We should take nothing for granted. Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of the huge industrial and military machinery of defense with our peaceful methods and goals, so that security and liberty may prosper together."
--President Eisenhower's farewell address to the nation, January 17, 1961
- "...this system of waste and private profit from public funds...which, when you think about it, is what these wars, the stock market and health care all have in common."
- --U.S. officer quoted in Truthdig, November 9
Whatever winning means to McChrystal and his horde of leaders on the ground, what it will mean to us back here are four things:
1. The war in Afghanistan is the Prez's war now. No longer can he blame it on his predecessor. Sure, Bush made the blunder of getting us there with only about 12,000 troops to train Afghanistan army and to look for Osama Ben Laden, who, it was believed, was still in the area trying to escape to Pakistan. But Bush never cared about Afghanistan. His sights were on Iraq.
2. In making the decision to send additional soldiers to Afghanistan, The Prez is making a long-term commitment of 10 years or more. We'll be there a long time.
3. With this long-term commitment will come increased numbers of U.S. casualties, increased funding to run this war, funding the U. S. no longer has, and a significant lowering of The Prez's popularity. No, this low popularity will have nothing to do with race but policy, which is just as it should be. It's a poor decision of historic proportion; and, as Americans soldiers's death rise and this drawn-out war rages with few improvements, he will deserve all the criticism he gets.
Welcome to the real world, Prez. This real world consists of the one you inherited and the one you have made. Good Luck with that.
Do you feel The Prez's decision to send a significant number of troops to Afghanistan, raising our level there to as much as 100,000 is a good idea?