Afghanistan and Iraq as Gated Communities

I’ve said this before, but the militarization of the Afghan economy doesn’t strike me as an effective way to pacify the place. This picture by Josh Foust (more here) of FOB Salerno in Khost Province, Afghanistan, got me thinking that essentially what we’re modelling in Iraq (the Green Zone) and Afghanistan is the most extreme version of the American gated community. But when a gated community is inhabited primarily by soldiers (yes, I’m exagerrating to make the point), it becomes a garrison. Apparently that’s what’s left of the nation-building approach.