Monday, October 19, 2009

A Little Troop-Think

I'm not a big Supporter of The Troops. If you are, though, you might want to consider this. Suppose you're an American Troop in Afghanistan. Whatever your alleged mission might be, you might reasonably think your chances of accomplishing it and returning home in one piece would be enhanced by having more Troops as company, helping you, watching your back, and so on. So, what do you think when your great leader (or his chief minion) is saying this stuff:
WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama will not commit more U.S. troops to Afghanistan until he is convinced that the central government can be a credible and effective U.S. partner, a senior White House aide said Sunday.

But it was unclear whether Obama intends to accept the recommendation by the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan, Gen. Stanley McChrystal, for thousands more American troops and other resources in the 8-year-struggle to stabilize Afghanistan.

The central question before Obama, chief of staff Rahm Emanuel said, is "not how much troops you have, but whether in fact there's an Afghan partner."
Gee, that's interesting. We install a puppet, and then decide, close to a decade later, that he's maybe not such a good puppet. What's the Hopey-Changey Administration's response? Do they get rid of the celebrated Mayor of Kabul and install another collaborator? Do they decide to wash their hands of the whole business -- a bad investment, you see -- and pull The Troops out? Neither one. Instead, they say that they're not convinced that Puppet Karzai is worth propping up, so you stay there and keep on propping, while they express their displeasure by not sending you any help.

If that doesn't make much sense to you, well ... you're not alone. But actually, O Troop, it does make a certain kind of sense. It's a way of temporizing, based on your leaders' evaluation of the worth of your butt: slight. Near-negligible, in fact.

Meanwhile, a failed contender for the Emperorship is puzzled:
The Senate Foreign Relations Committee chairman, who visited Kabul over the weekend, said Obama should wait until the election cloud has lifted.

"I don't see how President Obama can make a decision about the committing of our additional forces or even the further fulfillment of our mission that's here today without an adequate government in place or knowledge about what that government's going to be," said Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass.
Well, Senator, I can help you there. If Obama were a decent human being, he could make his decision in a few milliseconds. He could decide that the "mission" is either nonexistent, or something that can't be truthfully defined without even the somnolent American public becoming upset. And he could decide to adjust the number of killer-Americans in Afghanistan by -N, where N is the number currently there. Then he could order the entire imperial stock of flying deathbots to be flown out over the Indian Ocean somewhere and crashed into the sea. Next, he could ...

Ah, never mind. If Obama were a decent person, he'd hardly be employing the likes of Rahm Emanuel. And the rest follows, as the night follows the day.


akaGaGa said...

If Obama were a decent person, he wouldn't be president - so says your friend, the cynic.

Jim Wetzel said...

No argument from here. More's the pity, too.

Mimi said...

I find it so profoundly sad that parents, wives, and especially children are subject to the "hero" myth. In truth, the populace is programmed to be proud of hired killers--otherwise, nobody would enlist. And what about when things go awry and those killers are killed? Can you imagine the anguish of their loved ones? And how in the world could they bear it if they believed the sacrifice was not "in defense of our country" or "to fight for our freedom," but to fulfil the blood lust of our leaders?
"O lost, and by the wind grieved/Ghost, come back again..."

itsmecissy said...

I for one am relieved to see that the current administration is THINKING out the whole plan and coming to terms with reality and focusing on the target. No more "wizard of oz" behind the curtain, just reality. Kind of refreshing after the past eight years.

Jim Wetzel said...

Cathy, with vast respect and in the friendliest possible way, let me ask you: what is this target upon which the administration is focusing? What is it, and how will we know when it has been reached?

Somehow, whatever this target may be, and however fine it may be, I'm pretty sure it won't justify the continued infliction of death and misery on so many.

itsmecissy said...

‘Target’ was the wrong word to use. I just meant focusing on the reason we are there - and I'm with you, there is NO GOOD REASON to be there. It's refreshing because the president isn't acceding to the demands of those advocating an escalation. It's refreshing because he apparently isn't feeling any pressure to make an immediate decision. He seems to be asking the question many of us are asking about the requested escalation: to what end?

Unlike the previous administration, who got us into this mess in the first place (and Cheney is STILL calling for escalation to this day), Obama is being more cautious.

Me? I think we should just take all our stuff and go home. I’ve had family killed in Iraq, I don’t need anymore sacrificed in Afganistan.