Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Dog Bites Man

General Stanley McChrystal assures Congress of success in Afghanistan.

Stanley, meet William.

Labels: ,

Sunday, December 06, 2009

Deciding Obama 2.0

The Washington Post has pretty much the same article as the NYT. Taken together, they illustrate now the dimensions of the policy discussion, the players and dynamics.

As I noted previously the focus on changing from a never-ending commitment may be the most significant aspect of the story. Of course, the never-ending commitment in question is direct involvement in Afghanistan, not the world-wide network of military bases that is the American Empire. Still, any change in the right direction is welcome.

The WaPo quote that struck me hardest is this one:
Obama and his war council gathered in the Situation Room for the first of what would be nine official review sessions on a crisp Sunday in the second week of September. All of those in the room were familiar with McChrystal's classified 66-page assessment of "serious and deteriorating" conditions in Afghanistan, which made clear that "we were starting from zero after eight years of war," a civilian adviser said.

Eight years of war.

$233 billion.

932 Americans, 236 Britons, 367 other allied forces dead.

Many thousands of Afghan dead.


That abomination is the legacy of CheneyBush and his goddamn neoconservative "Masters of War"

Goddamn them all. Every last one of them.

Labels: ,

Deciding Obama

NYT today has the story of Obama's decision to up the ante in Afghanistan. It's a pretty typical account of how the various factions made their case and how Obama processed information. If nothing else, it certainly proves that Obama is not CheneyBush when it comes to considering military action. The article, however, does show Obama to be well within America's military-centric mindset which, of course, should be no surprise to anyone who has studied this nation's post WWII history.

Still, I wish Obama had made this speech. He did not and I am sad. I do, however, find a small glimmer of hope in the NYT article. After announcing his decision to his national security team at the White House,
Mr. Obama then went to the Situation Room to call General McChrystal and Ambassador Eikenberry. The president made it clear that in the next assessment in December 2010 he would not contemplate more troops. “It will only be about the flexibility in how we draw down, not if we draw down,” he said.

That is a commitment Obama would do well to keep.

Labels: ,