Tag: #LeavingAfghanistan

“What Does an American Promise Mean Today?”

 

LTC Scott Mann’s opening statement about the Afghanistan evacuation fiasco is well worth watching. If you want horrid details of what the pullout was like from a tactical perspective for those involved, read Operation Pineapple Express. I respect this man. I have never served with him, but he’s all in with whatever he does.

I have no illusions that this will result in anything other than the satisfaction of saying it out loud in the House.

Emails from Strangers

 

I get emails from strangers.

No, not the junk mail we all get. I swear I will never contribute to another campaign. Once you’re on one list, something happens, like rabbits multiplying, and suddenly you’re on everyone’s list. Even from members of the California ruling elite, none of whom I would ever vote for, listen to, or consider helping fix their flat tire if I were to recognize one of them standing on the side of the road, their arms folded, a stern face standing as if expecting that one of their imaginary minions would of course immediately stop to assist his or her or they highness out of their predicament.

No, not those kinds of emails. These emails are from Abdul or Zahra or Naseem. They too would like my help, but they’re not asking me to make an online donation, or to vote for them in the upcoming election.

While Afghans Patiently Wait

 

We are undergoing ruin by speed, and I’m not talking about meth, although meth in and of itself is terribly ruinous to our society. I might say, “just ask my dear and long-lost friend Richard,” but … he’s lost. Disappeared. Off the grid. Meth took him out … completely. I miss him. We used to enjoy long leisurely lunches and talk about everything.

So, what is it then? I’m talking about the sudden and increasingly accelerating speed of society’s fall into utter superficiality, a loss of depth that once could only be sustained through a slow gaze or a long think or an appropriate delay in sensitive communications like what we once accepted as normal and appropriate when people wrote newsy and heartfelt letters by hand. News stories were reports on what had actually happened, and journalists took their time to dig up and confirm the facts before writing word one. There was a dignity to the journalistic profession, and we relied on the profession’s product to first grasp and then think about what was happening in our world.

Of course, people were more relaxed and cordial back in the day; the day before someone put a large piece of lead on our world’s accelerator. I think his name is Mark Zuckerberg.

Last week on JobMakers, we met Abdul Saboor Sakhizada, a former translator, instructor and manager for the U.S. Army in Afghanistan, now living with his family in upstate New York. He spoke about life as a child of war, and what it was like in the front lines alongside U.S. troops, including Fox News contributor Pete Hegseth. This week, Abdul reveals that he is actively trying to evacuate fellow Afghan interpreters and their families, including his own baby brother, and he gives us his thoughts on the U.S. withdrawal, paints a picture of who these Afghan refugees are, and entreats Americans to reject the false rhetoric, and get to know these new Americans, in this final edition of a two-part special of JobMakers.

Guest:

This week on JobMakers, Host Denzil Mohammed talks with Abdul Saboor Sakhizada, who worked as an instructor, manager and translator for the U.S. Army (and received a Department of the Army Superior Civilian Service Award) in Kabul, Afghanistan. In the first of a two-part special, we get to know Afghanistan and its people, examine the fallout of the government collapse and learn how Abdul is actively working in the most difficult and chaotic of circumstances to get as many people evacuated from Afghanistan as possible. This week, we hear about the fascinating but tragic life in Afghanistan from Abdul, a self-described child of war, and we discover what those 50,000 interpreters had to endure every day, fueled by patriotism and targeted as traitors, in this special episode of JobMakers.

Guest:

The Missing of the ‘How’

 

Brigadier General Julius Easton Slack at the crossing of Moselle River in November 1944.

This isn’t my usual fare, but I need to get this off my chest… I used to work as a consultant to government. To be specific, I was an implementation consultant. Under contract, I was responsible for developing an overarching implementation strategy, defining the phases for the overall effort, developing informed and detailed tactical plans for each phase, and managing the execution of the effort. I was able to do this because, over time, I had developed enough hands-on experience to see ahead and work backward, keeping uppermost in my mind the most important “critical success factors” of the effort as I developed the strategy.

To develop the best plans, I tracked down the most knowledgeable people with the strongest track records in each functional discipline, and then leveraged their expertise in preparing the approach for each phase. They were also usually the ones who led the discipline during the execution; putting experts in charge of each team.

[Member Post]

 

Events of the past ten days prompt me to ask, “is Joe Biden smarter than a fifth grader?” To answer the question, not having a fifth grader of my own to ask, here is a word problem for you to give to your fifth grade child or grandchild. Or to any child in middle or […]

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Voices from the Past

 

General Patton, Corps and Division Commanders, 4th Armored Division C.P., England, June 1944.

These are the generals of the Third Army. Patton stands in front. My great uncle Brigadier General Julius Easton Slack stands in the back row, second from the right. This photo was taken in June 1944 in England shortly before the landing at Utah Beach in July.

[Member Post]

 

I have a theory, or maybe it’s a suspicion.  I’m skeptical Donald Trump would have pulled out of Afghanistan.  Why do I suspect that?  Here are a few reasons. Trump is a constant negotiator at heart and likes to angle for negotiating leverage. You don’t get leverage unless you put things off balance or threaten […]

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[Member Post]

 

This is a YouTube video documenting (in somewhat cloying style) the reduction and turnover of British Camp Bastion to the ANA in 2014.  It is worth watching in its entirety, but fast forward whenever the awful bagpiping comes on.  The central figure, the good LtCol in charge of reducing the base, seems a fine gentleman, […]

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