Over three hundred years before Christ, Alexander the Great swept onto the plains of Afghanistan with the wild idea that he was going to "shock and awe" the locals into a stupor à la Bush the Conqueror some 2,300 years later. After many years of warfare Alex began paying the Afghans not to fight him because, quite frankly, they were whipping his ass.
In the 1800s the British decided to have a go at Afghanistan and on three occasions managed to get their asses whipped just like good old Alex. During the first of these Anglo-Afghan wars the British suffered their greatest defeat up to that time with 16,000 being wiped out over the course of one week during a 90 mile dash for safety.
The Soviets took a shot at Afghanistan and managed to hang in there for ten years until 1991 when they were forced out and the Soviet Union collapsed under the weight of that war.
So what is the purpose, you might querry, for this history lesson? I am glad you asked. On ABC's TV program This Week, the director of the United States Central Intelligence (?) Agency, Leon Panetta, stated that the war in Afghanistan was proving to be "harder" and "slower than I think anyone anticipated."
You have got to be freakin' kidding me!
Who the hell in their right mind didn't think this war was going to be a ball-buster? Are there those in this country so arrogant or stupid as to believe that we could just ignore history and waltz into Afghanistan and pompously declare "mission accomplished" after a little sabre rattling? Don't bother answering. That was a rhetorical question that I think was answered this past Sunday by Mr. Panetta.