This Is What Winning Looks Like

This Is What Winning Looks Like

2013, Military and War  -   97 Comments
Ratings: 8.56/10 from 282 users.

This is a disturbing, new documentary about the ineptitude, drug abuse, sexual misconduct, and corruption of the Afghan security forces as well as the reduced role of US Marines due to the troop withdrawal.

In part one, we see just how chaotic and hopeless the situation is in Sangin, one of the most violent towns in Afghanistan.

In part two, we see on-the-ground footage of fighting between the Afghan forces and the Taliban as well as insightful commentary from the documentary's producer, Ben Anderson.

There are also exclusive interviews with the US Ambassador and the British Deputy Ambassador to Afghanistan about the prospect of peace in the region.

In part three, we see that the sad truth is, at the end of the day, we will be leaving behind ill-prepared security forces, which will likely lead to an increase in Taliban attacks, civilian casualties, and, overall, an increasingly dangerous and fragile nation.

More great documentaries

Notify of

Oldest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
2 years ago

Well the taliban taking over now in 2021 was expected as shown in this documenatry

3 years ago

This smells like Vietnam 2.0

5 years ago

hahahahahahah the proper fighters aren't shown on this doc and won't accept the help of the Americans. They don't need it. Afghans think Americans are a joke (for many reasons which I won't go into) which is why they don't take the American help seriously.

Also, what the heck is the point of telling the Afghans that they are committing crimes by capturing others? THEY DON'T CARE!!!!!!!

If the West really want to help, they should start with investing in education so that the children can be raised with empathy and so that the people can become compliant.

phillip kalaveras
5 years ago

My theory: Afghanistan supply's about 90% of the world's Opium. Before we arrived the Taliban was busy eradicating the Opium Poppy from Afghanistan and doing a good job of it too. We arrived in 2001. In the following 9 years, Opium production surged 100x what they were. Recording all-time record harvests beginning around 2010.

During the time Opium production was being ramped up in Afghanistan. Mexico and South America were retooling their ability to convert ever larger supplies of Opium into increasingly potent Heroin and developing new infrastructure to transport it.

Now during the decade or so all this was going on in Afghanistan and South America, scripts here in America for Oxycontin, Fentanyl, Hydrocodone and the like were widely available to any person claiming chronic pain. Nothing was done to confirm the claims of pain. Basically, scripts were available to almost anyone for the asking. The size of the scripts was insane, scripts for 200 even 400 pills a month were common. So one script supported the habit of 10 people and having multiple doctors was not uncommon either. The ones receiving all these pills did not know it at the time but they were being groomed.
It all came to a sudden end one day in 2011.

Almost overnight The Oxycontin and Fentanyl was turned into useless plastic and scripts all across the country were shut down with the exception of those few in truly chronic pain. Picture this; Hundreds of thousands of years long opiate addictions going cold-turkey on the streets of America. Well, that didn't happen because.. Simultaneously, seemingly overnight as if by magic every city in America suddenly had a fresh humongous supply of high quality very affordable Heroin. It was everywhere, I'm telling you it went from scarce to being on every street corner in America and the prices have never been lower and the quality never higher.

A coincidence?? ........I don't think so!!!!

America is and has been since we took the crown from England in the middle of the 20th century the biggest dope pushers on the planet. We make an un-godly amount of money doing this and today we make 100X more than we did in 2000. Many often wonder why we are in a country of stone age people with no resources... same reason 47 other countries from around the globe all have a small contingent of soldiers in Afghanistan with us... keeping a finger in the pie and cutting the Taliban out. If you recall only one country was in Iraq with us but 47 followed us into Afghanistan? Come on now, just how stupid are we? (rhetorical) If you think we are there because we care about the ass-backwards, woman beating, child raping Afghanistan people you are "spoon fed stupid" and probably voted for Hillary.

Here of late China and India have been cashing in on our self-made addiction with their own knockoffs of Oxycontin and Fentanyl and they're making a killing... the body count grows every day.

Daoud M Ahmady
5 years ago

In 2001 USA made huge mistake instead of given power to Northern Alliances, G Bush put Taliban ( Karzai )back to power Karzai & Ghani are terrorist government
Massoud was not a War Lord and this is absolutely lie !!!!
Massoud defended his country against Russia, Pakistan & Taliban

6 years ago

The ignorance of people is widespread. It shocks me to know that most people in US actually believe we were the "good guys" in any war during the second half of the twentieth century.

6 years ago

Amazing - in the midst of never-ending violence, famine, rampant sexual perversion, and all the other horrors, they continuously thank a god. If that's what I got from my god, I'd be getting a new one. Greed, religion, and an insatiable quest for power. The big three flaws of most men.

6 years ago

Disgusting, disturbing, sickening and sad. The sins of the United States government. Bush, Evil-Dick Cheney, Goofy Rumsfeld, and quite a few others needs to be in prison, or my choice, executed for war crimes. With the bad Karma they've got going on, I'd imagine most of the D.C. scum will come back as pubic lice on the bodies of these child rapists. Yep, you too Hillary. Trump, I guess he's already in his own personal Hell.

8 years ago

we're not leaving because we achieved anything...THANK YOU DUMBO BUSH

Ronny- Bangalore
8 years ago

Nice doc there Vice. There are somethings the ISAF is missing in it's implementations, comparing how 'complex systems' like this had law and order brought in other parts of the world.

Example: In India, with 27 different states with different cultures and sub cultures, 50 years ago when we seriously started implementing law and police and post office and things we did a few good implementation methodologies. Like the military recruits from the South of the country would train and get deployed in the North or East or West of the country. Reason being, same state deployment will create emotional problems for the soldier to shoot or fire at people of his own state or own tribe. Same we did with police officers, it helped in assimilation of the Army into a well mixed soup of men willing to fight for their country than their own state or tribe.

In Afghanistan, ISAF could deploy new recruits from the north to the south and vice versa.

One more implementation issues is to start certain institutions in town centers. Like a post office, fair price shops (Where govt supplied food grains are provided to the general public like a grocery store on a monthly basis at just above the cost price)

Kabul needs some special institutions like:
1. Civil Servants recruitment and Training
2. Public transport and general automobile and driving license issuing authorities, or regional transport offices
3. Public or mobile healthcare- on a very district to district level
4. Drug enforcement civil servants- (It is a failure in public administration if you call the army for every simple daily local issue, example being failure in Africa in public administration is coz of this)
5. Record Keeping institute- Be whatever records are kept, start keeping one and start a institute for it.

We in India with 4000 odd languages and 10000 plus subcultures/tribes in 1947 have transformed our complex system this way. We arent perfect here but we could give a lot to the ISAF wrt to dealing with implementation issues.


8 years ago

Taliban must be rubbing their hands together at the allied withdrawal.
The place is doomed.
I feel sorry for guys like that Afghan commander who was really good and having a go. Serving his country with pride unlike so many of his corrupt, drug addict, pedophile, revolting contemporaries.

Great doco

Blue Clue
8 years ago

Unbelievable, really.
After watching's pathetic.

9 years ago

This goes to show that culture, a process of change through many generations, is not something that can be copy & pasted on people. Give them guns, and direct them to fend off aggressors, and they will fail, simply because they can't relate to this "bigger picture".

This documentary shows a nightmare, in which sand, poverty, abuse, and death are the norm.

9 years ago

You cant help people who aren't willing to help themselves.

Eric Lawson
9 years ago

A very informative Doc. Right to the truth !!!!

Richard Passley
9 years ago

The Afghan fighters face @ the beginning of the film looks like Carlos Tevez. Just saying..............

Richard Neva
9 years ago

America had no business there. Just part of the war machinery that brought us there!

David Simon Safir
9 years ago

How can people watch complex documentaries such as this one, and then produce such long, yet monofaceted comments such as I've read below?

This film is a mere peer into the complex nation, and does not in itself consider many important issues, such as the cost of the American presence and long range issues, it's very focused on the immediate problems, and immediate problems of this location, it does not always consider some of the end game goals, it merely lets us see some of the real problems within the bubble that it is film, not including problems abroad, of the area as is, such as political deception, corruption, inability to relate to the populace, lack of education, etc. Remember - This documentary is a tool for your education, not the final word.

9 years ago

You could at least give us the realisator's name otherwise what's the point of the website just make a youtube playlist...........

david stewart
9 years ago

The truth is disgusting to see our politicians allow these beasts pedophile scumbags run the show in there own little kingdoms IE their tiny wee bases to rape and plunder to their filthy hearts content and when good dedicated moral soldiers report it what happens NOTHING.
Does no one see that because of this filth as soon as we pull out our troops fully the taliban [to whom we have lost hundreds of brave British servicemen and our American allies indeed lots of allies] will take right over within weeks maybe months, without a settlement in which the pastuns are willing to join the ANA,then its civil war game over if these norther alliance soldiers were to actually stop raping boys and treat the people with respect then pastuns might have joined up i mean the army leader when told by the American major about the chai boys basically said of course they will do this filth obviously he cant say anything because hes at it himself SHAME ON US for allowing it if we promised to give them no more toys to play with pull out before trying to train them up leave them to the hated Taliban they would soon think about more than whats in there pants.

9 years ago

USA should agree that they turned a functioning nation into the s hit ho le and the whole NATO is proud of it ...... on the second look they do exactly same in every country they try to help Iraq, Libya, Syria, Mali you name it ...... NOW Taliban is the only hope for Afghans and even Enemies acknowledge that.

Nicholas Hewlett
9 years ago

Unbelievabily disfunctional . I know it is war but it appears the american forces are being led up the garden path and they know it and cant do anything about it,Unbelievablely dumb !!

9 years ago

major bill steuber enables child molesters. he deserves a prestigious job at the department of homosexual land security with wonderful benefits after he retires from the no-combat us military.

urban deadite
9 years ago

Love how most of these comments go on about corruption in 'other' countries, usa is one of the most corrupt countries on Earth, but the victors and rich countries write the rules and are better equipped to 'hide' these facts.
There is a lot of delusional people out there.

Madhav Krishna U
9 years ago

If the ISAF forces leave the country in the hands of these stoned soldiers and police the country will return to 2001 and may be more in to past. . . . .The only country thats gonna benefit from this situation is pakistan, so that it can have terror schools run by its ISI and export terror across world.

9 years ago

real insite to the muslim culture... I guess some cultures will live in eternity in sh*tholes like the middle east, arabia,central asia and persia

Zack Sokolowski
9 years ago

Thieves and child molesters. It seems like its a big joke

to them. They remind me of a bunch of kids playing army in the backyard. Just popping off rounds cause they think its fun, all stoned with shit eatin grins on their faces. They dont seem to take theyre countries plight very serious. They just want free shit. What are we doing there? That money could be put to good use back here in the good ol USA. We should cut our losses and get the hell out and let em sort it out on there own Leave em some tooth brushes and soap thats about it..... SAD!

10 years ago

What a total clusterf--k. That's going to end up being no better than it was back in 2001. Corruption is rife...all the way to the top. Democracy can't work there.

chip griffin
10 years ago

there should be utter shame on the americans part. you have walked in and try to buy a country one man at a time. this is the great whore. i would walk off with my head held down, this is what my country has become. just damn. just damn. you brought your god to their world. the taliban is a ghost just like obama the american, neither are real, but foreigners with no home, sword to defend no one. the jet black eyes of obama. where is the backbone of a man who trust GOD and walks away? that would be your hero. a world sold into slavery and slaves unto self, no one benefits, not even self.

10 years ago

eye opening
.. and WORTH watching☺

10 years ago

I don't think the US Major in this film is going to get promoted anytime soon.

Brion Pittman
10 years ago

the only victory that will EVER take place here will be purely PYRRHIC. any country that promotes or even tolerates homosexuality between "policemen" and little boys deserves extiction. diverting needed funding from our own impoverished, decadent society is blatant malfesance on the part of the joke that suffices for our goverment.

10 years ago

I dont know who is worse, the blindly naive cultural children of the good old USA -or the little Afgani stoner boys who are so f--ked up they run at bullets or simply run off.
Absurd and pointless war which is flooding the world with cheap heroin.

10 years ago

Canada has been giving hundreds of billions of dollars to Afghanistan for over 25 yrs. Even this year the Tories have approved $500 million to train their illiterate police force and fundamentalist military. These traitors love the Afghan people so much, they call it Afghanada. I guess it's the ultimate frontier to exploit and pay these people $5 a day. The Tories never met a war or a weapon they didn't like and they are happy to never bargain with defense contractors.

10 years ago

The first part of this doc is almost funny. The stoned and unconcerned Afghan security forces can barely march in place or stay awake. It appears as if a group of little boys have decided to play army to the tune of billions of American tax payer dollars. The Russians could not
conquer Afghanistan but macho Americans can? More brilliant foreign policy planning at its finest.

Ilija Prentovski
10 years ago

Wars were never meant to be won, only perpetuated for the benefit of war profiteers.

10 years ago

We should have hunted Osama and gotten out. You can lead a horse to water but you can not make him drink. If these forces do not want to change they will not. If they want to use intimidation, corruption, kidnapping, and any other non humanitarian way to go about things they will.
I am sure it is disheartening to say the least but the military's hands are tied and there is not much that can be done about that at least not on a lower level.

A truly terrible situation but I can see the white house not wanting to publicize the abysmal situation where as there really isnt anything to be done about it and what can be said really? Sorry they do not want to change they like it this way but we did get Osama?

Sad statement from all angles to be sure.

10 years ago

If this is winning I'd hate to see what losing looks like. I think Heath Robinson might have had a hand in this war, barely contained mayhem and all we have at the end is a broken egg. Not sure if it's possible to be wholly good in a situation like this one, but some seem to be trying hard to be as good as they can. The rest of them - well, there are opportunists everywhere and in the middle of a war zone there are plenty of opportunities for bad behaviour, the worst behaviour in fact. Someone needs to give those cloth eared, willfully ignorant little suits a good slap. What would their mothers say!?!

10 years ago

BTW, am I the only one here having difficulty posting/reading comments with Disqus.

10 years ago

Epic/tragic hearts and minds failure, a must watch.
What will be learned? It's difficult to tell because mainstream media have not yet finished spinning tHIS STORY.

10 years ago

Every now and again there is a documentary on here that leaves me dumbfounded and emotionally reeling. This easily, and powerfully, is one.

10 years ago

Raping little boys, taking bribes for positions of power, stealing from their own people- has the catholic church taken over the Afghan police department?

10 years ago

i emphasize to watch the (german) documentary 'it started with a lie!'!

10 years ago

Please watch this one. It shows just how bleak the prospects are for peace when foreign armies leave the country; something that almost everyone already suspected is amply demonstrated. My heart goes out to the brave, honest, and honourable men like Major Bill Steuber who do their utmost to accomplish the impossible tasks that their government has set out for them. All of the bloodshed and money was wasted and ultimately will lead to another sad and dismal ending for the people of Iraq and Afghanistan.

It gives me no pleasure to remind Americans that, in your name, your elected leaders planned and financed this. For this, and other lamentable consequences, you now must pay. The chickens have come home to roost and you must bear responsibility.