If the mission in Afghanistan is two-fold -- the defeat of the abysmal Taliban and the creation of a stable, democratic state -- then it would appear that we are not doing well.
The same could be said of "nation-building" in Iraq. The true measure of our efforts in both beneficiary countries should be based upon an examination of the foundations of these countries that we have created with the blood of our best and our treasure. When such an examination is made, the result can be only horror.
The constitutions of Iraq and Afghanistan for those who love democracy, freedom, and liberty are failures. If the constitution is a failure, then what kind of nation can be built then upon it?
After the U.S. military (with our allies) drove the Taliban out of Kabul, we endeavored to create a new Afghanistan based upon constitutional law. Neither the constitution of Iraq nor of Afghanistan is structured on the secular American model of the state subordinate to the will of the people. This concept is the foundation of American democracy given to us by Jefferson, Washington, Adams, Madison, Monroe, Franklin, and Hamilton; this is tragically not the foundation of our failed nation-building strategy in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Iraq and Afghanistan are both Islamic states (specifically stated as such in their constitutions). The people of both beneficiary states are therefore in service to Islam (i.e., the state is Islam and Islam is the state). This is not any form of "democracy" that most Americans can countenance or reasonably support.
After WW2, Douglas MacArthur remained in Tokyo to impose a new constitution on the defeated Japanese. The new Japanese constitution removed the power of the Emperor and created an American-style democracy in which the people have power over the government through the constitution. This approach completely overturned the old order of Japanese totalitarian empirical rule.
In announcing the new constitution in Tokyo, MacArthur said that "the Japanese people thus turn their backs firmly upon the mysticism and unreality of the past and face instead a future of realism with a new faith and a new hope." Regarding the Emperor, MacArthur said in a public statement that the new constitution "leaves the throne without governmental authority or state property, subject to the people's will, a symbol of the people's unity."
The new constitution represented a complete and total shift in approach to government in Japan, and most importantly, the relationship of citizen to the state.
Declared by its terms to be the supreme law for Japan, it places sovereignty squarely in the hands of the people. It establishes governmental authority with the predominant power vested in an elected legislature, as representative of the people, but with adequate check upon that power, as well as upon the power of the Executive and the Judiciary, to insure that no branch of government may become autocratic or arbitrary in the administration of affairs of state.
-MacArthur's Announcement of Japan's New Constitution, March 6, 1946
Japan's post-war constitution specifically identifies the constitution itself as the supreme law of the land. This is the same structure of constitutional democracy that exists in the United States as delineated in Article 6, Clause 2 of the U.S. Constitution. Constitutionalism is ensconced in Japan by the 98th Article.
This Constitution shall be the supreme law of the nation and no law, ordinance, imperial rescript or other act of government, or part thereof, contrary to the provisions hereof, shall have legal force or validity.
The new constitution reiterated the overturning of the old empirical order; the Emperor was now legally powerless and subordinate to the constitution.
The Emperor or the Regent as well as Ministers of State, members of the Diet, judges, and all other public officials have the obligation to respect and uphold this Constitution.
-Article 99, Constitution of Japan
We have taken a tragically different course in Afghanistan and Iraq.
Article One of the constitution of Afghanistan states that "Afghanistan is an Islamic Republic, independent, unitary and indivisible state." Article 2 of the constitution of Iraq states that "Islam is the official religion of the State and it is a fundamental source of legislation." Both states identify Islam as the bedrock of the state and also the law of the land.
No law that contradicts the established provisions of Islam may be established.
-Article 2, A, constitution of Iraq
In Afghanistan, no law can be contrary to the beliefs and provisions of the sacred religion of Islam.
-Article 3, constitution of Afghanistan
Both Afghanistan and Iraq are Islamic states, as codified in their new American-supported constitutions. Sharia law is the law of Islam. Islamic law supersedes any laws in the constitution that are not Sharia law-compliant. Any review of the implementation of Sharia law anywhere in the world (or of Sharia itself) shows it to be brutal, cruel, misogynistic, anti-homosexual, anti-free speech, supremacist, anti-democratic, and anti-freedom of religion among its many unpleasant qualities. Even in Afghanistan as late as 2006, a Muslim Afghan convert to Christianity was sentenced to death for leaving Islam. Only American outrage prevented the implementation of the Sharia death penalty. Under Sharia law, leaving Islam is not permitted. It is considered a crime worse than murder and is punishable by death. A Sharia judge on the case commented at the time, "We are not against any particular religion in the world. But in Afghanistan, this sort of thing is against the law. It is an attack on Islam." The inherent contradiction between democracy and Islamic law did not go unnoticed by everyone, however. Sharia law is derived from the Koran, Sira, and Hadith, the three foundational documents of Islam. Sharia law therefore has the authority of both Allah and Mohammed, as it is the codification of their commands and the words, deeds, and example of the prophet. American support of this barbaric "legal system" anywhere on this planet is folly. Sharia law is antithetical to American concepts of freedom and democracy. What can be the reason why we have created two Islamic states founded upon American blood and treasure? Why did we take such a radically different approach to Iraq and Afghanistan from what we did with Japan after WW2? There is no overlap whatever between American concepts of decency and justice and Sharia law. Among the horrors of Sharia are death for criticism of Islam, death for leaving Islam, dhimmitude for non-Muslims living under Sharia, the near impossibility of rape victims to prove rape, wife-beating, child marriage, unequal rights for women, no legal rights for non-Muslims, and the subjugation of women. The list of Sharia's horrors is lengthy and disturbing. An illustration of Sharia from the definitive book of Sharia law, Reliance of the Traveller, is illustrative.
The following are not subject to retaliation:
a Muslim for killing a non-Muslim (o1.2(2))
a Jewish or Christian subject of the Islamic state for killing an apostate from Islam (O:because a subject of the state is under its protection, while killing an apostate from Islam is without consequences); (o1.2(3))
a father or mother (or their fathers or mothers) for killing their offspring, or offspring's offspring (o1.2(4))
Under Sharia law, there is no "retaliation" by the Islamic state against a Muslim who kills a non-Muslim for whatever reason. Can there be a more barbarous "legal" system that is more overtly opposed to our own concepts of right/wrong, good/evil, decency/barbarism, and justice/injustice? This is the system of "law" for which we fight in Iraq and Afghanistan? This is folly.
No American who loves our Constitution and the freedoms guaranteed under it should accept Sharia law anywhere in this country or actively support it elsewhere. How can it be countenanced that American soldiers are told that they fight and die for "freedom" in Iraq and Afghanistan when in fact our soldiers fight to prop up two Sharia law states?
Why did we free the Japanese people from the backwardness, totalitarianism, and aggressive warfare of the empire of Japan, but chose to cooperate in imposing the anti-human injustice and brutality of Islamic Sharia law on the people of Iraq and Afghanistan? The blame for this disaster must be spread across two administrations. We have failed in that we did not create a society based upon justice, secular law, and constitutional democracy in the American model as we did for Japan.
Sharia law is horrific and anti-human, and it should be opposed by decent people everywhere. Our "allies" across the Islamic world implement Sharia law to varying degrees, but every Islamic state must acknowledge its Islamic obligation to implement it.
The goal of Islamic expansion everywhere is the implementation of Sharia law in countries and cultures where it is not now enforced. This expansion is fueled by jihad. Jihad is required of all adherents of Islam.
What can be the purpose of the United States (the "great satan") in creating new Islamic states? The answers are not forthcoming because these questions are rarely (if ever) asked.
We now fight a war around the world and at home against Islamic brutality against us (our so-called "war on terror") motivated entirely by the doctrine of Islam, yet we fight two wars to create and prop up two new Islamic countries bound to the same doctrine -- folly.
What can our war aims be when the result will be the creation of two countries that are ideologically opposed to our existence? It would appear that we have been fooled, or worse. Our mistakes carry a staggeringly high cost; to bring any value or meaning to our efforts in Afghanistan and Iraq, we must admit that our course has been tragically in error and quickly make the necessary corrections.
D.L. Adams is an analyst and historian, and a co-founder of SIOA (Stop Islamization of America)