Sunday, May 28, 2006

Remember Afghanistan?

Afghanistan fatalitiesAs we approach Memorial day, there are going to be a lot of remembrances of the soldiers who bravely fell in the ill-conceived adventure Iraq, but we shouldn't forget the other great conflict of our time. The graph on the right, drawn from data available here, is one useful metric of our progress in Afghanistan. Reports from the ground have repeatedly warned that the Taliban is resurgent, and NPR had a story this morning about Taliban forces operating in larger units. It's long been the case that the government in Kabul has only been able to successfully govern Kabul.

That war is the war on terrorism, and pulling troops out of Afghanistan to pursue a war of choice in Iraq has had and will continue to have serious consequences. The soldiers dying in Afghanistan are fighting the people who attacked America. And more and more are dying in "a half-forgotten war." Afghanistan was able to harbor al Qaeda because everyone stopped paying attention after the Soviets withdrew. When we first invaded, we were assured that we wouldnt repeat that mistake. This Memorial Day, let's remember the people who've already died in the War on Terror and do what we have to to keep them from dying in vain.