Bing West

February 22, 2011 - Bing West 02/22/2011 Views: 25,462

Bing West believes America diverted itself from the war by trying to make a modern nation out of Afghanistan. (5:46)

(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)

>> Stephen: WELCOME BACK,

EVERYBODY.

MY GUEST TONIGHT SAYS THAT IT

WILL BE EASIER TO GET OUT OF

AFGHANISTAN THAN WE THINK.

I'M NOT SURPRISED, IT WAS PRETTY

EASY FOR BIN LADEN.

PLEASE WELCOME BING WEST!

(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)

HEY, BING!

GOOD TO SEE YOU AGAIN.

SIT DOWN, THANKS FOR COMING

BACK.

>> MY PLEASURE.

>> Stephen: LET'S GET YOUR BONA

FIDES OUT HERE FOR THESE PEOPLE.

YOU'RE ONE TOUGH OLD BASTARD.

(LAUGHTER)

YOU ARE A MARINE COMBAT VETERAN,

ASSISTANT SECRETARY OF DEFENSE

UNDER REAGAN-- THE BEST

PRESIDENT-- AND YOU GOT A NEW

BOOK HERE CALLED "THE WRONG WAR:

GRIT, STRATEGY, AND THE WAY OUT

OF AFGHANISTAN."

WAIT A SECOND.

WRONG WAR?

>> WRONG WAR.

>> Stephen: THAT'S AN AMERICAN

WAR, SIR.

THERE ARE NO WRONG AMERICAN WARS

>> IT WAS ALL RIGHT WHEN WE

BEGAN BECAUSE WE WENT OVER THERE

TO GET THE TERRORISTS WHO HAD

KNOCKED DOWN THE WORLD TRADE

CENTER.

BUT OVER THE LAST TEN YEARS WE

GOT THIS NEW NOTION THAT WE WERE

GOING TO BUILD A NATION AND AS

WE BEGAN TO TRY TO BUILD A

NATION WE SAID TO OUR MILITARY

YOU HAVE TO BECOME A GIANT PEACE

CORPS AND YOU HAVE TO BUILD

HOSPITALS AND GIVE SCHOOLS AND

YOU HAVE TO WIND THE HEARTS AND

MINDS OF THE AFGHANS AND WE

DIVERTED OURSELVES INTO TRYING

TO MAKE A MODERN NATION OUT OF

AFGHANISTAN AND THAT DOG ISN'T

GOING TO HUNT.

(LAUGHTER)

>> Stephen: WHAT... WHAT SHOULD

WE DO WITH THE DOG?

(LAUGHTER)

THE REASON I ASK, SIR, IS THAT

YOU LITERALLY WROTE THE BOOK ON

COUNTERINSURGENCY, ALL RIGHT?

>> CORRECT.

>> Stephen: WE USE THAT IN IRAQ.

WHY CAN'T WE DO WHAT WE DID IN

IRAQ IN AFGHANISTAN?

WE WIN THE HEARTS AND MINDS.

WE SURGE.

WE'RE SURGING, RIGHT?

NOBODY SURGES LIKE US.

ARE YOU SAYING WE'RE GETTING

OUTSURGED?

>> WHAT I'M SAYING IS THAT WE

KIND OF OUTHYPED OURSELVES.

WHAT HAPPENED IN IRAQ WAS VERY

SIMPLE.

THE MARINES OUT IN THE REMOTE

PROVINCE CALLED ANBAR KEPT

HAMMERING AWAY AT THE SUNNI

INSURGENTS UNTIL THE LIGHT

FINALLY WENT ON WITH THE SUNNI

INSURGENTS AND THEY SAID "WE'RE

ON THE WRONG SIDE."

AND THEY CAME OVER.

>> Stephen: WHY CAN'T THEY DO

THAT WITH THE TALIBAN?

TALIBAN, DON'T THEY HAVE

LIGHTBULBS BEHIND THEIR EYES?

>> THE PROBLEM IN DEALING WITH

THE TALIBAN IS YOU ARE DEALING

WITH HONEST TO GOODNESS STONE

KILLERS WHO BELIEVE IN THIS

ISLAMIST VERSION OF HISTORY AND

THE ONLY WAY YOU CAN DEAL WITH

THEM IS TO PUT THEM DOWN IN THE

EARTH.

AND AS LONG AS WE TRY TO WIN

HEARTS AND MINDS WE'RE DIVERTING

OURSELVES.

>> Stephen: SO YOU'RE NOT ONE OF

THOSE THREE CUPS OF TEA GUY.

(LAUGHTER)

I HEAR IF YOU SIT DOWN AND HAVE

THREE CUPS OF TEA WITH PEOPLE

AND EVERYTHING GETS BETTER.

>> LET ME SHOW YOU... I'M JUST

BACK FROM AFGHANISTAN.

I BROUGHT THIS ALONG.

>> Stephen: HOW MANY TIMES HAVE

YOU BEEN OVER THERE?

>> OH, ABOUT TEN TIMES IN THE

LAST FOUR YEARS.

SO I'VE BEEN....

>> Stephen: SO YOU GO OUT ON

PATROL WITH THE GUYS?

>> ALWAYS.

I DON'T SPEND ANY TIME AT

HEADQUARTERS.

>> Stephen: O.K..

>> BUT WE'RE OUT ON THIS PATROL

AND IN ONE PARTICULAR THE LEAD

MARINE FOUND FOUR OF THESE

FIENDISH DEVICES AND WHEN YOU

STEP ON THAT IT HITS AN

EXPLOSIVE.

>> Stephen: THERE ARE TWO WIRES

THERE I CAN SEE ONE ON THE TOP

AND ONE ON THE BOTTOM AND THESE

ARE PILLOW TO KEEP IT APART.

THEY HAVE PILLOW TECHNOLOGY?

(LAUGHTER)

SOMEONE GAVE THEM MEMORY FOAM

TECHNOLOGY.

>> Stephen: AND THEY'RE IN THE

DIRT AND EVERYDAY OUR SOLDIERS

AND OUR MARINES HAVE TO GO OUT

AND THEY ENCOUNTER THIS AND AT

THE SAME TIME WE SAY WE'RE

WINNING HEARTS AND MINDS WE'VE

BEEN DOING IT FOR TEN YEARS AND

AT SOME POINT WE HAVE TO SAY WHY

WOULD THEY STILL BE ALLOWING

PEOPLE TO DO IF THIS IF THEY

WERE ON OUR SIDE.

AND THE ANSWER IS YOU HAVE TO

WIN THE WAR FIRST.

>> Stephen: OKAY.

SO HOW DO WE WIN THE WAR?

BECAUSE I... IN IRAQ WE HAD A

MOMENT WHERE WE COULD SAY WE WON

THE WAR, WE COULD SAY "HEY, WE

HAVE AN ESTABLISHED GOVERNMENT.

PURPLE FINGER."

>> YUP.

>> Stephen: WHAT'S THE PURPLE

FINGER FOR AFGHANISTAN?

>> AFGHAN SOLDIERS STANDING UP

AND FIGHTING FOR THEMSELVES THE

WAY THIS DEAL THE BY A THIS DEAL

HAS BEEN GOING DOWN IS WE HAVE

BEEN TRY TOO HARD TO DO THE WORK

FOR THEM.

WE'VE BEEN GIVING THEM BILLIONS

OF DOLLARS AND WE HAVEN'T BEEN

SAYING "YOU HAVE TO STAND UP FOR

YOURSELF."

WE SHOULD DO THREE THINGS.

WE SHOULD REDUCE THE NUMBER OF

TROOPS WE HAVE OVER THERE AND

GET OUT AND LEAVE NATION

BUILDING TO THE STATE

DEPARTMENT.

WE SHOULD REDUCE THE AMOUNT OF

MONEY WE'RE GIVING TO THE

AFGHANS FOR NOTHING.

WE GIVE $14 BILLION A YEAR TO

THE AFGHANS AND WE ASK NOTHING

FOR IT AND THAT'S WHAT WE GET IN

RETURN.

>> Stephen: WE GET NOTHING?

NOT EVEN LIKE PRIMO HEROIN?

(LAUGHTER AND APPLAUSE)

LET'S FACE IT, IT'S BLACK TAR

OVER THERE.

(LAUGHTER)

>> BLACK TAR OVER THERE.

BUT ASIDE FROM... I WON'T EVEN

GO THERE.

AND THE THIRD THING WE SHOULD DO

IS JUST TAKE OUR TROOPS AND GO

BACK TO WAR FIGHTING.

WE COULD DO THE JOB AGAINST THE

TERRORISTS MUCH MORE EFFICIENTLY

WITH FEWER FORCES.

>> Stephen: DO YOU THINK WE

SHOULD HAVE BEEN OUT BEFORE

THIS?

>> NO, I DON'T THINK WE SHOULD

EVER GET OUT OF AFGHANISTAN.

>> Stephen: OH, THANK GOODNESS.

(LAUGHTER)

>> I THINK WE SHOULD LEAVE

BEHIND SOME VERY, VERY GOOD

ADVISORS AND SOME VERY GOOD

AIRCRAFT AND SOME VERY GOOD

INTELLIGENCE BUT WE... ABOVE ALL

WE HAVE TO SAY TO THE AFGHAN

SOLDIERS "YOU HAVE TO FIGHT YOUR

OWN BATTLES.

WE'RE NOT GOING TO CONTINUE TO

FIGHT THESE BATTLES FOR YOU FOR

ANOTHER DECADE."

>> Stephen: BUT ADVISORS DO YOU

MEAN ADVISORS OR "ADVISORS"?

>> "ADVISORS".

>> Stephen: OKAY, THE

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