Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Obama's Wars

Jason Corley's launched a new blogging journal of ideas, The Western Experience. If the forthcoming commentaries match those published at the blog so far, this should be not only quite a project, but a must read as well.

Head on over there and check out Jason's essay, "
America’s Wars and the Next Administration":

The long awaited decision on Iraqi troop withdrawal has all but ended. The Bush administration began hammering out SOFA agreements in the past months and the soon-to-be-arriving Obama administration added urgency to the process. The troop reduction will begin sometime in 2009 and is scheduled to be complete by 2010 or 2011 ....

There will be an estimated 70,000 to 90,000 troops still remaining in Iraq. Withdrawal used in the language of the SOFA agreement is purposely misleading and leaves a large amount of leeway for both governments to remain flexible.

We may consider this phase two or the Iraqi project. The forces left in place will help provide for training, logistics, and security and to ensure that democracy has the opportunity to take root and blossom. Furthermore, Iraqi has always been a bold longterm project. Their government has ambitions in becoming a prosperous, powerful and free nation. Nuclear ambitions are not out of the question, though, it is doubtful if it would mean anything other than peaceful purposes. These goals take time and it takes security for the infant democracy to grow. Americans can expect a longterm presence in Iraq with tens-of-thousands of troops scattered in various bases around the country.

This will undoubtedly come as a disappointment to some Americans who expected and rather naively believed that U.S. troop presence would vanish 16-months into the new Obama administration. It also may cause a backlash to Obama in Iraq itself. Since violence has been reduced, but likely to continue on some scale, a lot of Iraqis are expecting the presence of the U.S. to be gone soon.

It will be interesting to see what agreements and decisions will be made on Iraq after January 20, 2009.

In the meantime, we can judge for ourselves what the new Obama administration plans to do in Afghanistan. Admiral Mike Mullen announced that the Pentagon could double the existing forces there by 20,000 – 30,000 troops bringing the total up to 60,000. This comes on the heels of the report that showed this year was the deadliest for U.S. troops in Afghanistan since the invasion in 2001. Admiral Mullen also stated, the 31,000 troops already in place were plenty combat efficient but more troops were needed to control and pacify the territory that had been cleared of Taliban.

6 comments:

E.D. Kain said...

Corley is also writing for NeoConstant much to the benefit of that site!

Thanks for pointing your readers in his direction, as you are quite correct, his work is quite good!

Donald Douglas said...

Thanks E.D. Merry Christmas to you and yours...

J.B. Corley said...

Appreciate the coveted spot on AP and the kind comments!

Merry Christmas to all!

-Jason

LFC said...

A glance at 'The Western Experience' leaves me distinctly unimpressed.

Critical Thinker said...

Pffft, Corley? Who's that?

Kidding, Jason, the site and its reads are a fine testimony to your writing ability. Keep up the great work!

Tom the Redhunter said...

LFC, given the posts I saw at your blog you're not in a position to criticize anyone.