End Our Selfless Foreign Policy

WASHINGTON–The Taliban claimed responsibility Thursday for a blast that killed eight American civilians in Afghanistan, including officers of the Central Intelligence Agency. It may be the biggest loss of American intelligence personnel since the beginning of the war. After eight years of fighting, how is the Taliban still able to commit such heinous bombings?

“The half-hearted war in Afghanistan failed to smash the Taliban and al Qaeda,” writes Elan Journo, a fellow at the Ayn Rand Center. “It failed to render their ideology–Islamic totalitarianism–a lost cause.

“Our military was ordered to pursue Taliban fighters only if it simultaneously showed ‘compassion’ to the Afghans. The U.S. military dropped bombs on Afghanistan–but instead of ruthlessly pounding key targets, it was ordered to gingerly avoid hitting holy shrines and mosques (known to be Taliban hideouts) and to shower the country with food packages. The United States deployed ground forces–but instead of focusing exclusively on capturing or killing the enemy, they were also diverted to a host of ‘reconstruction’ projects. The result is that the enemy was not destroyed and crushed in spirit, but merely scattered and left with the moral fortitude to regroup and launch a brazen comeback.

“The failure in Afghanistan is a result of Washington’s foreign policy. Despite lip-service to the goal of protecting America’s safety, the ‘war on terror’ has been waged in compliance with the prevailing moral premise that self-interest is evil and self-sacrifice a virtue. Instead of trouncing the enemy for the sake of protecting American lives, our leaders have sacrificed our self-defense for the sake of serving the whims of Afghans.

“America cannot win this or any war by embracing selflessness as a virtue. Ultimately, it cannot survive unless Washington abandons its self-sacrificial foreign policy in favor of one that proudly places America’s interests as its exclusive moral concern.”