A recent letter (See no evil, Touch no Evil, Hear no Evil- Jan. 1) provides an excellent example of how effective the media/government propaganda machine is at using faulty moral arguments and incomplete information to cloud the real issues involved in the Afghanistan War.
To suggest that the purpose of this war has anything to do with liberating the Afghan people from the oppressive Taliban is patently absurd. The U.S. government was giving tens of millions of dollars in grants to this “evil” regime just months before 9/11for their drug eradication program and if 9/11 hadn’t happened we might be writing checks to them as you read this. In addition, there are dozens of regimes throughout the world which are equally oppressive as the Taliban (most of which the majority of Americans couldn’t find on a map) and no one would even consider risking a single American life to help overthrow since sadly American foreign policy is a manifestation of raw self-interest, and nothing more.
In the current case “we” have decided to destroy a regime (without negotiating) because they are intimately associated with a group that killed thousands of Americans. Whether or not you agree with the military course we have taken lets look at some of the results so far. Most estimates from groups inside Afghanistan indicate that we have killed at least as many innocent civilians as died in the attacks of 9/11, the human rights record of the people replacing the Taliban are remarkably similar, we still haven’t captured Bin-Laden or Omar, and it is unclear whether what we have done will in the long-run decrease the likelihood of future terrorist strikes against the United States