If this reminds you of Morocco and the French Foreign Legion, circa 1902, you'd be thinking right.
From " ‘Die, Die, Foreigners!’ by Mark Steyn:
In the last couple of months, two prominent politicians of different nations visiting their troops on the ground have used the same image to me for Western military bases: crusader forts. Behind the fortifications, a mini-West has been built in a cheerless land: There are Coke machines and Krispy Kreme doughnuts. Safely back within the gates, a man can climb out of the full RoboCop and stop pretending he enjoys three cups of tea with the duplicitous warlords, drug barons, and pederasts who pass for Afghanistan’s ruling class. The visiting Western dignitary is cautiously shuttled through outer and inner perimeters, and reminded that even here there are areas he would be ill-advised to venture unaccompanied, and tries to banish memories of his first tour all those years ago when aides still twittered optimistically about the possibility of a photo op at a girls’ schoolroom in Jalalabad or an Internet start-up in Kabul.The war ended the day George Bush left office. What came about on that same day was a half-hearted resolve on the part of our new president to honor a half-hearted campaign pledge. A pledge that amounted to nothing more than a promise to do something over yonder some day. This is the necessary conclusion to the effort Barack Obama has put into "Afghanistan policy" such as it is: a kind of Fort Algiers transplanted to the Hindu Kush.
The last crusader fort I visited was Kerak Castle in Jordan a few years ago. It was built in the 1140s, and still impresses today. I doubt there will be any remains of our latter-day fortresses a millennium hence. Six weeks after the last NATO soldier leaves Afghanistan, it will be as if we were never there. We came, we saw, we left no trace. America’s longest war will leave nothing behind. [link]
Add Gary Cooper and Hollywood has the makings of a great movie.
And Barack Obama has his Afghanistan policy.
And those poor Afghan people who - for a brief time anyway - looked to us for liberation from an oppressive government and oppressive religion?
No account bit players in a flick that will only be seen on IFC.
Nameless, faceless, unimportant extras used for effect and told they're no longer needed.
Go on back to your mud hovels. Grab one of those copies of Barack Obama's Nobel Peace Prize speech to take with you. Thanks for the cooperation. Try not to soil anything on your way out.
"Cut." "That's a wrap."