Afghanistan Taliban: A US Colonel on Trial
The New York courtroom had no spectators on a Tuesday afternoon.
The proceeding was a hybrid military-civilian hearing.
The presiding Judge was a retired general and an Obama appointee. The defendant: US Colonel Nathan Matthews, Special Forces, who had served six tours of duty running a secret training installation outside Kabul.
JUDGE: Colonel Matthews, I want to make a few things clear. First, we are engaged in a finding of fact. Once that is established, I’ll decide whether to bring charges against you. If I do bring a charge, you’ll be held without bail until a proper trial takes place.
MATTHEWS: Understood, sir.
JUDGE: First question. In the shockingly SAFE exit of US personnel and their Afghan allies from the country last week, is it true that nearly 20,000 Taliban were killed or taken prisoner?
MATTHEWS: It’s true.
JUDGE: I would like you to explain how you managed this feat.
MATTHEWS: Your Honor, there is a significant back-story. I have to tell it, for the first time. Very few people are aware of my secret mission in Afghanistan. I’ve been conducting that mission since 2003.
JUDGE: Yes, Colonel. Proceed. I’ve been made aware of the details, and I must say it’s changed my political stance on several vital issues.
MATTHEWS: By 2003, it was clear we were going to lose the war. Against our military threat, the Taliban would go into hiding. They would evade us as long as we stayed. When we left, they would emerge, take over the villages and the cities, destroy the central government we built, and the Afghan forces we trained would desert and surrender. All this was a foregone conclusion. Likewise, our efforts to help villagers build a Westernized “sustaining lifestyle” would also collapse. We were up shit’s creek without a paddle.
JUDGE: And that’s when your secret mission took off?
MATTHEWS: Yes. A unit inside the Pentagon gave me the green light. I’ll reveal what we then did in one Afghan village. You can assume we did this in MANY, MANY villages over the next 18 years. We brought roughly 500 heavily armed US soldiers into the center of a village and put all the Afghan men under temporary arrest. Some were Taliban, some were not. We didn’t bother to sort them out. Then we separately gather
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