Jun. 22nd, 2011

Problem Statement: The war in Afghanistan will soon enter its tenth year. Polls increasingly indicate that Americans want our troops withdrawn from Afghanistan as soon as possible. Given the high toll in American lives, as well as rising war costs and an extended economic recession, our politicians are under increasing pressure to conclude the conflict in Central Asia quickly.

At the same time, these same politicians do not wish for an American draw-down to appear as a defeat for our nation. Any result that does not stabilize and pacify Afghanistan, that leaves Taleban personnel in control of major parts of the country, or that leaves anti-American forces capable of staging new attacks against our country, will be perceived across the world as a general failure. Such a failure would spell political doom for incumbent office-holders. There is therefore a strong incentive to leave quickly, but also to achieve meaningful progress in Afghanistan before we leave.

Such results cannot be achieved by the use of manpower and munitions alone. We've been doing that for the last ten years and we haven't made a lot of concrete progress. The western world has been doing something similar to what we're doing since the time of Alexander the Great, and nobody's had a huge amount of luck conquering that part of the world by force alone. It's time to call in the Big Guns, and when I say 'Big Guns' I mean the large-calibre juggernaut of a weapon that is our superior scientific understanding and engineering know-how. Now is the time to think outside the box, especially if the box is full of anti-matter. Let us resolve to use the time remaining to us to identify our enemies and Science it all up in those bitches!

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