Thursday, April 8, 2010

Fleas (flees)

Doesn't this all sound too familiar? The United States turns a blind eye to the repressive ways of the head of state, unpopular with his people, in order to facilitate its efforts in the region. A relative of the leader, deemed a corrupt and destructive force, is allowed to remain despite cries for his removal. No, not Afghanistan, but Kyrgyzstan

When we lie down with dogs, as we have done in Kyrgyzstan, in order to maintain our military base there and a lifeline to Afghanistan, we come away scratching our heads. The uprising yesterday, the flight of President Bakiyev, and the possible challenges this now presents us, should be stark reminder of just how fragile, and potentially futile all our efforts will prove to be.

It seems like a house of cards, ready to disintegrate into a pile of nothing at a moment's notice. We are trying to superimpose stability to an area rife with a thousand pitfalls. As we look to Afghanistan and hear of Taliban posing as villagers to collect their stipends from the US, as we learn of villagers who are killed for receiving handouts from our country, as we continue to have an impossible time trying to even figure out who the bad guy is, or what to do with him, we stagger forward. In all its forms, whether it be in Kyrgyzstan or Afghanistan, our strategy appears messy, confusing, and tenuous.

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