Panetta: US Combat Role To End in 2013
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  • Jim.

    OK, so let’s measure this by classic Great Game standards — what national interests would be hurt if Russia or China (or maybe more applicably, Pakistan) were to step into the power vacuum we leave?

    Pakistan worries me most, but it would be a mistake to ignore the others.

    Oh, hey, horrible thought: what does the Muslim Brotherhood think of the Taliban? Are they even the same variety of Islam? A loose confederation from Casablanca to Islamabad wouldn’t be that strong, but it could be trouble.

  • LarryD

    The odds are that we will discover that disarray is not the same as defeated, and that while bin Laden’s death may provide emotional closure, it no more ends the war with Al Qaeda than the death of Yamamoto ended WWII.

  • Fred

    I do worry about Islamists around the world seeing this as turning tail and running and interpreting that as a green light to attack us (Go ahead, the Americans will send a few bombs, send in a few troops, then chicken out when you make it tough enough for them). On the other hand, it’s become abundantly clear to me that we could stay there 100 years and those barbarians would still start slaughtering each other the minute we left. Stability, much less democracy, is simply not in the cards there. So I think maybe our best bet is to get the heck out of Dodge, making it abundantly clear to the Taliban that we can always come back if we have to.

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