The New, Old Mission in Afghanistan

By: Wednesday June 22, 2011 5:54 pm

Let me make some brief thoughts on the President’s address. First of all, it was a somewhat poorly written, bumper-sticker-laden speech. Obama clearly wanted to claim a position of success in Afghanistan, and use the withdrawal as an example of that success. But there were a couple things that can serve as markers for the [...]

Leading Democrats Step Out on Limb, Call for Withdrawal in Afghanistan

By: Monday May 2, 2011 1:00 pm

There has been more momentum toward the bin Laden death leading to an exit from our occupation of Afghanistan than I expected. I expected more hesitancy from typically cautious Democrats around this point. But here’s Barney Frank making an argument: Explaining his decision to vote for the Afghanistan war in 2001, Frank said, “We went [...]

Questions About Pakistani Safe Harbor of Bin Laden Abound

By: Monday May 2, 2011 9:10 am

The speculation over whether Pakistan had knowledge of Osama bin Laden’s whereabouts in the military-heavy city of Abbottabad will simmer over the next several days. Steve Coll thinks the Pakistanis knew: Abbottabad is essentially a military cantonment city in Pakistan, in the hills to the north of the capital of Islamabad, in an area where [...]

Impact of Bin Laden’s Death Looks Greater in Pakistan

By: Monday May 2, 2011 7:20 am

So how will the death of Osama bin Laden affect our war in Afghanistan and undeclared war in Pakistan? I’ve already said that I don’t think much will change policy-wise. But that doesn’t mean there shouldn’t be a lot of change. First, let’s look at Afghanistan. If there was any further reason not to buy [...]

The Speech, And Its Shaky Foundation

By: Wednesday December 2, 2009 5:45 am

I’ve re-read Obama’s Afghanistan speech, and I think it was perhaps designed to displease everyone – hawks, doves, Democrats, Republicans. Afghanistan and Pakistan is really a least-worst scenario after eight years of war, and so we got an unsatisfying “get in to get out” strategy without any tactical information and based on an extremely shaky [...]

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