I see where the White House is lashing out at former Veep Dick Cheney (WaPost story here) because the former Veep is saying President Obama is taking too long — “Dithering” — on his decision over Afghanistan troop levels.
Why can’t someone get this jerk to shut up? No, seriously.
This is beyond irresponsible. Sending troops to war is not a thing to be done hastily because making a mistake in that decision will get people killed.
One really has to wonder what the real agenda of Cheney, and perhaps the military who are leaking their reports about the war, is in this matter. Why are they in such a hurry? Why the rush to get soldiers killed?
This war was messed up on their watch when they didn’t just dither; they delayed, procrastinated, sat on their hands and them moved their efforts somewhere else. NOW, when the decision is not theirs, they want to act quickly?
Afghanistan is a place only fools rush in to, and we did, eight years ago. We’re paying the price for that foolishness now in treasure and funerals.
More treasure and funerals will not solve the problem, and might make it worse. As Nicholas Kristof, NYTimes columnist, argued at Weber State last week, and does again in his column today (Click!) more American troops in a country where we are seen as propping up a disastrously corrupt government will look more and more like occupiers to the people who live there. That means they’ll hate us and join anyone who promises to make us go away.
Since the more troops we put in also means that more innocent civilians will, inevitably, be killed in accidents or on purpose, that also means we’ll have more and more sworn enemies. Americans forgive and forget quickly — Germany and Japan – but Afghanistan is a country where people measure their grudges in centuries.
Cheney’s criticism is double hypocritical because he claims that Obama is delaying even though the Bush administration prepared a study of the whole situation telling him what to do. He accuses Obama of ignoring all this sage advice — an odd charge coming from someone whose efforts to rebuild Iraq after invading that country were hamstrung by the Bush Administration’s insistance that anyone, no matter what level of expertise in nation building, be excluded from the rebuilding effort if they had any connection whatsoever with the Clinton Administration.
Bush and Cheny put the job of rebuilding Iraq in the hands of party hacks and political favor seekers, with the results we saw in the headlines for five years. The book “Imperial Life in the Emerald City” by Washington Post reporter Rajiv Chandrasekaran documents the resulting disaster in very painful detail.
Don’t tell me the book is no good because it was obviously written by a liberal. Show me the book by a so-called “conservative” that documents how well the rebuilding effort went.
Not to mention, I believe it is President Bush who, in the months preceeding 9-11, ignored a CIA report titled something along the lines of “Osama Bin Laden plans to attack the U.S.” It was given to him by a CIA courier who Bush told, I believe, “OK, You’ve got your butt covered,” and then went back to chopping brush.
So Cheney should just shut up. He adds nothing, is playing political games and obviously cares nothing for the security of the country unless that includes more business for Halliburton.
If Obama is taking his time on a decision, let him — the war’s not going away and for once I would like to see a decision in this country made intelligently.
After 8 years of Bush and Cheney’s methods, it will be a nice change, whatever Obama decides.