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Religion, Politics and World Events They make great dinner conversation, don't you think? plus Political Film

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Old 03-27-09, 09:51 PM   #101
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Re: Afghanistan: The War Continues Under Obama -- but the debate is still about Iraq.

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Originally Posted by classicman2 View Post
I'm quite certain that our European allies will step up to the plate at the urging of VP Joe Biden.
Speaking of which...

Quote:
The Obama administration has conducted a vigorous internal debate over its new strategy for Afghanistan, expected to be unveiled by the president in a speech Friday.

According to two U.S. government sources close to the issue, senior policymakers were divided over how comprehensive to make the strategy, involving an initial boost of 17,000 U.S. troops.

On the one side were Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. and Deputy Secretary of State James B. Steinberg, who argued in closed-door meetings for a minimal strategy of stabilizing Afghanistan that one source described as a "lowest common denominator" approach. [A natural choice since I'm sure Biden is intimately familiar with the concept of "lowest common denominator".]

The goal of these advocates was to limit civilian and other nonmilitary efforts in Afghanistan and focus on a main military objective of denying safe haven to the Taliban and al Qaeda terrorists.

The other side of the debate was led by Richard C. Holbrooke, the special envoy for the region, who along with U.S. Central Command leader Gen. David H. Petraeus and Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton fought for a major nation-building effort.

The Holbrooke-Petraeus-Clinton faction, according to the sources, prevailed. The result is expected to be a major, long-term military and civilian program to reinvent Afghanistan from one of the most backward, least developed nations to a relatively prosperous democratic state.

According to one defense official close to the debate, the key to success in Afghanistan remains eliminating terrorist safe havens and training camps, which are no longer in Afghanistan but in Pakistan.

"However, all of our actions are oriented on four lines of operation - security to set conditions for governance, development, rule of law with information operations and counternarcotics cross-cutting efforts," the official said.

The key to any strategy remains Pakistan and its border regions, which remain terror safe havens, said the official, who, like the other sources, spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the information.

Additionally, Gen. Petraeus made sure the Afghan strategy sought to borrow from the successful counterinsurgency strategy and tactics used in Iraq. According to one official in Afghanistan, many of the Afghans are not "hateful against the West."

A White House spokesman and an aide to Mr. Holbrooke declined to comment on the strategy or the debate over it.

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/...ring-23718486/
Looks like Obama took the smart way out. Ask Biden what he would do and do the opposite.
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Old 03-27-09, 10:38 PM   #102
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Re: Afghanistan: The War Continues Under Obama -- but the debate is still about Iraq.

gotta love those unnamed sources close to the issues.
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Old 03-31-09, 06:32 PM   #103
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Re: Afghanistan: The War Continues Under Obama -- but the debate is still about Iraq.

This piece applies just about equally well to the Bush policies in Iraq:

Hillary backs reconciliation talks with Taliban "if they are willing to abandon violence"

So apparently, if they are willing to abandon violence and pursue their goal of implementing Islamic law by other means, that is just fine with her. Here is yet another demonstration of the danger of misdiagnosis of the global jihad threat: the problem is not the means the Taliban use, the problem is their goal. The Taliban are not bad because they are violent -- after all, so are the forces that oppose them. However, as far as the President and the Secretary of State are concerned, that is the only problem with them. If they try to accomplish their goals at the ballot box rather than with guns and bombs, Obama and Clinton would welcome them as partners. The fact that the Taliban want to impose a law upon Afghanistan that would subjugate women and non-Muslims as inferiors, denied equality of rights with Muslim men, and extinguish freedom of speech and freedom of conscience, means nothing to them.

And why should it? Karzai's Afghanistan is already a Sharia state, according to the Afghan Constitution.

"US backs reconciliation with non-violent Taliban," from AFP, March 31 (thanks to JE):


US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Tuesday backed Afghanistan's plans to hold reconciliation talks with members of the Taliban or past Al-Qaeda supporters who reject violence.
"We must ... support efforts by the government of Afghanistan to separate the extremists of Al-Qaeda and the Taliban from those who joined their ranks not out of conviction, but out of desperation," she said.

"They should be offered an honourable form of reconciliation and reintegration into a peaceful society, if they are willing to abandon violence, break with Al-Qaeda, and support the constitution."...


Why not? The Afghan Constitution declares that Sharia is the highest law of the land.

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http://www.jihadwatch.org/
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Old 04-09-09, 03:02 PM   #104
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Re: Afghanistan: The War Continues Under Obama -- but the debate is still about Iraq.

President Barack Obama is seeking $83.4 billion for U.S. military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, pressing for a war supplemental spending bill like the ones he repeatedly voted against when he was senator and George W. Bush was president.

Oh my, how things change when you've got the job.
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Old 04-09-09, 03:07 PM   #105
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Re: Afghanistan: The War Continues Under Obama -- but the debate is still about Iraq.

^^^ Cleaning up other people's messes is doing the same? Hardly.
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Old 04-09-09, 03:10 PM   #106
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Re: Afghanistan: The War Continues Under Obama -- but the debate is still about Iraq.



You've gotta be kidding.
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Old 04-09-09, 03:11 PM   #107
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Re: Afghanistan: The War Continues Under Obama -- but the debate is still about Iraq.

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^^^ Cleaning up other people's messes is doing the same? Hardly.
Do you actually believe all the things you write? You certainly picked the right user name...
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Old 04-09-09, 03:24 PM   #108
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Re: Afghanistan: The War Continues Under Obama -- but the debate is still about Iraq.

You must understand. It's o.k. for Obama to do it; but, it was wrong when Bush did it.
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Old 04-09-09, 03:43 PM   #109
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Re: Afghanistan: The War Continues Under Obama -- but the debate is still about Iraq.

Or regardless of what Barack does, it is Bush's fault. So much for 'the buck stops here.'
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Old 04-09-09, 04:32 PM   #110
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Re: Afghanistan: The War Continues Under Obama -- but the debate is still about Iraq.

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Originally Posted by classicman2 View Post


You've gotta be kidding.
Great retort. It really supports your argument, I must say.
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Old 04-09-09, 04:34 PM   #111
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Re: Afghanistan: The War Continues Under Obama -- but the debate is still about Iraq.

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^^^ Cleaning up other people's messes is doing the same? Hardly.
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Old 04-09-09, 04:34 PM   #112
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Re: Afghanistan: The War Continues Under Obama -- but the debate is still about Iraq.

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Do you actually believe all the things you write? You certainly picked the right user name...
it's a play on my name. but it's good to know you care about frivolous things like a user name.
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Old 04-09-09, 04:36 PM   #113
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Re: Afghanistan: The War Continues Under Obama -- but the debate is still about Iraq.

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Bush didn't start a war in Iraq? He didn't send troops to Afghanistan? They just went on their own? Sorry, my mistake.
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Old 04-09-09, 04:56 PM   #114
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Re: Afghanistan: The War Continues Under Obama -- but the debate is still about Iraq.

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Bush didn't start a war in Iraq? He didn't send troops to Afghanistan? They just went on their own? Sorry, my mistake.
What in the hell has that got to do with the supplemental Obama is requesting.

Again - he consistently voted against Bush's supplementals. What's changed?

Perhaps you can address that.
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Old 04-09-09, 05:13 PM   #115
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Re: Afghanistan: The War Continues Under Obama -- but the debate is still about Iraq.

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Originally Posted by classicman2 View Post
What in the hell has that got to do with the supplemental Obama is requesting.

Again - he consistently voted against Bush's supplementals. What's changed?

Perhaps you can address that.
a real exit strategy for Iraq, that's what.
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Old 04-09-09, 06:15 PM   #116
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Re: Afghanistan: The War Continues Under Obama -- but the debate is still about Iraq.

a contingency exit strategy

What about Afghanistan? Has Obama presented a real exit strategy for Afghanistan?
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Old 04-09-09, 06:34 PM   #117
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Re: Afghanistan: The War Continues Under Obama -- but the debate is still about Iraq.

^^^ something Bush never even talked about. And yes, Obama's talked about the goals he has set out, and he says he doesn't want us there indefinitely. but really, what's the point of even answering your questions? you already think you know the answers to everything, so I have to ask, why ask me questions? do you think it makes any of your arguments better than mine? sorry to break this to you, but they don't.
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Old 04-09-09, 07:04 PM   #118
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Re: Afghanistan: The War Continues Under Obama -- but the debate is still about Iraq.

Under Bush, there was a planned withdrawal beginning this summer.

Where do you get this misinformation you're trying to foist on the forum?

Again - we're talking about Afghanistan. What is Obama's exit strategy for Afghanistan?

Answer - there isn't one.
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Old 04-09-09, 07:26 PM   #119
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Re: Afghanistan: The War Continues Under Obama -- but the debate is still about Iraq.

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Originally Posted by classicman2 View Post
Under Bush, there was a planned withdrawal beginning this summer.

Where do you get this misinformation you're trying to foist on the forum?

Again - we're talking about Afghanistan. What is Obama's exit strategy for Afghanistan?

Answer - there isn't one.
In fact, even his vice-president was just arguing that there isn't a clearcut strategy or goal for Afghanistan and didn't want to send more troops there.

I think we're seeing the cult of personality trumping ideology here.

The interview that just keeps on giving...

Quote:
But he did not deny reports of disagreement within the Obama administration as well, over the president's plan to widen involvement in Afghanistan. A report last week said Biden had warned about the possibility of getting into a quagmire, while military advisers pushed for more troops.

http://www.cnn.com/2009/POLITICS/04/...iew/index.html
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Old 04-09-09, 08:45 PM   #120
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Re: Afghanistan: The War Continues Under Obama -- but the debate is still about Iraq.

From Obama's letter to Pelosi requesting the supplemental.

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As I noted when first I introduced my budget in February, this is the last planned war supplemental. Since September 2001, the Congress has passed 17 separate emergency funding bills totaling $822.1 billion for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. After 7 years of war, the American people deserve an honest accounting of the cost of our involvement in our ongoing military operations.

We must break that recent tradition and include future military costs in the regular budget so that we have an honest, more accurate, and fiscally responsible estimate of Federal spending. And we should not label military costs as emergency funds so as to avoid our responsibility to abide by the spending limitations set forth by the Congress. After years of budget gimmicks and wasteful spending, it is time to end the era of irresponsibility in Washington. In this request, we are honest about the costs we will bear as a Nation, and we will use our resources wisely and responsibly to meet the threats of our time and keep our Nation safe and secure.
It is interesting to note that the $83.4B is well more than twice what is needed to fund the wars until the end of FY2009. Obama's FY2010 "honest" budget will start with at least 3 months of the wars already paid for.
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Old 04-10-09, 12:57 AM   #121
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Re: Afghanistan: The War Continues Under Obama -- but the debate is still about Iraq.

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Originally Posted by classicman2 View Post
Under Bush, there was a planned withdrawal beginning this summer.

Where do you get this misinformation you're trying to foist on the forum?

Again - we're talking about Afghanistan. What is Obama's exit strategy for Afghanistan?

Answer - there isn't one.
Yeah, after he'd already be out of office. "Please clean up my mess, Prez Obama."

Sorry you don't read up on Obama talking about Afghanistan. It's not like he hasn't. You can Google and look up what he's said yourself, I'm not doing your homework for you, but it just sounds like you'd conclude he doesn't have one no matter what you read. It's truthiness, plain and simple. Whatever you say is true is, no matter what. Does he have an exact date? No, because that'd be stupid at this point, and you know it.
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Old 04-10-09, 02:08 AM   #122
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Re: Afghanistan: The War Continues Under Obama -- but the debate is still about Iraq.

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Yeah, after he'd already be out of office. "Please clean up my mess, Prez Obama."
This makes absolutely no sense. Should Bush have planned a withdrawal before Iraq was ready, just so Obama wouldn't have to deal with it? I guarantee you Bush was going on Petraeus's recommendations, just like Obama's doing.
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Old 04-10-09, 08:47 AM   #123
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Re: Afghanistan: The War Continues Under Obama -- but the debate is still about Iraq.

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Yeah, after he'd already be out of office. "Please clean up my mess, Prez Obama."

Sorry you don't read up on Obama talking about Afghanistan. It's not like he hasn't. You can Google and look up what he's said yourself, I'm not doing your homework for you, but it just sounds like you'd conclude he doesn't have one no matter what you read. It's truthiness, plain and simple. Whatever you say is true is, no matter what. Does he have an exact date? No, because that'd be stupid at this point, and you know it.
You don't have to have an exact date to have an exit strategy.

He doesn't have an exact date for Iraq. The target date is 16 months, but he's clearly said that he will consult his military commanders to determine what is the the situation on the ground.

Quote:
Yeah, after he'd already be out of office. "Please clean up my mess, Prez Obama."
I agree with Hank Ringworm. That makes absolutely no sense.
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Old 04-10-09, 08:53 AM   #124
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Re: Afghanistan: The War Continues Under Obama -- but the debate is still about Iraq.

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Originally Posted by classicman2 View Post
President Barack Obama is seeking $83.4 billion for U.S. military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, pressing for a war supplemental spending bill like the ones he repeatedly voted against when he was senator and George W. Bush was president.

Oh my, how things change when you've got the job.

President Barack Obama wants Congress to act quickly on his $83.4 billion request for U.S. military and diplomatic operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, an appeal that's disappointing the most liberal, anti-war wing of his party.

It's going to be interesting to see how many of those 'most liberal, anti-war wing of his party' folks are going to vote on the supplemental. I'll venture a guess and say the vast majority of them will vote for the supplemental. Maybe Sen. Russ Feingold will against it.
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Old 04-10-09, 10:30 AM   #125
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Re: Afghanistan: The War Continues Under Obama -- but the debate is still about Iraq.

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Originally Posted by classicman2 View Post
President Barack Obama is seeking $83.4 billion for U.S. military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, pressing for a war supplemental spending bill like the ones he repeatedly voted against when he was senator and George W. Bush was president.

Oh my, how things change when you've got the job.
Except President Obama didn't consistently vote against supplementals when he was a Senator. He voted against the supplementals that did not include a timetable for withdrawal. He voted in favor of supplementals that did include a timetable for withdrawal. Now there is a timetable for withdrawal.

One could also point out that we are still in the budgeting cycle initiated by the prior administration -- a supplemental is necessary to fund the war since, per that administration's practice, the current budget does not include the cost of the war.
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