Afghanistan

Obama May Be Forced to Withdraw All Troops from Afghanistan By 2014

Another war to end despite the president's efforts?

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just over the next mountain
ISAF

The Obama Administration has floated the idea of a complete troop withdrawal in Afghanistan by 2014 over frustrations with the Karzai government. The bags and bags of cash sent to Afghan president Hamid Karzai may have fueled a lot of corruption in Kabul but, unsurprisingly, it didn't win actual friends. The Afghan government is not keen on granting NATO troops broad immunity, a key US demand. It also wants more control of how aid money is spent. Karzai suspended talks about post-2014 military cooperation over his perceived exclusion from peace talks with the Taliban organized in Qatar. Barring a successful attempt to change or sidestep the constitution, Karzai is term-limited. A new president is set to be elected in April 2014.

President Obama spoke to Karzai via video teleconference in late June in an effort to ease tensions. It did not go that way. Via the New York Times:

A videoconference between Mr. Obama and Mr. Karzai designed to defuse the tensions ended badly, according to both American and Afghan officials with knowledge of it. Mr. Karzai, according to those sources, accused the United States of trying to negotiate a separate peace with both the Taliban and their backers in Pakistan, leaving Afghanistan's fragile government exposed to its enemies.

Mr. Karzai had made similar accusations in the past. But those comments were delivered to Afghans — not to Mr. Obama, who responded by pointing out the American lives that have been lost propping up Mr. Karzai's government, the officials said.

Karzai, who has been president of Afghanistan since 2001, has long been seen by US policy makers as key to American "success," however defined, in Afghanistan. By the end of his term, George Bush had become "the case officer for Afghanistan," the Obama transition team observed. The White House now describes Obama's video teleconferences with Karzai "part of their regular consultations." Obama's plans to keep troops in Afghanistan past 2014 (to train Afghan security forces and target terrorist outfits) relies on Karzai even as his presidency is set to end within a year. Karzai fears the separate peace the US is trying to negotiate with the Taliban as a save face could weaken or threaten his government. The US has fought a war in Afghanistan since 2001; whether or not the Karzai government or any successor can survive absent American backing isn't going to change over another year or two or more of war.

The peace talks, meanwhile, are going nowhere. Notably, before he died in 2010, the president's special envoy to Afghanistan and Pakistan, Richard Holbrooke, had been pushing the idea of peace talks within the White House, finding some of the stiffest opposition among Obama's political advisors. Obama tried and failed to abort the end of the war in Iraq, but succeeded in telling the story that he "ended the war in Iraq." His dysfunctional foreign policy may find the same sort of hollow success in Afghanistan.

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  1. …”but succeeded in telling the story that he “ended the war in Iraq.””

    I’m sure slick Willy helped him ‘define’ things.

  2. When is the NSA going to release the email flame war between these two assholes?

    1. “ur liek SOOO uncool n childish”

      “shut it obama I FUK UR ASS U DIPSHEET”

      1. The original site is gone but there used to be this hilarious Kim Jong-il LiveJournal page where he would post AOL chat sessions with various world leaders.

        It is still easily one of the funniest things on the internet, I wish I could find all the other pages.

        Here’s two of them-

        Kim Jong Il (the illmatic)’s Journal

        Kim and Bush I

        Kim and Bush again

  3. Obama May Be Forced to Withdraw All Troops from Afghanistan By 2014

    Good

  4. Sometimes man you jsut have to roll with it. Wow.

    http://www.Privacy-Planet.com

  5. The bags and bags of cash sent to Afghan president Hamid Karzai may have fueled a lot of corruption in Kabul but, unsurprisingly, it didn’t win actual friends

    Its sad, the horrible depreciation of Bags of Cash. Why, I remember back in the 1980s, when just one bag of cash could buy you a matching set of Stinger missiles in that country…. sigh. Good times.

    1. “Bags of cash” is no doubt far less money than the “pallets of cash” sent to Iraq in 2003.

      1. BOOOOOOOOSH

      2. Laughable

    2. I can unequivocally guarantee that for bags of cash I will do far less damage to this country and our civil liberties than the Karzai or Obama or Bush administrations.

      NSA: where my dolla dolla bills at?

  6. The Obama Administration has floated the idea of a complete troop withdrawal in Afghanistan

    A lot comes floating out of this administration. I hope it happens, but I’ll believe it when I see it.

    1. A lot of comes floating floaters come out of this administration.

      FIFY.

  7. The teleconference wasn’t even supposed to happen at all. Obama and Karzai just happened to bump into each other masturbating on ChatRoulette.

    1. Obviously the thing to do is get a video of the president, and start trolling chat roulette with it.

      Let me be clear, if the… uh.. troller is careful enough, it could be uh… Epic.

  8. “Obama May Be Forced to Withdraw All Troops from Do What He Really Wants to Do Anyways in Afghanistan By 2014”

    We already saw this drama in Iraq. He wants to leave, but doesn’t want to be open to accusations we ran from the insurgents. Getting thrown out out by the Iraqi government accomplishes that. So he makes a show of wanting to stay while making negotiating demands he knows the other side will never agree to and then when negotiations break down, he’s free to wash his hands of the place.

    We’re now seeing the same negotiating strategy in Afghanistan.

  9. I really don’t understand why we care at all about any country ending in stan. I’m all for killing our enemies in a violent, brutish SHORT war and then coming home. If they do something stupid and launch another attack, fine, we do it all over again. Killing the people involved in 9/11 is fine, heck, removing Saddam from power was also fine with me, building nations to spread “freedom” is futile.

    If the people living there are cool with keeping their women under sacks and Sharia law so what, when they get sick of it they can do what is necessary to change things. Not our problem, that’s their problem.

    It’s probably time that we bring the troops home from Germany, Korea, Japan etc. If South Korea can sell us cars, they can defend themselves from their starving peninsular brethren. Why the hell is there even still a damn NATO? If Putin stomps on Latvia are we sending in our military to push them out? They have something like a whopping 5k deployable troops, why are we in any sort of an alliance with countries that spend nothing on defense?

    1. The Pax Americana.

      America is right there in the name. How can we be a respectable global empire if aren’t wasting billions on maintaining foreign bases and putting a collective boot on some foreigners’ necks?

    2. If the people living there are cool with keeping their women under sacks and Sharia law so what, when they get sick of it they can do what is necessary to change things. Not our problem, that’s their problem.

      Also, what can we realistically do about it? We could give them a constitution that was a photocopy of ours, but what would that change in practice?

    3. That’s a good point. There’s simply no believable scenario under which we go to war to protect Latvia.

  10. If this happens, Karzai will try to join the Taliban as a fellow Pashtun. You heard it here

  11. Obama tried and failed to abort the end of the war in Iraq, but succeeded in telling the story that he “ended the war in Iraq.”

    He succeeded because his true believers needed so desperately to believe it. Reality is negotiable; true faith in Jesus 2.0 isn’t.

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