Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Obama Does What He Has To Do...A Surge In Afghanistan

As much as I opposed it, I have to admit that the surge in Iraq worked. Some of my friends that are overseas tell me that what they are doing now in Iraq is far different than what they were doing. I have been told that our guys and gals are now sitting on bases providing logistical support now and then while waiting to come home. Subtext: The Surge Worked. Now, President Obama has done the sensible thing...he's bringing our troops home but redeploying where they are needed. More troops will be headed to Afghanistan.

While the surge strategy worked, we should not have been in Iraq to begin with. Now, President Obama is starting a surge of his own in Afghanistan by responding to what his military leaders on the ground are asking for with 30,000 more troops. That comes on top of his 21,000 more troops earlier this year. The central front in the war on terror becomes the same place the 9/11 attacks were launched from, Afghanistan.

Again, had President Bush, Vice President Cheney, and his Department of Defense planned this conflict correctly, perhaps President Obama could be bringing a close to the Afghanistan conflict by bringing our troops home. Instead, because the Bushies and the neocons sorely miscalculated by taking the War on Terror to Iraq and dropping the ball in Afghanistan, President Obama is forced to clean up the mess in Afghanistan.

Obama's decision to send in more troops came after months and weeks of careful deliberation. It also came as former Vice President Vader...er...Cheney goaded Obama for appearing weak in an interview with Politico. Let me get this straight. This is a former Vice President from the administration that caused this mess launching criticism towards a President charged with cleaning up the mess the former Vice President's Administration caused? Did I get that one right? Well, in former times, some on the Republican side might call that unpatriotic. Luckily, though, Cheney believes in American Arrogan...Exceptionalism. He can do this because anyone against him doesn't. Puhleeeze Dick.

Unlike the mission in Iraq, President Obama has said that this will not be a nation-building mission. The mission is to secure Afghanistan and allow the current "democratically-elected" government to get a handle on its own security situation. We are not installing an entire system of government for the Afghans. We are allowing the current corrup...whoops...government to get moving in the right direction.

Where we go from here is anyone's guess, but I hope that this surge is as successful as the Iraqi surge and that President Obama can begin to draw down our troops on schedule in 2011. Unlike the Bush strategy in Iraq, there is a target date for the withdrawing of troops to begin.

All-in-all, I don't like war. That said, I think it's very important for us to get this right in Afghanistan. President Obama did the responsible thing. Now that we are there, we need to get this one right...much in the same way as we did in Iraq. Remember, we went to Afghanistan for a specific purpose, and that mission was never accomplished under President Bush.

President Obama is again doing exactly what he said he would do during the 2008 election. He said he would draw troops down and out of Iraq so that we could focus on the real War on Terror in Afghanistan. Let's get it right and get our troops home!

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