RE: Lara Logan 2012 BGA Annual Luncheon Keynote Speech
War correspondent, Lara Logan, of CBS's 60 Minutes, addresses a Chicago organization on the lies being told about the war in Afghanistan. Her words need to be heard. They're powerful. I'm shocked they made air, frankly.
Before you hear them, here's an explainer. My thinking on Afghanistan is that the current rules of engagement deprive us of the ability to kill bad guys, break things and WIN a war. We have to use bullhorns and find guns on people in order to engage them. The bad guys hide the guns with their women or store the guns in their arsenals and live to fight another day. When caught, the bad guys nearly have to be Mirandized. The first question they're asked is, "were you abused?" The bad guys know the system. It's idiotic. Read "No Easy Day" and then tell me if you think our ROE make any kind of sense in a war.
AND if our soldiers continue to get picked off by the (*&%*) we're 'training' over there, then bring them home. Yesterday. That is the situation now. It's untenable. Obama's head should be on a platter for this alone.
The fact is, the President's political time table is the only reason we're being forced to rush this training and put our troops at risk. I wished we'd left the first time we wiped out the Taliban.
Al Qaeda is back in force in Iraq. We have no troops there because of this amateur in the White House's decision to pull them all out. Treachery.
That said, Logan makes several points in her recent "blistering" speech.
Al Qaeda is actively fighting along side the Taliban in Afghanistan
Pakistan is supporting the terrorists with funding and is cheerleading the "insider" attacks.
She says there's no such thing a kinder and gentler Taliban.
She says anyone who equates this war with Vietnam is a fool.
"Every once in awhile you'll read someone in a British newspaper or an American newspaper say that 'they've been talking to the Taliban and the Taliban want to go to peace talks and they're ready to renounce their links to Al
Qaeda.' Really the theory is, 'if you pack up and go home from Afghanistan that the problem is over, the Taliban just want their country back, they've got no problem with you and we can just stop wasting billions of dollars and American lives in Afghanistan and we can turn our backs on this war that has really been a waste of our time.'
"That's amazing to me that that's where we are today because not only do I remember the promises that were made, which is fine, if you don't want to keep your promises, well, I guess that's politics; but to think that there's any similarity between this and Vietnam is ridiculous.
"The Vietcong didn't care what you did when you went back to America. The Vietcong weren't fighting for an Islamic Caliphate. The Vietcong didn't have a global struggle. And it's amazing to me that we constantly ignore what Al Qaeda, the Taliban, Haqqani and all these groups, tell us everyday, in their own newspapers, in their own statements... They share something. They share an idea. Al Qaeda is not an organization, you don't have to have a membership card, or a badge or something that we recognize in our society. This is terrorism. It's a completely and utterly different fight from anything we have faced in our history and that's why we chose to do this story. Because what's the one thing in Afghanistan that's going to come back to haunt us? What we have done there in the last eleven years, our role in the middle east, our role across the world--our way of life -- is under attack. And if you think that's government propaganda, you think that's nonsense, you think that's war mongering, you're not listening to what the people who are fighting you say about this fight. In your arrogance you think you write the script. But you don't. There's two sides and we don't dictate the terms."