Friday, July 10, 2009

Obama To Wrestle With Afghanistan

It looks like out new commander in Afghanistan, the very well thought of General Stan McChrystal, is likely to come forward with a request to--again--dramatically increase the number of troops on the ground in Afghanistan.

Clearly there will be no rest for the weary. Our ground forces are stretched mighty thin, and the multiple combat tours are taking their toll.

That said, the President should give McChrystal a chance to make his case and then make his decision based on the best available information. One cannot sit back and laud George Bush for his fortitude in doubling down in Iraq, and then cry "quagmire" in Afghanistan. The new President and the new commander deserve support in trying to win--on whatever terms "winning" comes to mean for them.

The one thing I don't get though is the reference to the Provincial Reconstruction Teams (PRT's) that are now largely being led by USAF and USN officers. Both McChrystal and the head of our Special Operations Command (ADM Eric Olson) believe that Special Forces Officers should be leading these teams because of the skills they have. The story cites push back from the Navy and Air Force on this. First of all, the reason the Navy and Air Force picked these missions up in the first place is because we didn't have enough Snake Eaters to go around. Secondly, I cannot honestly conceive of the Chief of Naval Operations WANTING to continue to send Ship CO's and Aircraft Squadron Commanders out to Afghanistan to in these jobs.


Robert Thorn said...

Afghan forces. Not US forces. Recall that National Security Advisor Jim Jones told a group of colonels that if POTUS were to receive another US forces plus-up request that he would probably have a "WTF moment".

The Conservative Wahoo said...

Both may be required. Jones had to quickly cover his tracks last week.

Anonymous said...

I am not clear what YOU are suggesting CW?

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