Episode 113 “To be Blunt on Afghanistan 03/04 by Midrats on Blog Talk Radio
CDR Salamander writes:

Where is the line between truth, optimism, spin, happy-talk, and lies?

Those of us who have served in Afghanistan and those serving now all have our stories. Our guest this Sunday has a few as well.

“Over the course of 12 months, I covered more than 9,000 miles and talked, traveled and patrolled with troops in Kandahar, Kunar, Ghazni, Khost, Paktika, Kunduz, Balkh, Nangarhar and other provinces.

What I saw bore no resemblance to rosy official statements by U.S. military leaders about conditions on the ground.

When it comes to deciding what matters are worth plunging our nation into war and which are not, our senior leaders owe it to the nation and to the uniformed members to be candid — graphically, if necessary — in telling them what’s at stake and how expensive potential success is likely to be. U.S. citizens and their elected representatives can decide if the risk to blood and treasure is worth it.

Likewise when having to decide whether to continue a war, alter its aims or to close off a campaign that cannot be won at an acceptable price, our senior leaders have an obligation to tell Congress and American people the unvarnished truth and let the people decide what course of action to choose. That is the very essence of civilian control of the military. The American people deserve better than what they’ve gotten from their senior uniformed leaders over the last number of years. Simply telling the truth would be a good start. “

Using his article in Armed Forces Journal; Truth, Lies, and Afghanistan as a starting point – our guest for the full hour will be Lieutenant Colonel Daniel Davis, US Army.

For those of us who served in earlier wars this might bring back some memories. And the common warrior question: “What is ground truth?”

Join us live at 5pm here or download the show later from the same location or iTunes.




Posted by Mark Tempest in Army, Foreign Policy, Hard Power, Podcast, Soft Power
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  • Jay

    Some very good comments on Tom Ricks’ blog re: the AFJI article a few weeks ago.

  • Diogenes of NJ

    I won’t be able to take this in live, but I’ll definitely check the archive file. In the mean time you can get a jump on things by watching this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xw2MYPvQXgk

    After-all you may owe it to the noble people of Afghanistan.

    – Kyon

  • ANON, USN (ret)

    Is anyone really surprised?

    “On June 13, 1971, The New York Times began publishing the Pentagon Papers, a documentary history tracing the ultimately doomed involvement of the United States in a grinding war in the jungles and rice paddies of Southeast Asia.

    They demonstrated, among other things, that the Johnson Administration had systematically lied, not only to the public but also to Congress, about a subject of transcendent national interest and significance.”

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