John Kerry had an op-ed in yesterday’s Wall Street Journal titled Testing Afghanistan Assumptions, wherein he carefully laid out a path for President Obama to retreat from his hawkish pre-election statements to a path of defeat.
Beyond diminishing General McChrystal’s ability to provide fair and accurate information, the Senior Senator from Massachusetts basically throws him under the bus saying –
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.
So Senator Kerry is saying that its up to Congress to see if the Generals are really telling the truth. There is no new strategy here – the enemy is concentrating its forces in the presence of thousands of our armed soldiers. THEY ARE DOING US A FAVOR. Counterinsurgency wars take DECADES. It’s the realty of dealing with this kind of warfare. But our Democrat leaders do not have the backbone to commit to a war which will take a long time but ultimately finish in victory – or at the least, act like a giant BUG ZAPPER. That’s right – the strategy of George W Bush was, in my view, taking on the terrorists in countries far away from the USA – putting our troops in harms way to act like a GIANT BUG ZAPPER to attract the Al Qaeda enemy and then destroy them when they come close. Its a simple an effective strategy that the Jihadists
Kerry lays out the path of retreat in his closing words, giving Obama plenty of wiggle room to declare that things are different now than in March when Obama said that Afghanistan is a major priority in the GOWT.
The situation in Afghanistan has clearly changed since last March when the president unveiled his goal of defeating al Qaeda in Pakistan and Afghanistan. He and his advisers are exploring alternatives in light of the conditions on the ground and we should welcome the careful reassessment.
and then there is this doozy –
“Gen. McChrystal offers no timetable or exit strategy, beyond warning that the next 12 months are critical. I agree that time is running out and that troops are dying without a sustainable strategy for victory. But we cannot rush to judgment.”
So, troops are dying, but…..lets not be in a hurry. Its strange how history repeats itself. General George Washington had to beg and plead with Congress more than 230 years ago to get them to deliver necessary materiel to the Continental Army at Valley Forge. Dozens of pleas.
“I am earnestly requesting the aid of the executive authority of those States, whence our supplies are drawn; and in pursuance of this intention, I address myself to you; convinced that our alarming distresses will engage your most serious consideration; and that the full force of that zeal and vigour you have manifested upon every other occasion, will now operate for our relief, in a matter that so nearly affects the very existence of our contest.”
President Obama, Senators and Representatives – accept that some wars have LONG, LONG time period to win. The Cold War took forty years. Get over the notion of quick, lightning victories, and accept that the hard work that must be done will require generational sacrifice if we are to keep our children safe from jihadist extremists.
Cross Posted to The Cassandra Effect