Skip to comments.Testing Afghanistan Assumptions (John effin)
Posted on 09/28/2009 1:22:46 PM PDT by SueRae
In the coming weeks, President Barack Obama will make the most difficult choice a commander in chief can face: whether to send more troops into harm's way.
The challenge of making the right decision was dramatized recently by the grim disclosure that Gen. Stanley McChrystal, the top U.S. and NATO commander in Afghanistan, has warned that unless he gets more troops the eight-year war there "will likely result in failure."
The general provided a bleak catalogue of misaligned military operations, a corrupt Afghan government, and an increasingly lethal insurgency. He wants more troops and civilians to execute a nation-building counterinsurgency strategy that he hopes will reverse the slide. He says success is still achievable. As the commander on the ground, Gen. McChrystal fulfilled his assignment from the president, producing a tightly reasoned blueprint for a complex and increasingly dangerous conflict.
Now, we in Congress have our own assignment: to test all of the underlying assumptions in Afghanistan and make sure they are the right ones before embarking on a new strategy.
For example, one assumption of the proposed counterinsurgency plan is that our troops and civilians will be working in partnership with a legitimate and reliable government in Afghanistan. After the deeply flawed presidential election last month, we must ask whether we can succeed if our partner is weak and viewed with deep suspicion by his own people.
(Excerpt) Read more at online.wsj.com ...
(June 7, 2005) WASHINGTON — During last year’s presidential campaign, John F. Kerry was the candidate often portrayed as intellectual and complex, while George W. Bush was the populist who mangled his sentences.
But newly released records show that Bush and Kerry had a virtually identical grade average at Yale University four decades ago.
‘’I always told my Dad that D stood for distinction,” Kerry said yesterday in a written response to questions, noting that he has previously acknowledged that he spent a lot of time learning to fly instead of focusing on his studies.
Kerry’s weak grades came despite years of education at some of the world’s most elite prep schools, ranging from Fessenden School in Massachusetts to St. Paul’s School in New Hampshire.
Will you and the Missus be spending Christmas in Cambodia again this year?