History & Culture / National Security / Politics

Only Fools Ignore History. Another 9-11?


Nature abhors a vacuum, and so do terrorists.

That is why Biden’s withdrawal of US troops from Afghanistan, no peace accord, no security assurances, no land-based air support, no US troop tripwire – is not only a strategic mistake. It is a major blunder. Only fools ignore history.

In 1994, the radical Islamic Taliban emerged.

They ruled from 1996 to 2001, ruthlessly enforcing Sharia law. They starved 160,000, destroyed thousands of homes, undertook physical and “cultural” genocide, massacres, subjugation, human trafficking their calling cards.

See, e.g., Taliban.

Not satisfied with internal chaos and control, they turned outward. Bin Laden, al Qaeda’s leader, relocated from Sudan to Afghanistan in 1996, allied with the Taliban, began power projection. In August 1998, affiliates bombed two US embassies in Africa, killing 224, wounding 4,500. The hourglass flipped, countdown began to what would shake the United States, change our geopolitical thinking, internal freedoms, and security consciousness.

With the Taliban in control of Afghanistan, no deterring presence in that violence-ridden country, terrorists launched the 9-11 attacks on September 11, 2001. Into Afghanistan’s power vacuum, al Qaeda terrorists poured their venom – and then exported it.

That day lives in infamy. Many lost friends.

We were all shaken. Mine died where I served as a reserve intelligence officer in our spaces at the Pentagon. I was not there. They were killed when a plane that left 45 minutes before the one I boarded hit the Pentagon. Mine landed.

Back to now, and why “now” is analogous to “then,” before 9-11. America was perceived then as “off guard,” internally divided (after a hard-bitten presidential election), militarily under-prepared (enjoying a “peace dividend”), preoccupied with cultural inanities, domestic quarrels.

Moreover – the kicker – Afghanistan was viewed as a backwater, committing atrocities, destroying cultural symbols (including the Bamiyan Buddha), killing, starving, staining humanity, but not our problem. See, e.g., Flashback: The Destruction of the Buddhas of Bamiyan.

Who had time – who wished to bother with – a handful of feuding warlords, run-amuck Islamic radical terrorists, a culture and terrain that ground down Soviets, even if hijacked by terror?

At that time, we knew these groups existed, knew their motivations were anti-Western, knew they were a ruthless, reckless bunch. After all, our embassies in Africa were bombed. But we underestimated their capacity for power projection.

And here we are again. While progress was being made toward peace under Trump, power-sharing, and stability near, that is all gone. While US troops, intelligence, airpower, and ground presence offered hope, stability, a way forward – those will all soon be withdrawn.

Early indications are the Taliban – and aspiring terror groups – are afoot, taking swaths of land, threatening, intimidating, overtaking Afghan districts, whole regions. In the past month, “Taliban insurgents have captured more than 50 of 370 districts in Afghanistan …” See, U.N. Afghanistan envoy warns of Taliban offensive; Biden defends Afghanistan pullout as Taliban gobbles more territory. Even liberal media cannot ignore what is coming. See, e.g., Afghanistan is disintegrating fast as Biden’s troop withdrawal continues.

Worse, the Taliban is so confident the US – under Biden – is weak, lost, will not be back, presents no imminent threat despite saber-rattling, they are moving in the north of the country.

This is not a small thing. Taliban strength is in the south and east, not the north.

That they are starting the re-takeover in their least secure region means they are confident, leaving little room for the central government to maneuver. No one negotiates good outcomes from weakness.

Compounding the significance of their moment, Biden is perceived as weak not just in Kabul, but around the world, in support of allies and addressing adversaries, China, Iran, and Russia.

In short, US withdrawal of troops – even tripwire troops – with no credible backup to support the weak Afghan government in 2021 resembles 2001, or soon will. Several things are different. First, we now know Afghanistan could be a terror staging ground – so are forewarned. Second, we have greater security consciousness. Third, if the nation falls, we could return – at a huge cost.

Against us are things that should keep Biden’s team-up.

Taliban – and other terror groups – know our return is unlikely under Biden. We would not leave if we possessed the courage to return. Second, if China, Russia, or Iran become distractions, the Taliban has a free hand. Third, for all the goodwill our intervention created with the Afghan people, we remain a terror target. Fourth, terrorists, like card-makers, have a special interest in anniversaries.

So, all this tells us what? Biden’s decision to withdraw, no peace, no deterrent, projecting weakness, lack of conviction says “this is your moment” to the Taliban.

They know our commitment to their struggling people and government is milk toast. We are leaving.

Long term, the issue is only partly about Afghanistan. Yes, we are giving up hard-to-restore strategic advantage, the bulwark behind which we aimed for lasting peace. Biden kicked that chair away. But the fall of Afghanistan’s government – if it happens – will say more. It will tell other adversaries that our weakness is real, resolve eroded, this is their time, too.

Oddest of ironies, as the 20th anniversary of 9-11 edges toward us, a date Biden bizarrely picked for confirming US troops out of Afghanistan, we are likely to witness wholesale Taliban control over the country – with the potential for terror projection. On 9-11-21, Biden will have permitted conditions analogous to those that preceded 9-11-01.

What is to say? Only fools ignore history.

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1 year ago

He is the biggest fool of all. Not only is China a boss over him Obama and the rest of the muslims in office are his other bosses

1 year ago

I am completely stumped why the people of this great country are so ignorant. Afraid they will be surprised when they all suffer from the foolish acts of the Commies. Suggest they wake up b4 it’s too late. Remember, nothing in this life is free.

Thomas Carlucci
1 year ago

I wish I could live long enough to learn the secrets of how the citizens of the United States were so fooled, so utterly silent about the two largest cases of political fraud in our history: the election of a non-citizen, Muslim, homosexual, half-white man as president, and Whiskey Tango Foxtrot happened to let that half-brained, weasel-spined jackass move into the White House in 2021? I sure would like to be alive when THOSE secrets were declassified!

Myrna S Wade
1 year ago

Fools elect a president like Biden.

1 year ago
Reply to  Myrna S Wade

The election was a fraudulent plan. We all know the BIG LIE is about to be exposed and so do they. Hopefully it won’t be much longer before all is revealed.

Rhonda M Holub
1 year ago

First sentence sums it up! Cant’ wait for Antifa and BLM to engage with them on USA turf; like wielding a knife with a suicide bomber. Pop the popcorn and stand back Patriots. Clean up collateral damage on aisle 9!

John koss
1 year ago

Great Article. The “Kite Runner”, is an excellent book concerning Afghanistan at the time. They are a Tough People with old world beliefs but modern era weaponry. Sadly Biden and his sycophants worry about their feelings instead of “hard” intelligence.

Lindsey Goff
1 year ago

We were fighting a war in the wrong country. Saudi terrorists were the ones who caused 9/11. Bush just wanted to finish what his father didn’t get done and the Bush family are all friends with the Saudi “Prince”. We can’t save everyone and US taxpayers are tired of doing it without any help from other countries.

Casey C Matt
1 year ago

I personally think that after a 20 year dismal failure in Afhanistan that the US has spent enough time joining several other world powers from the past in trying to bring civilization to Afghanistan. Time to bring the soldiers home and stop with the world police crap.
The FINANCING for 9/11 had NOTHING to do with Afghanistan and everything to do with Saudi Arabia. Times seem to have mellowed the house of Saud somewhat so we are dealing with a different world now than in 2001. If we DO find signs that a group such as the Taliban is reforming in an activist manner then……..send in the drones if one just has to keep trying to have success that has eluded folks since Alexander the Great times. Screw those tick picking sub humans.

1 year ago

Good summary, but headline ONLY FOOLS IGNORE HISTORY —- was present 20-years ago when some military advisors were saying do not go here —no one else has been able to beat them on their home turf. Time to leave & it will not be good for the real Afghanistan natives.

1 year ago

All the lives we lost to protect them and now the Taliban will be taking over again Everything we have done will basically be for nothing, sad. ????

Lindsey Goff
1 year ago
Reply to  Ray

Just like Vietnam.

1 year ago

If only fools ignore history, America is in deep trouble because the Demo/Socialist party is inhabited totally by fools. They are not ignoring history, they want to erase it and build Amrica back under socialism and the one world government. Look at people like Harris, Pelosi, the Clintons, Schumer, Omar and the other Muslims stupidly elected to congress. They are evil, wicked, Satanic people who care nothing about people, just their own agenda.

Joyce Gibson
1 year ago

Unfortunately, we have a president who does not love democracy or the United States., He is willing to sell us out to any rogue nation in the world. He learned nothing from 9/11 and this time they may be successful in taking out the White House. We need to keep a peace keeping force in Afghanistan so that the middle eastern countries and the U. S. will not be attacked.

1 year ago
Reply to  Joyce Gibson

Biden doesn’t have enough brain cells left to love or hate anything. He’s told what to say and when to say it and even then, he can’t say it correctly. His handlers and other assorted monkeys run the circus.

Stephen Russell
1 year ago

Lay seeds for Ez 38 war, OT Bible??

1 year ago

Uh, what?

1 year ago

Those seeds are definitely being planted. I can’t see the Ez.38 war as being very far off. My opinion is, not over 2 years. Everything is lining up perfectly for it.

1 year ago

Please explain what this means, thanks

Jack Thomas
1 year ago

Afghanistan is militarily a losing endeavor for the United States, just as a 10 year war was for the Russians. That much now seems clear. We should have left Afghanistan years ago and let the Afghans worry about their own country, Stupidly, Biden announces 9-11 for U.S. troop withdrawal so the Taliban can put it on their calendar as their “Move-In” date. Which is exactly what will happen and is already happening as the Taliban gradually seizes control of more territory day by day. We have wasted billions of dollars and many American lives on an exercise in futility. But to continue this madness by keeping U.S. troops in Afghanistan as a mere token security force is also equally foolish.

Sharon Ormsby
1 year ago
Reply to  Jack Thomas

It is. My brother is a military contractor who has gone there many times. The Afghanistans are overrun with many people who are Taliban who infiltrate everyday and they let them instead of fight them. This has been going on for decades so it’s a loss no matter what military helps them. It’s a lost cause so our military does NOT need to be there. It’s been going on since the tribal wars and isn’t about to change now.

1 year ago
Reply to  Sharon Ormsby

Also, we have no idea just how much money Biden and his handlers are funneling into those countries for the enemies of America and Israel. I have no doubt that the Biden admin. also feeds govt. and military information to the Taliban, Hamas, and any other Muslim group.

Lindsey Goff
1 year ago
Reply to  Jack Thomas

Rumor has it the US military has something else in mind for 9/11. Keep your eyes and ears open, folks. Change is coming.

1 year ago

While I understand the argument of the neo-cons and some in the military for a perpetual military presence in Afghanistan, at what point, if ever, is the so-called democratically elected government of Afghanistan expected to be able to secure its own country without continual outside assistance from the United States and its allies? It’s a legitimate question that we U.S. taxpayers deserve an answer to.

Afghan military forces of about 260,000 personnel have been trained and equipped by us and our allies for two decades now. Yet all I see in news reports from around the world is how Afghan military forces outside of Kabul either routinely abandon their positions without firing a shot, thus supplying the Taliban with more weapons that the U.S. taxpayer has already paid for, or they willingly join the Taliban forces in the region. So please tell me what is the end goal for keeping U.S. military forces in harms way, when the Afghan military forces, after 20 years of training and equipping, don’t have the will to defend and protect their own country?

The nebulous argument of preventing terrorists from using Afghanistan as the staging area for another 9/11 type event doesn’t hold water. If terrorist organizations begin to use Afghanistan as a so-called safe base of operations from which to plan and launch terrorist attacks elsewhere, our military has proven they could locate and strike those locations in the past. What prevented al quidah leadership from being wiped out in Afghanistan in the 1990s was Clinton hesitating twice to authorize missile strikes in a timely manner. In short, a failure of leadership at the top. Bush also was hesitant to deal with situation in a timely manner. Both the Afghan government and Taliban leadership need to understand, in no uncertain terms before we finally withdraw our forces, that if either side allows any terrorist organization to setup shop in Afghanistan, the United States reserves the right to eliminate the threat pre-emptively by any means it so chooses. We are a lot of options in our arsenal, so we should be prepared to use them when necessary. We have to stop using our troops as glorified cannon fodder or expendable pawns on a global chess board for the decisions of weak political leaders both here and abroad. We owe them more.

Of course I don’t expect the Biden administration to take that stance, but that is none the less the correct way we should handle the issue.

Bill on the Hill
1 year ago
Reply to  PaulE

I agree PaulE… I’m not so sure I like what RBC seems to be suggesting here…It’s almost like he is using the weak, feckless Biden administration as a reason for keeping or putting more US troops back into Afghanistan…Whether by Biden’s design ( which it isn’t ) it is long overdue for America to leave this nation once & for all to defend for themselves what we Americans have spent over ( 20 ) years with countless American lives lost in this process training the Afghans to do just that…We should have been out of there on May 1 as per President Trump. The mindless idiot Manchurian candidate picking 911 as the US departure date is stupidity at it’s finest…Currently we as Americans & the rest of the world for that matter, are stuck with this occupying force taking up residence in Washington, DC…
In closing, I can only pray that the best is yet to come…
Bill on the Hill… :~)

1 year ago

Stupidity at it’s finest. The perfect picture of Biden. Also stupidity at it’s worst and lowest.

Lee S McQuillen
1 year ago
Reply to  CoNMTX

Stupidity? Perhaps greed and a need for power would be better in your post. Just substitute “greed and a need for power” for stupidity and you’ve got it for sure.

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