Exit Strategy: The two words that you don't hear anymore in the Afghanistan policy debate.
Where did they go?
Exit strategy? This is not Iraq. This is a country that we invaded with good cause. The country had been unstable, ruled (to the extent possible) by extremists, and had served as a base for attacks on the U.S. No discussion of “exit strategy” is necessary or warranted at this time. We have not yet accomplished the goal of creating a stable, long term, government capable of ensuring that extremist will not openly operate in Afghanistan.
Additionally, these extremists continue to use Afghanistan as a base of operations for destabilizing Pakistan. The destabilization of Pakistan is arguably the greatest threat (or at least top 3) to global security in the world today.
At this point, in this war, “exit strategy” is a euphemism for losing a justified and NECESSARY war, and is unacceptable.
If you are unhappy with how long the war in Afghanistan is taking or how it is going, blame Bush (I know I’m preaching to the choir on this) for launching an expensive and unnecessary war in Iraq that drained the resources necessary for completing the mission in Afghanistan. But please, don’t throw in the towel yet.
Obama has been hopelessly lost on what to do in Afganistan from the very beginning. He hasn’t ONE cogent idea regarding military strategy – and seems unable ask someone who does.
The thing that’s most galling about it though is that he refuses to admit it, apparently even to himself, and keeps telling the public that he’s got a strategy and he’ll implement it any day now… He’s been saying this since before the election and you’d have to be a moron to still believe him on it. He’s got NOTHING, and since his military commander in the region publically embarrassed him on it, he’s going to act like he’s six, and dig in his heels until whatever he does is so divorced in time that it looks like his own great idea.
I take that back, the thing that’s MOST galling is that he’s going to continue to allow American troops to DIE NEEDLESSLY while he dithers about looking smart and thoughtful. More kabuki for the masses. Either commit to the war, or get the hell out. Anything else is just pointless killing. But I guess if you are a Democrat that’s OK with lots of people who didn’t find it so OK when Bush was around…
So you think there has been no policy shift in afghanistan in the last year, Vic? That’s interesting. I seem to remember that we’ve had afghanistan on the back burner for the last 6 years, and it is now a priority–more troops, change of priorities, different offensive on pakistani border areas, etc.
What do you think, committing to war would entail? Who are we hitting? To what end? What would “getting the hell out” do for our interests?
Failure Bush lost Afghanistan years ago. Remember when we had bin Laden in our sights and Bush’s team couldn’t get it done?
That’s because they were paranoid micro-managers and couldn’t give up any level of control.
And that is why they will go to jail, as we basically already know that they micromanaged torture.
For Afghanistan, we could, theoretically, have gotten in and out and helped them set up some sort of structure that might, possibly, have led to a more stable situation. Instead, as usual, we put a puppet in power through criminal activity (if they bothered to actually pass any election laws, that is) and now of course it is all unraveling. The old iron fisted puppet regime just doesn’t work like it used to.
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