Ron Paul: The Real “Status Of Forces” In Afghanistan And Iraq

“THE WAR HAS BEEN A FAILURE” By RON PAUL || After 13 years of war in Afghanistan – the longest in American history – the U.S. government has achieved no victory. Afghanistan is in chaos and would collapse completely without regular infusions of U.S. money.  The war has been a…


ron paul is freaking people outBy RON PAUL || After 13 years of war in Afghanistan – the longest in American history – the U.S. government has achieved no victory. Afghanistan is in chaos and would collapse completely without regular infusions of U.S. money.  The war has been a failure, but Washington will not admit it.

More than 2,000 U.S. fighters have been killed in the 13 year Afghan war.  More than 20,000 Afghan civilians were also killed.  According to a study last year by a Harvard University researcher, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan will cost in total between four and six trillion dollars.  There is no way of looking at the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan and seeing a success.

So in light of this failure, what does the administration of Barack Obama do?  Do they admit the mistake?  Do they pull the remaining U.S. troops out of Afghanistan and try to avoid making matters even worse?  No!  As with all U.S. government programs, if the desired result is not achieved they just pump in more resources and continue with the same policies.  The past 13 years have been an utter failure, so this past week the U.S. government signed on for ten more years of war!

U.S. troops were legally required to be out of Afghanistan by the end of this year, according to a status of forces agreement between the U.S. and Afghanistan. The U.S. was unsuccessful in negotiating a new status of forces agreement with outgoing president Hamid Karzai. The Afghan leader had grown critical of the U.S. military presence – which has actually increased under President Obama. So, the U.S. needed a new puppet in government.

As international correspondent Eric Margolis pointed out recently, the elections in Afghanistan earlier this year were a farce. The candidates were hand-picked by the U.S. government. Furthermore, wrote Margolis, “[t]he largest, most popular party in Afghanistan, Taliban…[has] been excluded as ‘terrorists’ from the current and past elections.”

But they got their new status of forces agreement. U.S. troops will remain through 2024.

The United States’ war on Iraq has also been a failure.  The neocons want to blame the current disintegration of Iraq on President Obama for pulling U.S. troops out. This is historical revisionism at its worst.  The real blame goes to those who put the troops in in the first place.

In fact, President Obama didn’t even want to pull U.S. troops out of Iraq.  He had tried to re-negotiate a new status of forces agreement with the Maliki government in Iraq, but Maliki hesitated to extend immunity from prosecution to the remaining U.S. troops.  The U.S. responded by turning on Maliki, eventually demanding that he step down even though he had been elected.

Maintaining U.S. troops in Iraq would not have prevented the current unrest there for the simple reason that it was the presence of U.S. troops in the first place that caused the unrest.  It was the U.S. invasion that led to the emergence of al-Qaeda in Iraq and other extremist Islamist groups.  This should not have been a surprise to war planners: Saddam Hussein had been using brutal means to keep these groups at bay for decades.  The same is true with Afghanistan.

The Taliban government of 2001 in Afghanistan did not attack the United States. Al-Qaeda did.  But the 2003 U.S. attack on Iraq under false pretenses removed a leader who had fought ruthlessly against al-Qaeda and other radical Islamist fighters.  The result was that the al-Qaeda we were supposed to be fighting in Afghanistan flourished in post-invasion Iraq, along with other even more brutal groups.  Will our government ever learn that invasion and occupation are not the solution, but rather the problem? No new status of forces agreement can change that basic fact.

Ron Paul is a former U.S. Congressman from Texas and the leader of the pro-liberty, pro-free market movement in the United States. His weekly column – reprinted with permission – can be found here.

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Guantanamo still open too.... October 6, 2014 at 3:24 pm

Perhaps another Peace Prize will help?

euwe max October 6, 2014 at 3:47 pm

Another Republican – that’s the ticket!

Some hair of the dog that bit us.

shifty henry October 6, 2014 at 4:05 pm

‘but Maliki hesitated to extend immunity from prosecution to the remaining U.S. troops’
What ‘immunity’ is this — which I’ve never heard about?

Quick response October 6, 2014 at 4:16 pm

Basically, as I recall it, without even doing a Google, the immunity exempted our troops from what would normally be war crimes during WW2 for example.(though a lot of those went unpunished too)

So if US Sgt. Peckerwood kicks in Waheed’s door in Iraq, & shoots his family dead as they are eating dinner for no good reason, it’s pretty tough for him to get prosecuted(by Iraqi’s). Not impossible, but tough.

Sure, Waheed’s gets some money as “compensation”, but he doesn’t get to sue the soldier, strip him of his rank, take some of his danger pay, etc.

This was also an issue with the use of Xe(formerly Blackwater) as well…for a while Xe could do some things even soldiers couldn’t and get away with it…but the Iraqi puppet gov’t got tired of that too….so it’s time for the US to install a new puppet.

Bible Thumper October 6, 2014 at 8:29 pm

They don’t get immunity. They can be prosecuted under Uniform Standard of Military Justice or US law.

Yes they do October 6, 2014 at 8:41 pm

They get immunity from Iraq government prosecution.

Bhokara October 6, 2014 at 4:19 pm

If Ron Paul supported a woman’s right to an abortion and birth control programs for teens, I’d vote for him.

CorruptionInColumbia October 6, 2014 at 10:39 pm

As I recall, Paul was not a fan of abortion, but neither was he frothing at the mouth to make it illegal.

Yep! October 6, 2014 at 11:16 pm

He wanted to defer the decision to state level…pushing for determination by more local values…decentralization being the key.

So NY, CA, those types of states would probably make it legal…TX, SC, etc… would not.

Decentralization/local rule is already better than the behemoth is DC telling everyone what’s best IMO…but that’s obviously not the majority opinion.

ddean62 October 6, 2014 at 4:25 pm

I do not have any desire to enter into a political discussion, or as to whom is right or wrong. I served two tours in Vietnam and my grandson has served two tours in Afgan (aka) “The sandbox.” A Status of Forces (SOFA) is an agreement whereas the United States Uniformed Military in an operation in a foreign country is tried for crimes under the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) or in US Federal Court. Some countries especially in the Near, Mid and Far East have very harsh measures for sometimes mild offenses. A SOFA merely protects our men and women in a foreign country and insures they are tried under United States jurisdiction if they commit a crime in that country. I served under a SOFA in Vietnam and Europe. Please add if you wish.
David Dean
USA, Ret

idcydm October 6, 2014 at 7:25 pm

In 1966 when I was first stationed in Korea we were under the 1953 Mutual Defense Treaty. It wasn’t until July, 1966 that we had a Status of Forces Agreement.

ddean62 October 7, 2014 at 7:57 am

Sorry I missed that. Thank you for your service.

The Colonel October 6, 2014 at 4:27 pm

Hey Ron:

The longest war in American history is the American Indian Wars which ran from 1622–1924.

The rest of your BS is equally historically blind and factually challenged.

Question October 6, 2014 at 5:19 pm

I don’t recall there ever being a vote to authorize the American Indian Wars, is that the case? (I really don’t know)

What other stuff in his article is factually challenged?

The Colonel October 6, 2014 at 5:30 pm

Please read anything on the American Indian Wars – start by googling “Winfield Scott, Cherokees and Martin Van Buren” or Andrew Jackson for whom our fort in named, Cherokee and Supreme Court.

As for factually challenged – look into the elections in Afghanistan “American Puppet”? Hardly. For all of Sadam Hussein’s regime, Iraq was a threat to her neighbors – now she can’t even control an insurrection by “The JV squad” was it a perfect end – no but we just had to get out of there – regardless of the opinions of those who had been on the ground and knew what would happen. But I refer to most of what Paul rights as factually challenged and historically blind, not just this piece.

Question October 6, 2014 at 8:20 pm

I didn’t find any vote authorizing the Indian Wars.

Anyway, are you denying that Saddam tamped down both Isis and Al Qaeda when in power?

Question October 6, 2014 at 9:08 pm

*I meant the “Taliban”, but it’s probably equally valid for Saddam.

The Colonel October 6, 2014 at 9:12 pm

Question 1 – Ever heard of the “Removal Act”? if you’re looking for a declaration of war, there obviously was none, what’s your point.

Question 2 – no, Saddam didn’t tamp down the Taliban (Afghanistan) or Al Qaida (ditto). AQI didn’t appear until

Question October 6, 2014 at 9:27 pm

“if you’re looking for a declaration of war, there obviously was none”

Well that, or an authorization…only because you made the comparison to authorized & declared wars.

“no, Saddam didn’t tamp down the Taliban”

I think you misunderstood what I type, it’s ok though because I screwed it up anyway.

You acknowledged the fact Saddam kept Isis in line, obviously the Taliban did the same in their area.

Question October 6, 2014 at 9:28 pm


“the same”, meaning outside interlopers

The Colonel October 6, 2014 at 9:30 pm

Saddam didn’t tamp down ISIL, ISIL didn’t exist, some of its better trained members were once in Saddam’s army. Our mistake was either kicking them out of the Iraq army or not killing them when we had the chance.

Question October 6, 2014 at 9:43 pm

“Saddam didn’t tamp down ISIL, ISIL didn’t exist, some of its better trained members were once in Saddam’s army.”

You seem to be saying two things in that statement, it would appear Wiki disagrees:

“ISIL originated as Jama’at al-Tawhid wal-Jihad in 1999. This group was the forerunner of Tanzim Qaidat al-Jihad fi Bilad al-Rafidayn—commonly known as Al-Qaeda in Iraq (AQI)—a group formed by Abu Musab al-Zarqawi in 2004. AQI took part in the Iraqi insurgency against American-led forces and their Iraqi allies following the 2003 invasion of Iraq.”

Your argument seems unconvincing.

The Colonel October 6, 2014 at 9:45 pm

You cut and paste well.

Question October 6, 2014 at 9:47 pm

Dude, I’m just stating facts as they are listed on Wiki…what the hostility over the facts?

Do you want to claim Wiki is wrong? That’s cool if you do, but don’t slam me for quoting referenced stuff, that’s downright non-academic.

Question October 6, 2014 at 9:47 pm


The Colonel October 6, 2014 at 9:54 pm

If Saddam kept these groups “tamped down” how did
Jam??at al-Taw??d wa-al-Jih?d exist in time to get involved in the invasion, in fact, how did it exist in Iraq in 1999? Answer, despite what wiki says, it didn’t. The members of the group were spread all over the Levant.

Question October 6, 2014 at 9:59 pm

Well, the presumption is they never had enough power to overthrow him, but you know, it’s the whole “mutual enemy” thing when the Infidels came to town…

The Colonel October 6, 2014 at 9:34 pm

I said no such thing, all of the action against the American Indian were authorized-congress paid for it, there were any numbers of “acts” directing action against the Indians.

Question October 6, 2014 at 9:40 pm

“I said no such thing, all of the action against the American Indian were authorized-congress paid for it”

There was a congress in 1622? lol….you’re really talking out of your ass now

FastEddy23 October 6, 2014 at 9:28 pm

And, not to be too picky, again, Sadamn’s weapons of mass destruction have been used recently, first by Asaad against his own Syrian Rebels and most recently (re)captured by ISIS/al Qualuda for purposes TBD, but certainly no good outcome.

Call this present mid-east unpleasantness what you will, we most certainly do have a role to play there, and the shoe is on the other democrat foot this time.

The Colonel October 6, 2014 at 9:32 pm

What weapons of mass destruction? Saddam didn’t have any if you by the liberal line. In truth, many of them, and more importantly, the means of production, went to the Bakah Valley.

Question October 6, 2014 at 9:35 pm

“Saddam didn’t have any if you by the liberal line.”

Actually, that was Bush’s line:

“rhe main reason we went into Iraq at the time was we thought he had weapons of mass destruction. It turns out he didn’t,”

Has Bush become a liberal?

The Colonel October 6, 2014 at 9:38 pm

Wow have you got this turned around. In fact he did have WMDs, he used them against the Iranians and the Kurds. When it became clear we would invade he moved some of what he had along with some of his manufacturing capability to the Bakah Valley in Syria.

Question October 6, 2014 at 9:45 pm

“Wow have you got this turned around. In fact he did have WMDs”

So Bush was wrong twice? lol…I don’t know man. Powell lost face at the UN over that stuff too….seems like a lot of crow eating for nothing if your claims are true.

FastEddy23 October 6, 2014 at 9:52 pm

… And most of the stock pile of chem. and bio weapons were buried in the sand in eastern Syria right next to the Iraq border.

The Colonel October 6, 2014 at 10:12 pm

Bio weapons, not so much, they would not have survived, they’re incredibly difficult to make, stockpile and utilize. Some bio weapon precursors are easier to deal with.

Chem weapons like chlorine that was used in Syria or the mustard and cyanide based agents used against the Kurds can be made by any decent chemistry major with a less than “well developed sense of self preservation”

FastEddy23 October 8, 2014 at 12:55 pm

Mmmmm … correct. Of course the storage of the equipment and “the makin’s” might be in order for the bio stuff.

The chems “… can be made by any decent chemistry major …”, assuming the towelheads have any. Asaad didn’t have any, so he just used what Saddamn left behind in the desert on his rebels … and now, ISIS, et al, have dug those up (again) … with obvious ill intent.

Jason Cline October 9, 2014 at 5:06 am

You think Arab nations have no universities or educated people or stock of basic chemistry ingredients? A 14 year old girl any where on the planet could produce these so called WMD’s with nothing more than access to the internet and a prepaid debit card.

FastEddy23 October 9, 2014 at 12:21 pm

… Well, they can now that you have told them how, fur sure.

Watch yur selph the NSA / AA / CIA / FEMA / USPS are reading these post as we speaketh.

FastEddy23 October 6, 2014 at 9:50 pm

Up until 2010 it was possible to see the locations of the storage depots in the eastern Syrian desert, right where Sadamn buried them … Clearly visible on Google Earth maps. Ask Polish Army Intellegence.

Question October 6, 2014 at 10:01 pm

You know, your comment is odd to me in that this claim you make would seem to exonerate both Bush and Powell, yet neither have come out and done the victory dance.

Why is that, assuming what you say is true?

FastEddy23 October 9, 2014 at 1:31 pm

Would you? The only outcome of Bush/Cheney/Powell doing any kind of “we told you so” would be to muddy the waters even more in this national election cycle. (Those guys don’t often step on each others’ centrally located, swinging protuberances.)

The Colonel October 6, 2014 at 9:42 pm

And on your last paragraph, we agree and since question is too obtuse for words, I’m going to bed, it’s been a long day.

Question October 6, 2014 at 10:05 pm

“small “l” libertarian”

Dude…I’ve never seen a small “L” advocating assassination before….maybe you mean big “L”.

FastEddy23 October 8, 2014 at 1:04 pm

OK, call me a Classic Liberal … We invented tar and feathers for the carpet baggers and scallawags after the civil war. And we do like to note our strong support of our Second Amendment Rights. And most of us Classic Liberals assume that the federal death penalty would apply to errant g’ment employees, postal or not.

I would not call it “assassination” if the perp in question is holding a sword high over the head of one of our own, or is at the head of desert gangbangers bent on doing that to us or our allies …

IAF101 October 7, 2014 at 4:37 am

So Chlorine gas is now a WMD ? Lets invade Mexico then – they have tons of Chlorine Gas too!

FastEddy23 October 9, 2014 at 11:44 am

What exactly don’t you understand about weapons of mass destruction? The death rate must be huge? How about 4,000, the estimated death toll in Syria from Asaad’s gas attacks? … And they weren’t all rebels.

kastlerock October 8, 2014 at 5:55 pm

The proof of Assad using chems on the people was never, ever proven. In fact, the UN sent a team in to investigate, if you recall. Their evidence pointed to the Rebels using the chems and not the Assad regime. If so, that would mean US Foreign Policy is to blame since we have been funding, training and arming so-called moderate rebels for at least 2 years. Of course this was never touched upon in the MSM since it would go against everything the repugs and demos attempted to sell. The war in Syria is about toppling another regime just as has been stated by many so-called experts (CFR), a couple military Generals, etc. Iraq, Libya and now Syria are only the latest and it will culminate with Iran and likely a great conflagration. Got ringside?

Bible Thumper October 6, 2014 at 9:42 pm

Casualties from the “War on Terror” beginning in 2001 has claimed 6717 American soldiers lives total. This includes deaths in Afghanistan, Iraq, Pakistan, Uzbekistan, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Guantanamo Bay (Cuba), Jordan, Kenya, Kyrgyzstan, Philippines, Seychelles, Sudan, Tajikistan, Turkey, and Yemen.
This ranks ninth among US conflicts. The Mexican – American War ranked eighth with 13,283.

In combat deaths the “War on Terror” ranks seventh at 5281 behind the Revolutionary War at 8000 deaths. The US military deaths from the “War on Terror” represent 0.5% of all US military deaths.

The “War on Terror” has the lowest casualty rate of any major US conflict at 1.57 deaths per day(dpd) and 0.002% of the total population.
Civil War 420 dpd. —- 1.988% 
WWII 297 dpd —- 0.307% 
Korea 45 dpd —- 0.020% 
Vietnam 11 dpd —- 0.030% 
War on Terror 1.57 dpd —- 0.002%

Bob Garcia October 7, 2014 at 2:27 pm

Must be easy for you to use a body count to justify the flawed position of “pick your Middle-Eastern dictator.” For service members and veterans we’d like our sacrifice to mean something. That’s all we’ve ever asked. And yet, back to the sandbox you want to go, to see what happens when your toy soldiers go against another dictator or faction of our Nations creation.

Bible Thumper October 7, 2014 at 5:48 pm

Just the facts. I didn’t justify anything. Ron Paul makes the point of calling Afghanistan America’s longest war. I do believe that statement should be put in context. My facts presented does that. That doesn’t mean I agree with the war. A body count is a better measure than number of years.

Jason Cline October 9, 2014 at 5:00 am

You might have a point if not for failing to understand that the way we conduct war has changed. We no longer throw largely unprotected mass quantities of meat at our enemies as a tactic. Of course previous wars had a higher death toll.

FastEddy23 October 6, 2014 at 9:13 pm

Not to be picky: the wars on the American Indians began in the early 16th century, ~ 1520. The Spanish conquerors began in central Mexico, by sword and diseases, killing by some estimates

The Colonel October 6, 2014 at 9:26 pm

Holy cow…what part of “American” did you miss? Maybe I should have specified “people who would one day be identified as citizens of the U.S. if the U.S.had existed at the time”. I was specifically referring to the wars between the colonists of what would be America through the end of the foolishness in the 1920s.

FastEddy23 October 9, 2014 at 12:33 pm

I understand your intent. Its just that, in the total picture, from 1491 on, the Spanish Conquistadors and Catholic Missionaries killed more North and South American natives by a factor of more than 100 times … than did the US forces of taxation, sword and gun, exploration, exploitation and land seizures. (100 Million dead Indians by the Hand of the Spanish Church from ~1500 to ~1700.)

Of course those two serious wrongs do not make anything right.

SC Political Digest October 6, 2014 at 4:33 pm

Every inch of earth on this planet has been fought for. Liberals just will not Shut the H#!! up when they lose…

M2000 October 6, 2014 at 4:37 pm

Since when was Eric Margolis considered a journalist? That’s a source? A conspiracy theorist? Hmm, Dr. Paul must need more Internet style money bombs from the “Truthers”.

Sounds like a journalist to me October 6, 2014 at 5:15 pm

“For 27 years, ending in 2010,[2] he was a contributing editor to the Toronto Sun[3] chain of newspapers, writing mainly about the Middle East, South Asia and Islam. He contributes to the Huffington Post and appears frequently on Canadian television broadcasts, as well as on CNN.”-Wiki

M2000 October 6, 2014 at 5:26 pm

So Paulbots trust something from the Lamestream Media. I thought they were all about alternative media.

Sounds like a journalist to me October 6, 2014 at 7:07 pm

Wiki isn’t lamestream media, nor am I a Paulbot….I just thought you’d be interested in some facts.

Zach Martin October 6, 2014 at 9:12 pm

He’s not.

M2000 October 6, 2014 at 10:35 pm

WikiLeaks has only repeated the same stuff already within the Lamestream Media, after all Julian Assange doesn’t mind to pander to the Kremlin run Russia Today and hasn’t been outspoken or critical of Vladimir Putin nor his proxies like Rachel Correa.

Guess that’s okay then to pander to someone else who does the same thing the NSA does or worse right?

Sounds like a journalist to me October 6, 2014 at 10:37 pm

Dude….it was “Wikipedia”…not “Wiki leaks”…lol

M2000 October 6, 2014 at 11:52 pm

And referring to Wikipedia which can be edit by anyone is helpful how?

Sounds like a journalist to me October 6, 2014 at 11:56 pm

It’s all referenced bro…if you disagree with what’s written there, then you can at least provide a link showing me otherwise, especially in regard to what I quoted above.

M2000 October 7, 2014 at 8:48 am

You Paulbots get to suddenly claim legitimacy toward a Lamestream Media outlet like CNN or Toranto Star, only when they promote a Paulbot like Margolis.

Sounds like a journalist to me October 7, 2014 at 1:10 pm

lol….alright dude, you win. He’s not a journalist.

Jason Cline October 9, 2014 at 4:53 am

You’ve been exposed as an idiot, it’s about time you give up and go away.

M2000 October 9, 2014 at 11:10 am

Actually for a Paulbot to use Wikipedia which can be edited by anyone…who’s the idiot?

Bob Garcia October 7, 2014 at 2:17 pm

Your position of which sources should be considered as news and which shouldn’t be, demonstrates your lack of objectivity; by assigning labels rather than taking the time to consider the differing points of view and the facts available. Suggesting “Paulbots” only stick to particular mediums and sources, shows the unfortunate reality of internet dialogue … that even a simple minded neo-con can have an opinion. Meanwhile, I’d wager that the average “Paulbot” is more well read than you’re currently demonstrating.

M2000 October 7, 2014 at 2:20 pm

Didn’t you Paulbots go around and claim those same outlets were not reporting the facts before when your boy wRONg Paul didn’t win in 2012?

Jason Cline October 9, 2014 at 4:55 am

Everything in the article was true. The fact that you haven’t rebutted a single point in it and resort to trolling proves that even you recognize this.

M2000 October 9, 2014 at 11:11 am

Sorry, but a conspiracy theorist like Eric Margolis isn’t a journalist.

Bob Garcia October 7, 2014 at 2:00 pm

Sounds like someone lacks critical thinking skills.

M2000 October 7, 2014 at 2:01 pm

So according to Paulbots, if it’s someone like Eric Margolis or Alex Jones, or anyone else similar to their attire and they’re cited by a Lamestream Media outlet they wail so much for not supposedly “exposing” the 9/11 “Truth” movement.

It’s suddenly legitimate, but before they didn’t support it for not airing them.

Steve Svensson October 7, 2014 at 7:29 am

Who are you?

nobody October 7, 2014 at 10:24 pm

An idiot.

The Colonel October 6, 2014 at 10:30 pm

Since this is a Ron Paul story, I’m sure the dope smokers are here, here’s an article for you to check out:

Throws a new light on pot safety.

The Hateocracy October 6, 2014 at 11:10 pm

Good to know your concern for the pot smokers rivals that of your concern over our overseas wars. I’m sure they appreciate it. Cause it’s not like you intended it to be an ad hominem or anything. It was out of brotherly love.

IAF101 October 7, 2014 at 4:33 am

The US didn’t sign the status of forces in Iraq and pulled out – look how that’s going.

The USA has already made the historical mistake of creating the mujahideen when it was useful and then neglecting Afghanistan for decades to form into the perfect haven for terrorists who would strike at the heart of America and kill 3000 people.

The USA shouldn’t make the same mistake twice because next time it won’t be jetliners – it maybe something FAR WORSE.

Steve Svensson October 7, 2014 at 7:28 am

Never seems to amaze me how people love the establishment, right up till their unfortunate, untimely deaths in a FEMA camp.

mysaaed October 7, 2014 at 12:35 pm

A puppet Karzai is replaced by a similar puppet. Ghani.The case in Afghanistan will not get better, but worst. Karzai and Ghani changed their Western attire to traditional Afghan clothes after they become candidates. that shose their personality.

Louis Nardozi October 7, 2014 at 4:14 pm

Wow, there’s one guy commenting here that sounds like a complete dolt. Now, which one is it? Hint: his friends call him Mr. Ad Hominem


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