Afghanistan

Trump Still Wants to Privatize Afghanistan

SK Ashby
Written by SK Ashby

Trump briefly flirted with the idea of completely privatizing our presence in Afghanistan last year before finally signing off on plans preferred by his advisers and officials, but officials who spoke to NBC News say Trump is warming up to the idea again.

They say Trump's renewed interest in the idea is the result of watching a stupid video.

Trump's renewed interest in privatization was stoked by a recent video shot by [Blackwater founder Erik Prince], according to a senior administration official, in which Prince argues that deploying private contractors instead of U.S. troops, and using limited government resources, would save the U.S. money.

The White House currently has no plans for a comprehensive Afghanistan policy review, officials said. While one could take place after a new U.S. military commander of the war takes over in coming weeks, some officials said the president's team has been reluctant to conduct one now out of concern about what the president will decide.

Anyone who paid a single second of attention during the Iraq war could tell you that privatizing war does not save anyone money. The cost of the Iraq war ballooned far out of control because former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld privatized virtually everything right down to the preparation of food and laundry. Private contractors like those employed by Erik Prince also fought in combat in Iraq and that didn't save money either, with contractors taking home huge paychecks.

In fact, serving as a private contractor in Iraq was so lucrative, some former service members returned to Iraq just for the money. Chances are most people reading this knows someone who served in Iraq in some capacity related to the decision to privatize the war. One of my friends obtained a commercial driver's license just so he could go to Iraq and get paid three times as much for driving a truck.

Of course, People Who Paid Attention During The Iraq War is not a group of people that includes Donald Trump.

It's my understanding that we'll still be paying for the interest on Iraq war debt for the next 50 years. Interest payments could exceed the cost of actual combat operations.