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Is the war in Afghanistan worth it?

BATMAN

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Live Debate: Is the war in Afghanistan worth it?


Brenda O'Connor September 9th, 2010 2:32 pm ET
NO! The war was/is not worth it.

Kayrow September 9th, 2010 2:35 pm ET
Of course it was worth it. This helped governments export Afghan opium.

lefty avenger September 9th, 2010 2:40 pm ET
None of these wars are worth it unless you are a war profiteer. These wars were for oil and natural gas pipelines. If you are Blackwater or Exxon Mobil these wars are totally awesome. You use the U.S. military as your own private security force to capture what you need most: oil!. All alternative energy possibilities are stifled and the war is on. You use 9/11 aka another Reichstag and get the people behind you. The Weapons manufacturers and the military industrial complex have a bonanza making profit off of human misery. You kill 100,000 poor people and the world hates you but no problem, stock options went up! This is the truth and it hurts.

JB Kemble September 9th, 2010 2:41 pm ET
Anyone interested in this topic should read the article by Nobel winner Joe Stiglitz and Harvard Professor Linda Bilmes in last week's Washington Post. They explain that we cut spending in Afghanistan for 4 years while we got distracted in Iraq; in fact spending 5x more money and troops in Iraq. The question is: if we hadn't invaded Iraq wouldn't we have done better in Afghanistan?
washingtonpost.com

stephan wagner September 9th, 2010 2:42 pm ET
Well, I remember the old days in the late sixties, when the US fought another disastrous war. Vietnam. There must be a lesson to be taught, one way or the other. It is hard to see how young american servicemen, not drafted like in Vietnam but still, are dying in a place where no one really seems to like them, in spite of huge efforts to help.
Where is the chinese and russian (well, you know all about the eralier russians in Afghanistan, don't you...) efforts for help.
Always the americans, always.
Why?

Christopher September 9th, 2010 2:42 pm ET
Forget the Soviet experience in Afghanistan. Look at the history of the British in the early 20th century. What most people don't realize is that the present national borders in the Middle East are all leftovers of the British Empire. Before the British, loyalties were determined by clan, ethnicity and religion; this is still very much the case today regardless of where the "border" may lie. These people do not have a shared "nationality", therefore any attempt to impose one will be artificial and will be of limited, if any, success.


Rajesh September 9th, 2010 2:42 pm ET
Afghanistan war was absolutely worth it, while I dont have the same feelings for Iraq.

Pate September 9th, 2010 2:44 pm ET
It is absurd that the question is being asked as if there is a debate to be had. I suppose the military contractors might believe their no bid contracts made it worth it to them.

Whut? September 9th, 2010 2:45 pm ET
shouldn't that read IS and not WAS? We are still at war there are we not?

james s roberts, dallas, texas September 9th, 2010 2:46 pm ET
The second question is the important of the three; ".......what does the future for Afghanistan hold?" and more importantly for WHO- America, Afghanistians, Muslims, exactly WHO's view. Americans don't live in Afghanistan, they're only concerned with continuing their lifestyle, SECURELY, regardless of world consequences and squash/destroy anything preventing it; economic war, trade wars, military wars. Secondly, I don't know what "....war ever be won?" means, since know one has ever defined "won" in absolute terms, If it means the Afghanistans will like Americans I doubt "won" is possible. Not in my lifetime. What Amercians think is irrelevant, it's what the Afghanistans think, the world thinks that's important. USA is no longer the center of the universe.

Gil Oberdas September 9th, 2010 2:49 pm ET
How can a war fought against the same people (Taliban) that we called Freedom Fighters when they were fighting the soviets be worth it? The Taliban have been fighting to free their country of foreign occupation for some 130 years and now we call them terrorists and insurgents. I wish them much success their current occupation!

MedicParatrooper September 9th, 2010 2:50 pm ET
Was it worth it? Yes. America could not have sat on its hands and did nothing as a reult of Sept 11. That would show the world that we are weak and it would give terriostist the green light to attack us when ever they wanted. Besides most of americans at the time would have questioned our goverment and been outragged if we did nothing. The problem that our troops now face is a result of the currnet ROE that govern how they react. Also the american people need to stop worrying about the collateral damage done to the civilian population. This is war and collateral damage has always been a part if it. Once the ROE is more relaxed and the american people stop focusing on the bad, the war in Afghainstan can be won.

PJ Geohagen September 9th, 2010 2:52 pm ET
What will the US gain from this war? What is "victory" there? Obama says it is necessary, but why does he think that? I say no, the war is a waste of American blood and treasure, and the Afghans love it for the US soldiers to die for them when they are not even building up their own army to protect themselves.

MRC September 9th, 2010 2:52 pm ET
Two separate questions: 1) Was the original invasion worth it? 2) Was it worth keeping things going this long?

The invasion was necessary in some form or another. The Taliban were willing accomplices in a major attack and had the U.S. not responded it would have sent a very dangerous message.

The Afghan war, though, was horribly mismanaged and, more to the point, the was not a full administration commitment to see it through (the Iraq invasion plans being a distraction). The administration and the military can be forgiven to a degree for being a little unprepared for a conflict that came as a surprise, but that the conflict continued to be mismanaged and under-supported for so long is not forgivable.

The question now is whether there is really a path to stability in Afghanistan given that the people have such little faith in anything their government is doing.

FrankyB September 9th, 2010 2:54 pm ET
It was not worth it any more than Iraq was worth it. If Bin Laden (remember him?) had been caught or killed and we just came home that would have sent the message we needed to send. But at the time it just seemed like too many Americans just wanted to stomp on somebody's sandbox. Having been to that part of the world it was obvious to me what was going to happen and I'm nobody. Why didn't "they" (those leading the charge at the time) get it? If I can I am sure they could have, they just didn't want to. Very presumptuous of us to think we could turn a culture 5,000 years old; those people have seen everything.
Minneapolis

CNNbiased September 9th, 2010 2:54 pm ET
"Was"? Did the war end while I was asleep?

Bill D September 9th, 2010 2:54 pm ET
As boy I vivedly recall our brave heros of WWII climbing up the mountains in the south pacific
to reach the caves the enemy were hiding in while killing many of them. As I watch the news
from afganastan it appears our young men are again climbing the mountains and being killed
by the hidden enemy. In the many many years since WWII we have spent untold billions
on sophisticated weaponry. This weaponry should have been used to level the mountains where
BinLaden and his band were hiding after 9/11. Thus showing the enemy our resolve to deal
with terror attacks swiftly and with lethal force. Our brave young fighting force should be brought
home now. The enemy should be told we will retaliate for any attacks they perpitrate against
us, that we will be watching from the skies. Which we are more than able to do. The so called
governments of the middle east need to oversee thier country and deal with the factions as
they see fit. Stuffing democracy down countrys throats is not our job nor is it appropriate for
some people of the world. Our own country is in need of financial stabilty our debt is out of
control along with unemployment, which is directly effecting our family structures. We have to
elect leaders who have the grit to do whats necessary to make America the country it used
to be strong proud and respected

Ethernet September 9th, 2010 2:55 pm ET
Brenda – How old are you 18? The reason why i ask is most of our young adults we around 11 or so when the war started. So all they have to go on is propaganda. Is it worth it? Is any war worth it? Dunno, but the question is was it justified. They attacked us. Period. So it was completely justified. What about WWII when the japaness attacked us? Was that worth it? Don't confuse the Afaganistan with Iraq.

tet1953 September 9th, 2010 2:55 pm ET
Ousting Saddam and the Taliban were noble goals. However it appears that whether we stay another year or another decade both countries will descend into civil war or revert to dictatorship soon after we leave.
I say leave now, use drones for confirmed targets or training camps, and concentrate on the home front.

G. R.R. September 9th, 2010 2:56 pm ET
Was it the right thing to do? Yes. Was it conducted correctly ? Absolutely not. Rarely in US history has a cause and a war been more fouled up. In history books, President Bush and SOD Rumsfeld will go down as being some of the worst leaders of America's time. Even now, military strategy books have and will continue to be re-written to examine the nightmare that these two perpetrated on us and the world.
Now, as to the original question, was it worth it? That will depend on the final outcome. At this time, there is no way to say. But if we cut and run, AQ continues and taliban re-takes Afghanistan to **** and pillage again, then no, it was not worth it. OTH, if we stop AQ/Taliban, and give Afghanistan a better future (which is still possible) then yes, it was worth it.

Maybeben September 9th, 2010 2:56 pm ET
Was ousting the Taliban threat worth the human losses? Yes. Should it have taken the better part of a decade? No. No way. It should have been done with far less time, cost, and casualties. And that's to say nothing of the fact that Bin Laden is still out there. The war may have been justified, but history is going to have to ask some very serious questions as to why it was so apparently mismanaged.

Hank Allen September 9th, 2010 2:56 pm ET
I do believe that the war in Afghanistan was worth it and that the war can be won.

The U.S. entered the territory of Afghanistan in response to the attacks of 9/11...attacks by terrorists being harbored in Afghanistan by the Taliban-led government. After the Taliban refused to turn over Al Qaeda leaders (namely Osama Bin Laden) responsible for the attack, the U.S. attacked. After defeating Al Qaeda and successfully overthrowing the Taliban-led government of Afghanistan, it could be reasonably argued that our initial objectives were met, but we have the moral obligation to help Afghanistan restore governance.

The objective of the war in Afghanistan is to prevent the country from again becoming a haven for international terrorism. In order to accomplish this objective, the U.S. and her allies must continue to execute a "people-centric" counterinsurgency campaign, protect the people, and assist the Afghan government in their attempts to restore their economic, social, and political infrastructure.

In 2001 Afghanistan emerged as the 2nd poorest country in the world. A lot of progress has been made, but we have to remember where we started from. As the security situation stabilizes (short term goal) the international community will have to assist Afghanistan in economic development (mid-term goal) and educational development (long term goal).

I believe that this is accomplishable. It does, however, require U.S. and international resolve.

Davidk September 9th, 2010 2:56 pm ET
(from Dallas, TX) Of course this war was not worth it. Does anyone realize what we could have done with the money spent on this war by improving our national defense security at home, and abroad by investing in an international security network? Also by creating goodwill among middle eastern nations that would probably have helped us against the terror.

Patricia ochs September 9th, 2010 2:57 pm ET
I believe the Russians had 180,000 troops in Afghanistan when they decided it as not a winnable situation..Can we not learn from them and realize we should leave the Afghani to solve their own problems?
OUT..NOW

Paul Boomhower September 9th, 2010 2:59 pm ET
So far we've spent over $330 billion dollars, lost over 2000 American military lives, thousands more injured, countless civilians killed, and yet the Taliban keep fighting...
Sounds to me like a front comprised of special forces and cruise missiles could have achieved the same result

JuleS September 9th, 2010 2:59 pm ET
I was just asking myself on the way in this morning, "Why did we go to Afghanistan and why are we still there?" We are waging war in a country we habve no business being in. I can't deride those who attack our troops because they simply want us out of their country - it's why 9/11 happened and most everything before and since as it relates to attacks on US and other troops, citizens and even missionaries.

When will Obama and the rest of the people who keep sending troops to the Middle East going to wake up and realize, what they do in their own country is NONE OF OUR BUSINESS! If it's for oil, then we need to shed our dependence on the stuff - which would very easily be if the oil companies didn't have such a stranglehold on our economy. The electric car was a viable concept, and product, 30 years ago until the oil and auto companies conspired to have the government take them off the streets - actually stealing them from their owners. That's your government at work.

Chris September 9th, 2010 3:00 pm ET
Well it got George and Dick a second term didn't it? Even if it cost thousands of lives and over $1 trillion and wrecked the economy and made us all poor. Osama must be laughing.

This was the right war, the Iraq war was a political sideshow which drew resources from Afghanistan. The Afghan war should have been finished and we should never have touched Iraq. Better still the CIA should have been funded to find and kill Osama and his cronies but without any overt activity, it may not be considered honorable to assassinate enemies but it is certainly cost effective.

TallinOK September 9th, 2010 3:01 pm ET
The Afghanistan war was and is a waste of the courage of our men and women in uniform. They die and are wounded for what? So Karzai can continue with the corruption? So the western Afghani farmers can grow opium? To enable Afghani women to go to school? A total waste. You can't win the hearts and minds of people who live under the dominance of warlords and only have loyalty to their own villages. Get the American soldiers, contractors, and infrastructure specialists out. Nothing in Afghanistan is worth the sacrifice of American lives.

Moji September 9th, 2010 3:01 pm ET
It never should have gotten to war status to begin with. If the previous regime had done their job and taken out Bin Laden at Tora Bora in late 2001 along with Mullah Omar this problem would have been licked. But instead they did not finish the job (typical politician screwing up military stuff) and then diverting attention away from what they left to go start a real war in Iraq which was unnecessary. Now, the troops and money being spent over there is ridiculous and yet it never had to happen. If you show your enemy mercy they will come back and we allowed that so nobody to blame but the politicians for continuing to get this Nation involved in things we don't have to.

k September 9th, 2010 3:03 pm ET
Why does the title speak of the war in past tense? I see that someone made a hasty change on the story page but neglected to reflect that change on the main cnn page. Way to go CNN for your part in downplaying the sacrifices my brothers and sisters are making over in CENTCOM AOR. I'll make sure to pass the word on to them that the war is over.

Nicholas Pruet September 9th, 2010 3:03 pm ET
The war in Afghanistan was worth it as was the war in Iraq. The Taliban had to be removed from power, as did Saddam Hussien. Tyranny, wherever it exists and in whatever form it manifests should not be permitted anywhere. Period. Tyranny should be eradicated, while the inhabitants of Afghanistan and Iraq should be able to coexist with thier fellow inhabitants to determine their destiny. During the Korean war the war was similarly unpopular with a very corrupt government. Eventually South Korea became a major economic force while the corrupt government was eventually replaced by one for the people in the 80's. Both wars will be worth the effort in the long-run and may serve as examples to other states in thier respective regions.

Ben September 9th, 2010 3:03 pm ET
911 was/is an inside job. The wars on Afghanistan and Iraq are mass murder where nearly 2,000,000 innocent civilians are already dead, killed by our obscene military conquest for oil and world domination. Building 7 WTC is the SMOKING GUN! Arrest Bush and Cheney for mass murder and treason, convict and hang them by the neck until dead! End the wars on Iraq and Afghanistan now and bring our troops home!

alex September 9th, 2010 3:04 pm ET
No at all...Sorry but Bush was too dumb to understand this. we needed a very strategic response to 911... our military posture for a decade has made thing worse...
Hey but there is a positive side to this... WE keep up these wars for another decade and Haliburton will own US

Craig from LA September 9th, 2010 3:05 pm ET
No, and neither was Iraq. 1 Trillion dollars spent, our precious blood shed, our military weakened, billions that must now be spent replacing all the equipment degraded after 10 years of conflict, an emboldened and unchecked Iran, America's image forever tarnished for torture, and we have multiplied our enemies among the 1.5 billion Muslim world. A fine result! Thank you conservatives!

We should have sent in special forces in to wipe out the Al Queda bases and withdrawn. The Iraq vendetta was inexcusable. The damn Neo-Cons have so screwed up America's foreign policy that it will take generations to fix. If you want another war and more of the same idiocy, vote republican in 2010 and 2012.

Bruce September 9th, 2010 3:05 pm ET
The question is acidemic and has little significance in the longer view. Afghanistan has a history of being at war and being conquered etc for almost 3,000 years. Our involvement since 2001 is a very minor one and we should recognize it, get out and let them go at it again in the comming decades since they seem destined for conflict by thier culture.
BW from Southern California

davidinhz September 9th, 2010 3:05 pm ET
Did the war make America safer? No, absolutely not. Could the money and resources have been better spent on education, infrastructure, medical care, and energy development? Absolutely yes. Were the lives of American servicemen and women lost in vain? Sadly, again, the answer is yes.

Joe September 9th, 2010 3:06 pm ET
I'm not one of the wealthy "haves" as George W liked to say. I didn't benefit from the War Budget Gravy Train. I didn't get any No-Bid government contracts. I don't have a ton of money invested in stocks. I'm not employed by the powerful Military Industrial Complex. I don't hate and blame all Middle Eastern people for the acts of a radical few. So, I would say the war was not worth it.

new yorker September 9th, 2010 3:10 pm ET
Ousting Al Queda was worth it.
Keeping them on the run was worth it.
Ousting the Taliban was not.

RickyL September 9th, 2010 3:10 pm ET
The war was worth it........until we decided to stay. Our job was done in the first few months, but everything since then has been counter-productive.

The blood, money and ill-will far outweigh whatever good that can possibly come from supporting the Karzai family in their struggle for the control of Kabul.

El Gordo September 9th, 2010 3:11 pm ET
After 9/11, all of America supported the invasion of Afghanistan. We all hung flags out in front of our houses. Many Americans called opposition to this war treason. We all watched on CNN 24/7 for weeks.

No one questioned anything, and if they did they were quickly hushed by the barrage of criticism and phoned-in death threats.

Now we don't have much to show for the $5.5 trillion added to the national debt, do we?

George D September 9th, 2010 3:13 pm ET
No, it's not worth it. Al Qaeda is still plotting against us. They were expelled from Afghanistan but they just had to set up shop somewhere else. Now the US became the custodian of a poor, backward, corrupt country and now will spend billions of $ to support it, not to mention about the Talibans who will probably regain power as soon as the US troops pull out. It was a total waste of US lives and resources. Like Iraq and Vietnam before that, the Afghanistan war is a misguided attempt to rid the world of evil. The only thing it proved is that, like in Iraq, the US can invade any country it wants.

val7 September 9th, 2010 3:13 pm ET
It was worth it all right. Unlike Iraq, this war is to prevent terrorists have a safe haven to hurt citizens around the world. It is worth the fight, it is worth the sacifice. I know that we can win this war if we are just willingly struggle through it.

Jim September 9th, 2010 3:14 pm ET
Given 9/11, I don't think we had any choice but to go to war in Afghanistan. That being said, the only reasonable choices were how we conducted that war - there were many options - we could have:
- Just dropped a few nukes
- Gone in on the ground/air (as we did) and then just left once we dismantled the Taliban
- Done what we did, but left earlier, claiming victory even though we knew it'd fall apart
- Done what we did - work to build/support an Afghan government
- Gone in, taken over, and truly "occupied" the country - calling the shots directly until we felt things were stable, then appointed someone we liked.

That all being said, it's just a question of cost/benefit.

Robert J. Day September 9th, 2010 3:16 pm ET
As it is turning out, NO, how ever it was necessary to respond after 911. The problem was going into Iraq, we took our eye off the ball. Now it is a real mess. The only smart thing to do is leave. The sooner the better.

mike September 9th, 2010 3:17 pm ET
Not at all worth it as we have seen those who want to kill americans are here among us not in that rock pile of a country.

Douglas September 9th, 2010 3:18 pm ET
I was a staunch conservative until my party recklessly launched us into two destabilizing and costly wars. I'm disgusted every time I hear a conservative pundit or politician continue to justify Iraq, which is clearly unjustifiable. Some action was required in Afghanistan but clearly nation-building there is impossible and I don't believe there is a clear enough plan that will achieve a long-term victory.

DPMan September 9th, 2010 3:18 pm ET
It's funny...when families were hurting and smoke was still rising from the Ashes of 9/11, it was worth it then. The president at the time had 100% approval from almost everyone, including the elected officials the public placed into office.
Hindsight is 20/20. How can you condemn something from the past that no one had ever faced based on the unforseeable consequences. It's like someone sitting in their recliner yelling at the quarterback on TV.
We simply have to accept what was, and learn from it.

beckhead25 September 9th, 2010 3:18 pm ET
There isn't oil in afghanistan. After 9-11-01 everyone wanted to go to war in Afghanistan. Many democrats said they would in Iraq as well in 2003(hillary clinton). America can't afford to ignore foreign threats and must take our enemies head on before 3,000 or more Americans are dead. Liberals need to stop weakening America through failed policies and P.C. obsession.

Tom September 9th, 2010 3:19 pm ET
bin Laden declared war on us and attacked on 9/11. He was hidden and supported by the Taliban who had the opportunity to turn him over to us and refused. Where's the debate? We did not want this war but had it fostered on us. The alternative is defeat.
Media: Stop generating controversies just for rating and do what the first ammendment intended. Keep our country free – not increase your bottom line.

neoritter September 9th, 2010 3:19 pm ET
We're fixing something we broke in the 80s. It's worth it.

*ayla norris September 9th, 2010 3:20 pm ET
NO, not at all. I think it was stupied

Robert Johnson September 9th, 2010 3:21 pm ET
I have yet to find ANYONE who thinks we should still be in Afghanistan.
That the US is still there is testament that there are people making enormous profits from being over there.

Peter September 9th, 2010 3:22 pm ET
NO ! Karzai and his brother appears corrupt. The US policy of trying to buy the hearts of people failed in IRAQ and here too, plus it is bankrupting our country. This place is just like Mexico a corrupt failed drug state.

brian September 9th, 2010 3:22 pm ET
The English couldn't do it. The Russians couldn't do it.

No one wins in any type of war. Hiroshima? That is something the world should never have to experience again.

The loss of life on either side is not worth a victory. Throwing all our money at a spectacle when our economy is falling apart is mindless.

Even if the US 'wins', all we are doing is breeding more hatred against the US, make the world a less than safe place.

These comments are not against the military, since they aren't the ones deciding who we fight.

It is directed against the leaders that wage war and those politicians that continue to support it.

sam September 9th, 2010 3:23 pm ET
our initial reason(s) for invading afghanistan included:
1) capturing or killing osama bin laden
2) dismantling al qaeda
in retaliation for the attacks of 9/11/01

neither of these goals have been achieved yet, after nine years. are these goals still relevant? yes. do they merit more time and money? NO.

erexx September 9th, 2010 3:24 pm ET
No it is not

yasir_ mohammed September 9th, 2010 3:24 pm ET
No war is worth fighting
same time it was necessary to throw a global threat Taliban out of power.

but how would have NATO thrown Taliban without going on war ?

In my opinion constant and systematic funding the rebel would have been easier and cheaper then.
1.gaining enmity , widows and orphans.
2.losing evil osama and mullah omer for ever.
3.giving billions to Pakistan to give safe havens to above two.
4.finally losing peace and discontent at home.

most important it would have minimized the civilian casualties.

ask September 9th, 2010 3:24 pm ET
If we had treated 9/11 as a criminal act like we did Oklahoma bombing, we would not have to go to war and have our soldiers killed.

Drummer September 9th, 2010 3:26 pm ET
The US became directly involved in Afghanistan after September 11, 2001. Al Qaeda was operating out of Afghanistan with the support and approval of the Taliban government and NATO declared war on the country. Had the US directed the same resources as part of the NATO mission in Afghanistan as was provided to the Coalition of the Willing in Iraq, we might have a completely different picture in the middle east today.

Betty September 9th, 2010 3:26 pm ET
Never should have started and now politics keeps it going

rebnick September 9th, 2010 3:28 pm ET
Bin laden isn't there, we can't afford this war – Biden had the right idea, use the drones only on the terrorist camps and let's pull out the troops.

NJ September 9th, 2010 3:30 pm ET
I believed it was a just cause in the beginning but after my brother a special ops pilot was killed in action in Afghanistan on his 5th tour(after 3 Iraq tours as well) I began the question what we were still doing there. I really want to believe my brother gave his life for a reason. It hurts to hear people say this was a mistake because my brother DIED for this and his children now have no father. At this point we should just bring them home NO ONE should have to go through what my family has been through, it has been hell.

David Cagle September 9th, 2010 3:30 pm ET
How would you ever know if you won or not ?

vee qwan September 9th, 2010 3:31 pm ET
No ! it is not worth .
Democracy is a process not an act created by violence .Military is a short
term intervention. Iraq -afghanistan is a mess , was a mess and will be a mess. American need to withdraw as soon as possible .Cold war is over
American can promote democracy but we can only help poeple fight for it . If you don't fight for your selves , forget it.
Every lessonn is different thru history , we can not learn and also we are very stupid .

Zmarud Pashtun September 9th, 2010 3:31 pm ET
There is no doubt that the war in Afghanistan was worth it, for there could be no other reason than saving human dignity and freedom. The American public should not forget the atrocities meted out to the Afghan people by that brutal regime nor the should doubt the images in the electroninc and print media of the teenage girls with cut nose and ears and which is the case even today.Believe it or not if you encourage the Taliban by you teetring support for your troops you are leting down the sacrifices made by the men and women of the AA(Afghanistan and America). Not only that if the international cmmunity fails in a crucial place like Afghanistan in a crucial battle extremism will be knoking at your door not from one quarter but three.ie.Middle East(Yemen) East Africa(Somalia) and South and Centeral Asia(Pakistan and Afghanistan).
As for the future of Afghanistan, it is doomed if we lose the war and whatevere has been achieved so far will be cast to the wind, and forget not that we have achieved much in that country and achieved so dearly. Let it be remided that the American public should visualize the peculaire conditions in Afghanistan where progress could be painfully slow.
Is the war winable? Absolutely yes. As an inhabitant of the area I will do the following things.
Try to Know the psyche of the Pashtun
Be very committed
Prevail over the regional media especially the neighbouring countries
Win the local perception about the war
Out smarten the Taliban in thier tactics
Focus on Southeastren Afghanistan
However, having said and done all those things nothing will succed if we fail to control neighbouring spy agencies. Remember you are not fighting the Taliban but against stakeholders in the region.
Zmarud Pashtun
AfPak Border

Deryk Houston September 9th, 2010 3:33 pm ET
The war is bankrupting the United States in both blood and money. The only people who profit from war are the people who provide billion dollar high tech war machines. Not to mention the corrupt Afghan officials who have been widely reported to be flying out plane loads of cash to banks outside Afghanistan.
The future of Afghanistan will likely see America withdraw it's troops at a point that the American people say no more to the bloodshed and massive crippling costs. The Afghan government will have made deals with various groups........ groups that are exactly the ones the American's didn't want to see have any power in Afghanistan.....but that will be what will happen. Karzai is already making deals with these groups as Nato troops are blown to pieces by these very same groups.
By the way.....Nato is no where near an "international" force. It does not include China, India, the Soviet Union, Pakistan, Afghanistan, or many other countries.
Peace be with you.

chris September 9th, 2010 3:33 pm ET
Nope. Not unless we have Osama stashed away somewhere. That was the point, right? And if we have him, let's get the heck out.

Dawn Ramsay September 9th, 2010 3:33 pm ET
As an Army wife, I suggest you ask the wives, children, and families of the deceased and injured soldiers or marines.....we pay the ultimate cost.

Nofets September 9th, 2010 3:34 pm ET
If we had not gone into Afghanistan following the September 11th attacks, this would have read: "Should we have attacked the Taliban?" As a population, we are never happy nor satisfied with our current situation.

carol September 9th, 2010 3:34 pm ET
El Gordo, I spoke against the war when we declared it shortly after 9/11. I did not think we could win, did not want to lose countless lives both military and civilian. You are right, I was called a traitor by friends, family and co-workers. Bush's famous line, "If you are not with us, you are against us". I was against all the violence that would come with this war. Everyone else seemd to think this war would be so easy and so fast to win. It has been nothing but painful for everyone involved all the way around.

Dillon September 9th, 2010 3:34 pm ET
Yall are not thinking about the bigger picture here. We have men that are willing to put their lives on the line to protect YOUR right to have this right here, freedom of speech. They gave up their families and their freedoms just so you could bad mouth them? No thats not fair. You should seriously think about what you say. Yes it costs money and lives but they sign those papers knowing that risk. If we would've stood back and let 9-11 happen we would have been marked as weak and the attacks would've continued. So remember the reason you get to express your opinions are because of those people over there and the past presidents who put that in motion. They did the best they could with the hand they were delt.

USArmy 25B September 9th, 2010 3:35 pm ET
camp liberty, baghdad, iraq/ this war wont end nor the one in Afghanistan or any other in the name of "the war against terrorism". Evil begets evil, feeding the fanaticism on each side of the fence. No, the silent rulers of this world behind the governments and beyond the tethers of society have chosen a new mechanism for herding social order, and its terrorism. I'm afraid we have only begun to scratch the surface of a new chapter in human history and it wont be until enough innocent ppl like Pfc. Bradley Manning, martyrs in the struggle for world peace that our species will be free of its own hatred and reach a higher level of enlightenment.

jubei3 September 9th, 2010 3:36 pm ET
If you profit from it monetarily or politically these wars are worth it. if you had to pay for it with either money, blood, sweat, tears it stands to reason "no war is worth it". the question of the debate is flawed.

Did we get anything out of either the Iraq war or Afghanistan war? NO

That is my opinion, The little bit of revenge cost us too great a cost. Revenge ..was it worth it? would be a better question.

duh September 9th, 2010 3:36 pm ET
bush screwed it up by diverting attention to sadam. We had bin laden in tora bora but were not willing to take him out.
Russia failed in afghanistan but we were aiding them against russia.

the destabilizing this region by removing sadam has totally screwed us in this area. China benefits 100% from bush's idiocy. and the shia belt will tighten around us

Porter September 9th, 2010 3:38 pm ET
No It was not! It was good to go let them know that America will not put up with their attacks (9-11) but to stay there and try to set up a new kind of government NO! We can learn from how these people do Israel they are a thorn in their side. when they attack attack back with power and come home and protect our borders! Every American life is precious and to send them to their deaths needlessly is shameful. Didn't we learn ANYTHING from Vietnam??

Renato September 9th, 2010 3:39 pm ET
The problem is what will come after the war.

will the country be helped to focus on education and give women freedom while at the same time making sure people are safe and fed?

Will the U.N enforce a ban on Opium fields that not only dont help the country but makes their farmers live in slavery while at the same time affecting the whole world with the resulting drugs?

giving Afeghanistan money and expecting them to build a country wont work happens everyday in african countries.

What afeghanistan needs is education and jobs thats how you build a country.

Andre Colling September 9th, 2010 3:39 pm ET
Depends on who you ask. The was has certainly cost many lives whether in a just cause or not is unclear. It is clear that democracy does not exist as most people can not vote, the country is insecure at multiple levels and the prospects of a stable state in the long run remain unlikely. There remains no clear exit strategy at the moment and the country's neighbours are unable to provide a level of support to the current administration if the NATO forces left.

Mike S. September 9th, 2010 3:39 pm ET
Apparently it was worth it to Dick Cheney and George Bush Jr. It installed Halliburton in Iraq, and placed the U.S. in the heart of the heroin capital of the world.

Ed September 9th, 2010 3:39 pm ET
War is only worth something to the politicians whom called for it. To all others, war is hell.

james greene September 9th, 2010 3:39 pm ET
Why are we there???????????? The Russians were ther for years and years and finally gave up. The current goverment is totally corrupt. We as a country are going bankrupt and spending billions of dollars on a lost cause.We are shedding American blood for what????? The American people are fed up with this war! We are in a recession and need out tax dollrars spent in this country not some far away land with a corrupt goverment.

eric September 9th, 2010 3:41 pm ET
to gil: I am actually over in afghan right now and for you to even suggest the "freedom fighters" success is down right wrong. I am here with men and women who are mothers, fathers, brothers, sisters, sons, and daughters. since when did we forget that we are still fighting this war? whether we are "winning or losing" it shouldn't distract anyone that there are still those of us who joined the military with hopes of supporting our country and were ordered here. our beliefs on whether the war is right or wrong, worth it or not, lost or won, shouldn't matter to any of you. try supporting those of us who are trying to do the right thing by supporting our country by doing what we are told instead of just writing about your thoughts on the internet!

rip deverman September 9th, 2010 3:41 pm ET
from Bonn Germany...
A BIG NO!!!! to both questions.....
unfortunetly 9 years have gone by since September 11th took place...there are Still...to many TRUTHFULLY unanswered questions as to WHAT HAPPENED....the 911 Commision Report did not even touch on what happened to WT 7....we all saw that implode on tv that day also...now it was just FIRE..or so the government says....MANY PROFESSIONALS beg to differ...but main stream media...doesn't give them air time...and the president just wants to TURN THE PAGE AN MOVE ON....GREAT CHANGE .....
the TRUTH from that day will put America even deeper in disgrace than the 2 wars it started...
American politicans NEVER DID nor EVER WILL understand the people of Afganistan....they are different....NOT BAD....just different....instead of spending trillions of borrowed dollars from us..our kids.. our grandchildren and their grandchildren to KILL innocent civilians...they could spend much less to help them...along with the millions of americans who are unemployed. underemployed..homeless..losing their homes...sick..and uninsured....
of course american politicians do not really understand Main Street Americans either...so the outlook for Afganistan is going to be like driving down MAIN STREET in anytown USA..EMPTY....

Rick McDaniel September 9th, 2010 3:41 pm ET
Only if the Taliban are totally eliminated from the face of the planet!

Elly September 9th, 2010 3:42 pm ET
Both the wars were not worth the human sacrifice!
The lowest credible estimates as of August 10 2010 !

The death rate for both wars=919,967

Afghan troops=8587
Iraqi Troops=30,000
American troops=5554
Coalition=1090
Remainder=Contractors, journalists and mostly innocent civilians!!
Taliban and Al Qaeda=No One seems to know????
Total Injured between both wars
Iraq=1,609.903
Afghanistan=48,644
the Ironic part is the one who was behind 911 is still walking around
in spite of all the carnage mentioned above!

At some point someone has to have the *courage* to stand up and say enough is enough and End this war!!!
the money going to these wars could be better spent
beefing up our borders and ports, airports and subways!
Screening people better who come into the country
Maybe even set up special task forces to deal with the home grown terrorists

If these wars were for revenge I would say we have all gotten our revenge and then some!

*Confucius say" If you embark on a journey of revenge dig two graves"

Bill870 September 9th, 2010 3:44 pm ET
It was the Afghanistan government, ruled by the Taliban, who helped Osama Bin Laden attack us on 9/11.
Most Afghanistan's liked us for helping them fight the soviets all those years ago. Most were sick of the Taliban themselves. We should have been in and out of there quickly.
We end up diverting our forces to Iraq and screw the whole thing up. Now there is really no good solution to the mess.
Personally I was ready to wipe out the Taliban when they blew up those historical statues.....

Ed September 9th, 2010 3:44 pm ET
also, if i hear one more person invoke 9/11 as a reason to kill more people, i am literally going to vomit. I saw the towers fall from my home. At the time I worked calling into the 82nd FL (if i recall correct ) port authority construction office for plans and specs. I was mad also at the time. but i was young and foolish once also. and know now that you shouldn't ask for more blood when blood is spilt. And for some people it may take a lifetime to realize. But from now on I expect more rational logic from our politicians

Tim September 9th, 2010 3:45 pm ET
This is the wrong question. It was the Iraqi War that was not worth it and that diverted our attention from the Afghan War which I believe was necessary to disrupt and dislodge Al Quaeda and destroy his ability to have a safe training area. Someone on this blog asked if we were safer because of the Afghan War. How can one measure that? We are safer in the sense that we have disrupted their ability to train and organize, but does one measure our success by the fact that we have not had another major terrorist act in this country or by the problems and terrorist acts elsewhere in the world? I do believe that the war was necessary, but we botched it due to Iraqi War, which was not. Perhaps if we had kept our concentration on Afghanistan, we would have been celebrating departing that country a few years ago.

JEM September 9th, 2010 3:45 pm ET
We were blatantly lied into WW1 and to a lessor degree lied into WW2.
Therefore, there is a high probability we were lied into at least one of our two current wars.

Jack September 9th, 2010 3:46 pm ET
Was it worth it? Idunno, are we getting those minerals?

JDubs September 9th, 2010 3:47 pm ET
Unfortunately, we live in a dog-eat-dog world. It's kill or be killed.

We could go around debating all day whether the war was worth it, but the way that I see it, if we hadn't pounced on the situation when we did, and rather sat here in the US and did nothing, there would be many MORE Americans dead as a result of more terrorist attacks.

If the war on terror did anything, it diminished the confidence of the Taliban, and this has been shown throughout the past decade or so.

YES, we might not have been flawless in our attempts, but the bottom line is that there has been no domesitc terror attacks from our middle eastern friends.

"If you want peace, prepare for war"

Gaz September 9th, 2010 3:48 pm ET
Not worth it.
Many lives have been lost.
No area's have been secured.
We are no safer.
We didn't get Bin Laden.
Democracy & equality haven't taken root.
It's cost a fortune at the expense and suffering of domestic advances.

Helmi Kuukka September 9th, 2010 3:48 pm ET
As a human being living outside Usa i see only the sacrifice of all men and women who have been there in bad situations and have served their country/ Army in dangerous conditions. They have proudly done that i guess. I lift my hat to everyone in the forces of Nato, UN, Usa and the others, who have tried to save some civilation (if any has been there) in poor violent countries. Many families have and will lose their children, husbands or wives in places like Iraq and Afganistan. I dont see why all these wars have to be so long. If the economy of different countries is going allways in front of everything, we have no hope to shorten the wars or so called peacekeepings.. I guess the american voters have some value in when you are voting in next elections. Be wise there, will you. I hope less wars and more education and food and water to poor countries.

Greg September 9th, 2010 3:49 pm ET
Russia couldn't win and Afghanistan is in their backyard. We have to foot the cost of going all the way over there and the rest of the costs of war. Playing good cop / bad cop ups the cost. Either blow the place up or don't bother fighting. Prolonged war makes no sense. Throwing money at the Afghan government makes as much sense as investing in a termite infested house. One of my gripes with Obama is his upping the ante in Afghanistan when we have so much trouble here.

Robert September 9th, 2010 3:50 pm ET
No, it was not worth one American life.

If George Bush and Cheney were there doing WHAT THEY DIDN'T DO WHEN THEY WERE YOUNG... that would totally be worth it!

Missy September 9th, 2010 3:50 pm ET
Oh hell NO!

Zach September 9th, 2010 3:50 pm ET
This is not a debate, there is only one answer: no.

Shan September 9th, 2010 3:50 pm ET
I was free the day before 9/11, I was free the day of 9/11, and until this say I am still free!!! None of these wars are or will ever be worth it. Pat urselves on the back America , too late now to change course. We broke it now stay and fix it. Or 9/11 will repeat itself!

rebnick September 9th, 2010 3:52 pm ET
If every morning all the people that are unemployed or families of people that are unemployed would write the White House

Contact the White House | The White House

to say we can't afford this war, maybe it would make a difference.

Earl Wicks September 9th, 2010 3:52 pm ET
You would think that our leaders, with the knowledge (1)of what transpired when Russia (a huge power) gave up and left Afghanistan (2) the length of time we have spent there with little progress and (3) that the country will probably never stabilize, would make plans to remove our forces right away. We cannot afford to take care of the world anymore. Our middle class tax payers are about to revolt.

TPaine18 September 9th, 2010 3:52 pm ET
Yes! This is the "good" war, that Bush ruined by actually getting something done in Iraq.

p September 9th, 2010 3:52 pm ET
Hey Ethernet-
Afghanistan, to the best of my recollection, never attacked the USA.
A bunch of guys from Saudi Arabia did.
Why didn't we invade Saudi Arabia?
How long must we be over there? This is nothing but the perpetual American War Machine, that sucks up billions and spits out the lives of our beloved kid soldiers.
So much money is made, and stolen in wars, that I don't see them ending anytime soon. Too many people get rich during a war.
If the repubs had won the presidency (God forbid) we'd be at war with Iran right now. IMO.

logan September 9th, 2010 3:52 pm ET
Is any war worth it?

Pat Linton September 9th, 2010 3:55 pm ET
We're fighting folks that have been fighting hundreds of years before America was born. They fight each other for fun. We will not change them. I think we need to pull back into America for a while and stop changing the diapers of other nations. This is like wiping your butt on a wagon wheel. It's the same crap over and over...

Gomez September 9th, 2010 3:56 pm ET
I'm a member of the military and I say the war in Afghanistan is warranted and worth the fight, and the war in Iraq was not.
No one else but the parents of those service members should be the only members of this nation who should make the decision to go to war since they are the ones that have more to lose. Maybe then we would go to war for just causes.

dee September 9th, 2010 3:57 pm ET
All the deaths and mutilations of our service men and women, and the only thing supporters of the war can say is"We got rid of a tyrant, the world is safer" Tell that to the parents of the soldiers who lost their lives. We went in on the emotins of anger, and as people became more educated about the war, and the relationship that our government had with the middle east(OIL) became public, the majority of the country had enough.

Bill September 9th, 2010 3:57 pm ET
If we had gone into Afghanistan w shock and awe, instead of treating it as a sideline to the invasion of Iraq, it would have been worth it. We had the opportunity to get Osama bin Laden, and we blew it, thanks to Bush's infatuation w Saddam Hussein. All I want is Osama's head on the end of a spike. Thanks a lot Dubya.

Larry September 9th, 2010 4:00 pm ET
We should have sent in special ops to find BinLauden and stayed out of local government. The Talaban will prevail once we leave, thousands of years of tradition will not be undone until the locals change it. We cannot afford to continue to save the world and say we are preserving our freedom by doing so.

lordpet September 9th, 2010 4:00 pm ET
It's a question of necessity, not worth. We obviously needed to invade to dislodge the Taliban and get Al Qaeda. I don't see room for debate here. If there are any questions, it's about the prosecution of the war. We didn't destroy OBL and his cronies when they were holed up in Tora Bora and took our eye off the ball to invade Iraq. Who attacked us on 9/11, Al Qaeda or Saddam? Now people are tired of fighting in Afghanistan and want to pull out. This isn't an option, as the Taliban and Al Qaeda will regenerate. We will just have to go in again. We need to do whatever it takes to prevent that from happening.

bailoutsos September 9th, 2010 4:01 pm ET
Of course the cost of war is worth it. Just ask Halliburton.

Dude September 9th, 2010 4:01 pm ET
stephan wagner – how can you even compare Vietnam with the war in Afgan....the article stated we have lost about 2000 soldiers to the day in Afgan. We lost 60,000 in vietnam.

Sean September 9th, 2010 4:01 pm ET
To succeed we will have to stay there several generations (25 to 50 years) until the country can succeed economically on it's own. If we don't the Taliban will simply role back into power as soon as we leave.
We knew this going in as this has been our experience in any area where there are ethnic conflicts (the Balkans come to mind). We should have just gone in after Bin Laden which in the end we failed at do to Rumsfeld not allowing special forces to drop in behind Tora Bora. Again we have to make the commitment to make a country stable, including economically, before we decide to force a regime change. For Afghanistan we knew that would take several generations (50 years) and many trillions of dollars to occur. If you're not willing to make that commitment up front then don't attempt a regime change.

chris, tx September 9th, 2010 4:01 pm ET
the Afghan War was completely justified given that in 2001 Afghanistan was the HQ for Al Qaeda and the gov't was run by the Taliban. Since OBL was based out of Afghanistan and the gov't was hostel to the USofA i think what we did on 10/7/2001 was right. Most of America thought it was right too. The problem was that we got our attention focused on Iraq for no obvious reason. While we spend 6/7 yrs focusing resources in Iraq we could have been & should have been focusing heavily on Afghanistan. We owe it to those people to help them set up whatever type of gov't they as a people want. One that isn't as demeaning to human right as the previous gov't was. They were probably doing just fine in their part of the world till the Soviets invaded in the 80's since then they have been struggling b/c we did not help them. what happened because of that? 20 yrs later on 9/11/01 we were all shocked to realize we were now in the crosshairs of a gov't and organization made up of people wronged by the USofA. We need to learn from our mistakes and use these newly discovered resources as a way to give these people a new export that could easily bring them into the 21st century. Hey you wanted "green jobs" i believe this is part of it

Charlie September 9th, 2010 4:02 pm ET
I think we should ask the guy who was sitting on the 87th floor of the Twin Towers the morning of the attacks of 9/11. You know, the guy who had just got to work, was sitting down, on the phone, and just happened to look out the window to see the nose of a jet liner about 50 feet from where he was sitting.

Someone go find that guy and ask him if standing up and kicking some butt in defense of your core belief's was right or wrong.

Then come back and sing us a song.

josephhyde September 9th, 2010 4:02 pm ET
War is our pathetic attempt to control the behavior of others. Non-participation is the first step in any sane response to aggression.

Darr September 9th, 2010 4:02 pm ET
How can anyone say it was worth it when our country is nearly bankrupt with a 13 trillion dollar deficit and "victory" in Afghanistan is many many years away if at all? Investment and economic recovery here at home are being shortchanged due to war funding, 1 in 5 in America go hungry at at night, folks can't afford healthcare coverage, they're losing their homes, jobs etc and our imcompetent government of course, is more concerned about folks thousands of miles away, building their schools and infrustructure and sending away 27 billion in aid every year.
I have a relative currently fighting in Afghanistan, so these wars cannot end soon enough for me. Especially after nearly a decade you question whether they should have been deployed there at all. Our government obviously underestimated the insurgency there and had no clue of the culture and will of our enemies. Our engagement rules also tie the hands of our troops and it makes it difficult for them to defend themselves, they're basically sitting ducks.
We can't change radical Islam and no amount of nation building, diplomacy or millitary effort will change that.
We have a huge problem w/ violent drug cartel activity near our southerm border w/Mexico and I feel it makes more sense to have our National Guard on the border protecting Americans and Latin Americans from being slaughtered like the 72 would be immigrants.
1,200 National Guard that Obama had sent is clearly not enough or sufficient to minimize what's going on there.

Ali September 9th, 2010 4:03 pm ET
We all know afghanistan is very rich when it comes to minerals and natural resources and this war has nothing to do with 911 even FBI dont want osama for 911. On FBI site 911 is not even mentioned for osama to be wanted.

This war is only to dominate Asia and take nukes from Paksitan, but this is where america is making its biggest mistake.. coz. she dont know anything about Pakistani people. Wait till they wake up.. and those days arnt far.

Matt, San Diego CA September 9th, 2010 4:04 pm ET
Afghanistan wasn't worth it. We accomplished next to nothing other than installing an oil tycoon to a corrupt government. We accomplished ruining what little infrastructure Afghans had. We accomplished keeping the opium poppy fields alive and well for the CIA's drug wars. We accomplished scattering the Taliban and al Qaeda to Pakistan, and Iraq. We accomplished killing a lot of people, and losing a lot of our soldiers. We accomplished funneling billions, and trillions of dollars into a war with no real plan.

Disrupting al Qaeda was a success? Lies. They're waiting for us to leave so that they can come out of their caves, and back into Kabul.

We didn't get bin Laden, the mastermind of 9/11, so what are we supposedly measuring success by? Body counts? Number of people we detained, stripped of their human rights, and flew to secret CIA prisons? What?

What really burns me is, we did this with the permission of the Afghan government. They let us come to Kabul, and they asked us to stay. Everyone has gone completely crazy.

-Matt

Pandora September 9th, 2010 4:04 pm ET
In the end, wars are seldom worth the cost. We need to learn to wage peace.

In this case, driving OBL out of Afghanistan was a worthwhile aim. It's just that we didn't do it well enough to cripple Al Qaeda.

Once OBL had moved operations to Pakistan, we needed to follow up by making Afghanistan a place that would never need him again. We needed to begin a massive infrastructure improvement program, building roads, hydro plants and irrigation. Instead, we wasted money that could have been used constructively by bombing things. We made ourselves unpopular with the Afghan people by blasting wedding parties with missiles and kicking in doors in villages. The Taliban came to power initially becaused they imposed law on a country that had been awash in anarchy. Although Taliban law was harsh, many people felt they were better off because at least they knew what the rules were and who was in charge. We could have made the Taliban unpopular if we had created a peaceful, productive society with new conveniences (roads, power, water). Instead we made ourselves unpopular by simply presenting America to the Afghan villagers as another warlord, another danger, another bully interfering in their lives.

Yago September 9th, 2010 4:06 pm ET
Well if you consider
1.- The two Pipelines that need to cross Afghanistan to reach Pakistan so the Oil and Gas from the Caspian Sea could be shipped to the US, it sounds profit for the Big Oil.
2.- If you consider the amount of money used in bases, uniforms, equipment, contractors and reconstruction it is worth it for the MIC and Senate and Congress Corporation Friends. ($500 per hammer in the Halliburton Invoice)
3.- If you consider that 79% of the Opium production happened in Afghanistan and you can dope Russia and China, it's worth it. for the US strategist. We control the Cocaine in Colombia and the Heroin in Afghanistan.

bailoutsos September 9th, 2010 4:06 pm ET
:::Charlie I think we should ask the guy who was sitting on the 87th floor of the Twin Towers the morning of the attacks of 9/11 @@@ But Charlie, right now America is killing Taliban who had nothing to do with the attack.

Drazul September 9th, 2010 4:06 pm ET
A few reasons it wasnt worth it: (not that I am a fan of the realities of war)
1. It didnt benefit this country basically at all except to help bankrupt us. WW2 helped this country by creating tons of jobs and making America a country of production and industry.

2. It didnt help population control.
Now I dont want any more dead Americans than the next person but there is a growing issue with population control on this planet, not just this country, but that is another thread.

3. It didnt even make a difference over there.
They still hate us, we still hate them. A tyrant was removed from one country and they dont know how to act without a single person threatening their lives every day so they are probably hoping that another one will rise up and take the lead again so they dont have to try to think for themselves.

4. Its making our government, present and past, feel secure in their decision to once again involve America where it doesnt belong. Woot for Vietnam, the second chapter. I guess the thought of dedicating the average America's future to some sand and dirt-ridden country is more important that cleaning up this country. Faulty power grids, bridges on the verge of collapse all over the country, starving, homeless, and jobless folks out there. Thank goodness our decisions to be tax evasive took hold and our businesses were shipped over to India, ****-friggin-stan, and every other dirty corner of the planet.

The American people are tired of it. Now we see examples of folks getting enraged by one topic or another..muslims for example. There are so many signs of what could even be called a civil war on the horizon and the government barely notices until one particular president who most believe to have followed the muslim faith steps in and tries to intervene on the good of America and those good people who are in harms way in the aforementioned dirt-filled lands fighting blindly for something that has no tangible value to it.
America's inner collapse is imminent and the government isnt helping. Corruption is so deeply rooted. The corruption is even slowly killing those who are corrupt but they dont care. Some of these people still enjoy the best healthcare that the tax-paying public can provide, while those same taxpayers get notices that the benefits have been altered so that it cost a lot more or, even worse, that they lost them altogether.
There needs to be an uprising. Im not left, right, conservative, or whatever other silly label all you political types like to use but we are at the end of the American rope. Remember what it is to be American and what your fathers, grandfathers, and great-grandfathers fought for. If we dont remember there will be other powers in this country who are already hard at work trying to sneak in and get their roots to take hold.
The America of 1900 is dead and gone. The government needs to close the borders and help keep America inside its walls. Other countries and religious beliefs are pulling at the very fabric of this country and its all coming apart slowly but surely.
Other countries like Scotland understand. They resist having outsiders show up. They know what it could mean.
Well, i feel a bit better after all that...it wont mean a thing to a lot of you, if you even bothered to read this far. To any whose heartstrings this may reach, I hope we dont have to live in the new America thats already being planned around us. It will fail.

Mathew September 9th, 2010 4:07 pm ET
Immediately after the events of 9/11, the US demanded the Afghan government extradite the criminals behind that attack. If those criminals had been turned over, I would not have supported the war–but the Taliban government refused. As far as I am concerned, the Taliban is responsible for the US invasion of Afghanistan. The initial invasion was perhaps the only action by the Bush administration that I agreed with.

However, I do not think we should have attempted to impose a new form of government in that country. We should have deposed those idiots and left, with the promise to return again if any more attacks occur. The Afghans are responsible for running their own country.

Will September 9th, 2010 4:07 pm ET
Someone should have read the history books before we stuck our noses into Afghan. Simply go to your local library and search Afghanistan and you will find stories of the nightmares for the Brits 100 years ago, the Russians 30 years ago and others. All started with high hopes and ended with a disaster.

With all respect and honor to those who have been there and are still there, the signs are not good

Mark Harpster September 9th, 2010 4:09 pm ET
We haven't been in a war that was worth it since the Korean war and even that is questionable. Also, we haven't technically been in any war for quite some time, since Congress hasn't declared war for any of these pointless adventures. It's all going to end up being the same old song and dance for this one too. At some point down the road there will be lecture tours by journalists and evening news updates about how we lost this one and why. History does repeat itself and we learn nothing...or at least our leaders don't and the reality show wannabes who vote them in.

eco top gun September 9th, 2010 4:09 pm ET
Waste of lives and money with no way for any participant to win ever.

tcaros September 9th, 2010 4:11 pm ET
The pretext for the war is the 9/11 attacks.

The reason we did not go after Bin Laden is that he was a double agent and a figment created to continue the wars. The wars are for profiteering by corporations and the organized societies that are robbing our treasury through the Pentagon.

Elitists like Bush care only about wealth and familial connectons. They use politics to gain wealth and strip average people of their rights.

John 1776 September 9th, 2010 4:11 pm ET
Was/Is it worth it? Not the way we executed it. We could not turn a blind eye on what happened on 9/11 but how we handled it was in fits and starts that left us with a mess. The effort was under-manned from the start and therefore lasted three times as long as it should have and ultimately cost us far more in lives and resources then it should have.

Will-o September 9th, 2010 4:12 pm ET
The real question is not whether the war was worth it but where do we go from here. Can we learn from our mistakes and be more efficient/effective in working to stabilize the region? We are there for the long haul because we cannot allow the Taliban to take over Pakistan and get control of their nukes. So the American people have to be convinced that we are operating intelligently and effectively in the region and not just throwing money and lives into a bottomless pip. We also have to get more help from our allies and better behavior from our own cityzens whose mindless intolerance is fueling the fires of Islanmic radicalism .

Steve September 9th, 2010 4:15 pm ET
Surgical strikes against well defined terrorist targets could have been justified but certainly not the so-called "war" that evolved. It is absolutely ridiculous to think this conflict can be "won" like the generals would have you think. Exactly how do they measure success? Does anyone really think that Afghanistan will be changed significantly after this is over? The Afghans aligned with US (and allies) are certainly lining their pockets (and we're willingly paying) while pretending to slowly meet political goals that will be cast off when it's no longer to their advantage to meet them. We should get out of there as soon as it's logistically possible. Afghanistan will surely return to the fractious culture they are accustomed to when we depart. As long as we stay there will be no shortage of jihadist recruits from around the world willing to die to expel Western imperialists – especially when we "accidentally" kill innocent civilians. We should have left there yesterday.

Sam September 9th, 2010 4:17 pm ET
Is any war really worth anything other than to satiate the human appetite for revenge?

Only an American would think of a title like "Is the Afghanistan War worth it?" which would imply that a war is SUPPOSED to be worth something.

John S September 9th, 2010 4:17 pm ET
Are we safer, No. Are we economically stronger, No. Are we a stronger world power as a result. NO!

So now the problem is how do we pull out, reduce our cost of the military and not take a big unemployment hit. The military budget is a big part of our economy.

I fear as a result of unfunded 2 wars and unfunded tax cuts from the Bush years we are in grave danger of going bankrupt and falling into a long depression.

John Hennessy Black September 9th, 2010 4:17 pm ET
In a word: NO!

In 2 words: HELL NO!

Just another prime example of the over-abundance of testosterone and American stupidity for the entire world to see...

JACKSON September 9th, 2010 4:20 pm ET
There is no 'worth' in fighting any war, but when you do have to fight one, you take the gloves off and go after the enemy with everything at your disposal...everything. WWII was fought and won this way. But in this day of live video feeds, satelite TV, war comes into the living room in real time. We should have bombed them into submission and it would have been over in weeks. Instead, the government waffled, and now 9 years later, we're still fighting the same war against an enemy that should have been exterminated in the first two weeks of the war. War is not tiddly-winks, nor is for the feignt at heart, but if you're going to fight one, fight it to win, at all costs.

Anthony September 9th, 2010 4:21 pm ET
Americans have very selective memories! We won this war when we bombed the Taliban back to the "Stone-age" and they surrendered. What we failed to understand is that we spent trillions of dollars in Iraq fighting a war to reduce supposedly "Weapons of Mass Destruciton" that turned out to be nothing. This war was worth it, but sadly our resources went to Iraq which if we would have had the same efforts in Afghanistan this war would have been over.

Lee September 9th, 2010 4:23 pm ET
Initially I believed it was necessary that we went over there to prove to them that we are a powerful country that should not be messed with. But as the time went on, it seemed like a waste of money, money that might be needed for something more important later, and a waste of life. We cannot fix everybody, I don't believe it's our job. I think the reason we are over there now is for alterior motives, like their natural resources.

Robert J September 9th, 2010 4:23 pm ET
has anyone exlse ever noticed that it's "the war in Afghanistan" or "the War in Iraq" But very little is ever mentioned about waht the war is "about". That's becuse it's a war against a "strategy" and an ideology" How do you persue a war aginst those things? You cannot unless you plann on fighting for centuries! We made our point a approximatelty a year after 911 when we ran Alquida out of ther training grounds in Afghanistan. So what do we do now? Continue to alienate the qorld in a sensless war that we cannot win because there can be no winners. Leave Afghanistan, secure our country,let the rest of the world worry about themselves, and go back to being just good Americans. Otherwise get some kahunas and use OVERWHELMING and CRITICAL MASS FORCE qand get it over with. This is like an ongoing childish neighborhood sqauble that will never be settled!

ram September 9th, 2010 4:24 pm ET
The war has made the entire Western world sink to a point they had never been in the last century. While waging an illegal war on "terror" (simply a noun without a face, residence or country), an excuse to bestride the world and **** all of its international legalities, the western world, including Britain and USA, began to set the tone of "we are the rulers of the world and do as we say. We are the good guys"
While the war was going on:
- America financed it from hard earned chinese yuans thus creating a huge debt left for future generations.
-The government of these countries especially the US paid little attention to the suffering of their citizens. World prestige was more important. Being a war president or war prime minister was more important...lots of overriding clauses.
- While the war was being waged, and the US was more focused on suppressing certain countries, countries like China, Iran, Russia, Venezuela, Brazil, India, Syria et other non-US aligned countries made inroads into the realm of resource contract accumulation and management throughout the world including Africa, Eastern Europe and South America.
The western countries, all aligned with the US have lost out big time and will lose much more in trying to implement embargos on Iran et al. They are sinking in sympathy with the Flagship USA.
- American prestige is at its lowest and will not rise in the forseeable future even if it gives 1 trillion dollars in aid to Pakistan and 1 trillion to Israel.
-Finally, even if US declares that the war is won, with qualifications, the question of Palestine rests squarely on the shoulders of the world. Hamas, democratically elected, has to be included in the negotiations and this has a direct bearing on Iraq & Afghanistan.

Shawn September 9th, 2010 4:24 pm ET
The commander of the British forces stated that if the war was to be won, the poppy fields had to be destroyed. The U.S. forces in fact burned several poppy fields and in short order a very angry Karzai was demanding more control over security forces.

Afghanistan is a country made up of mountain ranges that straddle the land like fingers on a hand, in between those ranges are valleys controlled by warlords who will fight for the highest bidder. We train Afghani troops but there is no level of trust. Trainers and trainees are housed in different areas so how can any real bond exist. Some of the trainees are sympathetic to the Taliban and that doesn't bode well either. Their army is technologically challenged and the country itself has no infrastructure.

When we leave, Karzai and his brother will flee and the Taliban will take over completely. They can have it. The whole place isn't worth one drop of blood from any soldier serving there.

tj hughey September 9th, 2010 4:24 pm ET
No my belief this war was not worth the risk of wat America has lost there is no win to this situation it was just a decoy for bush to go ahead with his alterior motive and put up a smoke screen for the citizens of America I personaly lost my cuzn and the mother of my dauta I shed a tear everytime I look at my baby she looks just like her motha and knowing she will neva b comeing home just like so many otha American family's so no Hell fukn no the lost we have all taken was not worth it and evn if we win still was not worth the lost

Jonathan Antwi September 9th, 2010 4:25 pm ET
It really matters not because, the government of U.S must think of the valued lives and properties that may perish instead of trying to harness the situation in Afghanistan...

LouAz September 9th, 2010 4:25 pm ET
Here is a plan, the only plan we need:
Keep looking for bin Laden. Osama bin Laden, no one else. First guy to find him – shoot him, stab him, choke him, kill him quickly, no pictures, no celebrations, just kill him. Everyone will know soon enough. Then come home right away.

Why didn't we concentrate on getting bin Laden ? We seem to think everything is WW II and we must invade Europe and march across the whole region and after we blow everything up we try to find someone to sign a surrender document. Bin laden is not signing any surrender document. Our chance to have any positive influence in the region was after the Ruskies pulled out, but we messed that up. Occupying any country as we blow it up just does not work.

Russ Hiehle September 9th, 2010 4:26 pm ET
The Soviet Union found their war in Afganistan to be totally unprofitable with great loss of life, mostly their own military. They were, in effect, driven out of the Country by a much smaller force.

Foreign boots on the ground do not work there and will not for us either. We will leave on our own or also be driven out. The Country is too vast to control and their past indicates the percentage chance of winning the so called hearts and minds of the people is about zero.

Support our troops, bring them home.

Abdul-Akeem 4rm 9ja September 9th, 2010 4:26 pm ET
American should kinly please leave this people alone,let them leave there live.

john September 9th, 2010 4:26 pm ET
Does anyone ever question the government's immediate involvement in 9/11 look at all the money gained by the war on terrorism and all the oil in the middle east what ever happened to the weapons of mass destructio???? When north Korea said we have multiple nuclear weapons shouldn't our focus had switched no because we got what we wanted in the middle east our government are and always will be the real terrorist until we stand up and do something about it

William Walls September 9th, 2010 4:27 pm ET
Some debilitating countries, their problematic circumstances and accompanying threat portent, juxtaposed with an exceedingly-probibitive cost to rescue - in terms of American treasury and lives - are Tailor-made for strategic nukes.

Hello, Afghanistan!

Elliot September 9th, 2010 4:28 pm ET
This war has been a failure from day one. Bin Laden is alive and free, Al Qaeda is stronger than it was on 9/11 and we are shoring up a corrupt and impotent government. Karzai is the mayor of Kabul, nothing more.

Chris September 9th, 2010 4:28 pm ET
No war is worth it, as they only serve to strengthen hatreds and prejudices. As for can the war in Afghanistan be won? It speaks for itself, it's the longest conflict the U.S. has ever been in and we're no closer to anything that could be called a "win" now than we were 9 years ago

Chris – Fort Wayne, IN USA

White Lotus September 9th, 2010 4:31 pm ET
I wonder why we are there in the first place. Judging from (former) General McChrystal's comments Obama's interest in seeing us succeed over there isn't exactly the strongest. I look at General Petraus' strategy. Drink tea with tribal elders, make alliances, and win over the local population in order to win the war. The U.S.. has NEVER successfully implemented this type of strategy and it's showing in the way our troops are responding. The troops are freaking out because they don't understand the goal, they have not been trained to drink tea with tribal elders. They think when they goto Afghanistan they will kill people and blow things up and that's what they are expecting. We will fail.

Carol Burns September 9th, 2010 4:33 pm ET
Of course the war on terrorism is a must. We aren't fighting the Afghans - we are fighting the Taliban in Afghanistan and elsewhere because of the attack on our homeland on 9/11/01.

Kurt September 9th, 2010 4:34 pm ET
No, this war and all wars are not worth it. What we are doing in Afghanistan is only a response to 9/11 and an excuse for the military-industrial complex to make huge profits off the American taxpayer. What needs to be talked about more, especially by the mainstream media, is to look back at history and reveal some truths behind our government's effort at trying to invade Cuba in the early 1960s. I'm still a firm believer the entire War on Terror was fabricated, beginning with the so-called "terrorist attacks" on 9/11. In 1962, a false-flag plan was devised by the Joint Chiefs of Staff which has since been declassified. The plan, known as "Operation Northwoods", outlined fake terrorist attacks to be carried out by the U.S. government in order to convince Americans that the country should retaliate and ultimately invade Cuba. I don't know about you, but I feel Northwoods is eerily similar to what happened on 9/11/01.

John MacDaniel, Huntsville AL September 9th, 2010 4:34 pm ET
There was no "REAL" direction in the conflict because "W" wanted to invade Iraq to show the old man that he was more macho.

The area has been in conflict with itself and outsiders for thousands of years, and no one has survived in the interventions.

Unless, and until, a nation can go into this area as a friend to the people, and really listen to what the needs of the people are, then they are just invaders, and will be treated as such – and be put down.

We have lost so many good people whose lives have been lost to show how manly "W" was – and so much money wasted in buying the 'friendship' of corrupt leaders – that we have bankrupted our own nation.

It is past time for the US to come home and rebuild itself and quite playing war in an area of the world which has known war for thousands of years – and which will continue to wage war with itself whether or not we are there. Now is the time for Americans to come to the aid of America – for it is 'peace at home' that is most important .

Lilia Guanzon September 9th, 2010 4:35 pm ET
No war is ever worth it. But as a clear statement and retaliation for the terror attacks, perhaps we can have some justification with the war in Afghanistan. Iraq however, should have never happened. It was on someone's personal agenda and our soldiers and our country are still paying for it. Iraq was not a mistake – it was a selfish and malicious act by our country's leader(s) and Bush lead it.

AussieKelly September 9th, 2010 4:35 pm ET
Does it really matter if it WAS worth it when the past cannot be changed?
For each person who says it wasn't worth it and it shouldn't have happened then it's like saying for each of the troops who gave their lives there they've have done it in vain.
Maybe we shouldn't still be there. But we are. And we will continue to be whether we stand up and complain about it or not.
It doesn't matter whether we support the decision to be there, it only matters that we support those that are there. By saying we don't support the war we are also saying we don't support the troops who risk their lives to be there.

Only time will tell what the future holds for Afghanistan.

david speranza September 9th, 2010 4:35 pm ET
Yes it was worth it but president bush choice saddam over osama bin laden. They passed the surge to remove 80,000 soilders from afghan to iraq. Right now afghan probably not worth it. Bin laden already escaped several years ago and the people we work with there are drug lords.

Molly September 9th, 2010 4:35 pm ET
Was it worth it? I guess that depends on what we've gained. Did we spread democracy and freedom? No, the Sunnis and Shiites and other factions are still warring. Did we gain any new territory for the US? Nope, we're going to leave everything behind when we go. How about all that lovely oil – can we have some of that? NOT! Unfortunately after ten years we've gained absolutely nothing. We have the same bunch of Muslim lunatics hunkered down in the sand, the same factions are still at each others throats, and the Afghan government is still a joke. And what was the price? Thousands of dead soldiers, young men and women returning with horribly wounded bodies and minds, and scores of broken families.

Erkin Dilbazi September 9th, 2010 4:35 pm ET
The war in Afghanistan is worthless. From its outset, this war was a wrong one. The vietnam scenario will reiterate itself: american forces will leave Afghanistan tired, ashamed and disappointed. The american drones will continue bombing the mountaineous region on the border with Pakistan and the talibans will hide in their strongholds. Both sides will suffer from it: americans- financially, local population-by having casualties. The future for Afghanistan holds nothing: it will continue to exist as a state as it did before. As soon as the forces of coalition will leave the country, the 'puppet' Karzai will be overthrown by Talibans who will impose their regime all over the territory of Afghanistan as they used to in the past. The problem of Afghanistan is deeply rooted in its' culture of ignorance and superstition which opens way for 'power abuse' and corruption. Local people suffer from that under the regime of Karzai and,as a result, they more prefer to live under Sharia law than in a secular state. Soviets dubbed Afghanistan 'a cursed land'. It will be better for americans and its allies to leave that country as soon as possible and instead to focus on their own vulnerable economy and strongly guard their own borders from 'muslim immigration'.

jim September 9th, 2010 4:37 pm ET
Wars historically drive empires into bankruptcy -I hope we do not go that way

Pat September 9th, 2010 4:39 pm ET
Well, the Russians didn't think so. But, of course, we had to prove that we're better than them.

Scott September 9th, 2010 4:42 pm ET
Is it worth it ? Worth what ? Ask the families that lost fathers, mothers, sons and daughters if this war was worth it.

FunnyFaceUA September 9th, 2010 4:44 pm ET
This "war" has been a debacle from the start. What exactly was the mission again? To get rid of the Taliban? How's that going for us? We haven't chased the Taliban out of Afghanistan, and even if we had, they would be back before the last American chopper left the pad. We should have gone in there, bombed the place flat, killed every Taliban we could find, and left them to pick up the pieces. Instead we try to be good old Uncle Sam, rebuilding their infrastructure and trying to stabilize what amounts to a desert asylum. What a waste! God bless the men and women who have yet to come home, and the families of those who came home in a box.

upm123 September 9th, 2010 4:46 pm ET
Sure, why not, been drug out so long that it's been a complete embarressment. What have we accomplished?? Wars are fueled to build tax dollars for the economy...hmmmmm, what did our politicians and advisors do wrong???? We have gained sooooo much of NOTHING! Have we prooved anything other than we sometimes act as a pathetic country, we want to be everyones pal while more often than enough we are taken avantage of.

Chris September 9th, 2010 4:47 pm ET
The war was worth it as long as it served it's intended purpose. The problem in my estimation is that an intended purpose was never clearly defined. Are we there to eliminate the Taliban and Al Queda or to nation build Afghanistan into a Western democracy? I think everyone was so irate after 9/11 we allowed our government far too much leeway with regards to the launching of an unavoidable conflict. We knew Al Queda was in Afghanistan, we knew they were responsible for the attack ergo shoot first, ask questions later. Later being now apparently. To answer the question, assuming the war had two discernible objectives, ousting Al Queda/Taliban was worth it and attempting to nation build Afghanistan was not worth it. You can argue that one couldn't have occurred without the other but in terms of intrinsic worth, that's how I view it. Unfortunately we appear to be in a ‘you broke it, you fix it’ situation so folding up the tents without finishing the job or positioning the Afghans to finish themselves is out of the question in my opinion.

Craeb-deth September 9th, 2010 4:48 pm ET
Go Obama sin-Laden – make america poorer
NONE of it has been worth a darn thing

Jim Rice September 9th, 2010 4:49 pm ET
As a veterian of the Vietnam war, where we lost a great number of troops, this afgan and Irag was is not worth it. The minute we leave their countries ( all troops out) thew will return to the way they were. Bring our men and women home.

Robb September 9th, 2010 4:50 pm ET
You can not win a war where the people don't want you. Didn't work in Vietnam and it never will. Think how we would react if someone invaded us? We would fight tooth and nail and down and dirty to get them out. Can you blame these people?

todd September 9th, 2010 4:51 pm ET
COWARDS, who replied no, you don't have the stones to stand up and defend your country against evil. Don't critisize those that do and who volunteer to stand up and defend our country so that you can sleep in comfort at night. How long do you think that freedom as you know it would be destroyed by the Taliban if we had not made them fight us on their soil. The war that you see over there could have been here if we didn't face evil where evil lies. Do you forget the 3 thousand innocent civilans like you that died on 9-11? Do you think that just doing nothing would make them stop attacking us? They do not negotiate with you unless you have your foot on their neck amd an M-16 pointed at their head. Get a set and support your country!

Edsr September 9th, 2010 4:51 pm ET
NO.............no war is worth it....................we lost a lot of very talented and good young men and women because of religious conflict...........the only time war warranted is when some nation tries to attack us...........9-11 was not a country attacking us....it was a fanatic religious element and now they want to build a mosque near that site...............that is their way of celebrating our hurt................freedom of religion in this country is a pain in the anus................next we will allow people to worship rocks and sea urchins and other flipped out "gods"...............

Robert 1945 September 9th, 2010 4:52 pm ET
This war is clearly going nowhere fast. We are trying to fight a war against a small faction who will endure far longer than our efforts. These people do not want to change their radical religion and beliefs and still harbor age old customs. That is why Osama Bin Laden resides somewhere in the comfort of Afghanistan.
There are two answers to this solution, draw a line as we did in Vietnam and present a date that anyone who wants democracy should be on one side and anyone who wants to live under the radical muslims should be on the other. The second option is to simply level the entire country and let Allah sort the good from the bad.
This is a war which will not give us a victory but will take the lives of our servicemen and women. In the end, we as did the British and Russians, will just have to leave the country.

steve September 9th, 2010 4:54 pm ET
Yes it is worth it. Make money from selling drugs and ammo. Plan a new gas pipeline through Afghanistan. Create a new boogyman, to scare the people and keep old allies under command!!!! For having some poor kids getting killed (for flag and country), it is a great opportunity to get rich

linda September 9th, 2010 4:55 pm ET
NO. if we had gone in there & taken care of business and not INVADED iraq, it would be over with. i think bush used it as a reason to invade iraq because "saddam tried to kill his daddy"

Tom September 9th, 2010 4:56 pm ET
I think we are forgetting the overwhelming support by the American people and congress in favor of the war in Afghanistan during 2001-2002. In NY during 9/11, I saw the aftermath, I saw the reactions of the people, I heard what was said, and we went into Afghanistan for revenge and nothing more. Revenge is always worth it at the time, and then we usually regret it later. So there really is no point to the question, because it is hindsight and cannot change our previous actions, nor can we learn from a purely primal response to a real catastrophe that was 9/11

paul September 9th, 2010 4:57 pm ET
what the americans need to do is -stop allowing the news and human rights to run ahead of the tanks and infantry- this is a military engagement out, we will tell you when its over--–stop trying to impress news reporters by giveing them a story---learn how to fight a military battle,

ThomasInPhoenix September 9th, 2010 4:59 pm ET
Not worth it. We've created as many terrorists as we have eliminated.

Jake September 9th, 2010 5:01 pm ET
Afghanistan was and still is worth it because the people there are worth it. We made mistakes and took our eye off the ball when we went to Iraq. Americans seem to be having misplaced anger. America is tired of hearing about the war and they are displacing their discontent with Iraq onto Afghanistan. I am tired of hearing about the war too and I want it to end, but I recognize that when we go over and screw up somebody's country we can't just leave them to pick up all the pieces. And people complain that we have to take care of our own problems. Guess what? We aren't living in shoddy little huts. We aren't getting acid dumped in our faces just because we want to go to school. Our freedom isn't under attack. We have a responsibility and America is more than capable to meet it. We must have the strength to continue the good fight.

Dina September 9th, 2010 5:03 pm ET
If we had spent the last 30 years developing alternative fuels, we wouldn't need to be over there at all, and the terrorists would all be penniless nomads instead of dangerous enemies. Not having an energy policy is the most criminal neglect of our "leaders" in Washington.

tobsinte September 9th, 2010 5:04 pm ET
I am not an American and not even from a NATO country. But I think Afghan war is worth every minute of it but it could have planned much wisely, started way early and of course fought differently. But Iraq, poor Saddam at least he was for the outsiders and unmistakebly the greatest blunder US has done in the first decade of 21st century and it will take a lot of brash and stupid leadership to have another one worse than this.

Andy September 9th, 2010 5:04 pm ET
Lefty Avenger, this article is about Afghanistan. What does oil and pipelines have anything to do with this war? Stop using talking points about Iraq that I do not think stand up. $700 billion spent, what oil does the US get from Iraq?

Robert September 9th, 2010 5:06 pm ET
It should of been short and sweet. Unfortunately, they don't like us or themselves, so let's pull out and let them kill each other. It's not our responsibility to rebuild their pathetic country. It's not worth another brave American life to support their corrupt government.

Diane September 9th, 2010 5:08 pm ET
Has no one noticed that there has to constantly be an American conflict SOMEWHERE? It keeps readiness up, it employs all those people in the arms industries (a healthy chunk of our economy) and is an excuse to keep troop levels high. And lets not forget all the influential war profiteers in powerful positions. (I won't mention Dick Cheney and friends).

Mike S September 9th, 2010 5:09 pm ET
No. The goal was suppose to be to track down and kill Al-Queda and Bin Laden who were responsible for 9/11. Somehow that got changed to nation building, and regime change. This was exactly what the right wing and neo-cons wanted. This was a failed attempt at spreading democracy.

cookie September 9th, 2010 5:10 pm ET
It would have been worth it if we had done it right, and not gotten tangled up in a stupid and meaningless war in Iraq. In the end result the only thing we've done is waste a lot of lives and a lot of money on 2 unsuccessful wars. I'd like to think things will get better in Afghanistan in the next year, but given the government there, it's hard to be very hopeful. IMHO, our President should announce that we've done our best there, and with the right govt could succeed, but since Kharzai et al have proven to be hopeless, there's no point in throwing more lives and more money into the effort, so we're reversing course and getting out. We'll reserve the right to bomb any al Quaeda camps our intelligence discovers there in the future.

ROBMN September 9th, 2010 5:10 pm ET
No war is ever "worth it" in my mind. War is and should always be the last desperate act to protect your country. All that said; from day 1 I was against invading Iraq and I remember my quote to my then right wing buddies "I hope they fine WMDs" well we know what happened there. In the case of Afghanistan I actually support this war because of previous (prior to 9/11) Taliban actions and the fact that the Taliban directly allowed Alqueda to train in Afghanistan which makes them an associate of those who would do us harm. Had GWB seen things the way I did and still do we would have put much more in to Afghanistan and migh actually be pulling out by now instead of just getting going. I hate war and hate spending money on war and I hate the politics of war!

American Pie September 9th, 2010 5:10 pm ET
so much for military super power, Americans went it to a stone throwing Afghanistan and a weakened (10 years of sanctions) Iraq, and to this day they dont have full control. Taliban still rules parts of Afghanistan and is making treaties with the new government, and Iraq, well we just left there cause we couldn't get a handle on things.

Was it worth it? Well did you catch the people responsible for the attacks?? Osama bin eating sandwiches laden??? nope, did you defeat Al Qaida ?? nope they are still there and growing, did you defeat the Taliban?? nope they are still there and growing.

Did Haliburton and KBR get richer?? yup and they are still sucking dollars from the taxpayer, not to mention blackwater.

What did American gain?? a weakend military it will take a decade to get back to the pre- 9/11 status, a broken economy at home, a health care system thats on life support, a drug war that is more like the cartels opened a can of whoop *** on America.

The world is flat, and we are digging a hole people. wake the f*ck up.

Harvey Friesen September 9th, 2010 5:10 pm ET
Afghanistan and Iraq was wars picked by the USA to fight because they wanted to steal the booty: oil and natural gas reserves and, thanks for our inept government leaders in Canada to go along with this diabolical plan that cost taxpayers billions. These savage lands will be a toilet bowl for the West because they will need constant "babysitting" years after the wars end. Mr. Harper is a loose cannon because of he betrays Canadians with social needs: doctor shortages, long hospital waits, 34% of us do not have dental coverage, school closures, kids going to school hungry, seniors in poor health, increase health care costs, first nations in poverty, massive unemployment, etc. while he throws buckets of money in foreign aid to parasite "freeloading nations" like Pakistan, Africa, Haiti, Peru, Carribeans and others. We are betrayed by the "traitorous acts" of our political leaders while ignoring our dire social problems including a haven for "illegal refugee migrants" while promoting human trafficking in Canada because our overpaid leeches in Ottawa cannot say no! Charity begins at home firsts and foremost, Stephen Harper, you arrogant egotistical court jester! We are our own worst enemies because we cater to all others with "runny noses" while homelessness increases and much more.....shame on Canada. Enough is enough, do not get involved in foreign wars as Russia will tell you. We help nations like Pakistan and Afghanistan that are world known for drug trafficking, terrorist cells, crooked governments and whinings for international handouts. The West will go bankrupt as we cannot "police" or "act as a "piggy bank" for the world. Who forgives our personal loans, nobody! Yet, our governments forgive foreign loans in the billions, little kids have better concept of economic values.

danny boy September 9th, 2010 5:11 pm ET
I think the original invasion was worth it and very effective. We had to respond in a big way to send message to the terrorists (actually the word terrorist is not a good one, doesn't accurately describe the conflict but that's for another board.)

My comment is more a question? My understanding is that we are fighting the Taliban to stop their encroachment into Pakistan and its major cities. They are at the present time on the outskirts of the cities. The Taliban has a lot of support within Pakistan and the fear is that if the Taliban is able to take over the government they'll have access to the nukes which is scary.

And the Iraq war was a huge mistake and like someone else has mentioned pulled resources that should have been used in Afghanistan where the terrorists were operating from...The whole idea that Iraq was behind 9/11 was a fabrication. I think the boneheads in the administration had some crazy idea that they could democratize Iraq and that democracy would somehow spread from there. And let's not forget all that oil..Or W having to finish what his daddy started. Oh well that's what happens when you have men with old ideas in charge. I would love to hear Colin Powell tell the true story and express his outrage at being used to justify Bush, Cheney, Wolfowitz and the rest of those neocons crazy world view.

lance corporal September 9th, 2010 5:13 pm ET
I think it WOULD have been worth it IF it had been correctly managed in the early stages and had we not pulled our resources in to the morass of Iraq for no good purpose and for reasons we still don't know the truth of, this is where the people who attacked us where, this is where the absolute worst of the taliban/muslim terrorists where, this was the correct battle to fight, we had the world behind us and if we had done it well we had the resources to do it right, I will forever wonder if it was simple ineptitude or what that mad bush/cheney/rumsfeld so badly handle afganistan and go in to Iraq with no clear purpose. strategy or desired outcome/exit strategy, it appears to be the greatest abuse of power and the biggest blunder in our nations history, I wish there was some way to find out what was really going on as it will bug me for the rest of my life, marines and all of our soldiers where let down by our leaders, it seems criminal...... so yes I think it was the right fight just done so horribly wrong by an inept and seemingly dishonest administration. god bless our troops, ooh rah!

thequestioner September 9th, 2010 5:13 pm ET
not even CLOSE to worth it!!! How many BILLIONS or even TRILLIONS of dollars would we have in our domestic budget if we hadn't wasted all of this money backing a corrupt government just to guarantee we can get cheap oil. Not one single death was worth it.

JH September 9th, 2010 5:13 pm ET
The war with Afghanistan made the militants move to Pakistan. You go to Pakistan, the militants move to Iran. You go to Iran, they go to India or another place. When and where does the war end?
with all the money being spent on war, America can invest a fraction of that money to invent more sophisticated drones and attack them from homeland. No loss of solder's life but attack the enemy more effectively driving them to underground caves forever.

UP1652 September 9th, 2010 5:15 pm ET
At the least I suppose, a number of Afghan women were given a reprieve from virtual slavery. Perhaps a number of children were able to attend school as well.

JJ September 9th, 2010 5:17 pm ET
Are we that far away from 9/11 that this question is even being asked? We went into Afghanistan to oust Al Qaeda and the regime that was harboring them after they murdered 3,000 American citizens and shut our country down! What would have happened if we did nothing? That was a direct attack on America and our way of life and some of you are actually suggesting that we should have done nothing? Our society is in major trouble if citizens believe that action was not justified, called for and mandatory. As for “winning” that war, probably impossible, we need to find a way out while keeping the pressure on Al Qaeda.

Tom September 9th, 2010 5:22 pm ET
Hmmmm...let's see. Let's total the costs of Korea, Vietnam, Iraq, Afganistan – not to mention all the arms deals the USA has brokered for the entire world. Imagine what that money could have done to cure diseases, eliminate poverty, hunger, etc. But at least the war-mongers and right-wingers made some money off all that suffering!

dj September 9th, 2010 5:22 pm ET
This was the war that was justified. If all of the resources that went into Iraq went into this war then Bin Laden might have been found and tried. The US doesn't really have a quarrel with the Taliban as long as they don't export terrorism. The problem is that the war has expanded from the original goal of punishing Al Queda to turning Afghanistan into a democracy. It's one of the poorest countries in the world.. good luck. Unfortunately an entire generation of Afghans now perceives the US as an enemy so as soon as the US leaves there is no guarantee the Taliban won't actively seek revenge against the US.

LMD September 9th, 2010 5:23 pm ET
The Afghan war would have been worth it if we had gone in full strength,full military supplies,and with it being the prmary war. By going to Iraq,we declared basically that the terrorists,Osama bin Laden,were secondary and not worth the effort.Nine yrs later,and Osama still not captured/killed(was he ever seriously a target by the former admin?) And we Iraq will never be stabilized. So the answers,I guess is yes,Afghanistan was worth it IF we had gone in there,without the distraction of Iraq.

John September 9th, 2010 5:23 pm ET
Its funny to hear all the comments from the "Monday morning quarterbacks". The day after 9/11, the majority of this country was outraged and wanted blood for what happened to us. I, a Air Force Reservist was approached by family, friends and coworkers that wanted to go with me if I was activated and help "kick some a$$".
I did get activated. I spent two years going back and forth to both Afghanistan and Iraq. That's what military people do in a volunteer military. Go where their country tells them to go to do their job and duty. I've been doing for 24 years and have no regrets.
Was and is the wars we have fought this past nine years worth it?
I say yes. This country woke up and got our national security on line and kept the fight away from home. Just as my father did in WWII and kept the Japanese and Germans off US soil.
Lets not forget, terrorists tried several times to attack us and were successful prior to 9/11. Those attacks were on Clinton's watch and nothing was done to stop Osama Bin Laden . The terrorists were here planning and plotting for years leading up to 9-11-01. Clinton's watch, not Bush's.
So, to sit here and question why, you had to be here on 9-12-01 and see why we did what we did.

Doug September 9th, 2010 5:28 pm ET
Yes, it was worth it. We were attacked out of the blue by a hostile group. Our only mistake ws forgetting about Afghanistan in favor of the war in Iraq.

Brian Schraff September 9th, 2010 5:29 pm ET
Bin Laden Won!

His stated goal was to wreck havoc on Western economy's.

Turns out, slamming three planes into buildings and one into the ground didn't appear to have the net affect he was looking for, even if you dismiss Wall Street being closed for a short time. If only we could freeze time there. But, lucky for Bin Laden, we had George Bush. Instead of a single day of shock and awe in Afghanistan and maybe a few months of drone attacks on Al Qaeda camps, we go for occupation of a country that turned away the other cold war superpower. The temerity of the U.S. sometimes embarrasses me..

Then, the 9/11 planes are used to justify an attack on Iraq. 200 billion dollars taken out of the U.S economy that might have helped stem the financial crisis we're in now, and have been in, for years.

Yes, Saddam was a POS and there is some citizen consensus his being gone is good. But, there was no WMDs and no Al Qaeda in Iraq so hunting down Saddam in the darkness, killing him in anonymity and letting them figure this out for themselves would have netted the same result as we have now for 198 billion less. For the naysayers, Iran has no more chance of occupying Iraq than the U.S.

George Bush, used his power and might to kill thousands (many innocent observers) under my name, and yet, there are no gains for middle east peace, Iran has lost it's containing enemy, our economy – so strong in 2000 – iis now in shambles.

Hate to lose, but I was always taught to be graceful in defeat – Ladies and Gentlemen as of this day – Bin Laden Won!

Ned Sanders September 9th, 2010 5:30 pm ET
Worth it? Worth what? Does anyone benefit from war? People seem to think that they're cleaning up, but in the end you only have a bigger mess. You don't put out a fire with more fire.

Hugo September 9th, 2010 5:30 pm ET
@Brenda O'Connor, this is supposed to be a debate. Your post is missing your reasoning.

ramtruck2500 September 9th, 2010 5:30 pm ET
If it would have gotten ben Laden yes, to instill democracy absolutely not! Its something niether side cares about!!!

I Still have a Moral Compass September 9th, 2010 5:31 pm ET
The true anwer to this should be answered by the families of fallen soldiers. The soldiers themselves that don't know what they are fighting for. The Soldiers that are coming home disabled and recieving minimal aide from the government and terrible medical services. The innocent men, women and children that have had there lives taken away or turned upside down. People need to really think about what they are posting. This is WAR!!! I enjoy reading through these comments. It proves to me time and time again that we need to invest in the education system in this country. The general public are a bunch of zombies that will eat up anything that the media or a politician feeds them. I love the United States of America its just the people in it that get to me sometimes.

Alon September 9th, 2010 5:33 pm ET
It's not worth it because you diverted from it's original objective. Your'e not there to capture bin-laden your'e there to expand your geo-political influence. And the moment you did that you deserved to lose, because you created the Mujahadin, you armed them, you called them freedom fighters and now suddenlly they are the bad guys? They weren't fighting for democracy in the 80's they were fighting for Sharia law.

Le Chivre September 9th, 2010 5:33 pm ET
Yes. The rest of the world doesn't seem to like the US acting as the global police, but those same people complain when the US does nothing.

Someone had to, and still needs to, take care of this stuff. Might as well be the United States as per usual.

Turtle 52 September 9th, 2010 5:35 pm ET
Afghanistan, we should have only been there to do away with al Qaeda
and their leaders, when finished we should leave. Iraq, we should have never went there, they were contained by the no fly zone, and harmless to us. Billions squandered on needless war and deaths of innocents.

AngryMP September 9th, 2010 5:36 pm ET
It sound slike alot of people forget why we are fighting this war. Its not for oil or gas, its for the lives that were taken on Sept. 11th. Just because some companies are profiting from the oil, and not saying the government doesnt either, doesnt negate the fact that we need to catch the people responsible for the attacks on Americans. The taliban know and are harboring the main target, we need to do what we can to catch those responsible. But most of the comments are posted by people that have never experienced being in a warzone. They have the freedom to sit and post whatever they like. But once something happens to them then its the governments fault that it wasnt prevented. Granted people get tired of war and paying for it and trust me soldiers are to, but if we were not taking to fight over there they would bring it to us. Just food for thought on this Fight for oil.

RangerDOS September 9th, 2010 5:36 pm ET
The real question is: After spending trillions of $$$ on our nuclear weapons program, why didn't we use them at Tora Bora? A couple of low yield nukes would have done the trick. Worked before...

That's satire for you hopefulls – no it wasn't worth it. The first resort for a weak minded president/vice president at the time.

Ron September 9th, 2010 5:37 pm ET
Writing from Ft Mohave Az.
Yes the war in Afgan was necessary, Yes it is necessary now to keep Alquada from gaing another stronghold, and no we cannot win the war as long as Pakistan harbors Al Quada and other terrorists!!!

JVP September 9th, 2010 5:37 pm ET
The action in Afghanistan was needed to rout Al Qaeda from their bases there. If we had focused all of our attention and effort on that task we may well have succeeded in killing or capturing their top leadership. But the Bush administrations real focus was on Iraq, which was an entirely unnecessary adventure. Afghanistan will now likely play out the way it did in our earlier proxy war there in the '70's. We'll finish the military mission but screw up the follow through of rebuilding and encouraging democracy and they will slip right back into Taliban control. We might have got it right if we weren't so exhausted from the Iraq folly.

realtruth September 9th, 2010 5:38 pm ET
it's amazing to me the ignorance of these people who think they know what happened/ happens with our military operations. you folks should wake up and realize that its all about $$$$$ they didn't attack us, the bush admin. and his crew of elites attacked us for power and profit. did any of you realize that the owner of the WTC took out a HUGE insurance policy on the buildings 3 months before the attack? and what about WTC building #3? it came crashing down from "debris". get real people your all blind to the fact that the elites have a strangle hold on us common people who are just slaves to they're money machines. all the elite have buisness ties to the people they are waging war against! do some real research on these big shots and you'll find the truth. your all blinded by propaganda and distracted by worthless info. and stupid news shoved down our throats by the media who is ran by guess who.....elites, starting with the bildeberg group. look em up. wake up.

SM September 9th, 2010 5:39 pm ET
Yes. Taliban was evil and needed to be bought down. Was there a way to project costs / benefits ? Absolutely not, everything is not accountable in terms of $$.
Iraq was unnecessary

The Truth September 9th, 2010 5:39 pm ET
Hypothetical Situation:

If an extremist American group (KKK, Hutari Militia, Michigan Militia, Tea Party (bowel) Movement) planned and completed an attack on another country would it then be justifiable for that country to invade the United States of America and ****, pillage, murder and dismember the innocent civilians as we are over there?

Just a question.

Melissa September 9th, 2010 5:41 pm ET
Was? The Afghan War is still very much in progress.

Besides not being conigzant of the difference between Iraq and Afghanistan, how many of you critics were on board with this on the evening of 11 SEPT.?

centerbutmoreright September 9th, 2010 5:41 pm ET
I think you people are missing the big picture as you mix Iraq and Afghanistan. Iraq was not needed, obviously. However, Bin Laden and all the al-qaida were dug in deep there and training their soldiers. The Taliban was ok with that so we had to take care of business. We haven't been attacked successfully since.

Rainville Guy September 9th, 2010 5:42 pm ET
CATCHING A FLY WITH OUR HAND

It seems that Giant Goliath (Coalition Force) is fighting against flies (Talibans and Al Qaida). Flies can go anywhere: Yemen, Somalia, Pakistan, Iran and so forth.

Coalition lives in Afghanistan are at risk for nothing since flies may go away and reproduce themselves elsewhere anytime. They can come back anytime. Standing still in Afghanistan is then worthless.

This messy war will end up like the Irak one or like the search for Ben Laden: like a hand that misses catching a fly.

For the last decade, our politicians have been very poor at assessing relevance for wars. Very tough indeed to catch a fly with our hand.

Moreover taxpayers are getting more and more fed up by those catch-a-fly wars. The national debt is getting too high for their means.

Let's quit Afghanistan and let's reinforce our security at home. That would better than running after flies.

Guy Rainville
Quebec

Don Van Ryn September 9th, 2010 5:43 pm ET
I feel like we went to war in Afghanistan to avenge 9/11 – then got caught up in national building and lost our way. It's time to get out.

Tony September 9th, 2010 5:43 pm ET
There was no war to be waged. We did not and have not engaged the "enemy" responsible for the 9/11 attacks. All Americans wanted a response to the outrage of those attacks. The hosting Taliban were deposed by the Northern Alliance and we set Karzai on the throne. The next step was security and nation building, but it was not the announced plan and no resources were committed. Nobody wanted to do it anyway. Now we fight insurgents to keep the Taliban from regaining control. We lost this "war" in March 2002. As much as I admire our commitment and our forces, we will not win. Our withdrawal will be a negotiation with the groups we now oppose.

SGM H September 9th, 2010 5:44 pm ET
As a Soldier who is still serving and having deployed to Kabul, Kandahar, and Bagram Afghanistan and witnessed the conditions of the people and the fear they have of the Taliban and Al-Quaeda; combined with the meager resources at their disposal I do not see how we can now leave these people without providing what we set out to do.
They would have been better off without our involvement and more importantly the ones we seek for retribution are no longer there; they will continue to seek refuge in other governments and or remove their veil as Soldiers and return to their families to wait us out.
No the war is not worth it but we have painted ourselves into a corner leaving no way out while the rest of the free world is able to bow out gracefully without having to answer for its successes or failure.

/r
Dutybound

Merle September 9th, 2010 5:44 pm ET
No.

We keep feeding the beast. The military/industrial complex has an insatiable appetite. Think of the prosperity which might have resulted if we had not gotten involved in Vietnam, Iraq, and Afghanistan. The middle class keeps footing the bill and is poorer for its efforts. And, conversely the rich get richer.

As a country, we are addicted to war, and as a result are in decline. There's no such thing as a free lunch.

Yes, history continues to repeat itself over the millennia, and the United States is not immune to the rise and fall of nations and empires.

Tom September 9th, 2010 5:44 pm ET
Yes, the initial attack in Afghanistan was necessary – but when do we stop trying to rebuild countries? Go in and remove the problem and then get out. We cannot occupy these foreign lands. It's been tried before without success. If we need to go back and repeat, then do so. Cheaper and less casulities. We cannot change those people, only constrain them.

NotPC September 9th, 2010 5:46 pm ET
After 9/11/01, the whole world supported cleaning up Afghanistan. I supported this also, even though I've never had a President Bush that I didn't dislike.

Then Bushcheney allowed BinLaden & the Taliban to escape because they needed villains to continue justifying their Fascist warring. Through some very un-clever Media manipulation, they misdirected our desire for justice towards their illegal takeover of another country, (yes, Iraq), and Saddam, (who "tried to kill my Daddy").

I supported the war in Afghanistan & that is where all of our resources should have been expended, (including our Soldier's blood). I NEVER supported the illegal war in Iraq. The families of the Soldiers who died there have my eternal sympathy. Their lives were spent by Bush & Cheney and they will eternally bear the responsibility for them.

AngryMP September 9th, 2010 5:48 pm ET
I would also like to point out that most of the people on here have the freedoms and liberties they have today because of war. War is never a good thing, but sometimes it must be done. The same people that are complaining about the war now would be the same one if we were attacked again, or under someone elses rule. For those of us who have had to fight in Iraq or Afghanistan so others can still live they way they do, we are really greatful for the soldiers that had to fight in wars to preserve the way of life others can enjoy, and complain about. My response to those who dont like how things are going, nothing is keeping you in the country, you can come and go as you please, thanks to soldiers that have fought for you.

RN1 September 9th, 2010 5:49 pm ET
What war? Wars are fought using ALL the resources available to subdue the adversary, as we did in WW2. If American leadership is afraid of doing this, it should not be subjecting our troops to danger and wasting money in a futile effort against a determined foe. Did we not learn our lessons in Korea, Vietnam, and Somalia?

Truefax September 9th, 2010 5:50 pm ET
This whole conflict is directly due to the abandoment of the afgan people after the withdrawl of the ussr. We sat back and did nothing to rebuild the country, we did nothing to stop the taliban, and now we are paying the price with interest in blood and treasure.

Terror attacks are increasing, if this is a fight against terrorism we are loosing. It should be obvious that you can't defeat terror with terror. Lets get the afgans on our payroll instead of the Xe folks and the whole mess would be over. Hire on the fighters to fight for us, make them loyal to US, that is the ONLY WAY to win this fight.

Bush said he'd smokem out, that'd we'd win through shock and awe.... Well, where are they? Is the bakers dozen of actual terrorists in gitmo all we have to show? This is a failed war of a failed administration, and now the current president needs to facilitate our graceful departure or else he'll end up as big a failure as Bush Jr.

Money talks, it would have been more effective to send in some bankers and supply the north eastern alliance with equipment and have them deal with the entire issue. It's not to late, lets stop this insanity.

Bud Edwards September 9th, 2010 5:51 pm ET
There may have been another way to send a message that America will not stand for the 9/11 attack on our country. To try and blame President Clinton or Bush for the mess we are in now is stupid.However to think that things in Afghanistan will change to be anything other than what it has always been is also stupid. We have done our best to make a bad situation better. Now it is time to declair victory and bring our troops home. We have more than enought on our plate at home that will need out time and attention.

Jerry Rut September 9th, 2010 5:52 pm ET
JUST POISON THE POPPY..... Simple ......Case closed

Bob(Illinois) September 9th, 2010 5:54 pm ET
Yes, it was worth it in the sense that at the time it was the right thing to do. Then, the previous administration screwed up and invaded Iraq. Now we are left in the position of trying to clean up the mess that was left behind. Tge Taliban must be eradicated: Pakistan has nuclear weapons!

Gene September 9th, 2010 5:55 pm ET
Everyone needs to wake up. Al Queda, the Taliban, and the whole Arab and Muslim world counted on the fact that Americans would not have the stomach to see it through. Everyone wanted the big payback after 9-11 but now its old, so let's move on and live the dream: peace on Earth, no more killing, everyone loves everyone and no one offends any group. Great ideals, but these people aren't looking for that. They are looking to watch on al jazeera a war fought on American land. Then the next step will be the USA will adopt sharia law and we'll see how happy everyone is. The dream will become a nightmare.

If you don't let the them build the Islamic Center near Ground Zero it will incite Muslim radicals, if you burn the Koran, it will give the Taliban and Al Queda ammuniition to recruit and incite anti-American activity. No one seems to worry about inciting American radicals or Christian radicals by arresting a missionary carrying a bible on Arab land or making female soldires wear a burqa off the base.

Meanwhile back in the US, Muslim students sued to get "In the Year of Our Lord" removed from the diploma at Trinity University in Texas, and a Muslim woman sued the Department of Motor Vehicles in Florida to take he ID photo with her face covered. We are losing but not over there, in the heart and minds back here. When it happens the comments will be "Why didn't anyone do anything about this?" We didn't World War I and World War II with that "its good enough" attitude. Nearly a half of million Americans died in World War II. I never once heard anyone ask if that was worth it. And we tried to stay out of that war. And in the Middle East they have conferences on whether the Holocaust happened. 50 years from now they will be having conferences there on whether 9-11 really happened.

realtruth September 9th, 2010 5:55 pm ET
what happened to my comment CNN? the media hides the truth from the people. end of story.

Dean September 9th, 2010 5:57 pm ET
I spent time as a military advisor this year in Kabul and have some newfound respect for some of the Afghan people I worked with everyday. They are making slow progress. But there are a lot of things they need to start doing on there own. The number one thing that I seen over there is some of the Afghans we trained have poor critical thinking skills and very limited experience in financial/banking experience, hence the corruption and misuse of American dollars. My Afghan counterpart said it best when he said most Kabul educated men have been leaving Afghanistan and a lot left behind are trying to get visas to America where they can earn a decent living. That should tell us that a lot of people want out of there and attempts to turn it around are feeble at best. My interpreter/counterpart also said the old guard citizens will resist change as opposed to the younger generations. That's why it was almost impossible for me to work with older Afghans. Hey TC, hope you're getting through to those techs. A big hello to Dr. Ahmadzai, Dr. Jawid and Dr. Farhad. You all made me laugh and I wish you all the best.

Sceptic lib September 9th, 2010 5:58 pm ET
Was the war worth it? No. No WAR is worth it. Ask the thousands who have died was it worth it.
Was it justified? Yes. We were attacked and a response was required.
Did the Bush Admin drop the ball by starting the war in Iraq and losing sight of our main objective, Bin Laden. Yes. The Iraqi war took away resources that could of been used to capture/kill Bin Laden.
Will we WIN in Afghanistan? No. There is no possible way to WIN. The Afghanis have been at war with themselves for millennium. That is not going to change.
Can we accomplish our main objective,capturing/killing Bin Laden and defeating Al Queda. Yes. Only through Intelligence and police action will we be able to accomplish those results. Killing innocent Afghanis will only make matters worse for the USA.

Hugo September 9th, 2010 5:58 pm ET
The war was justified simply because strong evidence indicates that a territory in the United States was attacked by authorized or unauthorized agents coming out of Afghanistan. If they were unauthorized, then Afghanistan failed to make a good faith effort to arrest al Qaeda leadership. (They refused to try.)

The action was sufficient to trigger the NATO treaty. Either the treaty was misinterpreted by other nations or the treaty shouldn't call for retaliation. So, which is it, people who think we shouldn't have invaded? (1) The treaty was misinterpreted or (2) the treaty shouldn't call for retaliation.

If (1) then how? What is the mistake?

If (2) then when did you object? If you were 18 or older and citizen of a NATO nation on 9/11 and you didn't object, why not?

infidel September 9th, 2010 5:58 pm ET
AMEN John! Well said!!

D. Cleveland September 9th, 2010 5:59 pm ET
"Operation Enduring War"......the only ones who wants this farce to continue are the contractors making millions off this war.

aryan September 9th, 2010 5:59 pm ET
it is not worth to stay any longer there what ve you got so far to get after this.every time any soldier is being killed there how much it hurts all americans and 1 thing more after 9/11/2010 which they set as an intertnational burning a quran day the war can get triple not only in afghanistan but all over the world

Poppi from Toronto September 9th, 2010 5:59 pm ET
The Taliban harboured Bin Laden.
There is no distinction between the terrorists and those who harbour them.
It doesn't matter if they didn't know anything about 9/11 plans.
The Taliban could have prevented the 9/11 military response by handing over Bin Laden.
Their decision not to lead to the invasion and war.
An attack on one NATO member is an attack on all, even if the one is the mighty US.

I think we have already won the war simply by showing the world that any attack will be met with an immense over-reaction and a massively disproportionate greater response.
Perhaps the Taliban enjoyed seeing the 9/11 attacks but after seeing the response, I'm sure they wish it had never happened.

I am only talking about Afghanistan and not Iraq.
The war in Iraq was based on total BS and I have never supported that and I am glad that Canada did not join that wasteful mistake.

JM September 9th, 2010 6:00 pm ET
Is the war in Afghanistan worth it? YES... i prefer fighting the enemy in their land than in US soil.

DSangiovanni September 9th, 2010 6:00 pm ET
John, then plz, tell me the reason we went to Irak ? Cause they have nothing to do with 9/11 as you know. Why ?

bob6699 September 9th, 2010 6:00 pm ET
Certainly not worth it.......thousands dead, maimed and psychologically scarred. We could have achieved better results with B-52s, Stealth Bombers, AC-130s and drones with far less casualties. Maybe a few Special Ops insertions on hot leads.....BRING OUR KIDS HOME!

JohnCOS September 9th, 2010 6:00 pm ET
In the beginning it was worth it, but then we invaded Iraq and lost focus. If we had stayed with the war on terror instead of adding a war of choice we would have been successful and out of Afghanistan 5 or 6 years ago.

Hugo September 9th, 2010 6:00 pm ET
@realtruth, what comment are you referring to (that wasn't posted)? I see one that starts "It's amazing to me...."

Is it that comment or some other comment?

Greg September 9th, 2010 6:01 pm ET
History, if you don’t read and learn from it you’re bound to repeat it over and over again. The war in Afghanistan was at the start a justifiable war, if wars are justifiable. But, the politics of a uncompleted war from an earlier administration overseen by virtually the same people who justified the first war but…were stopped by a knowable person within 100 hours. Saw an opportunity to “complete” the first Iraq war but were blinded by sp called reason and forged/fake/misrepresented “intelligence” have spent thousands of American military personnel let alone the tens of thousands of seen battle wounds but the untold hundreds of thousands of battle scars both physical and mental that we as a nation will be dealing with for the next sixty or so years. At least now the Veterans Administration, Government, and the military are now acknowledging the fact that there are “other” battle wounds outside of the criteria of the Purple Heart. The Afghan war should have been completed or “won” within a period of maybe three or four years but….now we can sort of pick our ending similar to the British, or Russian, or the last helicopter leaving Saigon. What a tremendous was of human life and national treasure. Speaking of Saigon, now we purchase clothing made in Viet Nam, electronics from Japan, cars from Germany, and everything else from China. What will be purchase from Afghanistan in the future? I don’t think there is much oil.

Caleb September 9th, 2010 6:01 pm ET
The war is not worth it and it should be completely abandoned.
If we continue with this war – we continue to loose billions of dollars.
How can you expect us to defeat an enemy who has got nothing to loose?

Please consider this point.

PK September 9th, 2010 6:02 pm ET
Why do we debate by Monday morning quarterbacking? The war was started and we're doing our best to end it! I think we should do a lot more thinking before we start wars! To try to retaliate for acts against us, is no more than what Israel and Palestine are doing. You bomb me, I bomb you and then we go to war. When 9/11 occured, we immediately retaliated in Afganistan, but had no reason to go to Iraq! A war started without a plan on how to end it. We were and are at war with people who have been warring for centuries and will continue after we're gone.So, are we going to go to war with any country we suspect has set off a bomb? There are those who say yes. I don't happen to agree that by setting off a single bomb here is reason to go to the suspected country. Yes, Japan ATTACTED Pearl Harbor! Yes we must defend ourselves. But for one incident, think twice!

realtruth September 9th, 2010 6:03 pm ET
i see it now my fault.

Ed September 9th, 2010 6:03 pm ET
The motives are not pure therefore this war is a crime. When a country commits to killing and maiming its young people, leaving mothers without their sons and daughters and leaving spouses and children without husbands, wives & daddies and mommies then the motives better be pure and honorable by every measure. War based on lies or phony propaganda does not fall under those classifications. And trying to pretend or spin them to fool the citizens into supporting them as protective of our freedom is a criminal act. If you think the originators of these recent wars had pure motives please make your case because I cannot reach that conclusion at all.

Me September 9th, 2010 6:03 pm ET
ask the families & specially the kids who lost their beloved ones in Afghanistan if it was worth

Inthemiddle September 9th, 2010 6:05 pm ET
Step back in time. It's 09/12/2001, we've been attacked by a group of Islamic wack jobs who are based in Afghanistan. Those of you who are saying it wasn't worth it would have us do what?

luu nguyen September 9th, 2010 6:06 pm ET
Winning the war in Afghanistan? Just ask the Afghans... Do they see any tangible improvements in their lives? By the way how many Taliban are we fighting against? 2000 or 2 millions? Either way, after 9 years, the answer is pretty depressing. If they are just a band of insurgents, there is something wrong with our conduct of the war. And If they are more than that which I believe is the case, then our presence would be futile. On top, they have the only advantage that we don't, i.e time the essence of insurgency war. To win the war, Afghanistan must be transformed as a society, from the Middle Ages into the 21 century in a few years. A very tall order indeed...

Dr. A. Cannara September 9th, 2010 6:06 pm ET
What a stupid question. But what else do we get these days from many media & kooky politicos? Ask a soldier. Ask some Afghanis, especially women.

And "Was" - guess what, it's not a "was" it's an "is".

Is there any wonder now why Colbert & Stewart are the most functional news sources these days? Comedy Central has real news & CNN, Fox, yadda, yadda have pandering. Really?

Wounded Vet September 9th, 2010 6:07 pm ET
The Afghan war would have been wortht it if we would have kept our eyes on the prize and went after Al-Queda like we did in the beginning. As a vet of iraq, I think this was an unneccessary war considering we could have used Saddam to our advantage without committing the money, troops and American lives. Afghanistan was the prize all along but we lost track of what we were doing.

The concept of Naiton building is idiotic and pointless. Who are we to think we can go in, destory everything and rebuild. It worked in Germany and S. Korea b/c they were willing participants. There culture wasn't still based on tribal laws so it allowed us to actually revamp their infastructure. We should have focused on Afghan but with contractors and elite soldiers who can work amongst the people and build from there instead of rebuildig everything only to see it ruined by corruption from both sides.

kenneth September 9th, 2010 6:09 pm ET
A made up "war".

There was a pending agreement to build an oil pipeline through Afganistan that Pres. Clinton stopped for humanitarian reasons. He refused our company's ability to negotgiate with taliban.

When the bombing of Agganistan dirst started there was a diagram on CNN showing the bombing path. It was exactly the path of the oil pipeline that had been stopped.

Bush was elected to complete that oil pipeline and he had the U.S. Air force do the initial excavation work for Haliburton, et. al.

The plan for the pipeline is out there, done and killed in 1998. Find it and see for yourself what the undeclared "war" has been about.

9-11 was a criminal act. It should have been investigated nd prosecuted as such.

This should never have been escalated as it was – Bush wanted a war, and his supporters wanted to profiteer. No, this loss of life is NOT worht it. It never was.

Duwayne Anderson September 9th, 2010 6:10 pm ET
Think what we could have done with all that money!

We could have replaced every high school in America, with tons of cash left over. We could have paid the tuition of every American college student. We could have built the world's most advanced rail network. We could have *invested* the money in infrastructure.

But we didn't. The "defense" contractors made billions, but Americans got the shaft. What a sad, sad, sad waste of money. This is how empires die. They spend themselves into oblivion with military campaigns.

The really shocking thing, though, is that the press has labeled the tax-and-spend warmongers as "conservatives." The very people that created this horrendous loss of life and money are now the people that the right-wing press (including CNN) think should be trusted to fix the economy they ruined.

No doubt about it. If the Republicans get control of the government again they will continue to destroy our public institutions, drive up the dept, and get us into more wars.

kenneth September 9th, 2010 6:10 pm ET
so, I don't type....

veteran September 9th, 2010 6:11 pm ET
This was not declared a war by congress. This was declared by Bush and his cronies Cheny and all the other republicans so u people don't know to much about it . I fought in one war and one police action so i figure i know what this action is about. Bush and his oil thieves had it good for 8yrs.

james September 9th, 2010 6:12 pm ET
Was ? Who is saying that the war is over ? Don't we have +100,000 service members still there ?

TOM September 9th, 2010 6:13 pm ET
They have been fighting for over 2000. years and we thought we could make a difference. Now the (President)?????????? has increase the numbers. Another Vietnam in the making. All because of a stupid President and Congress for keeping this going.

Trayce September 9th, 2010 6:19 pm ET
Why is it over? If it is would you kindly send my son home?

Jon September 9th, 2010 6:19 pm ET
I don't know. There's a lot of things wrong here: we seem to be repeating a lot of the same mistakes we've made in the past - backing an ineffective, corrupt government in a country we don't really care about dominating; going against the historical trend in a region that has a long past of being invaded (and fighting off invasions); and driving up our public debt at a moment where we can scare afford to.

Yet... if we do pull out, and the Taliban takes back over, what's to say we won't have to repeat this all over again in 10 years or so if they allow Al Qaeda and like-minded organizations to use their territory again? And might it not reinforce the Pakistani Taliban, which might be dangerously close to taking over that country and its nuclear arsenal? ... I'm just not seeing very many alternatives.

Wounded Vet September 9th, 2010 6:19 pm ET
At times war is necessary and in Afghanistan it was.

War is not for the weak and those who are commenting have only seen crap movies or brief clips on our crap news media. War is a mean biotch who you must respect. One must leave behind their conscience or they will never make it. We personalize things far too much when we should stay the course and let the chips fall where they may. You may not agree with it but you've also never fought in a war. The concept of civility in war is criminal. We play by a set of rules no one else follows. Why I understand why the rules are in place I do not understand how they can enforce them when we're trained to kill. We're trained ot sacrifice yet when we take charge we get punished. Until we all grow a pair and realize the world isn't perfect and there are people who want us dead (not all f them) we'll never win.

ib42 September 9th, 2010 6:20 pm ET
An absolute travesty of common sense. America seems to love nothing more than to swing the lead anywhere it pleases, without any thought given to it's real motives or outcomes.
More and more, we are the bully in the playground. But the bravado of the classic bully hides a deep fear, too!
So, what drives us to be almost constantly involved in this adventurism? Seems the land where, officially at least, life is valued has zero regard for lives lost and maimed in pointless wars.
After sweeping across North America, killing and robbing the lands of natives, cheating them blind, is it now in our genes to continue this activity outside our borders? Sure seems like it!

miker September 9th, 2010 6:21 pm ET
Ethernet, you said

You asked 'Brenda' (not sure if you meant the author or someone that posted a comment) how old they were and said "the question is was it justified. They attacked us. Period. So it was completely justified. '

And just how old are you? Six? You don't start a war simply because you were attacked. Is the US really any better off after the war? Has Al Qaeda been routed? The Taliban disbanded? Osama bin Laden captured? There's a lot of dead people, and for what? Indeed, isn't this exactly what Al Qaeda wanted? A bunch of dead americans and extreme financial damage to the US?

ScubaDeb September 9th, 2010 6:21 pm ET
Neither Afghanistan nor Iraq were worth it. That part of the world is so barbaric - how many Muslims cry foul when a suicide bomber kills their civilians? - that we would have been better off cordoning off the Middle East and let them fester in the 12th century. Those people want to be governed by Sharia law, which openly discriminates against women, that we should bar them from visiting, studying or immigrating from that region, especially Saudi Arabia. Only women in that part of the world need salvation, and arranged marriages and immigration by Muslim men should be stopped otherwise the US goes backwards. This was a stupid waste of money, and there will never be peace in that part of the world. Let's cut our losses and say what we really thnk. To heck with political correctness!

Pragmatist September 9th, 2010 6:24 pm ET
No, it was not because the US response was not appropriate. It was an issue of intelligence and preventive work, not a war. The only reason it was put in terms of a war was because of the political agenda of the Bush Administration. In perspective, how could the US go to "war" against a handful of people, relatively speaking.
Terrorism is, ultimately, the tool of the powerless. Yet by their inappropriate response, Bush, et al, gave Al Queda the power to have the US waste billions of dollars and thousands of people's lives with no way of achieving victory, short of killing every person in Afghanistan.
The first rule of any crisis is to properly identify the problem and come up with the solution. Bush, with no history of ever being proficient with such problem-solving, was in no position to oversee that process. Forget about having a semi-competent person surrounded by smart people. The President still has to make the final decision. We should not ever think about electing someone under similar circumstances. Thank god Bush wasn't President during the Cuban Missile Crisis!

RamPal September 9th, 2010 6:25 pm ET
In 2001 it was worth it. Taliban that were completely uprooted in 2001, and now they have came up so strong over the years, who helped them revive so strongly and fight with the International forces needs serious consideration and rethinking of our strategy and tactics. Someone in the neighborhood is doing all this and the USA is looking other way and completely ignoring the real facts in the area. Someone is supplying Talibans all the weapons, ammunitions and intelegence. USA and international forces need to get their act together and go to the root of it and after the so called friends and get the real enemy.

Aamir Ali September 9th, 2010 6:25 pm ET
The war in Afghanistan was an immediate reaction to 9/11 and the real culprits Al Qaeeda was main target, but toppling Taliban was a bad idea in my opinion. They were the only force who controlled Afghanistan after decades of unrest and some how achieved peace. If they were barbaric, proper contacts and communication would have toned them down and convinced to detach themselves from Al Qaeeda. Now with Northern Alliance melted and evapourated, this all depends on NATO to risk their lives for a bloody gurella war.

The Afghanistan terrain is entirely different from Iraq and capturing the whole country is almost impossible. The moment NATO leaves, the Taliban may rise again and with in no time will eliminate current setup.

This is high time to rethink about strategy in Afghanistan.

Ray Leonard September 9th, 2010 6:25 pm ET
Santa Fe, NM
In the beginning Afghanistan was justified. If Cheany, Rumsfelt, and Wolfeitz hadn't stopped our troops at Tora Bora it would have been over. But then the Neo-Cons (Republicians) wouldn't have had a basis for going after the oil in Iraq.
Afghanistan is corrupt and we should get out. If they want 7th century Islamic law then let them have it.
Stop the flow of our dollars and our troops blood.
Leave with the slogan that the drones are up there.
We should also stop supporting Pakistan and let them live with the problems they created along the boarder.

Gart September 9th, 2010 6:28 pm ET
NO – Iraq
MAYBE – Afganistan – But we can't stay there much longer.

We went to Iraq because of GW Bush and for no other reason than he and his cronies wanted to 'take out Saddam"

This costs US BILLIONS of dollars – tens of thousands of lives and divided our country in a way that will take a generation to heal, if ever. I have never experienced so much hatred spreading across America as I see now. Even Hitler didn't bring out this much hate in Americans!

Irrelevant September 9th, 2010 6:29 pm ET
This is a debate?....One question, is ANY war worth it?

"Those who live by the sword shall die by the sword" ~Jesus

Interesting how people are STILL so simple minded, dating back to the days of cavemen and beyond, and REFUSE realize that there would be NO war if there were NO army...unfortunately the masses have learned nothing...

Who would die if everyone REFUSED to murder?...without people volunteering to kill others there would be no sheep for the generals/politicians to use as puppets...there would be no war...

there is absolutely nothing to gain from war, only loss...can you ever win when people are dying?...for what? land, money...meaningless crap...

people will one day wake up and realize the truth...when they are forced to...aka a nuke going off in your backyard....maybe just maybe then people will think war is not some game and is a direct result of the armies, weapons, government....without any of these there would be peace...however, the masses prefer materialistic physical gains and have totally forgotten about spiritual gains which are what truely matter...

I wonder how much god will praise soldiers for all the people they've killed just because someone told them to...for all the people that have not evolved mentally/spiritually since cavemen...guess what...we are all human beings regardless of your land of birth, skin color, male or female...but you think theres a difference between you and the iraqis or afghanis or anyone?

For all you war mongers out there...enjoy your land, your money, your "victory"...because in the end when you die like every other human being god will give a crap about all that and will instead focus on what kind of person you ARE...this is the TRUTH....enjoy it while it lasts....I'd hate to be there when you die and face REALITY in the face of god.

But hey, what do i know?

"Love eachother" ...take a guess who said that...

*p.s. food for thought... explain how there were no plane engines/luggage/debris/video footage of the event/etc..ever found when a "plane" allegedly went into the pentagon on 9/11? (guess they just vanished)...explain how there was molten steel found by the twin towers when no fire can ever reach temperatures that high to melt steel? (it has to be done in a controlled factory environment or you could use government made explosives designed for that)...might wanna think twice about what you've been told and see if it actually makes any sense or is TRUE before you start to kill others in response.

"The TRUTH shall set you FREE" ...wonder who said that too...

Chris September 9th, 2010 6:32 pm ET
This is ridiculous. The Afghan war was and is extremely important. The United States could not shrug off the thousands of innocent American deaths on sovereign US territory. For Gods sakes the extremists drove civilian planes into civilian buildings with no other provocation other than the fact that they did not like us? Pull up a video of New York City, New York, September 11, 2001, and tell me that doesn't move you to anger and grief. This goes for non-Americans too. People are so quick to forget 9/11 and the two buildings and four planes full of innocent civilians and those who risked their lives to save them. Those against the Afghan war, not the Iraq war mind you, need to go back and look at the reasons for the invasion. We did not invade for oil, we invaded to stop Bin Laden and those others who perpetrated the aforementioned attacks, and is not at all comparable to Vietnam nor Korea because we actually have a stake in this conflict.

Marisol Flores September 9th, 2010 6:32 pm ET
WE SHOULD END THIS WAR NOW, TAKE ALL THE MONEY WE ARE POURING INTO IT, AND KEEP IT HERE IN OUR GREAT USA TO RE-BUILD OUR NATION, BRING BACK ALL THE SOLDIERS, AND HAVE ANOTHER BABY BOOM! Casper, Wyoming

Bill Smith September 9th, 2010 6:33 pm ET
From Maine. There is not one advantage to staying in Afaganistan and having 100's and 1000's more of our US troops killed and injured, especially when the Government in Afiganistan does not like us or giving us only lip service to supports us. Why waste and I repeat waste our tax dollars for a country that has no ambition or willingness to take back control of their own country. More importantly, what is the advantage for us to stay there and get killed, when we can not fight if a civilian is near although they may have IUD'S under their clothing. etc. We can not shoot until shot upon etc.
As a veteran, have never in my life heard anything more ludicress.
We will never win this war even if it goes for 20 more years.

Robert W. North Carolina September 9th, 2010 6:34 pm ET
Yes. The day the WTC was destroyed and all those people were murdered I looked at my friend and ask "Well, who are we going to bomb?" He guessed Iran but it turned out the cold murderers were trained in Afghanistan. Here was a regime that had taken over a country and their main policy was to murder people that did not conform to their view of Islam. They had to be taken out of power. It was and is costly but the world is a little safer now. I say thank you and may you be blessed to all who have served in the military in this war to make my wife and kids live safer lives.

salerno September 9th, 2010 6:37 pm ET
No worth. Bin Laden and other leadere escaped. No success. Only useless killing and hate increasing.

Chris September 9th, 2010 6:41 pm ET
Of course the war is worth it. The only real issue, is how it has been handled.

As with all wars, mistakes have been made. We thought the invasion was the hard part, we underestimated the resiliancy of the Taliban and their Al Qaeda allies, resources were diverted to Iraq, and many more things that we could of handled better.

But the big question is the war itself. We were attacked by Al Qaeda, who's leadership and base of operations and training was in Afghanistan. Afghanistan was ruled by the Taliban, who openly harbored and protected this group. When asked to surrender Bin Laden and his associates, the Government of Afghanistan (the Taliban) refused. So we invade the country, topple the Taliban, and Al Qaeda has been severely degraded as a result.

It's not a perfect war with perfect and quick results, but their is no question in my mind and I would say any responsible leader of a nation, that this war was a war of neccessity that was thrust upon us.

BSM September 9th, 2010 6:41 pm ET
Yes, it was worth it, but our focus should have always been on Afghanistan. I believe that had we never invaded Iraq, that the current resurgance of Taliban would not have taken place. Now we're basically at the point where we have to start over. We were completely justified in attacking in the first place following 9/11. We have no choice but to win this fight lest we return control of Afghanistan to an openly hostile group that has already demonstrated the desire and ability to attack America on American soil.

By the way, I'm an Army veteran of OIF. I've lost close friends in both OIF and OEF. I also assisted with post-9/11 cleanup efforts.

Spencer in Chicago September 9th, 2010 6:47 pm ET
What a stupid question. That's like asking someone who crashed into someone else's car if it was worth it to pay to have the other guys car fixed. Of course not. But we had no choice. The cost of not fixing it would have been vastly worse.

We needed to get rid of the Taliban and that required 'breaking' Afghanistan. So we had to put it back together. You break it, you buy it.

Then, after being fairly successful, we lost focus and screwed it up. Was it worth it to screw it up? Of course not. It cost just as much to screw it up as to do it right. But to ask was it worth it? Nonsensical. End of debate.

crazyvic September 9th, 2010 6:49 pm ET
The war was not worth it. On the contrary, it has increase the 'untrust' to 'American Affairs' and people are upset for all 'nonsense killing' especially those 'innocents' that are really the ones paying for a 'nonsense war.' Please, bring the kids back ASAP, continue 'dronning' against specific targets is cheaper and very effective. Protect the homeland with sophisticaded 'technology' and invest that 'war money' to re-invent our economy.

Ruth from Ohio September 9th, 2010 6:51 pm ET
DOES THE WORD VIETNAM MEAN ANYTHING?....WE LOST AN ENTIRE GENERATION OF MEN AND WOMEN WHO NEVER GOT THE CHANCE TO GROW UP,LIVE,GET MARRIED,HAVE CHILDREN AND GROW OLD WITH US.....NOW WE DO TRADE WITH THIS COUNTRY....I FEEL THE GOVERNMENT OF THIS COUNTRY OWES AN APOLOGY TO EVERY VETERAN WHO SERVED.......I SAY LET THE 545 PEOPLE WHO RUN THIS COUNTRY,YEH RIGHT,GO FIGHT THIS WAR......THEY WANTED IT.......HOW MANY MORE OF THIS GENERATION ARE WE GOING TO LOSE.......IN VIETNAM IT WAS TO FIGHT COMMUNISM, NOW IT IS TO FIGHT TERRORISM.....THE TERRORIST ALREADY LIVE IN THIS COUNTRY......THIS UNITED STATES OF AMERICA IS BEING RUN BY IDIOTS AND WE THE AMERICAN PEOPLE ACTUALLY PAY THEM A SALARY!!!!!

Daniel September 9th, 2010 6:56 pm ET
By itself this war may have been worth it, unfortunately, the complete waste that was Iraq completely side-tracked us, weakened our position in the middle east, and bleeding us of American lives and treasure while consolidating terrorist resistance against us. By the time we turned our full attention back to Afghanistan, things had spiraled out of our control, and meanwhile, the world and American people alike weren't sure what we were even doing there. At this point, we're really back to square one, and now in a terrible position. We can't leave without the distinct possibility of a terrorist takeover, and yet the prospect of staying for another ten years (probably what it will take) is costly, bloody, and tiresome. No good options here.

Jessica September 9th, 2010 7:00 pm ET
The war never was worth it, nor will it ever be. Afghanistan had as much do with 9/11 as Spain, Saudi Arabia and Florida did...but you'll notice we didnt invade those places. The media continues to ramp up this notion that muslims all over the world are ready to blow us up if we move a mosque or burn some quran's...while in reality, it's a crazy few...and why we give them such a huge stage to stand and spew ignorance from, is beyond me. Even our president is paying lip service to the insane pastor in florida. Listen, if muslims want to go crazy because some reject down in florida is mentally challeneged – LET THEM. LET THE CRAZY BE WHAT IT IS...but how about we stop giving them media attention? We've created the religious zealot versions of Lindsay Lohan and Brittany Spears because we continually play up their antics as if they MATTER to anyone with more than 3 brain cells. STOP, JUST STOP.

Hari M September 9th, 2010 7:00 pm ET
Of course it is worth it. Having lived on receiving end of islamic terrorism, there is definitely a need to confront it. You can either have war all over the world or have it concentrated in Afghanistan and Pakistan. We don't have a third choice unfortunately. India never attacked Afghanistan and it even supported many afghan government, what did we get in return, hijacked planes, bomb blasts all over the country. Mostly based in Pakistan and some based in Afghanistan.

You cannot talk peace with folks who live by their swords.

war September 9th, 2010 7:04 pm ET
Justice for those killed during 9/11 attacks. No attacks on U.S. soil since 9/11. Freed an oppressed country. Averted a war on home soil. Eliminated a ruthless dictator. Showed the world we do not tolerate terrorist acts & WILL respond when our citizens are attacked (vs doing nothing). Was it worth it.....? You tell me.

Brian September 9th, 2010 7:07 pm ET
Yes, this war is worth it. This war is a bill long overdue. These people fought the Russians for us. They not only fought the Russians they won. The Afghans, more than Ronald Regan should be credited with ending the Soviet Empire. Yet instead of helping them rebuild we abandoned them. We abandoned them to fanatics like the Taliban.
If we had helped them rebuild in the 80’s and 90’s we would not be fighting this war. We are now spending twenty times what it would have cost us to rebuild back then. But then again America is very good at making a mess and then not cleaning it up.
This is one of the examples the NYC Mosque Imam should cite when he says that America was partially responsible for 9/11. We do this all the time. We abandoned our friends who fought for us in Vietnam. George H. W. Bush incited the Kurds to rise up against Sadam Hussein and then abandoned them. America cannot be trusted around the world. We abandon our friends when they need us.
America made its bed in Afghanistan. Now it is time to lay down in it. We need to stop messing around in the affairs of other countries if we are not prepared to pay the price to clean up the mess we make. The American Voter needs to tell their leaders to end American Imperlism.

garland September 9th, 2010 7:09 pm ET
not worth it. Would have been cheaper to buy all the opium they could produce and teach them Capitalism so they eventually reject the Taliban.

L September 9th, 2010 7:11 pm ET
I was Not worth it

Jeffrey September 9th, 2010 7:17 pm ET
well it was worth it for the American people to see how corrupted is this government. it also helped us see how our leaders lack of intellegence. it only helped us see what was hidden from us.

Cornelia September 9th, 2010 7:19 pm ET
Afganistan has a whole lot of minerals underneath that harsh country of theirs. Resources US would have first hand at exploring and buying if there is a foothold in the area. What if hostile forces have access to all that lithium? Problem is: are those resources worth the Billions of dollars that all taxpayers in US have already paid and all lifes lost for this war? Probably not.

Military September 9th, 2010 7:21 pm ET
Everyone who is a civilian should not give an opinion on what the military members want/need a LOT of us enjoy deploying and a lot of us Were young when the war started (23 now). But maybe we, the young military members, remember where we were when we saw the worst attack on the US on September 11. There was no propaganda making us join the military or forcing us to go over there, we VOLUNTEERED knowing quite well what we might be asked to do. Sure our family and friends are worried and we are thankful for the ACTUAL supporters but we don't need another Vietnam type welcome from non supporters blaming us for others sins. Remember we asked to join and train to do exactly what we do over there and if its not worth it to you try and remember the feeling you had when the towers fell, it frightened me and inspired me all at the same time. I saw Americans come together... Oh how quickly we forget.

Cherie Spells September 9th, 2010 7:21 pm ET
Here is the skinny, why the freakin frakin has'nt the military busted the door down on this so called pastor and put his butt in the slammer for just putting the troops in harms way/ What kind of weak, stuptidfied peope habe we become. This is so silly for A goverment to allow 1 idiot to put our troops in harm way and as a veteran I am insulted, by the lack of fortitude and the outright irrespossiblity on everyone speaking about this issue. Get some balls and arrest that jack handle.

Ricky September 9th, 2010 7:23 pm ET
The war is absolutely not worth it.

To say that the underlying attempt to prevent terrorism abroad by stifling a popular radical insurgency is a farce in lieu of terrorist movements elsewhere in the world such as Mexico, South America, the Philippines, East Africa and elswhere that are receiving little to no attention by NATO anto-terror campaigns.

This war is being fought simply to generate profit for military contracts and hides behind the rouse of stabilizing the region as a whole. It is a waste of human lives. European and American societies alike had to go through their own periods of instability and civil war before finding what Westerners would rationalize as humane/democratic treatment of its citizens.

Let them figure it out for themselves. We need to stop fighting other people's revolutions for them.
 

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Mike September 9th, 2010 7:26 pm ET
Is it worth it? Lets think about this for a second. Was it worth it to come to our soil and kill innocent people? Here is what I think!!!!! You are Damn right it is! I am in the military. I have done 2 tours in Afghanistan and 1 in Iraq. So for all you people that do not support our efforts in this war. Why don't all you non supporters come to Afghanistan and see if you like there way of life better than the one you have in the U.S. that your military is fighting to maintain. If we would have let that attack slide guess what the battle could have been brought on to our soil and more casualties could have been produced. So think about what you are saying. Also everyone that is supporting the military's efforts, "GOD BLESS" and to all the non supporters how about you just get out of America.

Mike September 9th, 2010 7:26 pm ET
@ MRC above – you are spot on

Amanda from Massachusetts September 9th, 2010 7:27 pm ET
We all want our men and women fighting in Afghanistan to return home safely and quickly, but those who oppose this war need to consider the cosequences of their suggestions. What do you think will happen if America leaves Afghanistan the way it is now? Do you honestly believe that the Taliban won't invite Al -Quaeda back into the areas they control to again set up operations? The lesson of history is this: when the United States lost in Afghanistan after the Soviet invasion, we helped enable the Taliban extremists take over the country. Letting history repeat itself is a scenario that we can't afford or allow.

Army SPC September 9th, 2010 7:27 pm ET
Coming from a military perspective, I do understand the reasoning for still occupying the country. "To stop them there,before they bring it here." I truly do understand that, but the war in Afghanistan will never end. There will never be a winner or loser. I have read many books on Afghanistan history and wars in Afghanistan. There is no national government, no one person that can speak to the people of the Afghanistan and have any influence. The people of Afghanistan have been through this for hundreds of years. The Insurgents will never be gone and the fighting will never stop. So was it worth it? to an extent yes. Will it ever be over and won? there will not be a winner, but maybe over one day.

Anthony September 9th, 2010 7:27 pm ET
It's funny that alot of people have something to say about our military but have never served and are enjoying the rights that have been protected by none other than service members. Are the wars right most likely not but 9/11 was no accident. Sleep well tonight for the UNITED STATES MILITARY IS PROTECTING OUR WAYS OF LIFE.

PJB1775 September 9th, 2010 7:31 pm ET
I fought in this war in 2008, and I, to this day, believe that it is NOT worth is. Period.

John September 9th, 2010 7:31 pm ET
AFNAM- NEEDED I SAY MORE

Cherie Spells September 9th, 2010 7:32 pm ET
Now here are some facts that i trust I receved in 1998 from Muhammad Ali, from a pamplet call Introdicing Islam, The are a list of muslims from around the world at the given time of this document, Arabs, Turks, Persians, Indians, Pakisanis, Malaysians, Indonesians, Eroupeans, Africans, Americans, Chinese, and other nationalities. The estimated muslim population at this time was one billion, and 200 million Arabs. approx at this time only 10 percent were counted none muslim. Thus the Arab muslim constituted only about 20 percent

dave September 9th, 2010 7:32 pm ET
YES the war was worth it. How could you say it wasn't. The attack of 9/11 was unexpected and that made us realize the true terrors out there. Since then we have not had anyh major attacks there have been attempts but they have been sought out by our top investigators.

EDP September 9th, 2010 7:34 pm ET
History has proven that any campaign into Afghanistan has always proved to be a failure. From Alexander the Great, to the Mongols, the British, the Russians, and now, the Americans, no one power had/has truly conquered these peoples/tribes. The incursion into Afghanistan was probably only worthwhile the first 3 years. Then we shot ourselves on the foot by invading Iraq. After all is said and done, and billions of dollars later on wasted between the 2 wars, the only people that gained anything were the "employees" of Halliburton, Blackwater, Triple Canopy, and the like. Again, the real casualties are the Americans (fiscally and otherwise). It's time to bail! Nothing good can come of prolonging both wars.

J3707 September 9th, 2010 7:36 pm ET
If you say it's not worth it, you're saying every death was in vain. There's a lot of implication that with was a war for minerals. I can specifically remember that this war was a reaction to Osama Bin Laden, his Al Qaeda thugs and the Taliban that supported them. People overstate the costs of these wars when they pale in comparison to much of our other budgetary programs. We engaged in these wars to make these countries, that were in the business of taking out America, into countries that are our allies. A lot of mining and drilling contracts were given to the Europeans and Chinese, so this is not about hegemony. In my opinion this war is completely worth it.

Annexian September 9th, 2010 7:37 pm ET
These wars are all lies.

Lies so a select, secret elite can profit a dime for every dollar spent/borrowed on/for them.

John September 9th, 2010 7:39 pm ET
Response to : DSangiovanni September 9th, 2010 6:00 pm ET
John, then plz, tell me the reason we went to Irak ? Cause they have nothing to do with 9/11 as you know. Why ?

Why? Because my country asked me to. Military men and woman don't have the advantage of picking and choosing where they want to fight. We do as we are told. If you want my opinion, I revert back to the tone of what this country was feeling. There was resistance from Sadam to open up his country to inspectors.
I believe everyone including Europeans were fed up with Iraq's defiance to the UN. The US stepped up and put the pressure on and did what it thought was right at that time. Did we find what we thought was there? ...no. Is Iraq better today then it was in March 2003? Maybe. If democracy prevails, it will be because of the US liberated Iraq from a dictator that killed his own people. Ask yourself, were we not better to have taken down Hitler and the Nazi's in WWII? Did not Hitler kill millions of "German Jews"? The 9th anniversary of 911 is just days away. It hurts me as a American to see how we have forgotten what happened back then and how this country was ready to take to the streets to triumph over evil.
One thing we need to remember, never forget the history of the world.
...it has a tendency to repeat itself when people are in denial and forget.

mario September 9th, 2010 7:40 pm ET
NO

tg September 9th, 2010 7:43 pm ET
Worth it or not, we are there...nothing said on this board changes that fact! That said, I spent a year there in 2003 in the military and my take aways were these: We dominated the enemy in all situations but our war costs vs theirs are unsustainable, the Afghan general population is well intentioned, but needs education more than anything to move forward, and our allies (or lack of) don't have the stomach for a long term counterinsurgency.

chris September 9th, 2010 7:44 pm ET
is any war ever really "worth it"? Whatever that means...Wars should not be defined like that. When we got involved in afghanistan, it was a defensive act, an act at the time deemed to be a necessity, and supported by the majority of americans and almost all of congress, and even most of the world, to include muslim countries. We were attacked. We responded the only way we knew how. Mistakes were made along the way, and now we have a mess. It is our duty and responsibility to clean it up...we should finish what we start, plain and simple. Who cares if it was "worth it" Let the morons argue over whether or not something was "worth it" the real doers of deeds will be out there trying to put together the pieces any way they know how.

Cherie Spells September 9th, 2010 7:46 pm ET
For one human being that severved this country in 1980-1990 and working 20 years at on job and letting that job go, to leave it open for a homecoming vet was my choice. I know how it is to come home during a recession and have to compete with others struggling to find work, beatrng the pavemwnt to find a decent job and feel some self worth after serving. No i did not have to fight other men and women for irresponsible and selfish decsions made by others. But I will not be looked down at now that I am un employed and struggling to find work or the sheer struggle to strat my own business because no one wants to really help do anything but haord and run their freakin mouths. We must keep the American cirrculating and the President must continue in his efforts to keep us alive

Ron September 9th, 2010 7:47 pm ET
Our way of life is here in this country. No problem with the war as payback. We should have waited to find out where he was and then annilated them. No invasion; no escape. What we can't win is this mess we are trying to mold into another Vetnam. Bring our troops home and use our resources to secure our borders against illegal infiltration. We are going to bankrupt our country while they grow opium. We need to learn our lessons from the false sense of security that enabled terrorist to deliver 9/11.

Jason September 9th, 2010 7:50 pm ET
From an infantry officer in the U.S. Army, the war was and is absolutely worth it! Stop saying we need to return our soldiers home and keep them safe... in an all volunteer Army, I knew exactly what i was signing up for- war. Although every soldier killed in combat is precious, numbers are way lower than any other conflict in American history with respect to the time invovled. I would much rather risk my own life and bring the fight to the enemy, than have the enemy bring it to my doorstep and threaten my family and countrymen. Agree with entering the war or not, pulling out our troops now WOULD be repeating Vietnam. The second we pulled out, we lost everything we had gained as the vietcong took over Saigon. Pulling out of Afghanistan would have the same effect... terrorism and religous extremism will only grow.

Daniel Rose September 9th, 2010 7:50 pm ET
All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.

Dan September 9th, 2010 7:52 pm ET
!. Was the war in Afghanistan worth it: No we are still there!!
Was the Iraq War worth it – No We are still there also.
The Culture is vastly different there will never be an end.
Let other countries live by their laws and America quit trying to tell everyone how they should live politically.
We are no safer now after 9/11/2001 than we were before. The terriorst are already here and obviously have been for along time. Lets save the lives of our military and use the funds we are spending oversees to upgrade technology and fight on our own sturf where we have the advantage.
Lets look at other country laws about imigration and follow suit!! What country can any of us go to get get the "free life" they get that as Americans we have to work a life time to enjoy.

John, Dallas, Texas September 9th, 2010 7:53 pm ET
I was profoundly against the invasion of Irak but I supported the war in Afghanistan and still am supporting our presence there for many reasons.
On the Taliban issue its clear that the Taliban are a product of pakistani military intelegince service (ISI). It looks to me that the US still playing a double game regarding Pakistan and support the same elements in Pakistan, direct or indirect, who provide assistance and training and supply to Taliban. The future of Taliban is in the hand of pakistani military. If we don't draw a clear line between our friends and enemies, we shall acomplish nothing.

Ninty five percent of Taliban are Pashtuns. Their tribes have been historicaly against any kind of progress. If they don;t want schools, hospitals, roads and bridges . we can not enforce them to have.
At least we can secure north, central and westren provinces of Afghanistan, pull back the troops to these areas and let theTaliban run the south and eastern provinces bordering Pakistan, their main tribal areas.

Reason18 September 9th, 2010 7:55 pm ET
Of course it is worth it! Let's not confuse this war with the one in Iraq. The taliban allowed Al Qaida to operate freely. We gave the taliban the option to hand Bin Laden and his people over. They said "No" and claimed they would fight to the death–So we did what we had to do to keep our country safe by overthrowing the taliban

We can't leave or we'll be right back where we were at on 9/11. The taliban will likely come in and take over again and give terrorists free reign.

Come on people. This is the most serious threat to our country.

Adeel Riaz September 9th, 2010 8:01 pm ET
people in afghanistan wants to usa remain in their country, reason they knew that americans will lose more troops and more money ,no ones ever win in afghanistan
thats wt russia and china wants to you people stuck in afghanistan,
put yr hand at yr heart and ask yr self ever usa could win this war?

Money September 9th, 2010 8:01 pm ET
No the war was not worth it. It was our fault the WTC killers got on board the planes and seized control. Stupid security, stupid procedure to open cockpits. Rather than admit out stupidity and responsibility, we kill thousands more of our young men and tens of thousands of other innocents. Absolutely insane. The wars exist because of our inability to accept responsibility and because they are so profitable for powerful industry sectors.

Ronald Watson September 9th, 2010 8:03 pm ET
Why is Obama convertly threatening our allies about pulling out? What he should be doing is covertly, then overtly, threatening our allies about pulling out!
Lay it on the line. Pakistan leadership, if you don´t eleminate the Taliban santuary inside your own country, we will pull out! NATO allies, if you don´t fully share the burden, we will pull out.! Once that´s done, the whole scenario changes because he won´t be getting any positive answers from anyone, not even the American public.
Moreover, this war should have never taken place. When the Taliban were running from their front lilnes in the U.S.-led invasion, Mr. Bush chose NOT to eliminate them by massive bombing, a gross miscalculation. Now, the time has come for our exodus, since terrorism cannot be destroyed by a victory in Afghanistan, and the country is one of the poorest on earth, which means a lot of unsustainable spending over the next 20 years. I only hope that Obama has a clear vision of what he must do now!
Ronald Watson
Madrid, Spain

bangash September 9th, 2010 8:08 pm ET
At this stage these questions look stupid and in clear term signs of defeat. Basic problem is deviation from the main ideals for which, founding fathers of the USA had fought liberation war from British imperialism. George Washington had advised nation to remain neutral and avoid alliances in world politics as it will add to wars and suggested trade relations with all other nations. Successive rulers of USA strictly followed these principles till world war II which by then had made USA a new super power after THE fall of British empire. Based on the principles of Universal Justice, Equality and fraternity the new super power USA had to lead the world away from wars and contrary to the oppressive policies of British imperialism, had to encourage free trade links between all states and make them true welfare states in the world. Unfortunately this sudden fall of world leadership in the hands of American found them unprepared therefore relied on British support in ruling the world. So nothing changed and instead American soil which had been built for the peace in the world was turned into a base for wars all over the world as had been the case during the British Empire and against which America had revolted. So when history has already proved that Empire when extended beyond limits it collapse. Today history is repeating itself on Afghan soil. American as a nation have voted for a change and election of Obama being an African American immigrant as President of USA, is in itself a revolutionary change in America therefore it is a time to confess and call spade a spade. Return to the basic national values which you as nation have promised to the world and you have it symbol in the shape of statue of liberty. Close your Arms complex and confine Pentagon to their barracks. lead the world with reason and logic then with guns and bombs. There is no harm in confessing that the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan were wrong, are wrong and will always be wrong and there is no doubt that further continuity in this illogic war means clear invitation to humiliating defeat.

gregory September 9th, 2010 8:11 pm ET
time .my friend time these people have nothing to loose unlike you.at the begining it was o.k. but after 9 years taliban are still in afghanistan ant pakistan, bin laden still there somewhere and el qaida evrywhere can your economy afford it ? and for how long. i think its about time you leave

Ikramuddin Bahram September 9th, 2010 8:13 pm ET
Ikramuddin Bahram, Afghan from Peshawar-Pakistan

The war in Afghanistan has now turned into a new phase as Afghanistan still remains a country directly dependent for its security and stability on the US and NATO. This makes the future of Afghanistan dubious and uncertain. The over all security situation hasn't improved at all. Karzai still remains to be the Mayor of Kabul and his influence can't be felt beyond his presidential palace. In such a scenario, I think it won't be wise to believe in an Afghanistan to emerge as a stable country sooner. The system currently running Afghanistan has been ill-founded and has been far weakened by the massive corruption that goes unchecked.

Kenneth September 9th, 2010 8:17 pm ET
Is the Afghanistan war effort worth it? Have we so easily forgotten 9/11? Do we somehow think our enemies have and suddenly will not bother us in the future? Do we really think they are suddenly going to stop their efforts to attack us? When we sent Cruise Missiles to destroy their training camps after their attack on the USS Cole did that stop them? Did our message get across? If the Soviets were a brutal army in the 80’s attacking the Afghans then we are the complete opposite. We are the politically correct “oh we don’t want to offend anyone” military trying to conduct a war. We need to find a balance where they know not to mess with us but also leaving them an alternative other than the destruction of both lives and culture/religion. Where Saddam will not be missed or anything, I do think we should not have gone into Iraq. We should have put more effort into our Afghan effort. When our soldiers ask for certain equipment to conduct operations on our government’s behalf they should not be denied because it might offend someone. If our soldiers have to take someone down because they might reveal the location of our troops out on ops that should be left up to the people on the ground. They shouldn’t be worried they might be charged with murder or assault when trying to defend themselves or conceal their presence. This is war after all. Imagine for a moment if the President at the time of Sep 11th said, “Well we know it was these terrorist in Afghanistan that have been attacking us for years but we simply do not want to commit to a war effort because we do not think it worth the effort”. What do you think Americans would have said? And what do you tell the families of killed service men now if we decide it wasn’t worth it, pull out and get attacked again in a few years. The only way to insure Afghanistan isn’t used as a terrorist safe haven against us again is to install a friendly government that is both stable and capable of defending itself. Look at where leaving them up to their own devices after the Soviet war got us. Nation building and the winning of hearts and minds is the ultimate goal but to achieve that they need to respect not just our capabilities but our commitment. Everyone knows from the first day an American soldier set foot in Afghanistan that ultimately we would be leaving. This is their home. The locals have to live there after we leave, so what is the incentive of working with us if we do not leave them with a government that can protect them? It usually is not easy to do the right thing, and freedom does have a price. When someone lost is close to you I cannot fault you for asking such a question but ultimately what will become of that sacrifice. If we simply pull up and leave it will have been for nothing and it will not have been worth it.

Kristiane September 9th, 2010 8:18 pm ET
Brenda O'Connor September 9th, 2010 2:32 pm ET

NO! The war was/is not worth it.

Brenda, AQ used Afghanistan as a site for training young men to be terrorists. The US has been attacked by these "young men" all over the world and in the USA as well. So, like Chamberlain, you must believe that diplomacy and endless talks work to change a mind set on evil. I do not believe these "young men" can change their mind because their hearts are so hard and they are bent on destruction.

gi_jackie September 9th, 2010 8:21 pm ET
Simply, no.

robert lotierzo September 9th, 2010 8:23 pm ET
NO! they wont help themselves, why do our children need to die for them. In thousands of year NO army has survived in that country. bring our people home. If you want use drone to kill the bad guys.

John A, Libertyville IL September 9th, 2010 8:25 pm ET
I think it to be failry obvious that neither the Iraq "Daddy's War II" (for Bush's intransigence and trumped up BS for entering in the first place) nor Afghanistan will prove to be worth the life of one single American, let alone thousands.

The Russians laughed at us when we went into AFG as they had their own winless escapade a number of years ago, when we financed and supported Mujaheddin – the resistance fighters who are now – Al Quaida. Both countries have centuries of sectarian division and hatred and the accompnaying religious fervor. We are trying -as usual – to impose our concept of free democracy on countries which do not want it!

The future of the sandbox and the rockpile are assuredly to be the same as always. These people will sort it all out among themselves and we should recognize that to impose what we believe to be the only "right" system is a gross mistake. Get the hell out and stay out is my fervent hope. Instead focus our diminishing resources on the protection of our own country and taking care of things that matter to US – such as controlling illegal immigration, finding a way to provide good health care etc.

Roger September 9th, 2010 8:27 pm ET
not worth it and no winners in war EVER

Valdemar Secher September 9th, 2010 8:30 pm ET
Writing from Copenhagen, Denmark.

As a Danish soldier who've done three tours of Afghanistan (Helmand Province), being part of the reconstruction and development, I sincerely believe that it is possible to suppress the insurgency and promote a peaceful and stable, if not entirely "western-democratic" Afghan state. As such, the campaign has definately been worthwhile.

I do believe, though, that the effective dismantling of the comprehensive drugrelated militant nexus is imperative and should be concluded prior to any serious attempts to introduce statebuilding to the tribal south. There are plenty of indicators that the insurgency of southern Afghanistan is entirely dependant on the profits made from the harvesting, processing and smuggling of opium/heroin. In order to effectively decapitate the resurgent Taliban and its multitude of affiliated militant groups, the illegal drug industry has to be eliminated. Once done, the balance in the current war of attrition being fought will sway in favour of coalition forces.

Lacking the backbone of their economy, militants will become less and less effective at interdicting coalition forces, let alone harassing the local populace; burning schools, maintaining "shadow governance" etc etc.

We have to first and foremost deal with the poppy issue. For far too long, this core problem has been neglected.

With the insurgency broken off due to lacking funds, Afghan state integrity will increase. At that point, I believe the key to success will be in dealing effectively with domestic corruption, and last but not least – to improve relations with regional neighbours.

It should be of less concern to western countries whether Afghanistan chooses to befriend Iran, Pakistan, central asian countries etc. etc. State integrity starts and ends with the right to choose your own allies.

Fidel September 9th, 2010 8:33 pm ET
Nothing would have stopped the impertuosities in ALQaeda if not for the war. Are we now pretending that we were not aware that more atacks were coming to the USA?. The war was worth it. Secuirty is costly and we must accept the hard truth

Ambrish Dhaka September 9th, 2010 8:39 pm ET
The War in Afghanistan began with the aim of fighting out the terror and its perpetrators. It has been now more than ever before evident that US has been linearly increasing its cost to maintain security more than ever before. So, the terror has not come down. The chaos that has been left by the US in Iraq and it seems to follow in Afghanistan is a testimony that it has not been able to physically drive out the terrorists.
Then what America wanted to achieve?
It wanted to restore its supremacy after 9/11. Yes, that has been achieved.
Its control over Middle East is paramount for extended presence world over. Yes, it has been achieved, too.
The fact is that the states in the world cannot afford to defy America. Yet, these non-state actors who are so crude in their war methods are defying the US tooth and nail every opportunity they get.
One of the important facts that have surfaced from this venture is that hegemony is not a civilisational good. It remains best with the state, and it withers away with it. The US state has taken care of its interest, but what about the ordinary Americans. What has been the reward for them. Some my contend for freedom, but as I said earlier that increased securitisation of life styles has left no room for real freedoms. There is virtualisation of space and it is offered inlieu of sense of freedom.
The US has come to the terms in the Afghan war that it is not the power that determines the fate of war. It is the ability to stay longer in the war that defines the moment of success, and they know they stood abreast with the West against the Soviets, who finally capitulated. But, this is a challenge of a different kind. It has exposed the falsity of the notions of democracy and human rights. They only work in the western hemisphere. The war torn state of the Middle East countries has left deep scars in the history of civilisations to which the US has no answer. It has left the place where it is going to get no glory, for the aims it justified for have already been cheated through its acts.

NFL Starts Today September 9th, 2010 8:41 pm ET
I've Just Read All The Posts – This guy wins hands down! 100% He's Right On!
****************************************************************************
Bin Laden Won!

His stated goal was to wreck havoc on Western economy's.

Turns out, slamming three planes into buildings and one into the ground didn't appear to have the net affect he was looking for, even if you dismiss Wall Street being closed for a short time. If only we could freeze time there. But, lucky for Bin Laden, we had George Bush. Instead of a single day of shock and awe in Afghanistan and maybe a few months of drone attacks on Al Qaeda camps, we go for occupation of a country that turned away the other cold war superpower. The temerity of the U.S. sometimes embarrasses me..

Then, the 9/11 planes are used to justify an attack on Iraq. 200 billion dollars taken out of the U.S economy that might have helped stem the financial crisis we're in now, and have been in, for years.

Yes, Saddam was a POS and there is some citizen consensus his being gone is good. But, there was no WMDs and no Al Qaeda in Iraq so hunting down Saddam in the darkness, killing him in anonymity and letting them figure this out for themselves would have netted the same result as we have now for 198 billion less. For the naysayers, Iran has no more chance of occupying Iraq than the U.S.

George Bush, used his power and might to kill thousands (many innocent observers) under my name, and yet, there are no gains for middle east peace, Iran has lost it's containing enemy, our economy – so strong in 2000 – is now in shambles.

Hate to lose, but I was always taught to be graceful in defeat – Ladies and Gentlemen as of this day – Bin Laden Won!

*******************************************************************************
Folks – it's easy. We should have been there to get the guys that got us,
Al Qaeda, and gotten the heck out of there.

These wars are not being fought for our freedom that's just patriotic, narcissistic, myopic, tea party bull! But, now we've messed it up so bad, our reputation is at stake, we have to live with it and move on with some commitment to get Iraq and Afghanistan's house's in order.

Shame, it just wasn't worth it. Yes we lost 3,000 in 9/11 but adding death to another 5,000, and carnage and pain to tens of thousands of US military and - to not be myopic about US interests - untold and uncounted innocent (some minute number guilty by association and direct involvement) citizens of these country's is unbalanced and unfair and immoral. Say what you want to protect your belief system but these wars have hurt every single living and to be born human being in the world at some level. Don't get me started on the impact of a Christen vs. Muslim environment this has created. By the way I am having a bible burning, anyone want to come?

A great man once said "The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over again expecting different results". Change. We need Change. Get out of Iraq. Hoo Rah. Get out of Afghanistan by killing poppy's and giving women guns and training so the downtrodden can thump on the little dicks in the town. Bottom line, this guy's right, our economy is in tatters and that's just what Bin Laden wanted.

Thank you military, nothing in my post should intimate that I don't support you and everything you do! Love America, democracy and my right to say what I think. I think you shouldn't be risking your lives for this mission.

I wonder if he's sitting in a cave somewhere right now dreaming of meeting George W. and telling him to his face "Sucka you did exactly what I thought you would, but I did think I would die doing it, lucky me."

Julia September 9th, 2010 8:44 pm ET
The war has been absolutely worth it, in regards to a response to the attack on 9/11. But unfortunetly it has been absolutely mismanaged and therefore we have so much unnesscesary loss of lives and loss of control. We need to be more aggressive over there and more supportive as a country–find the suposed perpetrator of the 9/11 attacks and bring him to justice.

We watched the world go to war in the 1930's and did nothing, the way many countries are watching us now. But what happened when Japan attacked Pearl Harbor? We took care of it and then we ended the war. And I am not supporting the use of the atom bomb, but I know we could end this war in Afganistan if we wanted to. We found Sadam. We could find the *** in Afganistan.

We're going to win the War on Terror same way we won the War on Drugs.... we're not, unless the world gets behind PEACE.
 

BATMAN

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Hi, the main purpose to copy paste those comments were that i wanted to document those to be read later.

pdf members can take over from here and post there views and may comment on above posted views.

What i see with a quick gaze... majority opinion is not favorable to the war...
 

bandit

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^^^.....So you got any thoughts of your own or you just plagiarize a whole bunch of comments and post it here??
 

Tuahaa

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The debate is quite long so I only skimmed... anyway, Afghanistan seems to be a hell hole for any conquering it. Russians couldn't do it, Americans couldn't do it... and both invaders made a lot of hell for Pakistan too.

Any opinions?
 

NWO

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Any opinions?
Pakistan needs to look for a solution; I advise that the government try playing the various factions against each other to create a pro-longed civil war. By the end of it, the remaining factions will have hopefully forgotten about Pakistan.

Yeah, it's kind of far fetched and pretty cruel to the Afghan people, but right now, Pakistan needs to look after itself.
 

Agnostic_Indian

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The debate is quite long so I only skimmed... anyway, Afghanistan seems to be a hell hole for any conquering it. Russians couldn't do it, Americans couldn't do it... and both invaders made a lot of hell for Pakistan too.

Any opinions?
Terrorism is a cancer.
afghan and pakistan was affected and it is good that NATO come in today because if not today tomorrow or day after both countries have to face it and they can't do it alone. It cause some pain but faster the treatment better the cure and lesser the pain. imo russia,india,china, should also help both countries with or with out army.
 

Tuahaa

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Pakistan needs to look for a solution; I advise that the government try playing the various factions against each other to create a pro-longed civil war. By the end of it, the remaining factions will have hopefully forgotten about Pakistan.

Yeah, it's kind of far fetched and pretty cruel to the Afghan people, but right now, Pakistan needs to look after itself.
There is no way they can forget about Pakistan in that region. India and Iran can't be bullied. That is the problem- we can. Our government has relied on America too much (Agreeing to 'help' America few decades ago was a bad move to start off with) so it'd be hard to break off. A good leader could do it.

We have done quite a bit for Afghan people, but they don't like Pakistan very much. They remember Taliban's invasion; I don't think they can be blamed.

You are right. Pakistan needs to focus on itself a bit instead on the WoT to fix itself up. Heck, WoT shouldn't have been our war! As for causing a civil war in other countries is quite an impossible task for a weak nation. Also, it would lead to millions of innocent lives lost- in the end, remember we are a Muslim nation and we can't do this.
 

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