90.9 WBUR - Boston's NPR news station
Top Stories:
PLEDGE NOW
Here and Now with Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson
Public radio's live
midday news program
With sponsorship from
Mathworks - Accelerating the pace of engineering and science
Accelerating the pace
of engineering and science
Tuesday, April 30, 2013

How To ‘Win’ The War In Afghanistan

U.S. Soldiers with Charlie Company, 1st Battalion, 38th Infantry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division cross the Tarnak river in the Panjwai district of Kandahar province, Afghanistan, April 10, 2013, on a two-day mission to clear the area of explosives caches. The Taliban have announced they will launch their spring offensive on Sunday, April 28, 2013. (Sgt. Kimberly Hackbarth/U.S. Army via AP)

U.S. Soldiers with Charlie Company, 1st Battalion, 38th Infantry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division cross the Tarnak river in the Panjwai district of Kandahar province, Afghanistan, April 10, 2013, on a two-day mission to clear the area of explosives caches. (Sgt. Kimberly Hackbarth/U.S. Army via AP)

In Afghanistan, the Taliban have launched their spring offensive.

The push comes as Afghan troops and police are supposed to be taking control of their own security from the 100,000 foreign troops still serving in Afghanistan.

That includes about 66,000 Americans, but most of them are supposed to leave by the end of next year.

So where are we in this war that has stretched on for nearly 12 years?

Bing West, a retired Marine captain who served as Assistant Secretary of Defense under President Ronald Reagan, writes in a piece called “Afghanistan the Unknown” in the National Review:

Our reason for invading that remote, medieval country in 2001 was to destroy the al-Qaeda terrorist organization, which had murdered 3,000 civilians at the World Trade Center. Our military failed to destroy AQ but did drive it into Pakistan. To keep AQ from reestablishing a base inside Afghanistan, modest U.S. assets (say, 10,000 troops) are needed.

The U.S. needs to let go of the broader mission of turning Afghanistan into “an economically viable democracy defined by Western values and laws,” West says, because that mission will never end and will always need more money.

Guest:

  • Bing West, retired Marine captain and former Assistant Secretary of Defense.

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
Robin and Jeremy

Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson host Here & Now, a live two-hour production of NPR and WBUR Boston.

March 30 37 Comments

Sen. Warren: Not Interested In Reid's Job And Still Not Running For President

Elizabeth Warren insists she has no plans to jump into the 2016 race. She joins us to discuss her current political goals.

March 30 6 Comments

Unveiling The Pain Of Secondary Trauma Victims

Mac McClelland was diagnosed with PTSD after witnessing another woman's horror at being brutally assaulted. She joins us to explain why she didn't believe the diagnosis, at first.

March 27 Comment

Using Poetry To Expose The Power Of Money, Class And Gender

Alissa Quart's first book of poetry is both personal and universal - inspired by work and research she has done as a journalist.

March 27 11 Comments

Yale Is Starting A VHS Archive And It’s Full Of Horror Movies

"Silent Night, Deadly Night," "Stripped to Kill" and "The Last Slumber Party" – all from the 80s – are a few of the titles.