Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Trying To Sneak One Past Us

OK, reasonably innocuous story, right? There's more Taliban violence going on in Afghanistan and we really ought to be focusing our attention there more, since that's the country that sheltered the folks who actually did us damage:
BAGRAM, Afghanistan (Reuters) - Defense Secretary Robert Gates said on Wednesday he would consider sending more troops to Afghanistan where U.S. commanders say they expect the Taliban to step up attacks from Pakistani sanctuaries.

Gates, in Afghanistan to ensure commanders have the resources to counter an expected Taliban offensive in the spring, said it was very important the United States and its allies did not let the success achieved in Afghanistan slip away.

Violence in Afghanistan intensified last year to its bloodiest since U.S.-led forces overthrew the Taliban in 2001.

U.S. military commanders said attacks from Pakistan into Afghanistan had surged, several-fold in some areas, and the violence was expected to increase in the spring and summer.
Except...on the Today Show, Sen. Hillary Clinton mentioned that as part of this surge/augmentation/escalation that the President is willfully and ignorantly committing more American troops to in Iraq, he will be switching an entire battalion from Afghanistan to Iraq! So something like 20% of the remaining US forces in Afghanistan (another 10,000 troops remain in Afghanistan as part of the NATO operation there. These troops are "advising" the Afghan army.) will be redeployed from the hunt for Osama bin Laden (indeed, that's why they aren't under NATO command) to go secure either Anbar or Baghdad in what can be best described as a temporary measure to give political cover to a Ronald-Reagan-like retreat from Iraq!

So don't go fooling us, Secretary Gates. We see through this. This "troop boost" in Afghanistan is just a way to provide fresh fodder for Iraq, as they'll stay in Afghanistan for only as long as it takes for Bush to claim he's withdrawing troops from Iraq!