Just when I thought you couldn't possibly say anything less informed... The severely weakened and financially drained empires of the British, French and Dutch were left with little choice but to give up their colonies after WWII. Japan's former colonies were also left without a master. This resulted in the largest power vacuum of modern times. The resulting turmoil set off a race between the two Cold War powers to win favor with dozens of newly independent nations in both Asia and Africa. And by the way there was certainly not a power vacuum in "Soviet held territories". The USSR possessed the most powerful land based military on the planet after WWII.
The Bush administration was in full CYA mode after discounting the threat OBL presented during their first few months in office. Instead they focused all their attention on the primary objective... creating an excuse for the USA to invade Iraq again. Cheney and his minions even went so far as to try and initially link Iraq to the WTC attack. That feeble attempt further undermined the administration's credibility. Providing evidence to support claims of wrongdoing prior to extradition of a suspect is not unreasonable. American courts do that all the time. Why wouldn't Afghanistan or any other nation be entitled to review evidence for our claims prior to handing over a suspect? Let us not pretend dismissing the possibility of diplomatic negotiations ten days after 9/11 should in any way be considered a serious attempt at diplomacy. The Bush administration made a list of unconditional demands knowing they were unlikely to be met. I can't think of a better way to create conditions for war than to refuse diplomatic discussions with the Taliban. We've ultimately entered into negotiations with the Taliban as they are the major power in Afghanistan. Maybe we should have saved thousands of lives and billions in treasure and simply tried diplomatic negotiations to begin with? You can always opt for war later. Afghanistan and the Taliban have never presented a serious threat to United States security. The attack on the WTC was committed mostly by Saudi Arabians funded by Saudi Arabians, and many came from a terrorist cell in GE, you know, our allies. The pilots resided in the USA for months flight training in preparation for the attack. The attack succeeded not because of some cave dwelling terrorist as much as the failure of communication between federal agencies tasked with overseeing our nation's security. Bottom Line: Attacking Afghanistan was a huge waste of life and US national resources. This outcome was not difficult to predict. History has shown no invader has ever been successful long term in Afghanistan. We invaded to capture terrorists, but within months mission creep had morphed the objective into turning a society barely out out the stone age into a functioning democracy. Good luck with that. 14 years and counting... what do we have to show for our efforts? A drained US treasury, countless crippled and dead, a weak/corrupt Afghanistan government, and more people than ever that hate America for killing their relatives.
It is pretty clear what our choices are. Preserving our liberty as god fearing Americans by courageously accepting weekly mass shooting deaths as a part of the price of freedom or... looking to the rest of the civilized world to determine what they are doing differently than the USA that results in dramatically lower murder rates/firearm deaths. As a nation we know what we need to do, we simply are not ready to do it. Bottom Line: Protecting the innocent lives of our fellow Americans is apparently less important than protecting a system that has our nation awash in easily accessible firearms.
9/11 caught the Bush administration with its pants down. It was the worst attack on American soil in sixty years. The priority for the Bush administration wasn't to gather evidence or negotiate to secure those responsible for attack. The priority was to quickly refocus the American public's attention away from a story line of presidential incompetence towards one of bold decisive action. Like countless incompetent governments throughout history, the Bush administration resorted to a foreign war to preserve their power at home. Bush and his cronies had no interest in determining the truth or avoiding conflict, they had a crisis of public confidence and they had to act quickly to counter it. Looks like Suhail Shaheen, the Taliban's deputy ambassador in Pakistan pretty much nailed it when making his prediction about the eventual need for talks doesn't it? So what do we have 14 years later? Eight years of failed efforts by the Bush administration to bring Bin Laden to justice, trillions in treasury wasted, hundreds of thousands of dead and injured Afghani civilians, a country in chaos and no end in sight for the involvement of an over tasked American military. It is sad to realize with so little to show after 14 years of death and destruction many still prefer to default to military action rather than attempt to negotiate with other nations that pose no direct threat to our nation's security. What a senseless waste, especially in a nation that could better use its limited resources here at home.
The Grand Old Party is being destroyed by religious fanatics who are not true conservatives or lovers of freedom. They are people who hate "the grand experiment" of our founding fathers and seek to force all Americans to conform to their narrow minded views of right and wrong.
There does seem to be an unsatiated sense of entitlement attached to many of these mass murderers. That society or some part of society has failed to recognized their superiority and must now pay for that slight.
Unfortunately in this case the mass murder's mother was a gun nut. She apparently had numerous guns easily accessible to her son in the home they shared. Neighbors had noted years prior to this event that this fellow seemed emotionally unstable, in a seemingly permanent state of pissed off. His mother, a nurse, must have been oblivious to the potential disaster of mixing crazy son with lethal weapons.
Lesson yet to be learned by many Americans: We should do everything we can to solve our problems with other countries before resorting to yet another costly war. Note: Afghanistan's Taliban leadership was willing to turn over the Al Qaeda leadership if the US could link them to 9/11. Instead we decided to start an illegal war of aggression that has lasted more than 14 years and counting resulting in tens of thousands of deaths and permanently injured people, civilian and American military alike. Americans would not tolerate this poo in our nation, nor should we. Why do we think we have the inherent right to reign this terror on people of other nations? Are they somehow less human, with lives less worthwhile? Our meddling in the ME continues to increase the pain, death, carnage and chaos with each passing day. I'm all for defending our nation from external threats, but these imperialistic neocon conflicts need to stop. The United States is supposed to be a beacon of hope for the world. It is well past time for us to stop acting like a 19th century war mongering empire.