Sam's link to "Road to Tora Bora" was very interesting, depressing and thought provoking. It shows the true difficulty of nation building in Afghanistan. Nation building - a term despised by conservatives. Talk about ironies and poetic justice. Karma strikes.
The depressing part about the road building efforts is that the roads all travel through "hostile Indian" and poppy country. We believe that by building roads, we can promote prosperity and some sort of national pride and identity for Afghanistan. The bad guys simply have to foil our efforts until we tire of the enterprise. Anyone care to bet on the outcome?
It appears that we are nation building in an area that aspires to be another Columbia and yet is light years away from such sophistication. We can nation build for a lifetime and still not acheive what Columbia used to be. There are two major problems to overcome. Radical Islam and opium.
No good will come from the poppy production, only addiction, misery, and death. When the roads to market are built, how will we be able to compete with the high profit poppies? These are intractable, long term problems which this world is ill-prepared and unwilling to address. Afterall, how does a secular world combat such evil? By raising a white, libertarian flag and declaring victory? I don't think so. And why is this evil resurgent even as the west is increasingly post-modern and secular? Maybe it's because the evil practitioners are driven and comforted by a faith and religious fervor lacking in the west. They're on jihad and we've lost our moral compass. They have one simple aim which is to see Islam reign supreme. They have no moral compunction about how they achieve their goal. We, on the other hand are so encumbered by moral equivalence that our society can no longer distinguish between good and evil as we navigate the backroads of humanity.
So, yes, let's get those roads built so that those poppies can get to market more efficiently. Let's stay with the Middle eastern roadmap as we throw more money down the Palestinian rat hole in the hope that our money will overcome their hate. Let us stop at the borders to safe-haven Waziristan. Let's continue down the asphalt highways with our good friends, the Saudis. Ignore the IED's placed by the internationalist hyenas who sabotage us at every turn. Let's build that superhighway from Mexico.
We've lost our moral compass but if we stay with our current map eventually we'll get to Rome.