While the US focuses on consolidating its permanent military presence in Afghanistan, designed to guard and exploit Central Asian energy reserves, its earlier rational "to fight terrorism" is a faded memory. Afghanis, meanwhile, continue to lose their lives and humanitarian conditions worsen.
The United States managed to avert a default, and that is good news. But the partisan battle in Congress sent the stock market plunging, and the decision by Standard & Poor’s to downgrade the country’s credit rating has made matters far worse.
Debate over the 10-year-plus war in Afghanistan tends to focus on how and when it "can be won," obscuring the fundamental question of whether it was morally acceptable in the first place. Now as the US gets closer to consolidating its imperial presence in the region for decades to come, the high cost to the Afghani people continues to be ignored.