I’m a little perturbed by the evening news lately concerning the War in Afghanistan. (This is probably because I have a vested interest in the war with the love of my life being there!) All I hear about each night is how American opinion of the war is way, way down. That bugs me-a lot. But not because I think everyone should just agree with me and support the war. I am not here to advocate or endorse mindless, uninformed support of the war in Afghanistan; but I would like to throw a couple of thoughts out there for reflection. My hope is that people would THINK about this and give the war in Afghanistan the deeper thought it deserves.
Americans have always had this problem of asking a principle question: do we let the rest of the world hash out their junk alone or do we come to the aid of others at the cost of our beloved American lives?
I think it is all too easy for us to say “it’s none of our business”, “it’s not our problem”, etc. We’ve been asking that question for a long, long time and using those arguments for just as long. When WWI broke out, we didn’t want to get involved. It was Europe’s problem, not ours. We had to decide if we were going to be an isolationist nation. Honestly, the question at hand in my opinion, is a moral issue.
Really, the question is, do we turn our eyes from human suffering? Do we look away when evil men spread evil deeds?
Stop for a second and think about all the evil that Hitler and Stalin were doing. Can you imagine what the world would be like if everyone just turned their eyes away? You guys, Saddam Hussein put people into wood chippers while they were still alive!
I think of the episode of Band of Brothers where the American soldiers found the first concentration camp. I think of how the German people in the village had constantly turned a blind eye to what was really happening even within their own town! When I watched that, I seethed with anger that anyone could allow such evil to go on, and just turn away saying “it’s none of my business”.
To me, this is at the heart of the matter of the war in Afghanistan. It may seem like a stretch, but allow me to continue.
I think the attacks of September 11 pretty much solidified in my mind that as Americans, there are a lot of people in the global community who hate our guts. Not only do they just hate us, but they would like to see us wiped from the face of the planet. WOW. Can you believe that such hate exists for you?
That hate doesn’t just stop there either. The attacks of September 11 were a vivid example of the goals of those evil people within the global community to act on the hate they have for us.
So, the question is, are we really so foolish as to believe that if we just “mind our own business” that they will leave us alone? We were minding our own business while they were planning their attacks on our country. Should we just buckle down, live in a state of fear, close our borders and bubble ourselves in from the rest of the world?
Let’s go back to the question I reposed at the beginning: do we turn our eyes from human suffering? Do we look away when evil men spread evil deeds?
I think it is safe to say that the average American has a heart to help people. While we all aren’t so nice, I think most of us don’t like to see human suffering. I believe there is a place in our heart that stings when we see children starving and people hurting as evil governments control them. I personally believe that is because of how God made our hearts. But I also believe that we know all too well that if we were hurting, wouldn’t we want someone to come to our aid?
All this is to say that I think it is important that we are in Afghanistan. Evil men are doing evil things there. It would be nice to think that if we left, they would leave us alone. History clearly tells us a different story.
People who are evil, truly evil, are not going to stop when they get what they want. It feeds the greed in their evil hearts and makes them want to enact even more evil.
The war in Afghanistan is very unique. It presents challenges that are deeply tied into the culture and history of that country. But just because something is hard or challenging, that doesn’t mean we should give up. I believe that we are in Afghanistan because evil is there and we aren’t going to just sit around waiting for it to come to our door and affect us personally. We are one of many nations who is there trying to beat the evil back and trying to help the people of Afghanistan pick themselves up.
My husband is there and I don’t want him to be. I want him to be here, home with me and my boys, eating pancakes and enjoying a beautiful “kinda-still-summer” Saturday as a family. But he is not here. He is in Afghanistan. I respect him so much for being there, for joining the Army KNOWING he would be deployed because it was a time of war.
I also know that if I think about it, if we all decided not to step up and help, if we all were so selfish as to hold what we love so tightly to ourselves and were never willing to extend a loving and helping hand to others that eventually, that evil would come to my door and to yours. Because if we are willing to think like that about the global community, allowing evil to purvey itself, then how long before we allow evil to grow in our own country? If we are ok with evil in the global community, then we are ok with evil in our community. And frankly, I’m not ok with that and you shouldn’t be either.
Do I support the war in Afghanistan? Yup. Because I support the idea that evil shouldn’t be allowed to continue. Do I support sending more troops to Afghanistan? Yup. Because 1) our guys need help and 2) it sends a message to the global community that we are willing to put some serious effort into this and they should follow our example.
You don’t have to agree with me. But I hope you will at least think about what you say when you talk about Afghanistan. Educate yourself on the country, on it’s history and on the challenges all the NATO forces are faced with as they seek to help the people of Afghanistan at the cost of our own loved ones.
I attended a memorial for 4 soldiers this past week. I don’t want to attend ANY more. But I’m not ok with evil in the global community or in my community. I’m not saying those deaths are ok, they are not. If I had the power of God, I would raise them to life and reunite each of them with their families without a second thought. I respect them and their sacrifice, the sacrifice their families have endured are seeking healing from right now as they celebrate their lives and mourn their deaths.
Do we turn our eyes from human suffering? Do we look away when evil men spread evil deeds?