Small Wars Journal

The Afghanistan War Is Over. We Lost.

The Afghanistan War Is Over. We Lost. By Thomas Joscelyn - Weekly Standard

America has lost the war in Afghanistan. Washington may not want to admit it, and the U.S. military insists the conflict is a “stalemate.” But make no mistake: The original 9/11 war has been lost.

On Thursday, the Taliban attacked a meeting between Afghan officials and the top U.S. military commander in Afghanistan, Lt. Gen. Austin S. Miller. Americans in attendance were wounded, but Miller was unhurt. At least three Afghan officials, though, were killed, including Gen. Abdul Raziq, a key American ally and powerbroker in southern Afghanistan. The U.S. military’s initial statement on the attack was a good example of its cognitive dissonance. Instead of a full condemnation, Col. Dave Butler, the spokesman for U.S. Forces-Afghanistan, claimed it was merely an “Afghan-on-Afghan incident.” This is an absurd characterization given that the Taliban quickly claimed responsibility, a crucial anti-Taliban commander was killed, and Americans were wounded, all in the presence of the U.S. general in charge of the war effort.

The U.S. reaction makes more sense when you realize that America isn’t trying to defeat the Taliban but desperately searching for a way out, whitewashing the Taliban to justify an exit.

It has been left to America’s diplomats to negotiate a face-saving deal—one in which the United States can leave without the appearance of losing. But there are many reasons to think this diplomatic gambit is misguided…

Read on.