The biggest problem with being an old geezer is that you remember the past. This complicates things mightily. A good, solid forgetfulness allows one so much more in the way of flexibility in thought.
For example, I remember reading the news about the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan on Christmas day, 1979. I thought that it was kind of stupid for them then, but, I could forgive them because it was sitting on their southern border and was firmly in their sphere of influence.
But the boys in Washington were too thrilled with their chess game (Brezhinski was, is, and always will be a controlling little dickhead) to let the thing be. Even though Carter would be out in a couple months, he started making the moves to screw things up for the Rooski's. Truth be told, there is a whole bunch of data that shows we were fucking around, stirring the pot well before Ivan got a bee in his bonnet.
So after the invasion, we spent a decent amount of time wringing our hands, and then we armed the Mooj (mujahaideen) six ways to breakfast and thirteen to the dozen. We trained them in Pakistan (with the F---- Chinese for God's sake), hell, we even kept captured Russians in a prison there.
When the Russians finally admitted that they fucked up and left Dodge, we fell over ourselves praising the Mooj. Doughty freedom fighters one and all.
Then they went back to their cherished hobby of killing each other on a retail basis, fighting over which tribe stole the other tribes goats and which tribe had the proper take on the somewhat opaque writings of Muhammad. In other words, things were pretty much normal.
Then 9-11 happened. It was in fact, the biggest sucker punch in history. It came out of nowhere. We did our usual take about how someone should have seen it coming, but anyone who says that can be safely dismissed as a moron. No one could have seen it coming. But Bin Laden had rented some property from one of the weirder tribes for the off-evening of pederasty and weapons training.
At this point, the doughty freedom fighters were re-branded as the Taliban and Al-Quaeda, who we funded at one time in the long ago, when it was convenient) and made to be a systemic risk to our safety.
So now we are nine years into it and no closer than the rooski's in keeping that shithole under our thumb.
So, refresh my memory. Why are we there?