Letter to the Editor: Let’s not repeat past mistakes


Fifteen years ago we invaded Afghanistan to punish those involved in the Sept. 11, 2001 disaster. We are still there. Our nation’s greatest wealth is in its youth, and their continued sacrifice of time and lives is disgraceful and disrespectful.

As Napoleon discovered at Moscow, sometimes it is necessary to declare defeat and withdraw. In fact one of the axioms of warfare from the Chinese writer Sun Tsu, (“The Art of War”) , is that you do not reinforce a failure. Isn’t it time we left this poor nation to the people who are forced to live there?

No one ever loves the invader. They may smile and proclaim loyalty, but somehow the incidence of Afghan troops attacking their American counterparts increases. Remember, almost all the battlefield deaths this year have been green on blue. We had over 100,000 troops there five years ago, now we have less than 5,000. Is another 4,000 going to make a difference, or is it just going to provide more targets?

A lot of our national involvement now is in civil or religious wars. We should remember that President Lincoln threatened Great Britain with war should she interfere in our civil war.  As the philosopher and historian George Santayna said, Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” Must we?

How about saving the money we spend on the destruction and rebuilding of a far away nation, and spend it at home?

Danuel L Smith, Woodstock