Quagmire! By Mike Hendrix

Anybody Remember the “graveyard of empires” and the “brutal Afghan winter”?

After the Taliban’s three-year struggle against a superior US force, there is growing optimism among the Americans and Afghan government that the end is close.

More than 1,000 people have died in violence in the past 18 months, but attacks have tailed off since the guerrillas failed to make good their vow to disrupt the presidential election in October, which saw a huge turnout and was won by Mr Karzai.

Didn’t think so. As Captain Ed says:

Will anyone report that the war is over when the Taliban come out of the hills and join the free Afghan people? Doubtful. The American media have all fled the success of Afghanistan and only one or two reporters remain to document Karzai’s bold and effective initiative to entice lower-level Taliban to come in from the cold.

Not to worry, though; the Left still has one indisputably hopeless quagmire to comfort themselves with, right? Uhh, well, uhh….

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. diplomats and intelligence officers are conducting secret talks with Iraq’s Sunni insurgents on ways to end fighting there, Time magazine reported on Sunday, citing Pentagon and other sources.

The magazine cited a secret meeting between two members of the U.S. military and an Iraqi negotiator, a middle-aged former member of Saddam Hussein’s regime and the senior representative of what he called the nationalist insurgency.

“We are ready to work with you,” the Iraqi negotiator said, according to Time.

Why, this is just…just…awful! But not to worry, you despondent LLL and MSM denizens: there is in fact one place on the planet that seems to be resistant to all attempts to straighten things out. Of course, there’s one catch: the real quagmire is not Bush’s but the UN’s:

The world reacted in horror six years ago when the Serbian regime of Slobodan Milosevic embarked on an ethnic cleansing operation against Kosovo’s Albanians, forcing 700,000 people, nearly half the population, to flee the province. Reports of massacres and images of mileslong lines of refugees fleeing into neighboring Albania and Macedonia compelled the world to act. The NATO air campaign against Serbia that followed convinced Belgrade to give up its brutal assault, and Kosovo was put under United Nations administration.

And so it remains to this day: an international protectorate, legally part of Serbia, but with a 90 percent ethnic Albanian population that would sooner go to war than submit to Belgrade’s rule. Kosovars seek an independent state, and the seemingly endless delays over final-status talks are only causing deep frustration and resentment.

Their discontent is not simply a matter of hurt pride over national sovereignty; Kosovo’s unsettled international status has serious repercussions for daily life. Because it is under United Nations administration, Kosovo is in economic limbo: it cannot be part of the international bank transfer system, it is ineligible for sovereign lending from development banks, and it can attract few foreign investors. With 70 percent unemployment, the province is being starved of the commerce it badly needs.

Perhaps most important, the continuing uncertainty creates widespread insecurity among Kosovo’s ethnic Albanians, who live with a constant sense of dread that they could return to Serb rule. It is essentially a siege mentality, and it could explode into violence at any time.

Six years—six years, folks—and not once during that more than half a decade have we heard the word “quagmire” uttered by the Left, the Dems, or the MSM, or at least not that I can recall. Curious, no?

Yeah, I know: not really. After all, it was Saint Bill of Clinton who whopped that particular tarbaby.

(That last is also via Captain Ed, who offers up some good commentary of his own, as usual.)

Content used with the permission of Mike Hendrix of Cold Fury. You can read more of his work by clicking here.

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