Posted by: Dark Defender | November 6, 2008

Obama to hit Oz up for troops

So it would appear that Obama is signalling early that he is going to want more troops for Afghanistan.  From the article:

“Given that Afghanistan-Pakistan is at the top of the foreign policy agenda, and that Australia has played a role there, that is likely to be a point of early contact between Obama and allies like Australia,” he said. “The focus will be on what should be done in Afghanistan and along the Afghanistan-Pakistan border. I would put that at or near the top of the agenda. We would be looking to have different allies to make a contribution.”

Senator Obama has described Afghanistan as “the war we need to win”, in contrast to Iraq, which he dubbed “the war we need to end”.

The Rudd Government has expressed concern that the war in Afghanistan is not being won, as did the Obama campaign. But Australia has declined to send more troops.

First I question whether winning in Afghanistan and losing in Iraq is really a good plan, I tend to doubt it.  Hopefully the surge has put us in a good enough position Iraq can limp on without us if Obama abandons the field there.

Second, this would indicate that Obama is serious about doubling down on Afghanistan.  I imagine were going to beef up our own forces there and get more aggressive.  I think this is probaby a good idea, I think we need to keep Afghanistan from again becoming a subdivision of Al-Qaida.  Again though I wonder at the value of succeeding in Afghanistan though if it means losing in oil rich Iraq. 

Finally, I think this will be a good test to see if the mere fact of Obama’s election will really change our relationship with key allies.  I have difficulty believing that countries are really holding back because they don’t like Bush and now with a President they do like, they will suddenly become more helpful.  We shall see though, if Australia and NATO commit substantial new forces to Afghanistan, I will be surprised but impressed.



  1. Afghanistan is who was really abandoned in 2003 (along with the hunt for Bin Laden).That’s why it’s such a mess now. You talk about “losing” in Iraq. No WMD.. Saddam is dead. What exactly is “winning”? Are you hoping for New Hampshire primaries in Mosul? It’s not happening. At least not for a 100 years, if that. The country has been effectively ethnically cleansed. We need to establish some sort of political solution and allow them to govern and police themselves. It can be done responsibly.

    Currently there is a full blown war raging in Afghanistan. We aren’t making any progress with airstrikes and we need troops on the ground. There is a full blown insurgency and struggle for power in Pakistan. They have nuclear weapons…it is the most dangerous place on earth. The US can’t afford to run that war on a tight budget anymore.

  2. Winning in Iraq for me means, its a stable country capable of exporting its oil, it is not a haven for anti-American terrorists and Iraq is not dominated by Iran.

    A shifting of priorities from Iraq to Afghanistan makes sense to me, Iraq probaby needs fewer troops at the moment.

    I am afraid of Iraq carrying the stigma of being “Bush’s war” though and being thrown out with the bathwater in the new administration. It remains important and our responsibility.

  3. This just shows Obama and Rudd for the liars they are. They’re hardly antiwar if they’re so gung-ho about bombing the shit out of Afghanistan, which like Iraq, is not some fight for peace, but a violent mission to advance America’s influence in the world, with its allies.

    The First day of Obama as President-Elect saw a wedding bombed in Afghanistan, killing most of the women there and Obama was silent.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: