Obama: U.S. security is still at stake
AFGHAN WAR TO ESCALATE
30,000 more troops; pullout begins mid-2011
By Scott Wilson
Washington Post Staff Writer
Wednesday, December 2, 2009
WEST POINT, N.Y. — President Obama announced Tuesday that he will send 30,000 additional U.S. troops to Afghanistan by next summer and begin withdrawing forces in July 2011, making his case to the nation that Islamist extremism in the region remains an enduring threat to the security of Americans.
Obama cited the solemn responsibility he has felt as commander in chief as he outlined a sharp escalation that makes him the main architect of the eight-year-old war. The speech was among the most important of his presidency, and he sought to prepare the country for the heavier fighting and higher casualties that are likely to result from his strategy in the months ahead.
. . . “If I did not think that the security of the United States and the safety of the American people were at stake in Afghanistan,” he said, “I would gladly order every single one of our troops home tomorrow.”
Well, that statement is disingenuous, at its most charitable reading.
Eight years into a war that has not been won by any of the countless invaders in a two-thousand-year history of invasion, there is nothing, absolutely nothing to be gained by our further gutsing-it-out,
other than avoiding the wrath of conservative Republicans and having half a chance at being re-elected.
Half a chance.
There are statesmen and there are politicians. President Obama promised us statesmanship and delivered politics.
The reasons we went into Afghanistan (ostensibly) were to catch Osama bin Laden and eradicate al Qaeda. Neither goal has been accomplished and neither enemy is any longer on Afghan soil.
Alexander the Great got his ass handed to him in Afghanistan 330 years before Christ, as has every invader since. The government (if it can be called that) we currently support, as in Vietnam, is hopelessly corrupt and powerless in all but a sliver of the country.
This war will leave our powerlessness more evident in a world that already has ample evidence of our failure ever to defeat an insurgency.
“When you’re wounded and lying on Afghanistan’s plains,
And the women come out to cut up what remains,
Just roll to your rifle and blow out your brains,
And go to your God like a soldier”.
We’ve sent enough soldiers to their God. Get us out, Mr. Obama.