The Obama administration is saying that they will have a decision on troop levels in Afghanistan in 'coming weeks'. Let's hope the casualties are kept to a minimum until Dear Leader makes up his mind on who to cater to - the Norwegians, or his own countrymen.
I understand that this is a very important decision, and something that shouldn't be rushed into, but when Obama let McChrystal's report languish on his desk for 5 weeks with no consultation or consideration, there was simply no excuse for the delay. Now that Obama is finally talking to his generals and military advisers, taking a little time (weeks, not months) to make an informed decision is a necessary evil. At least progress is being made in understanding the situation on the ground, which will hopefully translate into a thoughtful, successful approach to winning the war in Afghanistan.
Senator Inouye D-HI has done an about-face on supporting the war in Afghanistan. His recent trip to the region and discussions with Gen. McChrystal have garnered his full support of McChrystal's plan, and he is now pressuring the administration to implement the plan. He is joined in his support by none other than Sen. Diane Feinstein.
These two democrats actually listened to McChrystal's plan and saw the sense of it. They know the Taliban, as well as Al-Qaeda, are the enemy, and they see that McChrystal's plan is more than just bombing, it's building, too. Building a democracy, building a country, and building hope for the future for Afghans. With any luck, our esteemed leader will see the wisdom of this and follow through.
Unfortunately, there are rumors that VP Joe Biden still has his ear, even after Obama reportedly rejected his proposal of withdrawal and surgical strikes of terrorist strongholds.
Don't get me wrong - surgical strikes are something I support. But if surgical strikes are the only thing we would be doing, it would cause more harm than good, turning the Afghan people against us and potentially leaving a power vacuum that would be filled by the Taliban, just as it was when the USSR finally pulled out of the region in the late 1980's. The key here is not just eliminating the enemy, it's empowering the Afghan people to resist oppressive groups like the Taliban even after we leave. Even the radicals over at Code Pink see the truth in this.
The biggest question about all of this is, why in God's name would they listen to Joe Biden over generals in the field?
At this point, given his track record, the administration would be wise to consider whatever Biden proposes, and then do the exact opposite.
Success would be practically guaranteed.