While we are all watching the events that are taking place in Afghanistan on an hour-by-hour basis, I found several items of interest to share.

Putting aside the catastrophe that is currently taking place, I was somewhat amazed to find where a lot (a large lot) of taxpayer dollars have been spent in that country over the past 20 years.

I suppose I have been remiss in thinking that for the past 2 decades we have been over there attempting to help build schools, hospitals and other basic fundamentals of a civilized society. I mean countries need these items as well as roads, clean drinking water and other fundamentals to be alive and well in the 21st century.

What I didn’t expect to see are these items:

 “So, alongside the billions for bombs went hundreds of millions for gender studies in Afghanistan. According to US government reports, $787 million was spent on gender programs in Afghanistan, but that substantially understates the actual total, since gender goals were folded into practically every undertaking America made in the country.

A recent report from the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) broke down the difficulties of the project. For starters, in both Dari and Pastho there are no words for ‘gender’. That makes sense, since the distinction between ‘sex’ and ‘gender’ was only invented by a sexually-abusive child psychiatrist in the 1960s, but evidently Americans were caught off-guard. Things didn’t improve from there. Under the US’s guidance, Afghanistan’s 2004 constitution set a 27 percent quota for women in the lower house — higher than the actual figure in America! A strategy that sometimes required having women represent provinces they had never actually been to. Remarkably, this experiment in ‘democracy’ created a government few were willing to fight for, let alone die for.

The initiatives piled up one after another. Do-gooders established a ‘National Masculinity Alliance’, so a few hundred Afghan men could talk about their ‘gender roles’ and ‘examine male attitudes that are harmful to women’.

Police facilities included childcare facilities for working mothers, as though Afghanistan’s medieval culture had the same needs as 1980s Minneapolis. The army set a goal of 10 percent female participation, which might make sense in a Marvel movie, but didn’t to devout Muslims. Even as America built an Afghan army that ended up collapsing in days, and a police force whose members frequently became highwaymen, it always made sure to execute its gender goals.”

So my take on this is that we went into a country to control terrorism, and prod this nation into working with the rest of the modern age. This is a tribal country ruled by men who still think the 7th century was a great time to live. We wanted to go in and transform an entire society that is not only violent and warlike to one where that men and women can choose to pick their genders if so desired? This is a country that doesn’t even have a word for gender?

Our country is nearly 250 years old and we are still struggling with the issues of gender and sex. And someone in our government decided that these basically 7th century warlords would ‘embrace’ a woke mentality in a short time?

Maybe it’s me, but what comes to my mind is….who is watching these programs to see if they are effective or productive or not?

Do these contracts get awarded and then lost in the mix or fall through the cracks without any concept or idea of their success or failure rate?

I have worked with a lot of charities in many different ways. One of their primary needs, of course, is more money to operate.

I am always curious (and not well liked for this) by asking them to explain to me their success rate. For example, if a charity is set up to take sex workers off the streets away from that lifestyle, how many have they been successful in converting into productive and responsibility citizens?

If you are doing a drug intervention program, how successful have you been for the number of years you have been in existence?

If your charity or program has a $1,000,000 operating budget and you only changed the life of one person, good for you for that one person, but can you keep doing this with so little return to show for it? Perhaps you need to change your methods to be more effective.

Afghanistan is a 20-year experiment in futility, isn’t it?  

What were they thinking when they started these programs? They had good intentions, I have no doubt of that, but you cannot give a person a can of soup without a can opener.

To correct the ills of this tribal mentality would take many more years and more than just several billions of dollars to make any effective cultural changes of this nature.

After all, until 1920 women in this country were not allowed to vote. Think about that for awhile.

Stay tuned for next week’s edition.

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