Robert Greenwald is a producer, director, political activist, and Brave New Films founder and president.
On Monday, June 7, 2010, the Afghanistan War will complete its 104th month, replacing Vietnam as the longest war in U.S. history.
That's an incredible investment of blood and treasure, and one that deepens by the minute. We're spending $1 million per troop, per year in Afghanistan. To date, Congress has approved almost $300 billion in spending on the Afghanistan War. Combined with the costs for the war in Iraq, we've spent more than $1 trillion so far on war since 2001, just in direct costs. Right now, Congress is considering charging the U.S. taxpayer another $33 billion to pay for an ongoing troop increase.
And, don't forget that more than 1,000 U.S. troops have died so far in this war.
According to CNN:
[T]he Department of Homeland Security says 'the number and pace of attempted attacks against the United States over the past nine months have surpassed the number of attempts during any other previous one-year period.'
After 104 months of war, the last 12 of which saw the U.S. triple the number of troops in Afghanistan, attempted terror attacks against our country are at an all-time high.
No one in their right mind would look at the costs and the "benefits" of this strategy and think, "Yes, I want to sink more human lives and national wealth into that!" U.S. policy in Afghanistan is broken. Inertia carries it forward, not return-on-investment.
We've seen this kind of inertia before. Pentagon Papers whistle-blower Daniel Ellsberg explained it in 1971: "It was always a bad year to get out of Vietnam." President Obama has set at start-date for a withdrawal, but no end date.
If we're not careful, we'll find that it's always a bad year to leave Afghanistan, too.
As shown in the latest video from Brave New Foundation's Rethink Afghanistan campaign, people across partisan lines and ideological camps are coming together with a simple message: Enough is enough. More than 32,000 people are working together on our Facebook page to spread a simple message: It's not working, and it's not worth the cost.
There's no excuse for letting this disaster drag out any longer. Join Rethink Afghanistan on Facebook and help us shut it down.
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