Freddy Fender's (1937 - 2006) song 'Before the Next Teardrop Falls', 1975, immediately took off in popularity in 1975. The song ascended to No. 1 on the Billboard magazine Hot Country Singles chart. At that time, the world was at peace. But in reality, it was 'calm before the storm'.
Some say the only warrior who could capture Afghanistan is Genghis Khan, 1162-1227, Mongol conqueror. Now that Gen. Stanly McChrystal is relieved, can his successors implement COIN, counterinsurgency, and achieve 'victory'?
Now, in retrospect we may infer that all began in Afghanistan: Collapse of USSR. On 18 July 1973, Lt. Gen. Daoud Khan, cousin to the king of Afghanistan, a peaceful country at his time, and a group of young military officers deposed King Zaher Shah in favor of a Republic. In this Republic, he was both president and prime minister. A reform program began. In 1976, a new democratic constitution was undergoing its final stages of development.
As time went on, Daoud Khan found out he could not trust Moscow and his own officers. Therefore, he turned for help to Moslem countries: Kuwait, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Shah of Iran. It was too late. He, his whole family, and aids were all bullet-riddled. It was the 1st teardrop.
1978, Noor Mohammed Taraki, a Marxist, took over. This pro-communist socialist party, PDPA, decided to abolish usury, ban forced marriages, allow women's rights to vote, replace religious and traditional laws with secular and Marxist ones, abolish tribal courts, and perform land reform. [Compare with COIN, McChrystal's strategy: "...to take back havens from the Taliban commanders in southern and western Afghanistan, where shadow insurgent governors collect taxes and run court systems based on Islamic sharia law." "Af/Pak" News, Friday June 25th 2010]
In Sept. 1979, Taraki was killed and Hafizullah Amin took power. Shortly thereafter, the USSR invaded Afghanistan. Amin was executed. Soviets installed Babrak Karmal as president. It was the 2nd teardrop.
The Soviet stayed in Afghanistan for 10 years, this was named as USSR's Vietnam. During this period, Soviets were dragged into guerrilla warfare with mujahedin, "holy Muslim warriors", supported by American CIA, Pakistan, a wealthy Saudi named Osama bin Laden and Saudi Arabia.
In February 1989, Soviet Union withdrew its troops. Their proxy government steadily lost ground to the guerrilla forces. (to be continued)