed citizens there and they formed the Awakening Councils. That seems to have worked out, thus far, but I still think that it was ultimately a bad idea because I am worried about what will happen when the US finally leaves and these folks have a whole bunch of new weapons.
I feel the same way about arming civilians in Afghanistan. In fact, my concern here is even more than the concern I had when I heard about arming Sunnis in Iraq. What concerns me about giving weapons to Afghan civilians is that the place is made up of various tribes ruled by warlords. There is no guarantee that the people will use the weapons to fight the Taliban. There is nothing to keep the tribes and warlords from fighting each other rather than the enemy they were given the weapons to fight. True, they may get together and fight the Taliban. That would be great. But what happens after that? Do they go back to fighting each other? Do they then turn those guns against their own shaky government or even on US troops?
And say they do fight the Taliban, but are unsuccessful in their fight, what then? Well, the easy and most obvious answer is that the Taliban would have access to a whole new wealth of weapons provided to them (albeit indirectly) by the US military. Or another possibility, the warlords, seeing an opportunity to make lots of cash, could then sell those weapons to Taliban forces, again with the result of increasing the Taliban’s fighting capability. If arming Afghan civilians will bring peace to that nation, end the US war there and bring our troops home, then I am all for it. However, I think that the potential problems are there and must be recognized before any decision is made on this issue. This issue will not be resolved before Obama takes office which means that he will have an opportunity to weigh in on it and make the final decision. Given the fact that he has vowed to renew the US war in Afghanistan, I have little doubt that he will go along with this idea, citing that something similar worked in Iraq. That is his prerogative, and it could work like it did in Iraq, but Iraq is not Afghanistan, and I hope Obama and all others involved in making this decision remember that.
The second interesting news item I encountered concerning Afghanistan was that the US is offering warlords Viagra and other items in an attempt to buy their support in the fight against the Taliban.
I love this and wish that all wars could be fought with Viagra. Well, I know that Viagra isn’t being used to actually fight the war, but it is being used as a currency and a bribe to buy support for the US. And it seems to be working as several warlords have commented on the miraculous nature of the pill, and have offered their support for US forces in the fight against the Taliban. These warlords are not nice guys. They are rapists and murderers and thugs and villains, but they just happen to be potential allies of the US, so I guess it is okay that they are little better than the Taliban who until recently ruled the country. It is no surprise that they welcome the potential to have a boner for three plus hours. After all, when you have six different teenage brides, and several more unoffical concubines, you are going to need staying power, and this little blue magic pill will give them just that. It think that should be the pitch to all Afghan warlords:
Support the US against the Taliban and get a lifetime supply of Viagra. Just imagine all the women you could repeatedly rape with a three hour boner.
I do wonder, though, just how much these warlords will be able to support the US military in their fight against the Taliban if they’re all hard on Viagra. After all, it is quite difficult to participate in battles when you are buried balls deep in some young girl who may or may not be old enough to menstruate. Before Viagra, this wouldn’t be much of a problem: they get do the raping and get on to the business of killing, but now with the ability to rape, rape, and rape some more I doubt that they will ever make it out of the cave to go and fight the Tlaiban. On the plus side, though, that should make it easier for NATO, UN, and US convoys to move about the country since there will be fewer people stopping them and demanding tolls. Of course, all they have to do is carry a bunch of those little blue pills and toll roads would no longer be a problem.