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When the United States launched its post-September 11 military actions against Afghanistan, the George W. Bush administration issued to the Taliban a set of demands. The Taliban refused to comply, so we went to war.


Here are Bush's original demands:
"Deliver to U.S. authorities all the leaders of al-Qaeda that hide in your land."
"Release all foreign national including American citizens you have unjustly imprisoned."
"Protect all journalists, diplomats, and aid workers in your country."
"Close immediately and permanently every terrorist training camp in Afghanistan and hand over every terrorist and every person in their support structure to appropriate authorities."
"Give the US full access to terrorist training camps so we make sure they are no longer operating."
Two key assumptions are at work here. One is that the Taliban was actively sheltering key al-Qaeda leaders. The other is that terrorist "training camps" operating in Afghanistan constituted a major threat against the United States. Neither of these is true anymore. Khalid Sheikh Mohammed is under American custody at the detention center in Guantánamo Bay. Osama bin Laden is dead. Anwar al-Awlaki is dead. And no terrorist training camps have been operating in Afghanistan for years.So our troops have completed the "original mission".
What's more, that bin Laden was found and killed in a suburb of Islamabad, Pakistan, ought to underscore that physical control of Afghan territory is neither necessary nor sufficient to ensure America's safety.
So Tonight we will discuss this issue and other current events
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