It's "EMISSION ACCOMPLISHED!" for the American-led coalition in Afghanistan, as that wretched, so-called country plans to hold democratic elections in October. Between now and then -- i.e. for the next six months -- Armpitistan's so-called security forces will continue to struggle to prevent attacks by the country's ISIS affiliate as well as the more firmly established Taliban. Both groups are for some reason opposed to democratic elections, and regularly launch attacks, with the Taliban usually targeting the government and security forces, and ISIS targeting the country's Shia minority.
Reports coming over the mojo wire say that an ISIS suicide bomber struck a voter registration centre in the Afghan capital, Kabul, this morning, killing at least 57 people (and counting). A spokesthingy for the Public Health Ministry said another 112 people were wounded in today's attack. The Kabul police chief, General Daud "Idi" Amin, said the suicide bomber targeted civilians who had gathered to receive national identification cards. In a statement carried by its Aamaq news service, ISIS said it had targeted Shia "apostates".
If you live in Afraghanistsan and value your life, the last thing you want to do is go and register to vote. Last week, three cops responsible for guarding voter registration centres in two Afghan provinces were killed by Islamic militants. Elsewhere in Afghanistan, at least five people were killed when their vehicle struck a roadside bomb in Baghlan province. A spokesthingy for the provincial police chief said four other people were wounded in the blast.
That was just today... so far! Yesterday, in Balkh province, a district police chief died of his wounds after being shot during a gunbattle with insurgents. A spokesthingy for the provincial police chief said around a dozen insurgents were also killed in the battle, which is still underway. The "insurgents" are reportedly members of the Taliban, who routinely attack police stations and plant roadside bombs (IEDs) targetting anyone who happens to be using the roads.
In the headline, I said "Americans [are standing] stand by". And so they are. About 15,000 US troops are in Armpitistan even as we speak. But wait (I hear you say), didn't President 0 bring our boys (and girls) home in 2014? Errr, no. He started "drawing down" US forces in 2014 but, as with so many other things, never quite got the job done. When President Trump took over 15 months ago, some 10,000 Yankee imperialists remained in country. In "The Forever War", Newsweek reported in November that 15,000 US troops were still in Afghanistan. And the Washington Post said in January that more would likely be sent this spring.
The problem is [Wapo, again] that no-one seems quite sure what they're doing there! Sending in the Marines is one thing, deploying them effectively quite another. Marine Brig. Gen. Roger Turner's forces in Helmand province saw indirect enemy fire about 20 times over the last few months. None of them earned the Combat Action Ribbon, a culturally important award in the service that recognizes those "who have actively participated in ground or surface combat", including facing firefights and roadside bomb explosions.
Keeping 15,000 American boys (and girls) in that shithole country is costing American taxpayers millions of dollars every day. If they're not doing anything, why not bring them home? All of them! That's Walt's innocent question of the day. Ask it of your Congressman (or Congresswoman) next time you see him (or her). Let me know if you get a sensible answer.