Army Lt. Col. writes about deployment experience – Truth, lies and Afghanistan

I found this link in a post from a forum I frequent unrelated to politics, yesterday and then Drudge picked it up and AP at Hot Air posted on the subject last night. It’s one respected man’s opinion, but it is just that. Afghanistan might not be going as well as we are told.

The article is posted in Armed Forces Journal, and as I noted I found it through another web forum. The first post of the topic included “this guy’s career is over” in the title. Lt.Col. Daniel Davis writes…

I spent last year in Afghanistan, visiting and talking with U.S. troops and their Afghan partners. My duties with the Army’s Rapid Equipping Force took me into every significant area where our soldiers engage the enemy. Over the course of 12 months, I covered more than 9,000 miles and talked, traveled and patrolled with troops in Kandahar, Kunar, Ghazni, Khost, Paktika, Kunduz, Balkh, Nangarhar and other provinces.

What I saw bore no resemblance to rosy official statements by U.S. military leaders about conditions on the ground.

Entering this deployment, I was sincerely hoping to learn that the claims were true: that conditions in Afghanistan were improving, that the local government and military were progressing toward self-sufficiency. I did not need to witness dramatic improvements to be reassured, but merely hoped to see evidence of positive trends, to see companies or battalions produce even minimal but sustainable progress.

Instead, I witnessed the absence of success on virtually every level.

AP at Hot Air notes…

Plenty of anecdotes about Afghan troops’ haplessness and/or corruption at the link. The thing is, I’ve been reading news stories in that vein sporadically for years now. Davis would presumably say that that’s the point, that as the years roll on the same problems recur, but you don’t need his report to realize that.

Is the general consensus from those who have served in Afghanistan or are currently serving the same as the LTC’s? My guess is “yes” but I’ve only heard from a few.

Only time will tell…

10 replies
    • GdavidH
      GdavidH says:

      Dims, you really think so?

      I don’t think this administration knows how to tell the true story ?in a manner that gets them votes. The truth can’t possibly help the “won”.?

    • Plainvillian
      Plainvillian says:

      Look for a Gulf of Oman (Tonkin) incident before August and a shooting war with Iran soon after.? Obama knows America has never turned out a wartime president, just as LBJ did.

  1. ricbee
    ricbee says:

    Yeah,I’d like to hear what ordinary troops say. If you asked me when I left Nam in 68,I’d say Gooks are good & victory will be won.

  2. Lynn
    Lynn says:

    Personally, I don’t believe that Afghan nomadic tribes will ever gather together and agree on anything. They have no history to draw on and their population has been fighting enemies for so many years there is no education of their men and certainly none for their women for generations. What exactly is our purpose there? The Taliban are ruthless and vow to kill anyone who does not accept their fanaticism. I feel sorry for the innocent non-Taliban and they will surely be slaughtered, but we can’t stop human tyranny everywhere in the world.

  3. gillie28
    gillie28 says:

    If you haven’t read it, highly recommend the book “the Kite Runner,” by?Khaled Hosseini,?and his lesser-known book (which I preferred) “A Thousand Splendid Suns,” about Afghanistan.? The writer is a medical doctor and?a naturalized American, who?really gives insight into Afghan culture, history, religion?and politics without pulling any punches.? A very articulate guy (heard him give a lecture once).? Sadly, we see the country and people only through the eyes of modern events.?

  4. gillie28
    gillie28 says:

    Lynne, you make such a great point, and one that can be applied to many other countries with warring factions, especially in Africa and the Middle East.? The colonial powers (France and Britain particularly) did history a great disservice when they divided up land into countries arbitrarily.? They did not take into account tribal regions (mostly bounded by geographic features) but rather?partioned off areas according to whatever?suited their needs (read “greed”) at that time, often bonding?together as “nations” ancient, tribal?enemies.? Under strong dictatorships (or local sheiks who suddenly became “royalty” – again appointed by colonial powers) the simmering rivalries and hatreds were kept under some semblance of control.? However, once there is no strong leader it’s a free for all of rival tribes and/or religious groups trying to eliminate each other.?? Afghanistan has a long and complicated history, but it seems that tribal loyalties have remained intact despite all invasions.? Recent history has just proved to be a HUGE mess.? My opinion has always been (after the initial routing of the Taliban and Al Qu’aida) don’t sacrifice any more troops…use drones or strategic bombing if there is any further threat to the…

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