© Jonathan Stutz
Continuing Our Monthly Observation of
The International Day of Peace
The sad and tragic events surrounding Afghanistan invite us to do some serious soul-searching as a government and a people. Enormous amounts of money, supplies, and lives have been invested in what appears to be a failed effort. This is not a time for blame but accountability. We must resist the political opportunists in our Country who will distract us from the real issues at hand.
The failure in Afghanistan was based on the belief war can secure peace and prosperity. The United States and its Allies attempted to fashion an Afghan army in the image and likeness of itself. President Biden made clear he opposed nation-building. Yet, past Administrations tried to do just that. In retrospect, we needed to support the type of government that made sense to the Afghan people assuring their human and civil rights.
Hopefully, the failure in Afghanistan will remind us of what developing countries need and desire. The Afghan people treasured schools, water, safe transport, and human rights. Women and girls flourished over the past twenty years. It is a terrible misjudgment to think our only obligation in Afghanistan is to prevent future terrorist attacks. 
Regrettably, we wasted billions of dollars thinking a country could be saved by armed might alone. Once again, the military-industrial complex and the profits made from it obscured our vision and compromised the human rights of so many innocent people. We need to invest in people. The Afghan government proved itself to be concerned only with its own security and fortune. 
The human catastrophe now unfolding in Afghanistan requires we assume responsibility for our own citizens, those who supported us over the years, and citizens of Afghanistan who trusted us to stand by them. Malala Yousafzai, who the Taliban viciously attacked for advocating a woman’s right to an education, calmly wrote in the New York Times:
“We will have time to debate what went wrong in the war in Afghanistan, but in this critical moment we must listen to the voices of Afghan women and girls. They are asking for protection, for education, for the freedom and the future they were promised. We cannot continue to fail them. We have no time to spare.”
We are deeply concerned about our Veterans who respected the Afghan people and won their trust. Our failed policies as a Nation are not their fault and they deserve our gratitude and respect. Perhaps our Governmental leaders will listen to those who fought on the ground, spoke to the people, and came to their aid. Perhaps now is the time for soldiers and peacemakers to sit with the policy-makers before more blood is shed for no good reason. Perhaps now is the time to establish policies investing in people rather than killing machines.

As things begin to return to a new normal, we at The Interfaith Peace Project are here for you in any way that you need us. The Antioch Center is now open to fully vaccinated people on Wednesdays, from 11:00 am to 2:00 pm. We are vigilant and will adjust to any and all recommendations from the state and county. We will continue our work through Zoom as we add in person programs. If you would like to schedule an in person or Zoom program or would like a phone appointment with any of us, give us a call. You may call or email Tom at:
Tom Bonacci
925-787- 9279