Sunday, December 06, 2009

The Afghanstan Surge Timetable

Leaving aside the fact that President Obama waited 3 months to make this decision, then give essentially the same speech he'd given before, the President did the right thing.  At least in the sort run.
I make this decision because I am convinced that our security is at stake in Afghanistan and Pakistan. This is the epicenter of the violent extremism practiced by al Qaeda. It is from here that we were attacked on 9/11, and it is from here that new attacks are being plotted as I speak. This is no idle danger; no hypothetical threat.
...and we are going to leave in 18 months.

If this is the epicenter of extremism and no hypothetical threat, why the timetable for withdrawal in 18 months?  What if Afghanistan remains no idle danger?

The long delay, the surge and the timetable are as much about Afghanistan, as about Obama.

President Obama says the timetable for withdrawal is necessary to put pressure on the Afghans to get their act together.  Of course, the timetable's only purpose is to take political pressure off President Obama.

In 1867, Otto Von Bismark said "Politics is the art of the possible".  By this, he stressed compromise between differing factions is the only way to get things done.

However, President Obama is also Commander in Chief Obama, and this decision was solely his.  The only compromise was with his own anti-war, anti-American intervention, and pacifist values.

The only political calculations involved in the decision were "what will get President Obama reelected?"

Thus, we now have the "Obama Doctrine":
We will fight for 18 months and quit
Consider how this complements the Taliban dictum - "You've got the clocks.  We've got the time".


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