October 22, 2009 11:00AM

Hubris in Afghanistan

I don’t regularly read the Guardian, but when I do it is usually because someone else has called attention to Simon Jenkins’ latest column. Such is the case today. After reading this, I’m adding him to my Google reader subscriptions.

This graf pertaining to “Why are we in Afghanistan?” really stood out for me:

The excuse that we are preventing another 9/11 is ludicrously thin. That event, whose plotting and training were in Europe and America, will cause the US to spend what Congress puts at a staggering $1.3 trillion in wars and related security by 2019. And still no one has arrested Bin Laden. It must be the most extravagant punitive expedition to the Asian mainland since Agamemnon set off for Troy.

For the many people whose sense of history doesn’t extend much before the last winner of “American Idol”, that reference won’t register. For the people who understand the reference, and who nonetheless would persist in this open‐​ended nation‐​building folly, I defy them to prove Jenkins wrong.