The more I learn about that part of the world and its people, the more I respect everything that allows me to sit here and chat about it. The technology, the culture, the value we place on individual achievement, all that I take for granted, they don't have. The USA might as well be on the moon for them, and the idea that anything we think or do has anything to do with them must seem as unlikely... as the reverse seemed to us on September 10.
Even (especially!) the assumption that government derives its power by consent of the governed. Afghanistan doesn't have that. (However distrustful I may get of government agencies, I know that the occasional *bang* I hear outside my window is only a vehicle backfiring, and the water in my tap is safe to drink.)
The important part of the press coverage of this adventure *ahem* is not the war news, but the stuff that fills time around the war news. The wider dissemination that gets, the more we may realize just how rich we are.
(Further reading: P. J O'Rourke,