This should tell you something about the shifting, treacherous sands we find ourselves in while fighting the longest war in our history: Leaked classified documents reveal to the American public that we’ve been indirectly financing our own enemy, and government types in the know dismiss it as “old news.”
Which is worse…that a website released the information, which is surely damaging to our cause, or that our leaders have learned to accommodate this travesty as part of the cost of doing business with the Pakistanis?
The Bush team thought they were the sharpest guys around. After 9/11, they were going to go in there, shoot ’em up, and show the Rooskies the right way to tame those Afghans. Bring back Osama’s head on a plate.
They should have known they were getting this country embroiled in a part of the world where, if the locals didn’t actually invent intrigue, they certainly refined it to an art form.
There’s a story about a meeting in the Holy Land during the Crusades between Richard the Lionheart and Saladin, the local warlord. It’s probably apocryphal, but that doesn’t mean it can’t teach us something:
Richard, in order to demonstrate his military might to Saladin, draws out his huge, heavy double-handed broadsword and, in one blow, smashes a rock to pieces with it.
Saladin smiles, and pulls out a silk handkerchief. He tosses it in the air and unsheathes his scimitar of fine Damascus steel, holding it out cutting-edge up while the kerchief flutters down across the blade, splitting itself in two.
That’s what we’re up against over there.