We meant well. So, too, did the Soviets (some of them) when they occupied Afghanistan.

John Kifner, the intrepid New York Times reporter, told me about the time the paper sent him to report on conditions in the country just after the Soviet withdrawal, in 1989. John snuck across the Khyber Pass, hiked to a distant mountain village, and asked to talk to the chieftain. Over tea, John asked him if the Soviet occupiers had committed any atrocities. “Atrocities?” the elderly Afghan replied indignantly. “You have no idea how horrible it was.”