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Unstable Warhead

In a teleprompter speech that was as inspiring as it was specific, Donald Trump offered a bold new vision for how the US war in Afghanistan will be conducted differently after 16 years: Say that this time we’re really going to make some big changes, no really, and we’ll be there forever until we either win or the war can be handed off to another president. In keeping with his campaign pledge that he would never telegraph his intentions to the enemy, Trump also refused to say anything specific about his intentions to Americans, either, since we might blab.

The “president” prefaced policy parts of the speech — such as they were — with a bit of damage control, saying that hatred and racism are bad, mmmkay? and that it would be a real shame if our soldiers abroad were to come home to a divided America where everyone is at each other’s throats. Expect him to undermine that “let’s all come together in love and peace for the sake of our country” the next time he gives an unscripted answer to a a question about Nazis.

Still, to spare our brave troops the sight of a divided America, Trump will be sending a lot more of them to Afghanistan.

Trump acknowledged that his strategy, whatever it is, ran counter to his original instincts and several years of tweets insisting Barack Obama was an idiot for continuing the war in Afghanistan:

My original instinct was to pull out — and, historically, I like following my instincts. But all my life I’ve heard that decisions are much different when you sit behind the desk in the Oval Office; in other words, when you’re President of the United States.

We think that was awfully nice of him to explain that sitting behind the desk in the Oval Office means being the president. A lot of people probably don’t know that. But Trump decided that a premature withdrawal was likely to leave nobody satisfied, and could create chaos in Afghanistan, especially if he just left without so much as breakfast.

In the most obvious baldfaced lie of the speech, Trump said the new plan came after “I studied Afghanistan in great detail and from every conceivable angle,” which translates to I’m telling you what the generals have decided to do, and by Thursday I’ll have forgotten two thirds of it.

After shitcanning Steve Bannon before his big Camp David meeting with the top brass and surviving advisers Friday, Trump did not include any role for mercenaries in Afghanistan, greatly disappointing former Blackwater CEO Erik Prince, whose cockamamie scheme to turn over the war to private contractors was finally — we hope — scotched by national security adviser H.R. McMaster. Still no word on whether Trump intends to send 50,000 barrels of pig’s blood to Afghanistan for bullet-dipping purposes.

Trump’s vague policy objectives included a shift away from specific deadlines for involvement in Afghanistan. Instead, the goal will be either victory or at least keeping the Taliban from taking over until either the Afghan government establishes firm control over the entire country or Trump can dump the mess in the lap of his successor. He will accomplish this by abandoning efforts at improving the Afghan government or trying to build sustainable institutions:

We are a partner and a friend, but we will not dictate to the Afghan people how to live, or how to govern their own complex society. We are not nation-building again. We are killing terrorists.

One of the few sort-of specifics Trump announced was that he would pursue a much tougher line with the government of Pakistan, noting that while Pakistan is a “valued partner,” it’s also full of terrorists and it better clean up its act or else:

We have been paying Pakistan billions and billions of dollars at the same time they are housing the very terrorists that we are fighting. But that will have to change, and that will change immediately […] It is time for Pakistan to demonstrate its commitment to civilization, order, and to peace.

Nothing says “you’re a valuable partner and ally” like telling your valued ally they’re barbarians, after all. Trump also called for greater participation by India in building up Afghanistan’s economy, which should make Pakistan all kinds of happy.

Further, Trump said he’d make sure troops on the ground wouldn’t be hampered by too much micromanagement of the war from Washington, letting military commanders make decisions about objectives and targeting bad guys, or people we think are bad guys. Translation: Civilians are more expendable than ever, and since we’ll be super tough, there’s no way that could blow up in our faces.

While Trump insisted he wouldn’t talk about numbers of additional troops to be sent to Afghanistan, congressional sources briefed on the Pentagon’s plans said troop levels would rise by another 4,000 or so service members (there are over 8,500 in the country currently). That should certainly end the war somehow, even though America didn’t manage to win it when we had over 100,000 troops there under George W. Bush. But you see, this time we’re gonna let them win.

In yet another telling example of how the president makes decisions about matters of wordlwide importance, the Washington Post reports that H.R. McMaster resorted to visual aids to convince Trump that a complete change in Afghanistan really is a possibility:

One of the ways McMaster tried to persuade Trump to recommit to the effort was by convincing him that Afghanistan was not a hopeless place. He presented Trump with a black-and-white snapshot from 1972 of Afghan women in miniskirts walking through Kabul, to show him that Western norms had existed there before and could return.

As then-candidate Trump acknowledged in the Access Hollywood tape, he really is a sucker for a nice set of legs, so we’re committed to another buildup in Afghanistan.

Also, as always seems to happen, some poor schlub in the media fell for it, though you’d think by now they’d all know better:

OK, maybe he was being ironic.

Yr Wonkette is supported by reader donations. Please click the “Donate” linky. You know you’re going to need us.

[WaPo / White House / WaPo]

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  • mancityRed6

    “I studied Afghanistan in great detail and from every conceivable angle,”

    so, he knows where to find it on a map?

    • Cousin Itt de La Résistance

      From up and down and still somehow,
      It’s Afghans’ illusions I recall
      I really don’t know Afghans at all

    • The Rain in Spain’s Therapist

      Luckily for us his aides show him the same map for everything.

      Trump: “First were going to go in through King’s Landing and work our way up to Winterfell. Afghanistan has a huge wall of ice. Not many people know that!”

      • Msgr_MΩment

        Great. Now we’re gonna have THREE Ice Dragons.

      • WhiskeyTangoFoxtrot

        That’s hilarious!

    • doktorzoom

      He thinks Kandahar would make for some particularly tricky tee shots.

      • Cousin Itt de La Résistance

        When does Trump really have any forethought before he swings?

      • mancityRed6

        has he heard about the golf course we built?

    • geoffalnutt

      No. Not necessarily. Don’t forget he suffers from ADD and shit-headedness.

  • Msgr_MΩment
  • TJ Barke

    I’m gonna bet his strategy will be bomb more. And dump more soldiers into the meat grinder.

  • Bitter Scribe

    “I studied Afghanistan in great detail and from every conceivable angle,”

    Meaning what…he made it all the way to the third bullet point in the PowerPoint presentation?

    • TJ Barke

      Paying attention is hard when they aren’t talking about you.

    • Nounverb911

      But can he find it on a map yet?

    • JustPixelz (((Ω)))

      Every conceivable angle ….

      What about 42º? And 73º?
      Not to mention 2.7 radians?

      • Msgr_MΩment

        He’s too obtuse for that.

    • mardam422

      I studied it from every conceivable angle. Did you know that those Afghan blankets are named after Afghanistan? Lots of people don’t know that. But I sit in the Oval Office. I’m the President. Did you know the Oval Office is actually oval? I do, because I sit there. I’ve been hearing a lot about Afghanistan and the Oval Office lately. Always in the news. Even in the fake news. Did you know that?

    • Latverian Diplomat

      Renaming Kabul to Donald Trump City really helps him get through those briefings.

  • Nounverb911
  • arglebargle

    Perhaps he consulted Herman Cain…

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6J_qDLgbo1I

    • Mr. Blobfish

      It’s like a Derp Max Headroom

  • Spotts1701, Nothingburger Chef

    So it’s a “black box” plan. Dump a whole bunch of soldiers, guns and bombs in and “winning” comes out the other side.
    Yeah, I don’t think making the rubble bounce is really going to help.

  • Cousin Itt de La Résistance

    Mother Of All Boors

  • Nounverb911
  • alwayspunkindrublic

    I thought that thing about McMaster showing Trump photos of Afghani women in miniskirts was an internet joke. We’re fucking doomed.

    • Spotts1701, Nothingburger Chef

      I didn’t like W all that much, but at least he could pay attention at times. Donnie makes W look like a Rhodes Scholar.

      • alwayspunkindrublic

        He makes Obama look like a constitutional law professor. Oh, wait…

  • TheGrandWazoo2

    Repeating the same thing over and over and expecting different results isn’t the definition of insanity, it’s the definition of stupidity.

  • Spotts1701, Nothingburger Chef

    Oh, and starting shit with Pakistan is really a great idea. Anytime Pakistan gets pissy half of Southeast Asia holds their breath.

  • Msgr_MΩment

    In furtherance of the policy of Totaler Krieg — Not a Nazi. Not a Nazi. You’re the Nazi! — Breitbart will be setting up a Kabul bureau, and will be exporting white nationalist terrierists to fight against ISIS, every one of them carrying 100 pounds of pork strapped to the belts.

  • Joe Beese
    • h4rr4r

      Hiking?

      Yeah, sure.

      • Snark Tank Full of Resistance

        Hiking Listening?

        Yeah, sure.

        FTFY.

      • sgt. jmk of the résistance

        It’s what he calls walking from the car to the hotel.

        It’s hot in Arizona… it takes effort for him.

      • Celtic_Gnome

        Are hiking trails in Arizona wide enough to accommodate a golf cart?

    • PubOption

      Hiking = walking to the car from the airplane.

      • Rick Hill

        From the lazy boy to the kitchen?

        • Erala Contratista

          Kitchen? He don’t know kitchen.

    • The Rain in Spain’s Therapist

      Is it possible to hike in a golf cart?

    • therblig

      hiking up ivanka’s skirt?

    • BigCSouthside

      Yeah, please go hiking in that heat, old overweight man who loves fast food.

    • alwayspunkindrublic

      “I like people who don’t get brain cancer.”

    • Oxidation Suspenders

      Hiking up taxes on poor people?
      No way blubber butt is going up Camelback without involving ropes and pulleys.

    • spangled

      john mccain’s lived through a lot of torture, but trump by his bedside while he’s sick has got to be the worst thing he’s ever endured

    • SomeBigRedDog

      The only thing this dumbass has ever hiked up is his pants.

    • Hemp Dogbane

      Hiking = getting lost in the wilderness at the bottom of Air Force 1 stairs.

    • Oblios_Cap

      Hiking? I call bullshit.

    • SomeBigRedDog

      Hiking in Phoenix in August. Sounds legit.

      • I am all for him hiking in arizona in august. Let us doubt his manliness to do it so he does just to show us

      • Erala Contratista

        Yeah, have at it Donna.
        Maybe he’ll get lucky and arrive for the all-time August fave, monster dust storm and a downpour.

    • Bub, the cynical zombie

      HIKING!?!? Riding in an ATV isn’t “hiking,” dumbass.

    • ariel_gee_398
  • JustPixelz (((Ω)))

    I was surprised he didn’t announce we’d be dipping ALL our bullets in pig’s blood. That is literally the magic bullet to defeating Radical Islamic Terrorists™.

    • Rick Hill

      Even better, send in firefighting tankers and have them spray the whole country with pig stuf

    • Me not sure

      MOABB: THE MOTHER OF ALL BACON BOMBS.

      • Bub, the cynical zombie

        Keep Rep. Farenthold away from those. He’d devour millions in ordnance.

        • Me not sure

          Looks like a penis, tastes like bacon. Yeah, he’d be all over that.

    • Latverian Diplomat

      DARPA announces P-Prize of $1 million to first team that develops method for firing pork rinds out of a .50 caliber machine gun.

      • Me not sure

        Sessions ate them all.

      • doktorzoom

        Ammo that doubles as MREs!

        • Latverian Diplomat

          It’s practical, and anti-Muslim. Win/win!

    • Nockular cavity

      What do you dip bullets in to terrify Neo-Nazis? A book?

      • Bobathonic

        Lox?

  • dslindc
  • Longstreet63

    I suppose Mcmasters also showed him the comfy rugs and pretty dogs they make there…

  • MynameisBlarney
    • Mr. Blobfish

      Online demonstrations? Welp, that’ll show us.

      • When they show their faces in public they get yelled at

      • Celtic_Gnome

        Maybe they could put a petition on their online demonstrations. Online petitions always work.

    • The Wanderer

      Aw, how cute. Maybe a few of them will drop by Wonkette.

  • Rick Hill

    Yeah because who knew dealing with India, Pakistan and Afghanistan was so difficult? OI mean, if tried and tested business models fail then what can you do?

    • PubOption

      I’m sure the Pakistanis would love the prospect of India on one side of their country and an Indian client-state on another border.

  • Scooby

    I’m sending in the GI Joes.

  • memzilla Ω

    Blustering at Pakistan and India? Why does Mango Mussolini think that threatening nuclear-armed countries — except Russia — is a good idea?

    • Latverian Diplomat

      “Pakistan and India; they are in this together. I know it!”
      — American President who knows nothing about Pakistan and India

  • Latverian Diplomat

    This just in: Russian government rejects Trump’s “Back over to you guys” plan. “Nice try, Donne” said Putin.

  • Elendira

    Hey,Guys. Why so cynical? The Surge (take 16 ) is totally going to work this time. Why Eric Prince does the best work.

  • geoffalnutt

    “Tommy said ‘Donald Trumps’es weener is the bigest one in all the universes that ever were and will ever be!!’. Can we eat now??”

  • Me not sure

    That warhead isn’t unstable, it’s a dud.

  • JMP

    We have a very important goal in Afghanistan of never admitting we got our asses kicked, and so staying in there well past when any sane country would have left – just like Vietnam!

    • TJ Barke

      Sunk cost fallacy FTW!

      • JustPixelz (((Ω)))

        Trumpy’s “instincts” was to walk away. Except later he said the reason to stay is to a) not be like Obama, b) honor soldiers who died there already.

    • mancityRed6

      it broke Russia and they were only there 10 years or so.
      USA! USA! USA!

  • WhiskeyTangoFoxtrot

    Shorter Idiot Menace: GET YOUR MINDS OFF OF WHAT MUELLER’S DOING AND THE RUSSIANS!

    • doktorzoom

      Now that’s just completely unfair. It’s actually GET YOUR MINDS OFF HOW I SAID NAZIS AND PEOPLE PROTESTING NAZIS ARE MORALLY EQUIVALENT.

      Please, accuracy is important.

      • WhiskeyTangoFoxtrot

        I sit, pants-less, corrected!

      • mancityRed6

        it can be both, you know.

      • Rick Hill

        GET YOUR MINDS OFF HOW i SAID NAZIS AND PEOPLE PROTESTING NAZIS ARE MORALLY EQUIVALENT AND GOT MY HAND STUCK IN THE PICKLE JAR FOR THREE HOURS!

  • Mr. Blobfish

    Nice. He’s pre-blaming the generals for when it all goes to shit.

    • Bobathonic

      Well it can’t possibly be his fault if something goes wrong.

  • HR McMaster and other military brass brought home their argument to Trump with the aid of complex military diagrams.

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/afd961f626754d0eeab06fa5ffa0eff7fcd466ac1fffa21654ef6ed430b4c6ac.png

    Trump replied, “Let’s go with this, I love tic tacs.”

    • JustPixelz (((Ω)))

      “As cadet CAPTAIN at school, I learned all about military. Army and Navy generals are AMAZED at how smart I am.” #DeletedTrumpTweets

    • Latverian Diplomat

      “Which one is the quarterback again?”
      — Mike Pence

      • JustPixelz (((Ω)))

        Those Xs and Os are really hugs and kisses. Pence better not look.

        • Latverian Diplomat

          “Mother, come here, I need you!”

  • Thorn Spike

    Needs moar MAGA.

  • Crystalclear12

    Well, I am sick of the word “winning”. Is that close enough? Can we stop now?

  • JustPixelz (((Ω)))

    “Everyone says my Afganistan speech, which I totally wrote myself, was greatest ever given by a USA POTUS.” #DeletedTrumpTweets

  • UncleTravelingMatt

    Win harder!

    • Cousin Itt de La Résistance

      That’s what Melania said.

      • Msgr_MΩment

        You leave my mum out of this!

  • ManchuCandidate

    Still better than letting Mercs like Prince run the show. Somehow the mix of foreign occupiers, people with a long time deep resentment of foreign occupiers, cheap smack, Mercs with delusions of grandeur, religious strife and a shit ton of guns just wouldn’t end well.

    • Even the thought of making Erik Prince a ‘viceroy’ gives me the creeping horrors.

      Trump probably thinks Kurtz is the hero of Apocalypse Now.

      • Me not sure

        Didn’t we rebel against that very shit?

      • ManchuCandidate

        I love the smell of heroin in the morning. It smells like victory

    • You are kidding right? Cause the place is lousey with american contractors. This is not so much a war as a protect our assets game

      • Oblios_Cap

        We can’t let the Chinese have those rare earth elements that our businesses need!

      • ManchuCandidate

        But under the authority of the military unlike Prince’s plan which would have the Mercs running the show.

        Afghanistan is still a shitty situation no matter who runs it but letting a corprat rat fuker like Prince run it would be that absolute worst scenario. The Britta of Afghanistan scenarios if you will.

  • Msgr_MΩment

    C’mon. They’re top seeded.
    Come to think of it, we should have begged Vietnam to fight against them, not India.
    https://cdn.theatlantic.com/static/mt/assets/jamesfallows/SpyDetail.png

    • Augustus

      This is great, where is this from?

    • Cousin Itt de La Résistance

      Vietnam has Pho, Afghanistan has poppies.

      I consider this a draw.

  • Rick Hill

    Even when trump sounds like he’s almost saying the right things, he’s not actually saying what he’s going to do. And not in the twelve dimension hypergalactic chess that Obama played but in a “Look over there” and grab your lunch money and run kind of way.

  • therblig

    so, tax cuts for the rich, then?

    • Belasaurius

      how else will we pay for the patriotic march of progress through napalm?

    • TJ Barke

      They need that money, to keep us all in our place.

    • I swear i see the draft coming back.

      • Belasaurius

        thank god I’m 44 and 20/180 in both eyes. If they need librarians at the front, we’re fucked.

        • JustPixelz (((Ω)))

          We should have an all-retiree Army. Seniors all say they want to travel, they want free health care, cheap housing, and so forth. Go Army. Admittedly, the PT standards may need to be lower. And — for soldiers like me — the uniforms will need an elastic waistband.

      • Augustus

        FUCK

        THAT

      • doktorzoom

        Not gonna happen. Ask American families to involuntarily share the pain and support for the war goes from abstractly in favor of sending other people’s kids to die, to HELL NO.

        • Oblios_Cap

          Agreed.

      • JustPixelz (((Ω)))

        A military draft doesn’t fit modern, highly specialized, highly trained army. But a non-military, public service draft would engage a sliver of the general population in sacrifice. For every soldier deployed overseas someone is drafted to clean parks, paint schools, serve meals. No bone spur exemptions!

      • Bozilingus

        Let the alt-right nutjobs go fight overseas.

    • RumAddled

      Yep, Mnuchin’s wife needs a new handbag.

    • UncleTravelingMatt

      How else do you expect to pay for more warrin’?

  • Belasaurius

    I strongly suspect that Trump may have not known abut Pakistan providing sanctuary for terrorists. That was pretty much a given.

  • SpideySenser

    “My original instinct was to pull out —” … too bad for all of us that Fred didn’t follow that advise.

    • Rick Hill

      “Instinct”, that does sound better than “Whatever dumbass thing pops into my head, first”

  • Martini Ambassador 🍸

    Sure, “studying Afghanistan by all angles” means taking the 3-panel cartoon McMaster drew as a briefing aid and looking at it both right side up and upside down. Possible advanced viewing involved Ovaltine x-ray spex.

  • Oblios_Cap

    We think that was awfully nice of him to explain that sitting behind the desk in the Oval Office means being the president.

    Unless, of course, you’re Barack Obama, in which case you’re a Kenyan Usurper.

    • TJ Barke

      Well yeah, cuz blah…

    • Me not sure

      Requires thought. Kinda hard. Who knew?

  • Mr. Blobfish

    I look forward to the groundbreaking of Trump Tower Kabul.

  • UncleTravelingMatt

    The Grave of Empires is gonna be bigly classy once he gilds the fuck out of our mausoleum. Luxurious.

  • Gee, Your Hair Smells Horrific

    Yes, nation-building is idiotic (even though a stable country keeps people from ever considering picking up a gun) and killing terrorists is genius (even though it only creates more terrorists).
    Cause and effect, how does it work?

  • Indiepalin

    Trump forgot all about bombing Venezuela.

    • Dr. Rrrrrobotnik

      What, that? That was like, a week ago! Get with the times, man!

    • spangled

      don’t jinx it! he’ll bomb Togo if enough people tell him it’s a bad idea!

    • Me not sure

      Next week’s dramatic reading.
      “As I speak to you tonight the Marines are landing on the shores of Lake Maracaibo.”

    • Mr. Blobfish

      That’s those horns they blow at the soccer games, right?
      -Donald J. Trump

    • Bad Tom

      Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro is especially relieved.

  • Cousin Itt de La Résistance
  • Indiepalin

    Gen. McMaster baited Trump with miniskirts and ecstacy.

  • Rick Hill

    One last shout out to how the nazis were shut down last week, before we head off to the next news cycle.
    https://img-9gag-fun.9cache.com/photo/aADb7eL_700b.jpg

  • Michael R
  • Dr. Rrrrrobotnik

    I actually kind of wonder how fast Trump could wring the media through the “today Trump became president” hopes -> inevitable disappointment -> condemnation sequence if he really felt like it. He probably could do it four or five times a speech.

  • WhiskeyTangoFoxtrot

    This is just the latest step in the Russian’s diabolical plan to destroy the United States; Step one-Elect Pee Hooker Target as President. Step two-Get President Pee Hooker Target to involve the US in an endless war against a population that has broken more than one world power.

    • Ryan Denniston

      Step 3: Profit!

      • WhiskeyTangoFoxtrot

        Prophet!

    • Mr. Blobfish

      The skeletons of Soviet tanks and helicopters still litter the country.

  • Mr. Blobfish
    • weejee

      Punch and Judy libel!!

      • Celtic_Gnome

        In Trump’s case, it’d be Paunch and Judy.

    • Ghenghis McCann

      ‘That’s the way to do it.’

    • The Rain in Spain’s Therapist
      • arglebargle

        Best movies OF ALL TIME!!!1!

        1. Stripes
        2. Holy Grail
        3. Time Bandits

        That is all.

        • The Rain in Spain’s Therapist

          That’s a good list!

          Stripes feels like a prequel to Ghostbusters where Murray’s character, fresh out of the Army, get’s his G.I. Bill and thinks to himself, “What college degree can I bullshit my way through? The paranormal!”

          I also created a full size replica of the Time Bandits map. Had a friend print it out on canvas and then weathered it for movie authenticity. :P

          • arglebargle

            I want a Time Bandits map. I promise to kill baby Hitler Trump. With voters, of course.

    • Canis Greyhame

      Gentlemen, don’t you think it would be a good idea to silence those enemy cannons? https://youtu.be/5oOK3e53elo

  • Ryan Denniston

    “But all my life I’ve heard that decisions
    are much different when you sit behind the desk in the Oval Office; in
    other words, when you’re President of the United States.”

    Oh, you’ve heard that. That’s nice. The predisent is telling us that SOME MAY SAY that decisionmaking is totally different when you’re the decider. I dunno, any first hand knowledge to factor in here Donald?

  • William

    …and Afghanistan is going to pay for it, just like Mexico is paying for that beautiful wall. Many people are saying that, this I can tell you.

    • The Rain in Spain’s Therapist

      I love how we’re going to start charging countries for invading them.

    • doktorzoom

      He did hint at demanding mining concessions for U.S. companies…

      • Latverian Diplomat

        Someone needs to explain that resource extraction is less profitable when you have to airlift the minerals out on helicopter gunships.

      • William

        So many mining jobs. We’re bringing back coal jobs and piñatas will now be made in Buffalo New York. This I can tell you. Now if you’ll excuse me I need to head to my big, huge, massive, and unbelievable rally in Arizona where many people, so many people, many, many, many more people that Obamas swearing in when fake news reported that. Disgraceful….sad.

        • WhiskeyTangoFoxtrot

          And body bags. So many body bags coming home from Apgranny…Afgana…over there!

          • William

            Iraqistan. I’ll move on it like a bitch. We’ll take their oil, and Mexico will pay for it. They let you do that when you’re a star. You just need a tic-tac. This I can tell you.

      • ariel_gee_398

        He promised those coal miners he’d bring back mining jobs. He just didn’t specify they were going to be in Afghanistan, mining rare minerals, working for a private military contractor. He’s always been more of a big picture guy…

  • Snark Tank Full of Resistance

    Lemme get this straight: He was convinced by generals? I thought he knew more about war and how to win than all of his generals combined!

    • Latverian Diplomat

      He was disappointed that the Admirals weren’t more helpful. The Navy need to step up their game when it comes to land-locked countries.

    • Mr. Blobfish

      He talks to his brain.

    • Rick Hill

      I think he was convinced by finding out Afghanistan is sitting on a wealth of rare earth metals

      • Bozilingus

        Afghanistan better be ready to
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o3Z8NU5ImK0

      • Snark Tank Full of Resistance

        The rare earth metals are a drop in the bucket compared to the poppy fields.

        • Bozilingus

          “In Flanders fields the poppies blow
          Between the crosses, row on row,
          That mark our place; and in the sky
          The larks, still bravely singing, fly
          Scarce heard amid the guns below.

          We are the Dead. Short days ago
          We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
          Loved and were loved, and now we lie
          In Flanders fields.

          Take up our quarrel with the foe:
          To you from failing hands we throw
          The torch; be yours to hold it high.
          If ye break faith with us who die
          We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
          In Flanders fields.”

        • Cousin Itt de La Résistance

          Now, but in the second half of the 21st century? Yooge.

          • Snark Tank Full of Resistance

            Sustainability, my friend: You can only mine minerals once, but those poppies will bloom every few months.

    • mailman27

      Those were Obama’s generals, see, and every time the White House changes hands there’s an entirely different officer corps. Not a lot of people know that.

  • Bozilingus

    Just substitute “Afghanistan” with “Vietnam”…
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dATyZBEeDJ4

  • Blackest Noobs

    how about this for a novel idea, instead of bombing them into the stone age perhaps we could actually do the homework and attack the disease and not just the symptoms.

    my point is our colonialistic capitalism is the fucking problem. not saying capitalism is all bad, just the kind we practiced is why were are in this situation in the fucking 1st place. Until we remedy that HUGE, BIGLY problem we will NEVER end this war on terrorism.

    it will never ever end no matter how much you cut our dogs of war loose or how many dogs we send over to bite them brownie butt terrorists. how about for once we stop being so goddamn stupid, face up to our own sins, and resolve this shit.

    and i betcha this idea wouldn’t take fucking 16 years to realize, and oh yeah, that fucking doesn’t work. this would work…not more moar troops and moar generals gone wild.

    • OrG

      The “war on terror” is a very profitable enterprise.

    • BigCSouthside

      Money tends to change hearts and minds faster than bombs.

      In that region, militarily I think you need to commit to total conquest or leave.

      • Blackest Noobs

        but the total conquest by just military will not do the job. anyone with half a brain cell can comprehend that.

        • BigCSouthside

          Total conquest means just that. This is ours now. Roman style.

          We obviously won’t do that, so I think we leave, and take economic approaches

          • Blackest Noobs

            yeah total conquest would be a PR nightmare…it makes the pussy grabbing comment look passe and Trump’s C’ville comments a minor issue.

          • BigCSouthside

            No doubt, it’s not even viable. That’s why I think we don’t even bother with troop surges and shit. Get out, monitor. There are other tools st our disposal that won’t kill a bunch of people and create more terrorism

      • Dr. Rrrrrobotnik

        The problem with Afghanistan is that it doesn’t make sense to even totally conquer the place. It’s the most strategically, economically, and militarily worthless patch of cratered dirt this side of the Moon. That and it’s home to a constantly warring band of tribes (emphatically not a nation) that will lay low only so long as it takes outsiders to leave.

        It’d probably be best if we just economically dominate them like we do our other allies.

    • Mr. Blobfish

      I saw awhile back that NGOs where showing the locals how to grow pomegranates instead of poppies. The farmers were grateful. Guess we’ll try blowing them up again.

      • Latverian Diplomat

        We’ll see if it sticks. Pomegranate dealers are not at heavily armed or as insistent as opium dealers.

      • shivaskeeper

        It’s not much what they grow, it’s what they do with it after it’s grown.

        There is no real infrastructure in the country to do anything with crops that have a limited shelf life. There are no real roads to market, there are no processing plants, there is no nothing.

        Growing staple food crops for anything larger than a village is not really feasible. Teach them to grow peas instead of poppies, and there is nothing to be done with the peas and no money in it. Neighboring counties will buy the peas, if they can get them, for pennies on the dollar to import and can them, They then export the cans back to Afghanistan with a huge markup.

        This is an oversimplification, of course, but it is the essential problem.

  • JustPixelz (((Ω)))

    He presented Trump with a black-and-white snapshot from 1972 of Afghan women in miniskirts walking through Kabul, to show him that Western norms had existed there before and could return.

    Fun fact: Western norms existed in America until recently.

    • Latverian Diplomat

      “What, Klan robes have been in style since 1867!”
      — Jeff Sessions

      • Actually, the correct fake quote is “What Klan robes have been in style since 1867, I’d like 2 please.”

    • Steve Cole

      Snark of the day nominee

    • goonemeritus

      They will get my miniskirt when they pry it off my cold dead butt.

  • GreenGoldSharpie

    Good thing we didn’t elect some warmonger like Hlldawg.

    Dodged a bullet right thar!

    • Bad Tom

      Sadly, we did not dodge the mortar.

  • cheetojeebus

    I have a feeling the fresh new hell will be the pardon he announces tonight for that jackass Arpaio.

  • Ryan Denniston

    “He presented Trump with a black-and-white
    snapshot from 1972 of Afghan women in miniskirts walking through Kabul,
    to show him that Western norms had existed there before and could
    return.”

    Christ, that story was REAL!?1

    • Spotts1701, Nothingburger Chef

      Trump has entered the Tyson Zone – any story about him, no matter how implausible, has a very good chance of being true.

  • Lance Thrustwell

    During the few shreds of his speech that I could stand to listen to, it occurred to me that Trump was using his Serious Presidential voice. And that voice sounds remarkably like a stupid person over-enunciating everything because he thinks he’s talking to an even stupider person.

    • cheetojeebus

      Its a dunning kreuger ouroboros

    • mancityRed6

      he knows how people make fun of him for the “bigley”, “big league” thing.
      also it’s because of the teleprompter. that’s how he reads out loud.

    • Phoenixdoglover

      Teleprompteritus. When you can’t move your finger along the line.

    • Robbertjan Brandenburg

      Or when Bush was telling ghost stories around the camp fire.
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9leNE7nXUEU

    • It’s always accompanied by sniffing as well.

      When he lies or is under stress he sniffs.

      And frankly it sleeves me out.

  • elviouslyqueer

    We think that was awfully nice of him to explain that sitting behind the desk in the Oval Office means being the president.

    *cough3millionvotescough*

    • weejee

      Stuffed by illegal aliens every last one, plus millions more.

  • weejee

    Perhaps the only way America can get its head screwed back on is mandatory conscription (draft) for essentially everyone. Two years service after high school. That way everyone will have some skin in the game. The draft was a real motivator for Vietnam anti-war protests.

    • Blackest Noobs

      i say draft 70’s somethings who use tons of spray on tanner…draft those assholes 1st.

    • Ghenghis McCann

      Expect an epidemic of ‘bone spurs’ among the offspring of the rich and privileged, then.

      • MynameisBlarney

        Bone spurs, shit-pants and pilonidal cysts.

      • Snark Tank Full of Resistance

        I’ll bet some of them are pissed that they can’t use that whole “tell ’em you like to suck dick!” defense anymore. Maybe that’s why Dampnut tried to ban transgender folks!

    • Michael Smith

      Then the government was like “Hmm.. this whole ‘draft’ things just smacks of coercion. How about we just go with a volunteer army? I mean basically it will still collect mostly people who feel like they have no other options economically, but it won’t scare middle class white people as much. It seems counter-intuitive gang, but ending the draft will actually give us more leeway to do whatever we want.”

      • shivaskeeper

        Which is a fine theory if the only reason people join the military is because they are poor, which is not true.

        • bupkus231

          Yeah – there’s all those guys given the choice between enlisting and going to jail….

          [ Seriously, your comment smacks of “there’s good people on both sides” sentiment. Altho’ there are many people that enlist for “other reasons”, the military acknowledges that, in times of high youth unemployment, they have an easier time meeting recruitment numbers…

          Link: http://www.people.mil/Portals/56/Documents/2014%20Summary.pdf?ver=2016-09-14-154051-563

          Recruiting is more difficult when the economy is robust and civilian unemployment low; it was less challenging in recent years when jobs were more difficult to find and the unemployment rate was high. The importance of the state of the civilian economy cannot be overemphasized. Even in FY14 after the unemployment rate had dropped considerably, the 13.4-percent rate of unemployment for 16- to-24-year-olds was higher than it had been in any year since FY93

          ]

          • shivaskeeper

            My comment smacks of both sides? Of course it does. The original comment smacks of, “Only those undesirables who are too poor, too stupid, or too lazy to do anything else joins the military”. The only thing missing from the superfecta is they are all murderers/mindless automatons/baby killers. Same as it ever was.

            You wonder why the military as a skews right as a whole? That attitude of “you are to stupid to be anything else” is one of the huge reasons why.

            No shit recruiting for an all volunteer force is harder when the economy is good. It’s a hard job that asks you to give up a huge amount of your rights as a citizen for not a lot of pay. Recruiting goals are still generally met even when the economy is running like a fine tuned machine though. Must be that every single person who joins is too stupid, or slow, of unmotivated to go out and get one of those good, easy to get jobs, when the economy is good, right?

            I know that last is not what you actually said, but it’s the implication I hear damn near constantly from my own side. I’m not saying the military should be put on a pedestal by any means, but seriously, “you are too poor and too dumb.” is not a way to win friends and influence people.

            Edit: missed the word “as”.

    • georgiaburning

      Which is why there’s no way it will come back. Americans want their war where they don’t see it, fought by people they don’t need to think about except for a nominal “Thank you for your service.”

    • House0fTheBlueLights

      Yup.

  • MynameisBlarney
    • mancityRed6

      “I’m sick and tired of being hit for being white,” she wrote on Facebook hours after the Charlottesville violence. “It is all about making us feel like we need to apologize. I am WHITE — and proud of it! No apologies necessary.”

      huh, I’m white and I don’t really think about it much.

      • MynameisBlarney

        INORITE?!?

        Sounds like she’s got a guilty conscience or something.

        • Treg Brown

          “Sounds like she’s got a guilty conscience an asshole or something.

      • Mildred Broxon

        And I’m white and had nothing to do with it. My parents were white. It’s a circumstance, not a point of any particular pride.

        • Heck, I’m enormously proud of my ability to inhale oxygen from the air, and exhale carbon dioxide. Along with the pride I take in turning various organic materials into energy by a process called “digestion.” Those are so much more a source of pride than my skin color.

    • elviouslyqueer

      What is it with bleached blonde and leathery skinned females in Arizona? That whole “Iguana” look is so five years ago.

    • bupkus231

      Everybody’s focusing on this witch’s racism – but that Raw Story piece reveals a bit of Orwellian “Big Brother” in her makeup, too:

      Miller has also submitted a Freedom of Information Act request for all phone, computer and social media records from all 7,000 public employees. She seeks “any and all copies of verbal and written communications, including but not limited to emails, social media accounts, phone calls and letters from anyone; including members of the public, all county employees, County administrator, any and all elected officials, communications department employees, County attorney office employees, as well as each and every one of the Board of supervisors members related to the request for the opinion you [ apparently addressing former Tucson mayoral candidate Shaun McClusky ] just issued regarding my comments on a Facebook post.”

      Gee – I wonder why she wants all these public records? Not for potential retaliation?

  • UncleTravelingMatt

    I like that they strategically timed this for when the sons of the people killed by US bombs the first time around are in their mid-teen years, an age well known for sober reflection, calm deliberation, and lack of suggestibility. Who ever even heard of a teenage suicide bomber?

  • wide_stance_hubby

    Let us guess: he saw on the internet that one weird trick can fix all sorts of things.

  • Robbertjan Brandenburg

    4000 extra troops would just be enough to make sure the next democratic president, house and congress will have to fix the shit sandwich.

    • MynameisBlarney

      True, but fixin’ GOP clusterfucks is their forte.

      • Robbertjan Brandenburg

        Yeah but I wonder what McMaster’s take is on sacrificing American lives to further a political agenda. I thought he was one sick of Washingtong bureaucrats deciding on who is to die for their careers.

        • bupkus231

          You may be excused for your naivete. McMasters is only the NSC chief – it’s SecDef Mattis that you have to look out for, even if they weren’t in cahoots ( supposedly, the two of them agreed waaay back that one of them should remain in country at all times, to prevent Rump from setting off WWIII while they weren’t there. This is not to say that either one of them gives a shit who lives or who dies, as long as it isn’t them…. )

  • Indiepalin

    Trump, on his youngest son: “My original instinct was to pull out — and, historically, I like following my instincts.”

  • Bub, the cynical zombie

    Somebody has to post this:

    When you’re wounded and left on Afghanistan’s plains,
    And the women come out to cut up what remains,
    Jest roll to your rifle and blow out your brains
    An’ go to your Gawd like a soldier.

    • The Wanderer

      Drat. I should have checked before posting the same stanza further upthread.

      • Bub, the cynical zombie

        It bears repeating.

  • wide_stance_hubby

    Slip out, pull out, what’s the diff?

    • OutOfOrbit

      well, if it’s a snapper you’re into…

      • Msgr_MΩment

        Mudshark libel!

        • OutOfOrbit

          it’s not that kind of snapper

    • elviouslyqueer

      Only Melania knows for sure.

      • wide_stance_hubby

        “Just vake me veniz ovir”

    • bbayliss

      girth

    • Cogswell – In a Mirror, Darkly

      His father should have pulled out.

    • Snark Tank Full of Resistance

      If you have to ask, you’re not doing it right.

      • wide_stance_hubby

        That’s something we don’t have to ask about.

        • Snark Tank Full of Resistance

          Maybe you don’t have to WORRY about it like us unhommasecshuls, but unless porn’s been lying to me all these years, there’s a reason to pull out even if you’re gay, isn’t there?

          • wide_stance_hubby

            Money shot libel!

    • Raan

      One is more lubricated?

    • Celtic_Gnome

      The difference between slipping out and pulling out is several inches.

  • Michael Smith

    Wow, Trump fell for that internet meme of the women in Kabul with the modern dress too?

    Okay, yeah, you can wall off a city for a little while and take a picture of a few people walking around in western style dress. And that means you can conquer the place?

    So yeah, a socialist government briefly controlled Afghanistan (okay, mostly just Kabul and the few other outposts of educated urban society). But a rural movement of Islamist nationalists, encouraged by the U.S. as a way to destabilize the U.S.S.R.’s perimeter, swiftly pushed it to the brink of implosion. Then the Soviets, in an attempt to save this friendly government in their notoriously wild southern neighbor, intervened with a military force. Naturally, the U.S. started giving arms and training to the Islamic nationalists and condemned the U.S.S.R. as illegally intervening in a sovereign state to crush independence and religion.

    So then there was a decade of war which saw Soviets and their allies versus the Mujaheddin, supported by Reagan and the States. Once our allies won, because the Soviets essentially bankrupted themselves trying to conquer the place, a civil war broke out between the victors that lasted about another decade, which was so mystifying to the United States (“You guys just won your freedom! Can’t you just be happy?”) that we ignored them completely. Finally the fundamentalist Taliban regime managed to rule the country with an iron fist for about 20 minutes before the U.S. started dropping bombs and sending in troops in retaliation for 9/11.

    1972 is now a decently long time ago in the United States. In Afghanistan, it was about 300 years ago. And the apparent peace enjoyed during that time was fleeting and illusory anyway.

    Ask Alexander the Great. You can’t conquer Afghanistan.

    • Lance Thrustwell

      I just did. He said you’re right.

      • Spurning Beer

        Make Alexander Great Again

    • Vagenda and Pee-ara

      George W. Bush took an economy in 2000 that was absolutely golden, and managed to destroy it with two wars, and two tax cuts. The national debt was going to be paid off in 2010, and we were scheduled to be running budget surpluses until the year 2030 (even with an aging population). I don’t see how we’ll ever be able to get out of the financial morass Bush left us. Oh, wait, how about ANOTHER round of tax cuts and war? That should do the trick.

      It still infuriates me that Scalia gave the presidency to George W. Bush, when Al Gore had clearly won.

      • Covfefe’s Evil Twin

        I take comfort in the fact that Scalia is dead.

        • GoutMachine

          And burning in hell, if it exists.

        • Vagenda and Pee-ara

          Not dead enough!

    • bbayliss

      Interview with Zbigniew Brzezinski,
      Q: When the Soviets justified their intervention by asserting that they intended to fight against a secret involvement of the United States in Afghanistan, people didn’t believe them. However, there was a basis of truth. You don’t regret anything today?

      B: Regret what? That secret operation was an excellent idea. It had the effect of drawing the Russians into the Afghan trap and you want me to regret it? The day that the Soviets officially crossed the border, I wrote to President Carter. We now have the opportunity of giving to the USSR its Vietnam war. Indeed, for almost 10 years, Moscow had to carry on a war unsupportable by the government, a conflict that brought about the demoralization and finally the breakup of the Soviet empire.

      Q: And neither do you regret having supported the Islamic fundamentalism, having given arms and advice to future terrorists?

      B: What is most important to the history of the world? The Taliban or the collapse of the Soviet empire? Some stirred-up Moslems or the liberation of Central Europe and the end of the cold war?

      https://www.globalresearch.ca/articles/BRZ110A.html

      • Michael Smith

        Oh but now the war hawks would have us believe that Muslim terrorists are a bigger threat than the Soviets ever were, because at least the Soviets were relatively sane people who had a gigantic state to worry about.

        So in the 80’s, it was worth arming, training and encouraging Islamic militarism because the USSR was the bigger Hitler. Now the Terrorists are the biggest Hitler ever and we need to mobilize our whole country and culture to ending the threat.

        Makes me think that the specific enemy isn’t important, just as long as we always have someone to fight a war against.

        • Steve Cole

          You know the enemy isn’t important. I have a long history w/DoD and I remember getting seminar brochures on subjects like “replacing the cold war w/the drug war” after the Berlin wall came down. “scary scary” never goes out of style.

    • jesterpunk

      We should show Trump Rambo 3 which was dedicated to the Mujaheddin when they where fighting Russia.

  • bbayliss

    “Not many people know we could have won Vietnam except for the libruls” is the lie on which the current right wing madness was built.

  • schmannity

    How about a little fire and fury, scarecrow?

    • Mr. Blobfish

      And frankly power the likes of which this world has never seen before?

      • NotALiar

        Believe me. That I can tell you.

  • Mavenmaven

    With any luck, we’ll have a war on every possible front (Afghanistan, Korea, maybe reinvade Vietnam), then you’ll all have to support the troops and the commander in chief!

    • Vagenda and Pee-ara

      I read an article a week ago about the only possible way Trump could get Americans behind him would be through a war/terrorist attack. I hope he doesn’t figure that out. Although it worked for GWB, I’m not sure it would work for Trump. I don’t care if we were invaded by Martians, I still wouldn’t support Trump.

      • Bad Tom

        Sadly, one of the possibilities is civil war.
        Not sure if that’s a plus for him at the Midterms.

        • Vagenda and Pee-ara

          Ha ha…yes, that seems more and more plausible. I just looked at a 538 poll that was heartening for Democrats in 2018.

      • Ghenghis McCann

        It worked for Maggie Thatcher back in 1982.

      • Royal Ugly Dude

        I would give the martians a chance. They’re new at this.

        • Vagenda and Pee-ara

          There are some very fine martians, not all of them are green supremacists.

    • Mr. Blobfish

      We’ve always been at war with Eastasia.

  • r m reddicks

    Donny Two-Scoops sounded kind of copd-y wheezing into the mic. I wonder if our short national comedy show is almost to be over. Of course, it would be followed by a longer national night”mother”mare in mikey ha-pence.

    • shivaskeeper

      He always sounds like this when he reads off a teleprompter though. WH staff may have gotten a shock vest on him and told him he would be zapped if he went off script.

    • Rags

      Reading out loud requires some anticipation and breath control. 4-5 can’t do it.

  • The Wanderer

    “When you’re wounded and left on Afghanistan’s plains,
    And the women come out to cut up what remains,
    Jest roll to your rifle and blow out your brains
    An’ go to your Gawd like a soldier.”

  • therblig
  • Mr. Blobfish

    I can’t believe his great brain is missing the obvious. Now that the Middle East knows peace, Jarred is available to solve Afghanistan.

  • All it takes for some ‘reporters’ to think someone is presidential is for the president to promise to kill lots of brown people.

    • Spotts1701, Nothingburger Chef

      And not sound too bloodthirsty when promising it.

  • elviouslyqueer

    Meanwhile, OT, but Steven Mnuchin’s wife, y’all! Don’t cry for her, Valentino…

    https://mobile.twitter.com/margarita/status/899806489686179840

    • TJ Barke

      She really needs to look up Marie Antoinette…

      • WIDTAP

        She needs to go back to Kenya during the monsoon season.

      • elviouslyqueer

        She hashtagged her SHOES.

        • wide_stance_hubby

          Shoes. OMG, shoes.

        • Spurning Beer

          During the “many sides” press conference, Steve Mnuchin hashtagged his pants.

      • Canis Greyhame

        Lowly, ungrateful peasants! See how she sacrifices. Your suffering is nothing compared to what she has endured, for America!

        • Weird Fishes

          That was one of last year’s Hermes scarves, such is the sacrifice.

    • wide_stance_hubby

      1, 2, 3. . .”Let’s leave politician’s families out of politics.”

      • Ghenghis McCann

        If only some politicians would do that.

        • bupkus231

          If only some politician’s families would do that ( and that includes making stupidly self-indulgent social media posts )

    • Bill D. Burger
      • wide_stance_hubby

        But, she’s not beautiful. She’s blindingly average.

        • elviouslyqueer

          And blindingly white, also too.

        • Bill D. Burger

          Yup! But…she thinks she is. So she’s stupid as well.

          Being a stupid bitch golddigger is a lifestyle, a career choice, for people like her and the First Slutty Girl Mel.

          • bupkus231

            Not that I have any real respect for Steve Mnuchin’s intelligence ( despite his supposed “fiscal wizardry” ), but one has to figure he knew what made him attractive to her in the first place – perhaps he didn’t care. Kinda makes you wonder what other skillz/characteristics she possesses that would make him leave a wife of 15 years and marry this piece of work just a few months ago….

        • jesterpunk

          But she is rich, so that means she is beautiful to Trump’s base. They also think that if they compliment her other women will sleep with them.

      • The Wanderer

        “Beautiful?” She looks like she’s got the butterface in that pic.

    • Joshua Norton

      Absolutely nobody is more pretentious than white trash with a couple of bucks in the bank.

    • BigCSouthside

      She’s an Ivanka clone. Born wealthy married wealthy thinks it somehow makes her something special, smarter, and more capable than others

  • DesertedPictures

    “My original instinct was to pull out.”

    That’s what she said…

    (Okay… I’ll show myself out)

    • Raan

      Maybe if Fred Trump had the same instinct, we wouldn’t be in this mess.

  • Canis Greyhame

    I’m sure Viceroy Erik Prince is very disappointed that his mercenary Blackwater army will not be allowed to raid the U.S. Treasury in the immediate future, but there’s always the chance Trump will completely reverse course within a few days, and decide to let him launch new crusade after all.

  • ez

    Oh my yes, so Presidential. A leader. A gifted speaker. An inspiration.

    Oh and a total fool as well.

  • Jeff Ackerman

    Peter Hopkirk wrote “The Great Game” it is a good story/history about the British in Afghanistan during the 1800’s. It’s a good read. Unfortunately, we don’t learn from history.

    • Canis Greyhame

      Can we get it in the form of a bronze statue somewhere? That’s the only way we can ever learn about historical figures and events, apparently.

    • unmasked mumbler

      I’ll have to check that out. “A Peace to End All Peace” by David Fromkin is also a great way to get some perspective on how the Middle East got so chaotic in the first place.

      • YoBunnyBunny

        I’m “reading” that right now actually. (Well, I started it and made it half-way through… I’ll get back to it soon enough.) Very fascinating.

  • ariel_gee_398

    I swear the press is like fucking Charlie Brown and the football with this guy. He manages to speaking on live tv for ten minutes without shitting his pants and all of a sudden they’re willing to believe that this time, for real, he’s going to pivot into taking his fucking job seriously.

    • YoBunnyBunny

      The press is Trump’s abused spouse.

      • GoutMachine

        A match made in hell.

    • Suttree

      I was amazed that he didn’t talk about his yooge electoral college win. Prednisential!

      • cmd resistor

        Tonight.

    • David Chaillou

      September the congressional funs and games start again. That’s when we’ll see if the GOP can pull its act together.

  • Cousin Itt de La Résistance
  • Raan

    At least he…

    You know what, no. Much like a shutout in hockey, saying the words would jinx it.

  • Joshua Norton

    I guess Drumph thinks Afghanistan is called “Graveyard of Empires” because they think it’s a catchy slogan to put on their travel brochures.

    Ever since Julius Caesar, they’ve been causing superpowers to overestimate their odds of victory and overextend themselves in attempting to conquer it.

    And we’re supposed to think that Donnie, the least qualified f*uck up of them all, will be the one to pull it off. Unfortunately, his entire plan is to sit on his ass and take credit for whatever has happened before he came to office. Which he claimed was all fake until November 2016 no less.

    • ariel_gee_398

      He’s old, his hearing is a little off. He thought it was “Great Yard of Empires”…

    • wide_stance_hubby

      And wasn’t that Bin Laden’s strategy, to bankrupt us with endless unwinnable wars everywhere?

  • Pierre_de_Fermat

    David Rothkopf:

    A strategy without a strategy, a change without change, a commitment without a commitment, principled realism without principles or realism.— David Rothkopf (@djrothkopf) August 22, 2017

    • YoBunnyBunny

      Which means: WINNING! #maga!

  • VirginiaWackelpudding

    It’s getting obvious that the GOP is going to keep this bugfuck crazy person in the oval office for as long as they can. There was never a better squirrel used to keep attention focused on things other than regulations getting cut and new ones getting made all of which maximize the wealthy’s piggy banks. Even when a new administration gets in, those changes won’t be changed back. Winning our way into third world country status.

    • Mavenmaven

      He’s our own Ferdinand Marcos.

      • Iron Monkey

        Both Ferdinand and Imelda rolled into one.

    • Dr. Rrrrrobotnik

      To be honest, I’ve always kind of thought the flurry of squirrels hasn’t ever been for our benefit: they’ve been for Trump’s. Trump isn’t smart, disciplined, or canny enough to keep up an endless series of public deceptions. I think it’s more his staff trying to keep him occupied, but then quickly changing the subject when he actually starts doing (stupid) things about it. It seems to happen about once a week.

  • laughingnome

    Did he drop some Pashto into the speech?

  • Bill D. Burger

    https://twitter.com/BettyBowers/status/897143183339134978

    Just wait til’ Orange Foolius goes off script tonight in Phoenix.

    • Canis Greyhame

      Uh oh, that’s right, his ego-trip is today. I’ve got a bad feeling about this.

  • Les Appentis De la résistance

    “My original instinct was to pull out”
    — Fred Drumpf Jr.

  • Iron Monkey

    Sending more troops “Into the Land of Bones” is always a good idea.

    http://www.ucpress.edu/book.php?isbn=9780520245532

  • goonemeritus

    That is totally unfair, Trump clearly put forth a bold vision of winning by not repeating Obama’s mistakes while simultaneously doing exactly what Obama was doing.

    • Bub, the cynical zombie

      Watching Republicans swallow this crap is like watching a boa constrictor swallow a deer. You just can’t believe it’s going to go down – but they manage somehow.

      • goonemeritus

        Once you stop thinking the rest is easy.

    • jesterpunk

      Remember when Trump said his immigration plan was what Obama was doing but with more winning?

      • goonemeritus

        Good times.

    • Beanz&Berryz

      Obama hadn’t thought to win.

  • bbayliss
  • Bub, the cynical zombie

    Anyone who wants to read a wonderful, albeit fictionalized, account of the disastrous British retreat from Kabul in 1842 should pick up the novel “Flashman,” by George MacDonald Fraser. Just be aware that you likely won’t be able to stop there – it’s the first of a series. Brilliant books – some of the best historical novels ever written.

    • alwayspunkindrublic

      I love the Flashman books. He’s basically Donald Trump with humor and self-awareness.

      • Steve Cole

        Way too agile to be Trumpolini.

        • Bub, the cynical zombie

          Flashman had a really big dick too…

        • alwayspunkindrublic

          There’s that, but like Trump, Flashman is totally motivated by lust, greed, cowardice, the urge to bully, and self-gratification.

          • Bub, the cynical zombie

            I’m currently rereading the series for about the fourth time, and it occurred to me that MacDonald may have intended us to reconsider our notion of what a hero really is. How many people, I wonder, were motivated as much by having to live up to people’s expectations of them as by genuine courage and integrity? Much of what Flashman does in the later books is forced upon him because he has to protect his reputation as a hero.

          • alwayspunkindrublic

            Interesting point. Flashman does exhibit a degree of moral growth-relatively speaking-from the first book; he’s definitely hoist by his own petard, trapped by the reputation he gained through sheer accident. Fraser is so masterful on every level. He eviscerates the Brit imperialist aristocracy and military leadership (well, he pretty much eviscerates everybody), while noting some of the good-albeit unintentional at times-that resulted, and the crazy-but-futile bravery that made it all happen.

          • Rags

            You say that like it’s a bad thing. #deletedtrumptweets.

    • Steve Cole

      I get most of my military history via fiction (accidental or intentional fiction).

      • Bub, the cynical zombie

        These are models of the form. They even include footnotes. The account of the voyage of a slave ship, with details of how the slaves were packed onto shelves like sardines, is harrowing.

  • Bill D. Burger
    • Bub, the cynical zombie

      And tissues. Boxes and boxes of tissues…

    • wide_stance_hubby

      This takes schadenfreude through the looking glass.

      Snot-nose, crybaby Nazis. I hope they know how ashamed Hitler would be of them.

    • jesterpunk
    • Blackest Noobs

      because apparently white-skinned assholes think the cops will kill them.
      shit..cops haven’t killed white supremacist assholes since Ruby Ridge and Waco..then cops went SOFT….very SOFT on these Nazi-punk-wannabe-pukes.

    • BadKitty904

      Because they’re cowards?

    • IdiokraticCulturalMarxist

      They just realized Trump was lying when he promised to pay their legal fees.

  • TheGrandWazoo2

    The pundits are going crazy today analyzing all the things he didn’t even say.

    • Cousin Itt de La Résistance

      You mean, he didn’t say the rain in Spain falls mainly on the plain?

    • Spotts1701, Nothingburger Chef

      The ink-blot Presidency.

  • Anna Rompage

    Let’s face it, there is no winning in Afghanistan. It’s a tribalized country, much like Iraq, with a weak centralized govt, and many local factions vying for local control in their regions

    Add to this, the rural folks are still essentially living in the 19th centruy, and what you have is a catch 22

    If we stay, we can secure the populous urban areas and prop up the govt. if we leave, it becomes a power vacuum where the taliban and other various violent factions will take control of segments of the country.

    • bbayliss

      You can’t bomb the stone age back to the stone age.

      • arglebargle

        “Well then, we’ll go for the Cretaceous.”

      • Anna Rompage

        You can bomb the world to pieces, but you can’t bomb it into peace

      • TJ Barke

        Stone age people were just as capable of learning to use AKs and IEDs as modern people…

        • bbayliss

          While that may be true they hadn’t made a fetish of honor.
          The Concepts of Honour and Shame

          Honour in Afghan culture defines the reputation and worth of an individual, as well as those they are associated with.
          The head male of a family is responsible for protecting the honour of the family. o The issue of honour drives much of the behaviour surrounding the protection of women, modes of dress, social interaction, education and economic activity.
          If someone’s honour has been compromised, they are shamed and will look for a way to exact revenge for themselves, their family or group.
          The role of honour and tribalism has fuelled much of the disharmony in the country’s recent history – with one group carrying out violent acts against another, the victims are forced to respond causing a circle of violence.

          http://www.commisceo-global.com/country-guides/afghanistan-guide

      • David Chaillou

        I am sorry, see above. This country was poor but very nice until we and the Soviets fucked it up. And just because they do not share our way of life doesn’t make it the stone age.

        • bbayliss

          You think we should bomb them?
          “Sharing our way of life” is nothing I would recommend to anyone, but then neither is this:

          Mixing Between Genders
          Free mixing between genders only takes places within families.
          In professional situations such as at businesses or universities, males and females may be co-workers, but are nevertheless cautious to maintain each other’s honour.
          Foreign females must learn to read the rules and live by them.
          If a man speaks to you directly in a social context, he is dishonouring you. If someone speaks to you on the street, that is equally inappropriate. You should avoid looking men in the eyes, and keep your eyes lowered when you walk down the street to maintain your reputation as a proper woman.
          Women must always dress properly to avoid unwanted attention. Always wear loose fitting pants under your skirts and be sure the definition of your legs is indistinguishable. It is also strongly advisable to wear a headscarf in public.
          On the other hand foreign men should note that it is inappropriate to initiate social conversation with a woman, and one should not ask a male about his wife or female relatives.
          Men and women should never be alone in the same room. If this happens you should ensure a door is left open.
          Men and women should never touch one another under any circumstances.
          http://www.commisceo-global.com/country-guides/afghanistan-guide

          • David Chaillou

            Sounds more Victorian than Stone Age. Stone Age implies barbarians. Afghans definitely are highly civilised.

          • bbayliss

            So you’re the arbiter of degree of “civilization”?
            Stone age implies tools made of stone.
            The idea that Victorian men could not address women in public, or make eye contact is nonsense.

          • David Chaillou

            Stone Age implies more than tools made of stone, or you wouldn’t have used it in reference to Afghanistan.

            As to the relative degree of civilisation, I’m pretty sure it’s far too undefined for anybody to “arbitrate” it. I just want to point out that judging a different culture only by benchmarking it on what you consider to be your own culture’s highest achievements is a logical fallacy. It tends to overlook the strong points of the other cultures.

          • bbayliss

            You missed my point initially. It hasn’t gotten better. I’m done.

    • Jeffery Campbell

      It’s not known as the “graveyard of empires” for nothing.

    • Randy Riddle

      “It’s a tribalized country, much like Iraq, with a weak centralized govt, and many local factions vying for local control in their regions.”

      You just describe the US.

      • Anna Rompage

        To some degree, yes

      • Kiri the Unicorn

        Not quite, but getting there.

    • David Chaillou

      My aunt was in Afghanistan in 1975, spent quite a while there. It was a beautiful, fairly peaceful country. I don’t believe this “cursed tribal land” narrative. We fucked this country up by making it a counter in the fight between superpowers. America enabled and armed the Talibans because it was convenient to drain Soviet energy.

      • Anna Rompage

        This is true…

        Much like what we did to the Middle East in the early 20th century and our subsequent actions From then on out.

        We have a propensity to displace the normal power structures in other countries, which in turn, leaves a power vacuum for the most rutheless ideologues to step in

        • Ωbjectifier

          And South America, Central America, the Pacific Islands…

          • YoBunnyBunny

            Everywhere, Katie?

    • Vagenda of Rebel Scum

      Read a long account about a horrific landslide that buried an entire village in Afghanistan- when survivors showed up to try to dig out the victims, they were buried by a second landslide.
      Eventually representatives from the Afghan government showed up, but it was only for photo ops and to declare the site a mass grave- no victim recovery.
      The US Military did show up with actual help- food, water, blankets and temporary shelter for the survivors. However, the people in the next village over heard that there was free stuff, and came over for some, too.(and who can blame them? They didn’t have a pot or a window, either). They tried to apportion the goods based on who had the highest status with the elders, rather than who was most in need.
      This is a system the US is somehow supposed to fix, and BTW, this is life under government you can drown in a bathtub, Republican assholes.

    • georgiaburning

      Eventually we set up a photogenic warlord or two, proclaim victory, and leave.

      • Anna Rompage

        Is Noriega’s son looking for some work?

  • Resistance Fighter Callyson

    But all my life I’ve heard that decisions are much different when you sit behind the desk in the Oval Office

    Did you forget this during the campaign, when you kept babbling about how easy it was going to be, asshole?

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/c57dd13fd4d4034bb9fb403f1625580804d4817913b7e2e0708d3a735e80e96f.jpg

    • Anna Rompage

      Who knew presidenting could be such a difficult, and complex task

      • Kiri the Unicorn

        This is usually where I post a picture of Hillary Clinton.

    • Blackest Noobs

      more like ‘Art of the Deal: bullshitting you enough for you to buy my bullshit even though i am pretty much a fucking failure if not for My Daddy’s Money’

  • Ghenghis McCann

    After all the things Trump said about NATO, now he’s asking the other NATO members to send troops to Afghanistan to help the US.

    • BadKitty904

      I can’t imagine any NATO ally in their right mind having anything to do with this ignorant buffoon. Which is exactly why Putin put him in the White House.

    • doktorzoom

      Well of course. He’s whipped ’em into shape in 7 months, just like he upgraded the nuclear arsenal.

  • BadKitty904
    • YoBunnyBunny

      And to think: we knew all of this BEFORE he was elected.

      • BadKitty904

        Thanks, GOP/Russia!

    • wide_stance_hubby

      All of them, Kitty.

    • Bill D. Burger

      Sadly, a majority of those qualities allowed the people who voted FOR him to identfiy WITH him.

      • BadKitty904

        Happily, they are a minority in this country. Time for us to take back our nation.

  • Resistance Fighter Callyson

    Trump said he’d make sure troops on the ground wouldn’t be hampered by too much micromanagement of the war from Washington, letting military commanders make decisions about objectives and targeting bad guys, or people we think are bad guys.

    Christ. We learned nothing from My Lai, did we?

    • alwayspunkindrublic

      Because civilian leadership of the military is what separates us from fascist states.

  • MynameisBlarney
  • Martini Ambassador 🍸

    Well damn, son, ain’t no way we can win it now!
    https://twitter.com/woodruffbets/status/899814237417111553

  • Suttree

    Where was Jared in this process? Or is he on the outs since Turnip just found out he was a Jewish from that nazi interview on Vice.

    • Spotts1701, Nothingburger Chef

      On a plane to the Middle East. He left Sunday so that he can try to figure out this whole “peace” thing.

      • Resistance Fighter Callyson

        Oh, Christ, as if the Middle East hasn’t been through enough.

      • Cousin Itt de La Résistance

        Try the Peace Train next time.

    • The Rain in Spain’s Therapist

      Him and Louise Linton were too busy discussing how hard it is to find good help these days.

  • Robbertjan Brandenburg

    They probably realize no terrorist would try anything because them in place ony suits their agenda.

    https://twitter.com/Shakestweetz/status/899974939960381440

    • Spotts1701, Nothingburger Chef

      Double the planes, double the cost.

    • MynameisBlarney

      They know the USSS is broke, right?
      What are they gonna do, hire rent-a-cops for security?

      • covfefesumgame0005

        Eric Prince merc’s are for hire!

      • Boscoe

        Hell’s Angels?

    • Mr. Blobfish

      But who will provide the adulation? Even Ivanka was there.

    • Red Bird

      Whaaaaat? Your sentence makes so sense.

      • Robbertjan Brandenburg

        No sense or so sense?

        • Red Bird

          No sense. I think it is missing a word.

          • Boscoe

            A couple, at least. Still, i was eventually able to parse it.

            try this:
            “They probably realized that no terrorist would try anything, because keeping trump/Pence in power suits their own agenda.”

          • Red Bird

            Ahh….got it. Yes, that makes sense now.

          • Robbertjan Brandenburg

            Well what I meant is. Terrists won;t blow up a Pence Trump rally killing both because This admin does more damage to America than they would ever be able to inflict.

          • Red Bird

            You Dutch people are very smart.

          • Robbertjan Brandenburg

            We thank the cheese and milk.

          • Red Bird

            Not the dams and tulips?

          • Robbertjan Brandenburg

            And the dykes and canals.

            fun fact: Tulips aren’t really Dutch. They are Turkish and it was once again our desire for trade that made them considered Dutch:

            Carolus Clusius is largely responsible for the spread of tulip bulbs in the final years of the sixteenth century. He planted tulips at the Vienna Imperial Botanical Gardens in 1573. He finished the first major work on tulips in 1592, and made note of the variations in colour. After he was appointed director of the Leiden University’s newly established Hortus Botanicus, he planted both a teaching garden and his private garden with tulips in late 1593. Thus, 1594 is considered the date of the tulip’s first flowering in the Netherlands, despite reports of the cultivation of tulips in private gardens in Antwerp and Amsterdam two or three decades earlier. These tulips at Leiden would eventually lead to both the Tulip mania and the tulip industry in the Netherlands.[35] In 1596 and 1598, over a hundred bulbs were stolen from his garden in a single raid.[clarification needed]
            Between 1634 and 1637, the enthusiasm for the new flowers triggered a speculative frenzy now known as the tulip mania. Tulip bulbs became so expensive that they were treated as a form of currency, or rather, as futures. Around this time, the ceramic tulipiere was devised for the display of cut flowers stem by stem. Vases and bouquets, usually including tulips, often appeared in Dutch still-life painting. To this day, tulips are associated with the Netherlands, and the cultivated forms of the tulip are often called “Dutch tulips.” The Netherlands have the world’s largest permanent display of tulips at the Keukenhof.

          • Red Bird

            Thanks for history lesson. Aren’t the Dutch one of the first countries to send explorers to the east? I’m thinking of the 15th century.

          • Robbertjan Brandenburg

            In the 15th century we weren’t really a country yet but I think the Spanish and Portuguese started most of the exploration. We did take over the leading role at the end of the 16th century after becoming independant to the Spanish Habsburgs and ruled the seas during the 17th century.

          • Red Bird

            Maybe that’s what I’m thinking. People from that region sailing with the Spanish.
            Anyway, my reason for asking is because I used to hear that Dutch sailors fought along side the natives of Trinidad and Tobago when they tried to avoid colonization. Maybe just a local legend.

          • Robbertjan Brandenburg

            Ha! my ex is from Trinidad (or actually her father is) making my son one quarter Trinidanian.

            What I know is that the Dutch like Tasman were greeted more friendly than the Spanish or Someone like Cook because they always tried to appease the natives by playing music and that was ost of the times a lot more succesful than brutal displays of force.

            Fighting alongside is new to me so I can;t help you there.

          • Red Bird

            And one of my cousins is married to a Dutch man. And I’m Trinidadian. That’s funny.

          • Robbertjan Brandenburg

            Just proofs to show how this really is a small world. :) Biggest problem I had was pronouncing Trinidadian in Dutch: Trinidadiaans. I usuallly just say: Caribbean.

          • Red Bird

            Just call us crazy. ;)

          • Robbertjan Brandenburg

            I won’t. I have very fond memories of my former Trini family.

  • Randy Riddle

    I find this post hard to make dick jokes about except to say that everyone involved with Trump’s speech is a dick.

    • goingohm

      Many of those people are very fine dicks.

  • Resistance Fighter Callyson

    What can you add to this, NYT link?

    The president heaped contempt on his predecessor’s strategy, promising that he would avoid President Barack Obama’s mistakes.

    But in substance, Mr. Trump’s strategy was not all that different from Mr. Obama’s, relying on a mix of conventional military force and diplomatic pressure on Pakistan. One administration official conceded that there was to be no major change in the mix of American forces operating in Afghanistan, and that the priorities would remain training Afghan forces and conducting counterterrorism operations.

    So we’re following the same policy that Donald supposedly opposed, while engaging in hostile rhetoric that seems designed to alienate our allies. OK then…

    http://i0.kym-cdn.com/photos/images/original/000/829/550/a4e.gif

  • Ωbjectifier
  • Daniel Hooper

    In the most obvious baldfaced lie of the speech, Trump said the new plan came after “I studied Afghanistan in great detail and from every conceivable angle,” which translates to, “I’m telling you what the generals have decided to do, and by Thursday I’ll have forgotten two thirds of it.”

    Wonkette, come on; be honest. He’ll have forgotten ALL of it by tomorrow.

    • Ghenghis McCann

      You both assume that it passed from the teleprompter to his mouth, via his brain.

  • Toomush_Inferesistance

    “My original instinct was to pull out” – a phrase he honed through the 1980s…

    • Bobathonic

      “So now, go get an abortion, you slut.”

    • goingohm

      But decided he didn’t want to deny America his essence. Ew.

    • wide_stance_hubby

      “Until Mel informed me I wasn’t in in the first place.”

  • OrG

    If you don’t have a plan, nothing can go wrong.

    • Me not sure

      “If you don’t know where you’re going,
      Any road will get you there.”
      George Harrison

  • Blackest Noobs

    i would vote for Trump if he got rid of fucking pennies. goddamn it i fucking hate people who pay for things with goddamn nasty dirty as fuck pennies.

    • Bill D. Burger
      • chortlingdingo

        Lincoln really ought to be on a higher denomination too.

    • Vagenda and Pee-ara

      Finally, some hope and change I can believe in.

      Yes, I’ll show myself out.

    • MynameisBlarney

      Well, I looked for the original “Ass-Pennies” video by Upright Citizens Brigade comedy troupe, but it ain’t on youtube anymore apparently.

      • Guest Liberal

        “My pennies have been in your ass!!”

        Brilliant, one take.

    • YoBunnyBunny

      In defense of pennies, I’ve come across some nice and shiny new pennies that were recently minted in 2016! I didn’t know they were still producing those things either!

    • 🛶🗣️ Mr Canoehead 🛶🗣️

      Another reason to move to Canada.

      • Blackest Noobs

        wait. WAIT!!!! did the fucking Canucks get rid of the fucking penny????!!!!????

        if only Canada had a need for librarians…even shitty ones.

  • Guest Liberal
  • Nasty Candy Apple

    He presented Trump with a black-and-white snapshot from 1972 of Afghan women in miniskirts walking through Kabul, to show him that Western norms had existed there before and could return.

    Are you goddamn fucking kidding me?! The reason Afghanistan is not wearing miniskirts today is because the CIA fought a proxy war there against the USSR to stop the spread of Socialism. We overthrew that progressive movement. WE ARE THE REASON FOR THE RISE OF THE TALIBAN.

    What the fuck. Delete your account, U.S. government.

    • OrG

      Oops.

      • Bobathonic

        That’s the usual response when the Law of Unintended Consequences eats your lunch.

      • Nasty Candy Apple

        I need to go play with a room full of kittens now.

        • Kathleendimberling

          Square94e

          Google is paying 97$ per hour! work for few hours and have longer with friends & family!
          On tuesday I got a Smart new Land Rover Range Rover from having earned $8752 this last four weeks.. Its the most-financialy rewarding I’ve had.. It sounds unbelievable but you wont forgive yourself if you don’t check it
          !ai244d:
          ➽➽
          ➽➽;➽➽ http://GoogleFinancialJobs534CashMarketSquare/GetPay$97/Hour ★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★✫★★:::::!ai244l..,…..

      • Naytch

        Did we break something in a China shop?

    • bbayliss

      Here’s proof from Zbigniew Brzezinski’s lips:
      “What is most important to the history of the world? The Taliban or the collapse of the Soviet empire? Some stirred-up Moslems or the liberation of Central Europe and the end of the cold war?”
      https://www.globalresearch.ca/articles/BRZ110A.html

      • Permit-holder Ron

        And now we have the answer.
        Thanks, Z.

    • everstar

      Stop confusing people with relevant historical information!

  • paxpax

    He’s gonna manage with “results” because let’s run a war like a poorly run business

    • Bill D. Burger

      Putting the War in Afghanistan into Chapter 11. ___ And then Orange Foolius waits for the Taliban and ISIS to come to him and try to work out a deal?

      He does have a LOT of experience with that strategy. __ Better rest up. This could take a while. ~snicker~

      http://stateofthenation2012.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/resize.jpg

    • jesterpunk

      He is going to run it like his casinos and bankrupt the entire planet.

  • Mr. Blobfish

    Mother Of All Butthurt

  • Guest Liberal
    • Rick Hill

      Well, duh. He’s smart enough to not do that. Do you think he would get involved with fighting Vietnam? trump has the best brain, after all.

      • Guest Liberal
        • Hamilton Ω, AKA Formerly DN

          Trump could use his brain for a hockey puck.

          If you could use a hockey puck made out of bullshit.

          • Permit-holder Ron

            Well, there WAS this one time in Kapuskasing…

      • Pierre_de_Fermat

        But Korea? Could always restart the Korean War.

        • Rick Hill

          Phtttt. Asia, man. Korea’s not in Asia

      • Guest Liberal

        FYI, Afghanistan is located in South Asia and Central Asia…

  • Resistance Fighter Astraea

    So we can’t question the need for war because it upsets the troops, we can’t protest by refusing to stand for the national anthem because it upsets the troops and now we can’t oppose nazis in America because the troops. I had no idea our military was made up of such delicate snowflakes that fighting against nazis is just too much to handle.

    • therblig

      why do you hate our troops? i bet you don’t even have a ribbon magnet on your car.

      • Boscoe

        …or a Confederate flag on the gunrack of your pickup truck. You know, like ‘rill ‘murikan patriots have.

        • therblig

          Calvin pissing on a Koran?

  • So this is his plan for 2020? War time incumbant? Do we burn our dixie chicks cds now?

  • TJ Barke

    “We’re gonna keep doing the same things as obama, but it’s different, because I’m not obama…”

    • wide_stance_hubby

      Winning strategy. Now with 100% less melanin.

      • TJ Barke

        And 100% more orange.

  • jesterpunk

    Trump is going to need congressional approval for his bigly plan. He keeps attacking congressional republicans too so I am sure they will be willing to help him.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2017/08/22/trump-wants-an-unlimited-troop-increase-in-afghanistan-hes-going-to-need-congresss-help/?utm_term=.027424ff6f86

    On Monday, President Trump made it sound like America is revving up its war with Afghanistan, by an untold number of troops delivering “overwhelming force” over an untold amount of time.

    “Our troops will fight to win,” he said in his first major speech on Afghanistan. “From now on, victory will have a clear definition: attacking our enemies, obliterating ISIS, crushing al-Qaeda, preventing the Taliban from taking over the country and stopping mass terror attacks against Americans before they emerge.”

    Except, he’s going to need Congress’s help to do that. And it’s not immediately clear how much of it he will get.

    Constitutional experts say the president can decide to escalate or de-escalate U.S. troops’ fighting in Afghanistan whenever he wants, since Congress authorized the executive branch to use military force in Afghanistan immediately after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.

    There’s no such thing as a free war, and Congress is the one that will authorize money for Trump’s to-be-determined troop increase. Though Trump didn’t specify how many troops would join the 8,500 serving in the region, congressional officials say the administration pegged the increase at about 4,000 additional troops

    • Boscoe

      Except there is no “plan” coming from trump. The “plan”, whatever it is, is whatever congress and the generals would’ve done anyway. trump was just preemptively taking credit for whatever it turns out to be.

      • Permit-holder Ron

        It worked at Carrier. And will likely end the same way.

      • GHERKINS OF RESTIVENESS!

        “Ok, Generals, you are in charge of the winning. You, Afghanis, also do the winning. Pakistan, you will help do winning too. PLAN ACCOMPLISHED!”

  • Anna Rompage

    Troop increases in Afghanistan, brink of war with North Korea, and now we’re looking to engauge our military in Venezuela…

    John McCain & Lindsey must have giant stiffys right about now

    • Mr. Blobfish

      They’re having a sword fight literally right this very minute.

      • Zyxomma

        Thanks for the smile; I needed it.

  • Mr. Blobfish
  • OneYieldRegular

    “Tonight is a new President Trump.”

    No doubt this is the PIVOT we’ve been hearing about for the past 20 months. [turns page of People magazine, uses Emery board on fingernails, takes sip of coffee]

  • Thiazin Red

    Seriously, is that memory erasing drug from Torchwood real? Do media people not remember all the alleged “pivots” and “New Trumps” that happened since he announced his candidacy?

    • Anna Rompage

      Hell, he’s even looked presidential a time or two since being in office

    • jesterpunk

      BOTH SIDES!!!!!

    • Blackest Noobs

      the media fucking lost it when they didn’t call out on this asshole from the get-go.
      Trump should have never gotten this far.

      • Permit-holder Ron

        He should have been laughed back into relative obscurity when he was halfway down the frakking escalator.

    • Rick Hill

      Wait till tonight’s rally when trump starts throwing his shrinking base the red meat they want. Kindof the way Stalin’s secret police turned into a group that was only composed of people who liked to terrorize and torture and, in the end, even Stalin feared them. These people would love it if he actually ordered them to start a race war

      • Permit-holder Ron

        Especially if they themselves aren’t likely to die in it.

      • 🛶🗣️ Mr Canoehead 🛶🗣️

        Love it? They’re counting on it.

    • Hamilton Ω, AKA Formerly DN

      Media people say what brings their management the most profit. {{{Full Stop}}}

  • Guest Liberal
  • fawkedifiknow

    I know Trump is not serious about winning in Afghanistan because he didn’t even once mention the idea of taking the Taliban furniture shopping.

    • Hamilton Ω, AKA Formerly DN

      ..and a nice dinner, a good movie, and then invite them up for drinks…

      • TundraGrifter

        That’s not Mr. Trump’s style. He’s more a grab ’em by the pussy guy.

  • Hamilton Ω, AKA Formerly DN

    Fuck this shit!

    The only measurable change that can come from what Trump is proposing is that more people will die. Nothing will improve. {{{Full Stop.}}}

    • Zyxomma

      So … you’re named for two different wristwatches. I approve.

      • Hamilton Ω, AKA Formerly DN

        Neither of which I can afford at the moment.

        ETA: Unless I give up cigars.

        • Zyxomma

          I own a vintage 18K Omega Ladymatic that cost me way more to fix than to buy. It’s got a rectangular dial; almost all Ladymatics are round. Very plain, very beautiful, and works perfectly. If I don’t find work soon, it will be for sale.

          • Hamilton Ω, AKA Formerly DN

            Best of luck to you finding work.

            I am tempted to go look at watch porn now. Thank you.

          • Rags

            Is that like ‘ I am going to hear and listen to music.’?

          • Hamilton Ω, AKA Formerly DN

            I guess sometimes, occasionally.

            This is watch porn (to me, anyway):
            https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/a3dbcbec3efbfa975361b8646a46d5c06a574fb83359c6652560a7f339a680e3.jpg

          • Zyxomma

            That’s gorgeous. Who makes it?

          • AuntyMaude

            some gear head

          • Hamilton Ω, AKA Formerly DN

            Can’t remember. It was about $250 at the time, I think.

          • Permit-holder Ron

            ‘Oh, man, you can see her escapement and EVERYTHING!’

          • JustDon’tSayDignity

            Hey! Where’s the NSFW warning? You could get me fired!

          • TundraGrifter

            Why type of work are you looking for? In a general way, where do you live? Perhaps somebody here can give you a few useful tips.

          • Zyxomma

            I usually temp as a second or third shift legal and financial proofreader. I live in the east village of NYC. I also write and edit. The problem is that no one wants to hire a 63 year old for anything other than occasional work. It’s time I listed my holistic health educator skills on Craigslist.

          • TundraGrifter

            On the Internets nobody knows how old you are. Sounds like you are competing with off-shore services. Can you push the fact you’re US based so the confidentially is much higher?

            I got my California substitute teacher credential as a back-up position – then my regular commercial property inspection and report reviewing work picked up.

            Perhaps some kind Wonkettes have a few NYC contacts. There certainly would seem to be a need for financial proofreading – not a business where one wants to have the decimal point in the wrong place!

          • E K Wallace

            I’ve worked for a couple of proof-on-demand places as an editor/proofreader. There’s a pool of available work, and you take what you want to do when you feel like doing it. It’s all online, so you can work from anywhere. I don’t know if linking to one of them is allowed in the comments, which don’t exist anyway, but I can send you the URL for the editor application page for the busiest one if you like.

          • Zyxomma

            Please do. Thank you.

          • E K Wallace

            Oh, this thing can’t do PMs. Here’s the application page, and I hope that’s OK. I don’t get anything if you apply to/end up working for them. Your legal experience should be a plus–anything using Bluebook referencing tends to sit for a while because everyone’s afraid of it!

  • TundraGrifter

    Why doesn’t President Trump take his fool-proof (as if!) plan to defeat ISIS, just change a few names, and use it in Afghanistan?

    • bbayliss

      He did

      • Boscoe

        Step 1: Stand in front of a microphone
        Step 2: say words about how “we’re gonna be doing a lot of winning of all the things, believe me.”
        Step 3: PROFIT!!

  • TundraGrifter

    In the excellent book about the Civil War “I Rode With Stonewall,” the author describes how commanding officers often made the mistake of slowly feeding reserve troops into battles. They didn’t provide the impact of going in all at once (which can be difficult to arrange and accomplish successfully, of course – movements of large numbers of soldiers on a battlefield is quite an art) so they just got chewed up to no purpose.

    That seems to be what our President is proposing. Not enough force to actually accomplish anything – just enough to appear to be doing something.

    I hope someone in Congress – say, Sen. John McCain – asks the President “Just what does ‘victory’ in Afghanistan look like?”

    • doktorzoom

      He won’t tell anyone. Then the enemy would know!

      • TundraGrifter

        Which, actually, is the way Stonewall ran his Corps. It rather frustrated his junior officers, but he did manage to make it work.

        • doktorzoom

          Trump’s just missing the “tactical and strategic genius” part, is all.

          • TundraGrifter

            Along with the West Point education, military combat experience, ability to inspire and lead, etc., etc. He reminds me of Stormin’ Norman’s description of Saddam Insane’s abilities as a military leader.

    • YayConspiracy

      It looks like a wall shaped in the form of the repeal of Obamacare.

    • Mission Accomplished banner on some Aircraft Carrier where trump gets to stand around in a flight suit.

      • TundraGrifter

        He won’t need to borrow President Bush’s codpiece. A thimble will work just fine.

  • Relativicus

    Phillip Rucker please pick up your last check in HR.

    Also, besides the acquisition, storage, and cost issues, wouldn’t coating bullets with blood cause significant maintenance issues for the armaments themselves?

    • cmd resistor

      Who the hell is he anyhow?

    • GHERKINS OF RESTIVENESS!

      Trump’s Elite Suidae Sanguinary Supersoaker Squad will lead the way!

  • Zyxomma

    So, if anyone’s been wondering why the DOJ under Jeff Sessions is re-starting the War on Drugs no matter how many states are legalizing pot, I have a theory. The all-volunteer military relies on a recruitment tool that involves expunging arrest/criminal records in exchange for service in the military.

    I remember a scene in a movie (Lone Star?) where Joe Morton commanded a military base where a recruit failed a drug test, and he gave her another chance.

    • AuntyMaude

      Can’t we all just get a bong?

      • Zyxomma

        Can’t join you, Aunty, though I’d love to. I’ve been abstaining since May of 2016 (yes, I went through the whole election disaster straight) because I’m job hunting, and even temp jobs sometimes drug-test. Sucks.

        • AuntyMaude

          Drug tests are a huge intrusion into our private lives. What the hell business is it of any employer what a worker does on their time off? Unless smoking pot or doing some other drug is a public safety hazard, then it shouldn’t be allowed. It’s just another business dedicated to making corporate assholes rich. Having said all that, I actually don’t smoke though the possibility exists that I may have in the past. Also good luck with your job hunt. I hope you find something suitable soon.

          • Biel_ze_Bubba

            A huge factor in unemployment is drug testing. A fair percentage of “conservative” red-staters are self-medicating in one way or another, and don’t seem willing or able to knock it off long enough to pass a frickin’ employment screen.
            Then they blame the immigrants who get the jobs, vote for Drumpf, and supply Dok with a steady stream of SFB material.

          • AuntyMaude

            I think I get “stupid” and “fucking” but what does B stand for?

          • Biel_ze_Bubba

            “Dear Shit-Fer-Brains” is a weekly feature at Wonkette. SFB material is provided by assorted trolls and right-wing loons who’ve been banhammered, but whose deleted coments Dok has preserved for posteriority and presents for our amusement and bemusement (and probably our ceemusement as well.)

          • AuntyMaude

            Got it. Thank you. “Ceemusement” hahaha Good one.

    • SnarkON

      My theory is slightly more simple: Now that the War on Gay Marriage and the War on Obamacare are effectively lost, the dumbass base needs something new(ish) to rally around.

    • Boscoe

      And as a bonus, all the extra taxpayer money flowing into the pockets of the for-profit prison industry…

  • SnarkON

    Can’t we just build a big, beautiful wall around Afghanistan?

  • Bitter Scribe

    Will the government of Afghanistan ever be able to defend itself? Are we going to be “advising” their army forever?

    If the answer to the first question is “no,” then the answer to the second is “probably, unless we broker some sort of peace deal with the Taliban.” Trump will never do this, of course, because it means dealing with terrorists as equals instead of killing them.

    • bbayliss

      Defend itself against itself?

    • Kooolest G

      if only we could send more guns and teach these people how to fight, we would finally have peace?

  • Professor Fate

    So people will continue to die but nobody has to admit that nothing the US does will do any good. Sounds about right. God forbid anybody important admit an error.

  • Permit-holder Ron

    So the US will confine itself to the task of killing people, while the rest of the UN forces there have to tidy up afterwards and keep the place from becoming Somalia.
    Sounds about right.

  • Kooolest G

    the problem is, if we ever leave afghanistan, anytime some crazy muslim shoots up his office party in san bernadino, it will be the president’s fault for leaving afghanistan too early. if we leave tomorrow the taliban will take over, if we leave in 10 more years, the taliban will take over 10 years from now. and if we don’t keep on sending kids to get killed there we dishonor the other kids that we sent there to get killed somehow. so it looks like we will be there forever, we’ll keep getting coffins sent back, the whole region will continue to hate us for meddling, volatility will keep gas prices high, and we’ll keep pissing away money on this stupid misadventure. good plan mr. president, and past mr presidents….and future mr. or mrs. presidents

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/423208fa9d159d71aca6d298827676f84f1b4fc334ecb662509110c9661554bb.jpg

    • Can we make sure our royalty sends its kids off to fight like the UK did – look at Prince Harry with his military experience and all. It would be a national disgrace if the royals did not participate.

      • harryeagar

        Won’t work. Although they do make pink AR-15s there aren’t really any cool designer weapons. Perhaps Hermes could be induced to bid on pentagon contracts.

  • Great, let’s just get Nuclear armed Pakistan and India at each other’s throat too while were at it. Nothing says peace like a nuclear armed escalation in the region.

  • William
  • Jeff Mc Donald

    I guess we don’t really need details, do we? I mean come on! We already know none of the President’s family or friends will be in any danger, and really, isn’t that what’s important here? I mean, we have to protect or almost best and not so brightest.

  • William

    Well as we all know, vast oil reserves paid for the war in Iraq, therefore it’s logical to assume the afghans we seize in Afghanistan will pay for our involvement there.
    Sincerely

    The Bush administration.
    (you’re welcome, call us anytime).https://www.thenation.com/article/who-said-war-would-pay-itself-they-did/

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/86a8804ee9c84f1aea524c3b4ebd5d4ad462684ec8bc9738a7a76378a24c2b58.jpg

    • eyelashviper

      Nice colors, but not authentic enough…dontcha know that afghans need day-glo, and lots of it?

  • eyelashviper

    The Hoofwanker did an about-face on Afganistan when he learned that there were possibly trillions of dollars of minerals there, so we can be sure that some corporate entity attached to the tentacles of his vile family is now seeking ways to get their suction cups on some of that $$$$$..

  • The Librarian

    Ok, losers, I’m gonna be rich soon, rich! Trust me!! No need to ask how. So fucking rich. You’ll never know just how rich, but richer than your wildest dreams!!!1!! Riiiiiiich!

    *Got me powerball tickets. Drinks on me if we win

  • eyelashviper

    Well, if the troop increase goes as swimingly as the Navy in the Pacific, will we be winning bigly?

    • JustDon’tSayDignity

      Uh oh. That means the plan is doomed.

  • Bill Patterson

    Trump is correct regarding the US military never leaving Afghanistan.
    The reason we’re there is the TAPI natural gas pipeline, in which the US government and US based multinational crude oil and natural gas companies, including Exxon Mobil, the world’s largest, have invested billions.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Turkmenistan%E2%80%93Afghanistan%E2%80%93Pakistan%E2%80%93India_Pipeline
    Incidentally, the reason Rex Tillerson transferred directly from CEO of Exxon Mobil to Sec. of State is as follows:
    “In a dramatic stroke of luck for the Kremlin, this morning there is hardly a person in the world who is happier than Russian president Vladimir Putin because overnight state-run run OAO Rosneft announced it has discovered what may be a treasure trove of black oil, one which could boost Russia’s coffers by hundreds of billions if not more, when a vast pool of crude was discovered in the Kara Sea region of the Arctic Ocean, showing the region has the potential to become one of the world’s most important crude-producing areas, arguably bigger than the Gulf Of Mexico.” http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2014-09-27/russia-discovers-massive-arctic-oil-field-which-may-be-larger-gulf-mexico
    “Then Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin and Exxon Mobil Chief Executive Rex Tillerson attend a meeting at the Novo-Ogaryovo state residence outside Moscow, Russia April 16, 2012.”
    “Exxon Mobil stands to regain access to huge reserves of oil if the United States rolls back sanctions on Russia.”
    “U.S. sanctions on Russia have prevented Exxon Mobil from exploring assets covering 63.6 million acres.” https://www.cnbc.com/2016/12/13/exxon-mobil-could-tap-huge-arctic-assets-if-us-russian-relations-thaw.html
    If one wants to know the guiding principle of US foreign policy in every major situation, just follow the oil (and natural gas).

    • Gregory Purcell

      The Russians build spaceships, and they have recently figured out how to produce a domesticly built arctic drilling rig. (I am glad Exxon is getting skrewed but…)

    • tkingt

      Putin + Tillerson + Exxon Mobil = Billions for Donnie. Basic arithmetic.

      • SeeTrain65

        = Billions for Putin. A dose of Polonium for Donnie.

  • GHERKINS OF RESTIVENESS!

    What do you mean my “Donald J. Trump Certified Plan© To Play A Symphony®” won’t work!?

    It says here, I am to press down the piano keys, or play the violin strings, or whatever, at the right moment for the right length of time, in the right order. Everyone else is to do the same thing. No micromanagement anymore, by “failing conductors” or anything.

    PLAN GUARANTEED TO SUCCEED

    • John Saxon

      After all, how hard can it be?

  • Pat_Pending

    I wish Donald had ‘followed his instincts and pulled out’ starting 40 years ago and spared us his hell spawn…

    • Angela Ruzzo

      You made me smile, because back in 1970, when I was 14, I went to the local university library to do research for a school report, and when I was sitting in a booth in the back of the stacks I saw some graffiti on the wall that said “Nixon’s father should have pulled out too” and I didn’t understand it. I had to ask my mother what it meant, and she blushed. I still laugh about that.

      • Grumpy Old Man

        My graffiti triumph in the 70s was adding to this string:
        “All prisoners are political”
        “free political prisoners”
        I added:
        “Due to Nixon’s inflationary policies, they are a dime a dozen”

  • Angela Ruzzo

    Jesus Christ, people, study some fucking history!!! Nobody wins a war in Afghanistan, nobody. Even Alexander the Great said those people were unconquerable, and he would know.

    • Opiwan

      Even Vizzini knew you don’t get involved in a land war in Asia…

  • Khavrinen

    “Donald Trump lays out bold plan for strategic vagueness.”

    So, pretty much the same plan he has for everything else, then?

  • Saxo the Grammarian

    Taliban’s response: “We have limited resources, but we don’t seem to have a problem matching up against the world’s best-equipped armies. We’re happy to fight on.”

  • TEX Dept. of Space Tacos

    “Trump did not include any role for mercenaries in Afghanistan”

    Well, he didn’t say there would be a role..maybe the Generals convinced of how stupid an idea it would be – or maybe they’re planning on giving away the farm, but just didn’t mention it.

  • harryeagar

    What Trump and his generals are doing is called a blusterfuck.

    They sound like Westmoreland.

  • Celtic_Gnome

    One of these days, some asshole member of the media is going to be interrupted in mid-tweet about Donald Trump’s presidential pivot by the mushroom cloud rising in front of him.

  • Biel_ze_Bubba

    Mother Of All Blowhards sez what?

  • Begin Anew Day

    If donnie thinks all of this saber-rattling will endear him to Crom he doesn’t know Crom.

    Crom hates one thing above all else, weaklings like donnie.

  • Jack

    So more of the same, that hasn’t worked? Gee Donald why didn’t I think of that? 16 years of failure followed by four more years of failure with another 4,000 troops, what could go wrong? But the Generals know that without Afghanistan how would the Army get more promotions, with no wars to fight?

  • TundraGrifter

    Who do you think taught people in that part of the world to construct car bombs and other assorted IEDs?

    We sent super sniper “elephant” rifles to the Afghan “freedom fighters” and then had to warn our friends in India that their officers on the Indian-Pakistan border (Kashmir) might want to be very careful because some of them got away…

  • TundraGrifter

    If President Trump really wants to learn about Afghanistan, instead of interviewing a handful of low level soldiers he should have talked to the taxi drivers and waiters in Fremont, CA.

  • azeyote

    maybe i should apologize but i won’t – i grow the absolute kind and smoke the shit out of it every day – till the pain of old age fades – i also drink a sixer of the best beer ( lagunitas – lil sumpin ) too – but i can still read a teleprompter and make sense when i read it – this guy can’t even do that –

    • SeeTrain65

      I’ve noticed my speaking voice is beginning to grate on people and I tend to mispronounce many words in a most embarrassing way. #SeeTrain2020!

  • Maybe

    I wish his daddy had pulled out.

    I wonder if he’s ordered his “Mission Accomplished” banner yet. I know where he can get one secondhand cheap.

  • Trumpenis can’t even run an airline, much less a war.
    https://media1.giphy.com/media/xT4uQ8nbHSmRd7fb56/200w.gif

    Loser war officially lost by losing loser

  • Kathleendimberling

    Square95f

    Google is paying 97$ per hour! work for few hours and have longer with friends & family!
    On tuesday I got a Smart new Land Rover Range Rover from having earned $8752 this last four weeks.. Its the most-financialy rewarding I’ve had.. It sounds unbelievable but you wont forgive yourself if you don’t check it
    !ai245d:
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