"There is danger from all men. The only maxim of a free government ought to be to trust no man living with
power to endanger the public liberty." - - - - John Adams

Friday, May 27, 2011

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"I would rather work as your servant, cut grass and tend to your garden than be the ruler of Afghanistan."
- - - - Yaqub Khan, (Amir of Afghanistan) to a British Viceroy in the 19th Century  

Yaqub Khan

The politicians talk and talk about the "progress" they are making in Afghanistan.  The light at the end of the tunnel pep talks to voters.  But the war goes on and on and on.

The fact of the matter is the United States is bankrupt and we cannot afford to be at war.

The time has come to sign a peace treaty and come home.  A Peace Treaty appears to be a "radical" idea to modern Americans, but throughout our history signing a treaty to end a war was standard.  The Americans have signed treaties twice with England, with Mexico, with Spain and with Vietman.  It is time to move on.

STORY #1:  
Insurgents kill six in attack on Afghan police outpost

Reporting from Kabul, Afghanistan—
In what has become a near-daily drumbeat of insurgent attacks on Afghan government and security installations, a team of gunmen and suicide bombers on Sunday stormed a police outpost in an eastern city, killing six people, most of them Afghan police and soldiers.

The four assailants died as well, officials said.

The early-morning onslaught in the city of Khowst typified a pattern of insurgent strikes that has taken hold as the spring "fighting season" gathers force — a coordinated assault on a site that somehow symbolizes the authority of the central government. And in what has become an increasingly common tactic, the attackers wore Afghan police uniforms to confuse the defenders and gain initial entry.

British soldiers in Afghanistan 1879
They did not stay for long.
 The six men killed by the attackers were three police officers, two Afghan soldiers and a civilian worker in the compound, according to police. At one point, in what has become another hallmark of such attacks, the assailants used the upper floors of the commandeered building to fire on arriving government reinforcements, police said.

STORY #2:  
Suicide Bomber kills six at Kabul Hospital
The medical trainees were just settling in for lunch when the bomber struck.

The suicide attack Saturday at a well-guarded Afghan military hospital complex in the center of the capital killed at least six people, injured about two dozen others and revived persistent fears about insurgents' ability to infiltrate sensitive government and military installations.
The midday explosion, on the first day of the Afghan work week, took place in a part of the sprawling 400-bed hospital compound mainly devoted to medical training, Defense Ministry spokesman Gen. Mohammed Zahir Azimi told reporters.

As word of the attack spread, frantic relatives of patients and workers clustered outside, denied entry by security forces guarding the hospital compound.  "My brother is an army officer and works inside," said Ahmad Shah, a shopkeeper. "I've been calling and calling his cellphone, but it's not answering, and they won't let me in. What kind of government is this, that can't even protect itself?"

British troops from India in 1890s Afghanistan
STORY #3:  
36 Afghans killed in attack on work crew

Insurgents massacred 36 workers at a road-construction encampment in eastern Afghanistan on Thursday, provincial and company officials said, marking one of the most lethal assaults of its kind in recent years.

The Taliban and other insurgents sometimes target work crews on infrastructure projects, regarding the building companies as collaborators with the central government and foreign forces. But most such projects have substantial security contingents, and it is unusual for militants to be able to kill so many in a single strike.

The construction company's owner, Noorullah Bidar, one of 20 people injured in the attack, said from his hospital bed that all those slain in the predawn attack in Paktia province were Afghans.

Rohullah Samon, a spokesman for the provincial governor, said the dead included laborers, technical personnel and security guards. Eight assailants died in the attack as well, he said.  President Hamid Karzai  condemned the attack as the work of "terrorists … enemies of the development of our country." A government investigation team was dispatched to the site, officials said.

The Amir Yakub Khan, General Daod Shah, Habeebula
Moustafi, with Major Cavagnari C.S.I. & Mr Jenkyns (1879) 

STORY #4:  
Camp Pendleton honors 125 Marines and sailors killed in Afghanistan last year

For 78-year-old Harry Mixer, a retired Marine master gunnery sergeant who served in Korea and Vietnam, the event Friday hit all the important notes.

In a brief ceremony after the morning raising of the American flag, Marine brass remembered all the Marines who died in the last year in Afghanistan. An Afghanistan battle streamer was attached to the 1st Marine Division colors -- linking Afghanistan with battles of the past.

Both actions were important to Mixer -- respect for the fallen, and a reminder of the Marine Corps history of battles won, losses suffered and heroes recognized.

“It’s important for these young Marines to remember the heritage,” Mixer said. “They’re the tip of the spear at the front of the column now. The old Corps was tough, but these young Marines are just as tough.”

The Marines honored the 125 Marines and sailors killed in Afghanistan in the last year -- and another 2,000 wounded -- Mixer and other former Marines were in a place of honor as a bugler played taps, followed by a bagpiper playing "Amazing Grace."

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