Safeguarding Afghanis More Important Than American Lives?
WASHINGTON, D.C., August 12, 2009--According to the latest reports, the United States suffered a six-fold increase in casualties in the war in Afghanistan last month, versus the same time a year ago. The Wall Street Journal, in a story earlier this week, declared the Taliban are now winning the war. The Wall Street Journal noted that the American strategy in Afghanistan “puts a premium on safeguarding the Afghan population rather than hunting down militants.” This is why we’re losing the war, and we at the Ayn Rand Center have been saying it for seven years.
In 2006 Elan Journo, a fellow with the Ayn Rand Center, wrote: “The failure in Afghanistan is a result of Washington’s foreign policy. Despite lip service to the goal of protecting America's safety, the ‘war on terror’ has been waged in compliance with the prevailing moral premise that self-interest is evil and self-sacrifice a virtue. Instead of trouncing the enemy for the sake of protecting American lives, our leaders have sacrificed our self-defense for the sake of serving the whims of Afghans.”
In 2004 Mr. Journo wrote about the Iraq war: “Though Washington may be blinded by the longing to buy the love of Iraqis, our service men know all too well that (as one put it): ‘When you go to fight, it’s time to shoot--not to make friends with people.’ In its might and courage our military is unequaled; it is the moral responsibility of Washington to issue battle plans that will properly ‘shock and awe’ the enemy. Eschewing self-interest in the name of compassion is immoral. The result is self-destruction.”
In 2002 ARC senior fellow Dr. Onkar Ghate wrote: “How then goes the war? An objective answer must be: badly. But our cause is not yet lost. We lack not the wealth nor the skilled military necessary to defeat the enemy, only the ideas and the will. If we articulate and practice a rational foreign policy, one actually premised on America’s self-interest, we will prevail. Nothing more is needed to achieve victory than to replace the pragmatism and self-sacrifice now dictating America’s actions with the principles of reason and rational self-interest; nothing less will do.”
Will our government listen?
Elan Journo is a fellow at the Ayn Rand Center for Individual Rights, focusing on foreign policy. He is the editor of and chief contributor to Winning the Unwinnable War: America's Self-Crippled Response to Islamic Totalitarianism. The Ayn Rand Center is a division of the Ayn Rand Institute and promotes the philosophy of Ayn Rand, author of Atlas Shrugged and The Fountainhead.
For more articles by Elan Journo, and his bio, click here.