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Jon Stewart: Counter-Insurgency Expert?

Posted on July 29 2010 8:00 am
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It amazes me how Hollywood celebrities or just average opinionated people are so confident in their analyses when they don’t really know what they are talking about. Last night in an interview with Fareed Zakaria, Jon Stewart stated that the Afghans “don’t like us” and it is absurd to think any invasion force can win the hearts and minds to a degree necessary for victory. There you have it folks, Jon Stewart knows better than General Petraeus.

Zakaria follows up by correcting Jon Stewart by noting that polls indicate the Taliban is extremely, extremely unpopular in Afghanistan and U.S. and we’re looked upon pretty favorably. Stewart responds by saying that somehow proves his point and says, “we’re not unpopular,” as if he hadn’t said Afghans “don’t like us” one minute prior.

Watch the interview below:

The Daily Show With Jon Stewart Mon – Thurs 11p / 10c
Fareed Zakaria
Daily Show Full Episodes Political Humor Tea Party

Zakaria is right. A recent poll of Afghans in Kandahar and Helmand Provinces is disappointing, but another poll reflecting nationwide opinion is a good thing and in my opinion, there’s a connection between their feelings towards us and whether we provide them with security.

Stewart somehow thinks this proves his point. He says we’re not really hated but the war is still a mess even when we’re not hated, apparently trying to say we can’t win enough hearts and minds to turn things around. One of the most infuriating things to me is how people are judging the surge in Afghanistan before all the troops have arrived and before it’s even been fully implemented—just like we saw happen in Iraq when people like Harry Reid prematurely declared the war lost.

So, Jon Stewart was right when he said the Afghans “don’t like us” and when he was informed that “we’re not unpopular” (in Stewart’s own words soon after) he was even more right. General Petraeus, you have competition!

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