Sunday, October 07, 2018

U.S. invades Afghanistan, Oct. 7, 2001 - Politico

On this day in 2001, three weeks after Islamic suicidal terrorists attacked New York and Washington with hijacked commercial airliners, with devastating loss of life, President George W. Bush announced the start of Operation Enduring Freedom — an offensive in Afghanistan by U.S. armed forces and some NATO partners.

The goal, the president said in an address to the nation, was to crush the Taliban, which had seized control of the country, and to wipe out al-Qaida (the group that actually planned the 9/11 attack in Hamburg, Germany and then witnessed its successful execution by 19 terrorists, most of whom were citizens of Saudi Arabia.) As of today, the ensuing Afghan conflict has consumed 17 years, making it the longest American-led war in the nation’s history, at an estimated cost to U.S. taxpayers of more than $150 billion.

In his televised speech, Bush asserted that “we are supported by the collective will of the world.” He added: “Today, we focus on Afghanistan, but the battle is broader. Every nation has a choice to make. In this conflict, there is no neutral ground. If any government sponsors the outlaws and killers of innocents, they have become outlaws and murderers, themselves. And they will take that lonely path at their own peril.”

After more than 13 years, on Dec. 28, 2014, President Barack Obama announced the end of Operation Enduring Freedom. Operations in Afghanistan by the U.S. military forces, both noncombat advisers to the Afghan military and those directly engaged combat, he said, would henceforth occur under the name Operation Freedom’s Sentinel. (At the time, Obama also cited what he saw as the danger of perpetual war to America’s well-being by recalling the warning of James Madison, America’s fourth president, that “no nation could preserve its freedom in the midst of continual warfare.”) - Read More


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