Imagine when your so-called “Commander-in-Chief” asks and receives council from the military experts, the generals and other commanders, for an ongoing war. Imagine the so-called “Commander-in-Chief” authorizing one-half of the requested personnel, announces to the world, including the enemy, that he will provide some troops but will begin withdrawing those troops in 18 months.
Barack Obama did that when General McChrystal requested troops for a planned surge against the enemy in Afghanistan and before he could fully implement his strategy he was relieved of duty but later vindicated of the charges. Yes, Barack Obama limited the amount of troops needed for an effective surge, allowed fighting during only one season, fired the commanding general and has now surrendered for political, not military reasons.
Obama’s decision, though politically expedient, jeopardizes the successes made in Afghanistan over the last 10 months and will signal to allies and enemies alike that the United States is more committed to extricating itself from the fight than it is to ensuring that stability in the region is achieved.
Obama’s decision to bring home 10,000 troops by the end of this year and a total of 33,000 troops by next summer comes despite requests from the Pentagon and General David Petraeus to limit the initial withdrawal to 3,000 to 4,000, and isn’t based on a convincing military or strategic rationale instead it is at odds with the strategy adopted by NATO, which aims to turn over the war to the Afghan army by the end of 2014.
Since when do we take our marching orders from NATO? Barack Obama decided he didn’t like the word victory and instead of leading from the front he prefers to “lead” from behind. Obama is convinced that by killing Osama bin Laden the war has been won, only the “Mission Accomplished” banner was missing as a backdrop in the White House’s East Room during the announcement.
Lisa Curtis of the Heritage Foundation writes:
It is short-sighted to use bin Laden’s death as justification for hastening the U.S. troop draw down in Afghanistan. Announcing rapid withdrawal of U.S. forces will likely bolster the morale of the Taliban and encourage them to stick with the fight. Since al-Qaeda has not yet dissolved as an organization and its relationship with the Taliban remains strong, reducing military pressure on the Taliban in Afghanistan could benefit al-Qaeda and provide it a lifeline at a critical juncture in the fight against terrorism.
The withdrawal plan will signal to both our Afghan allies and enemy forces that the U.S. is more committed to withdrawing its forces than the long-term goal of stabilizing the country. The U.S. made a grave error in turning its back on Afghanistan after the Soviets departed in 1989. President Obama’s speech will stoke fears that the U.S. is getting ready to repeat a similar mistake.
As Obama surrenders in Afghanistan he dictates to the American people how we should live and feels he should lead in that effort:
Over the last decade, we have spent a trillion dollars on war, at a time of rising debt and hard economic times. Now, we must invest in America’s greatest resource –- our people. We must unleash innovation that creates new jobs and industries, while living within our means. We must rebuild our infrastructure and find new and clean sources of energy.
Obama is back to shovel ready jobs that never appeared after he doled out $757 billion to repair the infrastructure of the United States and is preaching about those green jobs that won’t solve our energy problems. Obama talks of creating jobs but we all know that government only destroys jobs with policy and can never create the sustainable jobs grown in the private sector. Obama increases job growth only by expanding the size of government.
The United States is fighting terrorism in Afghanistan in order to keep it from reverting to a protected location for terrorists such as those who attacked America on September 11, 2001. While US soldiers and Marines have realized positive results within the region, their sacrifices might be thrown away with a rash departure which is considered for political gain, not for triumph on the battlefield. Barack Obama should take action based upon circumstances on the ground and the recommendations of his military commanders — not on an electoral timeline or the counsel of Joe Biden.
According to the Liberal bastion and anti-American rag, The New York Times writes:
Mr. Obama’s decision is a victory for Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr., who has long argued for curtailing the American military engagement in Afghanistan. But it is a setback for his top commander in Afghanistan, Gen. David H. Petraeus, who helped write the Army’s field book on counterinsurgency policy, and who is returning to Washington to head the Central Intelligence Agency.
Two administration officials said General Petraeus did not endorse the decision, though both Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates, who is retiring, and Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton reluctantly accepted it. General Petraeus had recommended limiting initial withdrawals and leaving in place as many combat forces for as long as possible, to hold on to fragile gains made in recent combat.
Danielle Pletka of the American Enterprise Institute wrote”
“This is an amazing decision to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. Those in the field believe that lower numbers will result in higher U.S. casualties, reduce the chance of success in stabilizing Afghanistan, and concede territory to the enemy.”
Wake up America – we have Barack Obama and Joe Biden making military and national security decisions. Are you sleeping well at night?
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