Hurricane Ida has touched Louisiana. All living things there are in for a rough time.
I have decided that those blasting President Biden for the chaos in Afghanistan have lost touch with what “war” is. I’m not saying that no mistakes were made, but it could have been worse. See Storer H. Rowley, The Media’s Premature Verdict on Biden’s Afghanistan Pullout and David Rothkopf, There’s chaos and risk in Afghanistan exit, but Biden critics are getting it mostly wrong. Rothkopf writes, “There’s no way that the Taliban regaining control would not have led to chaos with many thousands of Afghans seeking to escape the rule of a thug regime. Whenever we began to airlift folks out, it would have started.” Yes, because war is like that. War is bloodly and chaotic. We seem to think wars can be directed by Steven Spielberg to just give us some good action sequences followed by a positive outcome.
The United States has transported roughly 120,000 Afghans and American citizens to safety at great human cost. That miraculous feat is a tribute to the humanity and bravery of the U.S. military and civilian personnel and volunteers. But any hope of depopulating a war-torn country, and ending the suffering there (including the dismal future for millions of women and girls) after our defeat is not grounded in reality. It belongs with the magical thinking that the United States could create a nation state in Afghanistan.
On the covid front: See Vaccine Refusers Don’t Get to Dictate Terms Anymore by Juliette Kayyem.