Beyond the News - FACT Analysis

America is becoming wiser in its foreign military actions

Harjap Singh Aujla

As the Second World War ended in 1945, America wanted to mend her relations with those countries, which were destroyed by its massive bombing operations. So it decided to rebuild the shattered economies of Germany and Japan. On purely humanitarian grounds, they decided not to abandon these heavily wrecked countries. The first thing that America decided was not to pull out its troops completely from these nations and to stay put in these countries. They built permanent military and air bases in these countries, bought most of the land at market rates and built mid-sized cantonment townships. Like any modern cantonment they built roads, sewerage and water supply lines, constructed offices, schools, hospitals and residential accommodation at their own cost to house their sailors, soldiers and airmen. They exhibited a strong desire to rebuild the severely bombed out London and the United Kingdom too. So they decided to build the infrastructure for their troops in the war ravaged United Kingdom too.

American troops are still there in all these countries more than seventy five years after the war ended. Neither these countries object to the presence of American troops, nor the Americans mind living in these civilized societies. To the people of these countries, these Americans are just like international tourists and the American troop presence indeed helps their economy. When the Korean War started during the 1950s, America stationed her troops in aggrieved South Korea, which was facing onslaughts from North Korea militarily supported by the Communist Super Power Soviet Union. In fact, up to this day, there is a substantial presence of American troops in South Korea. South Korea’s industrial and economic progress is heavily supported by America. Taiwan and Philippines are also holding their own against the might of Communist China because of the flexing of American economic and military muscle in their support. China could have gobbled these countries up without America’s active support.

America’s foreign military experiences have been a fairy tale story in all the above mentioned.

Countries, but when it comes to its experiences in the Islamic World, the picture looks gloomy. The Islamic militants consider America as their main enemy. Of course Islamic militants have been violently active in European theatre too, but their real most violent confrontation has been with America. During the past two decades America made military intervention in Iraq and Afghanistan and in both cases the aftermath has been bitter. In Iraq, America succeeded in killing its strongman Saddam Hussain, but their pull out was disastrous. They tried to build an Iraqi Army. Here they went terribly wrong. The majority of Iraqi population is Shiite and the democratically elected government is dominated by the Shiites, but America left most of the arsenal in the hands of the Sunni Muslim Militias. This resulted in numerous incidents of violent bombings and mass murders mostly of the Shiite Muslims. The law and order situation is still grave in the country and it is unlikely to improve in the foreseeable future.

Situation is the worst in Afghanistan. On the advice of Pakistan, America raised an army of three hundred Pashtoon Soldiers. India wanted America to support and strengthen the remnants of the Northern Alliance, but America did the reverse. The result was that none of the three hundred thousand soldiers put up a resistance and the entire country surrendered before the marauding Taliban fighters in a matter of a week. America’s fear is that while vacating the country there will be attacks on the retreating America forces. Their fears were genuine, there was an attack on the Kabul International Airport, in which thirteen Americans (eleven marines, one armyman and one sailor) were killed in addition to more than ninety Afghan citizens.

This was a big disaster, the entire blame, rightly or wrongly, fell on the present American President Joe Biden. Technically America is the most advanced country in the world. They don’t need to station their soldiers in any country. Their Navy is the largest and most advanced in the world. They can station their naval frigates on the high seas anywhere in the world and run their operations from the well protected war ships. Since ground operations are becoming dangerous at least at the time of withdrawal of soldiers, the Americans are depending more and more on unmanned drone aircrafts for hitting their targets. After gathering reliable intelligence, the Americans are now loading smart weapons on the drones and the weapons are fired totally undetected on the hidden targets, where the terrorists are taking shelter. A couple of such operations have succeeded in recent days. In future it is expected that America will operate more and from its enormous Naval assets.

On Tuesday August 31st, 2021, the Americans have achieved their complete withdrawal from Afghanistan. There were chances of terror attacks on the withdrawing American soldiers, but quick and decisive action on the part of America prior to the last days of withdrawal has sent the right unambiguous messages to the terrorists. All is well that ends well. God bless America.  

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