In a post entitled Deutsche Kreuzritter (German Crusaders) Alive and Kicking, I wrote in 2008:
I have predicted for quite some time that attacking and occupying Afghanistan is likely to meet support in Germany only as a matter of transient "political correctness".[...]
During the Nazi years, one could not observe broad sections of the German population demanding the killing of Jews - in fact, the Nazis knew that they would be going too far in disclosing or aggressively advertising the systematic extermination of Jews and, therefore, carefully hid the vile business from the public.
Today, it is easy to find support among the German public for the killing of certain sections of the Afghan population - just call them Taliban, and it will be deemed fine to take them out.
After all, German soldiers are over there for a "humanitarian" purpose - helping to support and stabilise (by bribery and other most dubious means) war lords and political coalitions in Kabul that on closer inspection betray, perhaps even more pronouncedly, the repugnant aspects implied in the term Taliban, a designation conveniently employed as a supposedly irrefutable all-purpose condemnation that must be accepted if one is not to commit the unspeakable sin of not being politically correct.
The media are largely silent about the actual circumstances of German collaboration in Afghanistan, portraying instead German involvement as a touching case of compassion and a generous act of bringing cultural advancement to savage tribes. [...]
"Humanitarian" aggression is not only the government line with regard to Afghanistan (and indeed other places), it is the position assumed by a growing industry of militarised charity. To my horror, I heard on the radio recently, a representative of CARITAS - a charity of the Roman Catholic church - demanding that German forces remain in Afghanistan to protect CARITAS in the pursuit of their various projects.
Six years later, DER SPIEGEL reports:
"They ran away," croaks the deputy police chief for the Kunduz province in his office and gestures dismissively. "They simply ran away. It was too soon."
"It was too soon. It was like an escape." One can hear almost exactly the same thing from the mouths of German soldiers, some of whom even compare the Bundeswehr's departure with that of the Americans from Saigon at the end of the Vietnam War. "If there is one thing the Bundeswehr is really good at, it's retreating," is a sentiment that can often be heard in the government quarter in Berlin these days.
What, though, did the Germans really manage to accomplish in Kunduz and what did the 25 Germans killed in the region die for? What did all the money buy? What remains of the mission? Berlin would rather not provide an answer to these questions: A complete evaluation of the Afghanistan engagement is not on the agenda.
Make sure to read the entire article.