Thursday, 14 July 2011

Bin Laden's war

As we move swiftly towards the tenth anniversary of 9/11 and the first (and hopefully last) of the War on Terror, I think it may be valuable to take stock or evaluate what we have actually achieved.

The achievements in my eyes, come to very few. With Afghanistan clearly the focal point of the War on Terror, from the outside and information from the media, it does not appear to be much better off then when we arrived. Granted, the Taleban is probably slightly less influential, but the war lords are still powerful and losing trust in the coalition forces.The national and local governments appear rather weak, particularly in Helmand and suicide bombings (resulting in civilian deaths) appear to be commonplace. The country itself looks to be very unstable and in no state to support itself (even the president's brother was killed). Although the lack of progress could be partially down to the apparent corruption of Karzai,(rigging of elections) the Afghan leader. It must be said that the soldiers fighting are not to blame; putting their life on the line to make a safer Britain is admirable. But was invading Afghanistan ever going to make Britain a safer place?

The answer lies with Bin Laden's vision - an Afghan war would just make the world more unstable. The purpose of 9/1, for Bin Laden, was to provoke the west into a war they could not resist - Afghanistan. Bush and Blair quickly obliged, carelessly it now seems. For Bush in particular, after 9/11 he had the sympathy and backing of not only America but the world. The world would support America in eradicating terrorism. However the recklessness of the Afghanistan war was always likely to anger the Muslim communities, possibly causing a more wide scale war between Christians and Muslims. Not only this but the West was going to be drawn into a war they simply cannot win - as seen by the little progress achieved in ten years.

So, if the war in Afghanistan was never going to be won, then surely the War on Terror would never be won. If this is the case, then Britain may well not be any safer than before we invaded Afghanistan, terrorism would still remain potent. In fact, invading Afghanistan may lead to the eventual increase in anger and terrorism directed at the West.

So it now looks as though the aims of the west, after 9/11 - to win the War on Terror and make Britain and USA safer places - have so far not been accomplished. This, to me begs the question, what have we been doing for the past 10 years, if not completing our goals?

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