President Obama was highly critical of the Bush administrations actions in Afghanistan while campaigning, statements from he and his handlers placed an emphasis on “the forgotten war” and how Afghanistan was the real war, so much so that the administration has painted themselves in a corner as to potential options. Now seven months after announcing a new direction in the Afghan war the President is sending an additional 30000 thousand men and women into the fray.

The move to increase troop levels and follow General McCrystals lead is being seen by the left as a critical mistake further dividing Obamas dwindling support base. But the real question is, what is the end game or expected outcome, or put simply the goal. 

Note Afghanistan has been at war now for some 2339 years, dating back to 330BC, so history has a big role in any potential outcome.  The latest effort to bring stability to the region, albeit Communism was Russia,  least we forget history that war lasted from 1979-1992 and both the outcome and the byproduct of the invasion bankrupted Russia and assisted in the Democratization of the former Soviet Union.

The ostensible reason for the last administration entering through “hells gates” was to quell the Islamic Jihad against all infidels led by Osama Bin Laden, or in political terms, gain control by installing a puppet government, and gain a military foothold in the region.  All of which was pursued at great human and economic cost, and to what end?

The inside joke among my military sources is “the only way to win a war in Afghanistan is turn it to glass”, since that option is not politically nor morally possible, why are we sending our solders to fight a war we cannot nor need to win?  Not used to hearing this from a conservative?  Let me digress,  Afghanistan’s economy is based on two staples, one is opium, the second livestock, sheep and goats, not exactly the spoils of war one would hope.

The total GDP for the country in 2008 was $12.8 billion, with 53% of the population being below the poverty line, the citizens of Afghanistan have nothing better to do than to fight given these numbers.  Ahhh but what about the terrorists hiding in the hills, and the threat to Americans?  We might want to spend time worrying about Pakistan and Iran who either have or are developing nuclear capabilities than spend another dime on the war in Afghanistan.

It is easy and arrogant to say from our comfortable surroundings that we need to be involved in this war, but the facts and truths are apparent, read on.  The terrorists that were operating out of Afghanistan have long left the area, most of which have either scuttled into Pakistan or Syria, and a small amount to Iraq, they have more resources in any of the three countries listed and except for the most wanted can blend into the populace with ease.  With the cost of the increase in troop levels, the United States is spending (roughly) three times Afghanistans GDP to quell the Taliban and Al Qaeda militant presence, a hefty price to pay when you add in the loss of lives of our most precious resourse our soldiers.

After last nights speech is is clear that the Obama administration is attempting to be all things to all people and in the process is alienating their base on the left with the escalation, and enraging the right by placing a time limit on the action.  Also covered and glossed over was the time the Obama administration took to come to the compromise decision, Obama stated, “we did not have any official request for troops, so no deadline was present”.  To approach the lack of action by hiding behind legal dogma is second nature for Professor Obama, who consistently runs to the law library to either support or defuse his actions.  This process is seen by  Obama’s enemies and opponents as weak, a very dangerous precedent to set.

One has to wonder when it takes an additional 30000 troops for a total of over 100000 troops in country to overcome the Taliban and Al Qaeda threat.  One also has to wonder when we basically tell our enemies that if they can survive the surge we will exit the conflict in as soon as 18 months.  A short period of time when you consider Afghanistans long history of war and warrior culture.  Time to cut and run Mr President, leave the job to our special forces, our money would be better spent if it were targeted at bringing the country out of the dark ages, because until a self sustaining economy is created mitigating the need for war, Afghanistan will be at war, it is their culture.

ACE OF SPADES HQ  Obama and Afghanistan
AMERICAN THINKER   JAMES LEWIS   On AfPak, is Obama clever or stupid?
BLACKFIVE  General McChrystal on the plan.
BREITBARTS BIG GOVERNMENT  Reaction to Obama’s Afghanistan war plans
CONSERVATIVE BLOG NETWORK
DOUG ROSS JOURNAL   Blessed with freedom? Thank a soldier
FLOPPING ACES  Obama at West Point: Portrait of a US Commander in Chief on the defensive.
GATEWAY PUNDIT   Rumsfeld:  Obama is a bald-faced liar about us not supporting the troops.
ALLAHPUNDIT/HOT AIR   McCain grills Gates:  How fixed si the 2011 timetable for withdrawal?
ED MORRISSEY/HOT AIR    Are targets too low for Afghan army?
ALLAHPUNDIT/HOT AIR   Open Thread: Afghanistan
IMAO   Excerpts from Obama’s West Point Speech
MACSMIND  A stumbling bumbling 45 minutes of nothing- Obama’s plan for Afghanistan, or not
OUTSIDE THE BELTWAY   The media react to President Obama’s Afghanistan speech.
POWERLINE   Paul Rahe: can Obama save his Presidency? (2)
RIEHL WORLD VIEW   Change: Tax cuts for the wealthy, deploy more troops.
SAY ANYTHING BLOG   Obama’s Afghanistan Incoherence
SMALL DEAD ANIMALS  Look left, look right
SNOOPER REPORT   Obama Surrenders In Afghanistan Part 2
ANOTHER BLACK CONSERVATIVE   General McChrystal on Obama’s strategy
FRUGAL CAFE BLOG   Obama’s weak speech, too much hedging on Afghanistan surge.
MOIST BIT’S
ON MY WATCH   Obama to Taliban-don’t worry-be happy-only 30000 troops!
VOTINGFEMALESPEAKS!  ClimateGate:  Disintegration of the Global Warming Dynasty is Underway; Senator Inhofe on deck.
VOTINGFEMALESPEAKS! Number of Democrats Falls to Four-Year Low, so says Rasmussen Poll; butt kicking of Socialism mounts

ED MORRISSEY A few thoughts on Obama’s Afghanistan speech


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