Sometimes, people read what they want to read…

( – promoted by buhdydharma )

Sometimes, people read

As president, I would pursue a new strategy, and begin by providing at least two additional combat brigades to support our effort in Afghanistan.

What they want to read…

As president, I would pursue a new strategy, and begin by providing at least two additional combat brigades to support our effort in Afghanistan.

Rather than what was intended.

As president, I would pursue a new strategy, and begin by providing at least two additional combat brigades to support our effort in Afghanistan.

Sometimes, people read

Taken together, these additional American and international troops will allow us to accelerate handing over responsibility to Afghan forces, and allow us to begin the transfer of our forces out of Afghanistan in July of 2011. Just as we have done in Iraq, we will execute this transition responsibly, taking into account conditions on the ground.

What they want to read…

Taken together, these additional American and international troops will allow us to accelerate handing over responsibility to Afghan forces, and allow us to begin the transfer of our forces out of Afghanistan in July of 2011. Just as we have done in Iraq, we will execute this transition responsibly, taking into account conditions on the ground.

Rather than what was intended.

Taken together, these additional American and international troops will allow us to accelerate handing over responsibility to Afghan forces, and allow us to begin the transfer of our forces out of Afghanistan in July of 2011. Just as we have done in Iraq, we will execute this transition responsibly, taking into account conditions on the ground.

Read.

But under Republican questioning, Mr. Gates acknowledged that the surge troops could remain in Afghanistan longer if the American military and its NATO and Afghan allies failed to reverse the Taliban’s recent gains.

“It is our plan to begin this transition process in July of 2011,” Mr. Gates told the Senate Armed Services Committee. “But if circumstances dictate in December, I think the president always has the freedom to adjust his decisions.”

Sometimes, people read.

88 comments

Skip to comment form

  1. it takes time and openmindedness.

    Thank you Turkana, for stopping in here and for the heavy ligfting you’ve been doing lately over there.

    Man, Ive got whiplash.

    “It’s the place from which we were attacked on 9/11, and should we be hit again it’s the place from which I am convinced the planning, training and funding will emanate,” Adm. Mullen said.

    Next week, Gen. McChrystal will appear on Capitol Hill alongside Karl Eikenberry, the American ambassador in Kabul, who raised administration eyebrows during the three-month Afghan strategy review by arguing against sending more American troops to the country — though he told reporters in Kabul Wednesday that he is fully on board with the new strategy.

    In the wake of the president’s West Point speech, lawmakers from both parties have expressed frustration over the state of the eight-year-old U.S. war in Afghanistan, but gave little indication that they would try to stop the administration’s planned escalation.

    Rep. John Murtha (D., Pa.), chairman of the House Appropriations Defense Subcommittee, told reporters Wednesday that he expected the administration to submit a $40 billion supplemental spending bill next year to fund the new troop surge.

    Mr. Murtha said the bill would almost certainly pass.

    • Edger on December 3, 2009 at 9:43 pm

    and sometime people read, and aren’t nearly as dumb as politicians are dumb enough to believe people are.

    In Afghanistan, the Pentagon Digs in

    Forget for a moment the “debates” in Washington over Afghan War policy and, if you just focus on the construction activity and the flow of money into Afghanistan, what you see is a war that, from the point of view of the Pentagon, isn’t going to end any time soon. In fact, the U.S. military’s building boom in that country suggests that, in the ninth year of the Afghan War, the Pentagon has plans for a far longer-term, if not near-permanent, garrisoning of the country, no matter what course Washington may decide upon. Alternatively, it suggests that the Pentagon is willing to waste taxpayer money (which might have shored up sagging infrastructure in the U.S. and created a plethora of jobs) on what will sooner or later be abandoned runways, landing zones and forward operating bases.

    The building and fortifying of bases in Afghanistan isn’t the only sign that the U.S. military is digging in for an even longer haul. Another key indicator can be found in a Pentagon contract awarded in late September to SOS International, Ltd., a privately owned “operations support company” that provides everything from “cultural advisory services” to “intelligence and counterintelligence analysis and training” to numerous federal agencies. That contract, primarily for linguistic services in support of military operations in Afghanistan, has an estimated completion date of September 2014.

    • banger on December 3, 2009 at 10:20 pm

    I don’t ever watch Presidential addresses any more because I can write them. Once you see one Lyndon Johnson making a bullshit speech (which, God bless him, he knew was bullshit) you’ve seen them all.

    I remember when the U.S. “lost” Vietnam — there was no comment from the media about lessons learned or anything. It was really, really weird (or was I just stoned then?). It was just quiet as I recall.

    I remember thinking “we’re just going to do this thing all over again”. It took time with the media hand-wringing over getting rid of the “Vietnam syndrome” (which meant the U.S. was reluctant to invade countries at the whim of the media pundits) and finally after small incursions here and there we started on our new military ventures such that we now have a state of permanent war. Somebody was reading Orwell.

    • k9disc on December 4, 2009 at 12:47 am

    face of the Democratic Party over at dKos.

    Scary stuff.

    Looks like the big tent just up and hopped about 10 million people to the right.

    They’ve got all the ‘undecideds’ now. An influx of braindead mainstream corporate media addicts who only know what the boob tells them to know.

    I can’t believe it’s the same site.

    There will be a powerful centrist party – Corporate Dems+Corporate Republicans and Corporate Media all pursuing the Corporate Agenda.

    I think we’re doomed.

    I’m going to say it… I think this might be worse for our long term future than President McCain.

    I can’t believe I just said that…

    Turk, you’re on fire!

    • TMC on December 4, 2009 at 1:08 am

    Many here have asked if you would post your diaries here because they either can’t comment at DK because they are banned, because they would rather not give the site traffic or they would like to comment without be harassed by the likes of your mascot and his friends.

     Great job today, not just this diary but your responses to Seneca Doane’s attempt to get you involved in a 9/11 CT discussion. I think that diary was a very thinly veiled attempt to get you banned.

  2. To me, Afghanistan is just another Iraq.  You know, go into an already oppressed (economically and otherwise) country and pummel the shit out of their country and their people — for its resources and to “move in” and control the country.  

    The boom in Afghanistan, is not too well known, but it’s been going on for sometime now, as you probably know.  Afghanistan, while poor, literally is situated on a “hotbed” of wealth: oil (Northeastern Afghanistan, Afghan-Tajik Basin); natural gas, Amu Darya Basin, stemming from the Caspian Sea Region); minerals:  barite, chromite, coal, copper, gold, iron ore, lead; gemstones and more!

    Afghanistan and Iraq, were both being discussed for invasion well prior to 9/11, right away in the Bush Administration (right in alignment with the PNAC goals).

    Obama’s speech was almost verbatim to that of any of Bush’s speeches on more troops for surges in Iraq, and in fact, seem to mirror much of what Bush said, just more articulately.

    And, I loved this:

    We do not seek to occupy other nations. We will not claim another nation’s resources or target other peoples because their faith or ethnicity is different from ours.

    And then Gates!  “We have to stay long enough to make sure Afghans can handle it!” (paraphrasing).  Hummm!  Where have we heard those same words before?  

    And, “We have benchmarks, as well. We’ll be reviewing the situation in 2010, for progress.” (paraphrasing)  What?  Like the hydro-carbon revenue law a/k/a Iraq oil-revenue sharing law? Still not signed!  But progress is being made, afterall, Exxon won a contract for increasing oil production in one of Iraq’s most prized oil fields.

    This is interesting and really doesn’t surprise me, in some ways!



    Obama Had Rejected His Own Speech’s Surge Rationale

    by Gareth Porter

    WASHINGTON, Dec 1 (IPS) – President Barack Obama presented a case Tuesday for sending 30,000 more U.S. troops to Afghanistan that included both soaring rhetoric and a new emphasis on its necessity for U.S. national security. . . .

    Despite Obama’s embrace of these new national security arguments, however, he has rejected within the past few weeks the critical link in the national security argument for deploying tens of thousands of additional troops – the allegedly indissoluble link between the Taliban insurgency and al Qaeda. . . .

    One of the senior officials interviewed by Times said the administration was now defining the Taliban as a group that “does not express ambitions of attacking the United States”. The Taliban were aligned with al Qaeda “mainly on the tactical front”, said the official.

    Notably absent from the Times report was any suggestion that Obama had given even tentative approval to the proposal. Only Obama’s advisers were said to be “coalescing around” the proposal. But “administration officials” confidently asserted that the only issue remaining was how many more troops would be required to “guard the vital parts of the country”.

    That confidence was evidently based on the fact that Obama’s national security team had already agreed on the options that would be presented to the president for decision. Two weeks after that report, Obama’s press secretary Robert Gibbs said he would consider four different options at a meeting with his national security team Nov. 11. . . . .

    Although Obama bowed to pressure from his major national security advisers to agree to the 30,000 troops, his conviction that the Taliban is not necessarily a mortal enemy of the United States could influence future White House policy decisions on Afghanistan. . . .

    Sorry this is so long!  My anger is just too great! All this while our own people go jobless, homeless and are suffering.

    And there are even a couple of bills in Congress that want to tax Americans for these wars in order to pay for them.  So, on top of it, tax us so the select rich can  #@!$#@[email protected]!#[email protected][email protected]#[email protected]#$??????????????????????????

     

  3. David Swanson, reminds us — the decision for everything lies with Congress, not Obama:

    The U.S. Constitution leaves the decision to wage war to Congress, and Congress can enforce its decision not to wage war by refusing to fund it.  Blocking a funding bill for wars requires the House of Representatives alone, and both Democrats and Republicans in the House are rapidly joining us in saying No to war funding.

    It’s time to finally get serious, to lobby, to protest, to sit in, to nonviolently disrupt and resist in local district offices until enough Representatives commit to voting No on any bill to fund more war.

    Here’s a link to a rapidly-changing whip list in the form of a google document that you can embed on your own website:

    http://afterdowningstreet.org/

    ~~~~~~~~

    also, go to End the Wars Org and sign on to the letter to the President.  It’s easy, send them an e-mail and ask that your name and state be included.

    • Miep on December 4, 2009 at 3:17 am

    There is something terribly sad about all these happy Obama supporters now feeling the need to turn hawkish, lest they let him down.

  4. Congress authorized the use of force to go after terrorists, not countries, as I recollect.  Whatever, both Iraq and Afghanistan, were and are wars of aggression — war crimes, in other words!

  5. the United States. As we watch, there seems to be a consolidation of power/wealth and a correlative ossification and  paralysis of government. To the extent that all three branches seek the public good, the only reason for a Democracy in the first place, there is a frightening void.

    Lobbyists have literally swallowed the Legislative Branch of government like a Boa Constrictor. It is obvious in the HealthCare fiasco. The Lobbyists for the MIC, in all their new and innovative forms have done the same thing with the Executive; except they need lobby only one person, and they have the coincidental advantage of being integrally imbedded in that branch.

    And the Judicial Branch/Supreme Court, seems a bit lost in its purpose in a 21st Century world. IMO, to look back at the founders intent in 1789, seems absurd, as we look at a country with 300,000,000 more people, 37 more states and severely depleted resources etc.

    However the one thing that I think is very clear is the heightened and poisonous influence on the exective from the “inside” (as mentioned supra). Until WW2, presidents pretty much acted alone in consultation with their White House advisors as far as military decisions were concerned. Now it seems that generals can make calls that presidents used to make: The subversive notion that presidents can’t know all the facts is frightening.

    To know whether Obama has had a chip put into his brain to be controlled remotely or that he is actually in control of his own faculties is problematic. In any case, his principal goal seems to just hold the status quo together. And that means facilitating the momentum toward a global capitalism, even if it means destroying the last vestiges of American Liberalism, that short lived period of optimism that made the average working man/woman feel growing empowerment and optimism, that 30 year period in the middle of the 20th century (from FDR to LBJ).

    The pendulum now swings back to the worst days of the Robber Barons, but with a player that basically didn’t exist then, the Military Industrial Complex. In 1900, the Lobbyists owned every Legislative Branch in the Country, including the Federal one, and the Supreme Court knew who they must favor. But now we have a third player of immense power and influence. IMO, I don’t see how our standard of living can do anything but slowly decline along with the hope of a more Perfect Union.

    I’ve never been so pessimistic. The people are asleep.

    Obama has literally destroyed Liberalism by abdicating his role as a leader for the people at one of the most important crossroads in American History. This “fierce urgency of now” can only be seen as a rhetorical gimmick to win the White House and serve his real masters.

     

  6. Seriously, the guy stumbles through a bad Dubya warmonger cover (complete with mushroom cloud reference) and people cheer him like he’s the second coming of Gandhi.

    Beware of false prophets indeed.

    I will say one thing though, not everybody over at Big O thinks O is The One, and I for one applaud all the folks over there with fortitude to keep speaking up for the real Red Pill.

Comments have been disabled.