But if we put aside for the moment the reasons to have gone into each country, the two now look remarkably the same. Both have fragile democratic governments. Radical Islamists--using similar tactics of suicide bombing and improvised explosive devices--are pouring in from sanctuaries across the border, whether Pakistan or Syria and Iran. Bin Laden and Dr. Zawahiri themselves have boasted that Iraq, at the heart of the ancient caliphate, is now the frontline theater for the jihadists.Unlike Iraq, we invaded Afghanistan with a legitimate justification, but as the Tora Bora battle and Operation Anaconda show, the same incompetent crowd is in charge.
So far the international approval of Afghanistan and its smaller costs have ensured support from the Left. But note, as casualties begin to mount, and the nature of the counter-insurgency fighting increasingly begins to resemble Iraq--as it must in this particular front of a global war--and as the magic multilateral solution proves a mirage, the NATO coalition being no more effective than the coalition of the willing in Iraq, expect to see the Democratic leadership begin to bail on Afghanistan as well.
Wednesday, September 13, 2006
Victor D. Hanson makes the case, not heard often enough, that Afghanistan is as screwed up as Iraq, though he doesn't characterize it that way: