Saturday, September 26, 2009

Afghanistan withers while Obama dithers?

(We're settling in for the weekend at the family compound on the high plains of Colorado and we'll be back on the road Monday)

As much as we would like to give the Commander-in-Chief the benefit of the doubt with respect to needing more time to re-think strategy, the facts on the ground do not appear to warrant this pass.

His top general there in Afghanistan, General Stanley McChrystal has asked for as upwards as 40,000 more troops or risk failure in our mission there in Afghanistan but the administration has not committed either way.

The conventional wisdom right now is that Obama is biding timing, stalling in effect, in order to shore up support on his left for healthcare. If this is so then that is the very definition of political cynicism. We have 62,000 men and women over there right now who are being sold out for something that an increasing majority of Americans do not want (and we'll deal with the craven hypocrisy of the liberal-Left abandoning the "good war" for another time).

And something else that is not printing out with respect to the President needing more time: McChrystal is his guy. Obama picked him for this spot. We don't expect Obama to be McChrystal's rubber stamp but for cryin' out loud - a) in McChrystal's very first big request he is essentially rebuffed by the President (with the current situation in Afghanistan, a "need more time to think about it" is an effective "no") and b) did not Obama have an inkling that McChrystal might ask for more troops? He's had plenty of damn time to think about this previously.

McChrystal is one of the most highly regarded generals we have and his reputation as a war-fighter is that of someone who is going to fight to win. There is absolutely nothing we have read about this man that would suggest that he would take the job if it meant him executing a troop draw-down before achieving total victory.

Again, it appears very much so that the President is just playing politics with Afghanistan which, of course, means he is playing politics with the safety of the troops in the field and playing politics with this country's national security.

B-Daddy has some excellent thoughts on the matter, here.


Road Dawg said...

Is victory in our President's vocabulary. Kind of smacks of imperialism.

B-Daddy said...

Thanks for the link. For all the talk about "rethinking strategy" I think this is about Obama securing his base. You may say, where will they go? But that is not the point, polls show a majority of Dems are for pulling out, and not coincidentally, donations to the Dem congressional campaign funds are way down. Operating from such a narrow political perspective is sure to get the President in trouble.