This article was last modified on December 2, 2009.


On Obama’s Afghanistan Speech

“Peace President Escalates War”

As December opened, President Obama went before his West Point soldiers and delivered a speech the world was waiting months to hear. And while his smooth-talking rhetoric may have calmed some people, others quickly became uneasy. I have my own concerns.

Obama has tried to paint this as a continuation of the war on al-Qaeda, but this is a gross misrepresentation. Both the source and endpoint of this terror network are not to be found in Afghanistan. The bulk of the 9/11 hijackers came from Saudi Arabia, our ally, where they were indoctrinated by radical Islam. None were Afghani. With the structure of belief there unchanged, the outcome of ongoing schooling will not waver from its extremist ends.

Mysteriously, Obama recognizes the remnants of al-Qaeda are now in Pakistan, and that Afghanistan’s problems are “corruption, the drug trade, [and] an under-developed economy”. Yet, he continues to see this as a military rather than civilian mission. I do wish someone, anyone, could explain to me how 30,000 additional troops does anything to change the very nature of a government built on bribery and election fraud. If we are supporting Hamid Karzai and his CIA-funded brother, we merely legitimize their criminal ways.

I do have to give him credit for the timeline of winding down our involvement after eighteen months, but this does not ease my fears that we are throwing money we do not have down a bottomless pit. That is eighteen months of funding that will not be going to job growth or health care, and even after troop withdrawal, we will likely be funding thousands of mercenaries from Blackwater or related companies. If this is to be anything but a war that never ends, we should begin to withdraw now.

Also try another article under Letters to ...
or another one of the writings of Gavin.

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