When George W. Bush set the plans in motion to invade Afghanistan to attack Al Queda, nearly everyone was on board. The authorization by Congress for the invasion of Afghanistan was 420-1 in the House and 98-0 in the Senate. Funding was no problem. Everyone wanted a butt to be kicked swiftly after 9/11, and the Taliban had their trousers firmly planted around their ankles.
The action in Afghanistan was quick and decisive. The problem with Afghanistan does not originate with US intervention. The problems stem from NATO intervention.
The troops allocated to Afghanistan by our NATO allies have been few. They have been poorly equipped. Even the British contingent is short of equipment, especially helicopters, to help resupply troops at FOBs (Forward Operating Bases). Even the US troops are having troubles getting the equipment needed to secure victory.
One reason George W. Bush asked NATO to take over operations in Afghanistan was so the US could have more troops to attack Saddam Hussein. Unfortunately, we didn’t use enough of the troops, and we ended up mired in an insurgent campaign. But the US always made progress, and the NATO forces were effective at maintaining a status quo. Unfortunately, the status quo let the Taliban squeak back in. US commanders are asking for more troops.
What’s absolutely stunning is Obama’s insistence on making the War in Afghanistan his war. What has he done to accelerate victory in Afghanistan? Nothing. There are no new troops. There’s no clear strategy. Effectively, he’s holding onto failure there with both hands, and his lack of action is putting the entire operation at risk. Not to mention his campaign stances to attack Pakistan, and that hasn’t helped much at all.
Obama is sinking fast with independents and Democrats. He’s alienated the Blue Core by backpedaling on health care (but he’s devising his own health care plan?) and now he’s looking to alienate as many independents as possible through inaction on Afghanistan and turning that into Iraq circa 2004.