Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Obama: Give me 34,000 More Troops for the "Necessary War," But Just Till I Can Blame Someone Else for Retreat

That's the impression one gets from President Obama's proposal, to be announced next week, to send 34,000 more troops to Afghanistan...but with "off ramps" to allow the POTUS to retreat but still blame someone else for his decision to bug out.

This is really quite distressing. Barack Obama and the Democrats running Congress spent the last 2 years telling us that Iraq was the "wrong war" and Afghanistan was the "necessary war," that we needed to provide more troops and give more support to our allies in Afghanistan to win the "real" war. Now, that appears to all have been a sham. Of course, the cynics among us (raises her hand) knew Democrats weren't serious about fighting any war, and that the real reason they disliked Iraq so much had nothing to do with sympathy for embattled Iraqis or concern for the budget, but rather, they hated the war in Iraq because we're winning there. We ousted a ruthless dictator, helped create democratic elections and have built and rebuilt much of the country's infrastructure.

But the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan were never about winning for the Democrats. They were merely propaganda tools to bash Republicans for the tiny number of American deaths in the Middle East, multiple deployments of our troops and the inconveniences that come with such things.

From Ed Morrissey at Hot Air:

The increase in troops is a good decision, but the off-ramps almost completely undermine it. The point in extending our footprint is to win the trust of the local communities and prove our reliability in providing them security, which is the central thrust of McChrystal’s COIN strategy. By getting them to trust our commitment, we can get them to help fight the Taliban themselves, as we did with the Anbar Awakening in Iraq against al-Qaeda, and greatly improve the intel we get from the locals. If we send 34,000 more troops but give ourselves a six-month time frame for success or bug-out, the locals will very quickly come to the realization that allying with us will be suicide. The COIN strategy only worked in Iraq because George W. Bush was adamant that we would stay until we won.
A Commander in Chief doesn’t need “off-ramps.” Any President can call an end to a deployment based on his own judgment. Putting these conditions into the American strategy signals weakness — a desire to pull out without getting blamed for the decision. Obama wants to be off the hook for an eventual withdrawal by claiming that he’s forced to do it because of these benchmark failures. And if Obama’s that keen to retreat, he should just do it now.

Question: When will the Democrats impose the war tax, then tell us there was nothing else they could do?