Condoleeza Rice wants the US to stay in Afghanistan, and this time it’s for ‘the women’
Former National Security Advisor and State Secretary Condoleeza Rice appeared on a late-night comedy show, calling for a continued US presence in Afghanistan, this time for apparently feminist reasons. She was swiftly called out.
After some de-rigeur Trump-bashing, host Stephen Colbert and Rice got down to the topic at hand: President Donald Trump’s decision to host, and then cancel, a meeting with the Afghan Taliban at Camp David last week.
Speculating that Trump might cut a deal with the Islamic militants to wrap up the war in Afghanistan –which turns 18 next month– by any means necessary, Rice made the case for continued American involvement in the country. “I hope we’re not going to abandon the women of Afghanistan,” she proclaimed, to cheers from the audience.
“We’ve gone a long way toward helping to create a decent place for the Afghan people to live,” she continued, without mentioning that an estimated 38,000 civilians have been killed in Afghanistan since 2001, along with more than 2,400 US troops, 4,000 US contractors and 58,500 Afghan military and police personnel.
While she trumpeted the fact that women may now join Afghanistan’s military and police force, Rice did not mention the near-weekly attacks on these forces, like the Taliban bombings that killed at least 179 security personnel in one week at the beginning of this month.
Commenters were quick to call out the former Bush administration official. “‘Women of Afghanistan’ is a strange euphemism for defense contractors,” one wrote. “[I] Love late night comedy,” another sarcastically quipped.
What she means is: I hope we are not going to stop dropping bombs over the heads of women and men in Afghanistan. https://t.co/PsqQVbOVee
— asad abukhalil أسعد أبو خليل (@asadabukhalil) September 11, 2019
love late night comedy
— making parents listen to 21 Guns (@ByYourLogic) September 10, 2019
And while life for these women under the Taliban was certainly repressive and cruel, life with American boots on the ground and drones in the sky can be nasty, brutish and short, too. A joint American/Afghan airstrike killed seven civilians on Monday, obliterating a crowd reportedly on their way to a wedding party in the Sayed Abad district. Furthermore, a UN report revealed in July that Afghan government forces and their US and international partners had killed more civilians in the first half of 2019 than the Taliban, Islamic State, and other anti-government fighters.
Colbert, however, did not press Rice on any of this. Instead he took a moment to plug Rice’s new book, unironically entitled ‘To Build a Better World.’ Colbert’s show was just one stop on a recent media blitz for Rice, who told CBS on Tuesday that “No one but the US” can guarantee stability in Afghanistan.
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