Here is video of Charles Krauthammer last night saying President Obama’s redefining of the goals for the War in Afghanistan is essentially “an acknowledgement that the surge has failed, and we’re leaving.”
Here is video of President Barack Obama addressing the American people tonight from Afghanistan. Obama said “the goal that I set” – to defeat Al-Qaeda – “is within reach.”
Somehow, I thought the goal to defeat Al-Qaeda started long before anyone even knew who Barack Obama was?
Here is video of Newt Gingrich on “Face the Nation” today where he agreed, “I think it is” time for the United States to leave Afghanistan.
Gingrich made the comments in the wake of news that a U.S. Soldier in Afghanistan apparently went on a shooting rampage and has killed 16 Afghan civilians. Gingrich said the U.S. should reassure Afghans that the rule of law will prevail, and that a full and transparent investigation into what happened will take place. Host Bob Schieffer then asked Gingrich if he thinks it is time for the U.S. to get out of Afghanistan, and he responded, “I think it is.” Gingrich said “We are not prepared to be ruthless enough to force them to change.”
Gingrich also addressed whether he will get out of the race if he does not win in Alabama and Mississippi, and call for him to get out of the race and endorse Rick Santorum. We’ll get clips of those comments up shortly.
Here is video of Gov. Sarah Palin during an interview with Greta Van Susteren last night, where she said Alaskans are tired of seeing President Obama issuing “naive apologies to savages in Afghanistan who turn around and kill our soldiers.” Palin summed up the feeling of many in her home state – “Anybody but Obama.”
“I’ll bet you the majority of Alaskans are still of the mindset that it must be anybody but Obama. We’re a very pro-military state up here. We recognize what it is that our men and women in uniform sacrifice for all of us to keep us secure. And at this point, we’re watching Obama with his naive apologies to savages in Afghanistan who turn around and kill our soldiers. We look at things like that, the actions of our sitting president, and we say, Anybody but Obama. And that is why, Greta, the Alaskans whom I speak with, we’re so tired of the pettiness within that GOP process of – you know, the folks are bickering back and forth about different tactics taken within their campaigns and in this nominating process. We’re trying to remind these candidates – stay focused on the main thing – and that is get a commander-in-chief whom our troops deserve. Get a commander-in-chief who will keep our nation safe, who understands our Constitution and the number one job of a president is to keep this homeland and Americans safe.
When we don’t see that coming from our own president, we get very perturbed and very impatient with the pettiness of GOP campaigns that bicker at one another. And we say, stay focused on the main thing. The main thing – replace Barack Obama in November 2012!”
Here is video of U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan Ryan Crocker not ruling out the possibility that our U.S. Troops will face military “proceedings” for the inadvertent burning of some already desecrated Korans that had messages written in them by terrorist prisoners.
Bret Baier asked Crocker about suggestions by Afghan President Hamid Karzai that the soldiers should face public trial for what happened. Unbelievably, Crocker would not rule out proceedings against the soldiers, although he did say any proceedings would come under the authority of the U.S. Military:
“If there are to be proceedings, they are going to be U.S. proceedings under the UCMJ (Uniform Code of Military Justice) — and I don’t think there is any question or doubt on the part of the Afghan government that that is exactly how it’s going to go.”
If Barack Obama allows these U.S. Soldiers to be tried for what happened here, Republicans need to make that travesty the central issue of the upcoming Presidential Campaign. Every Democrat running for office should be made to answer for the dereliction of duty by the Commander-in-Chief of the United States.
Here is a video report from Afghanistan on the killing of two more U.S. Soldiers – this time in the Southern part of the country. It’s the third incident in recent days where Afghan Soldiers or security forces turned their fire on American Soldiers. This incident has not yet been directly tied to retaliation for the inadvertent burning of Korans desecrated by prisoners who wrote in them to pass terrorist messages, but it has the hallmarks of the previous two incidents that were directly tied to a motive of retaliation.
Just yesterday President Obama claimed his three-page letter of apology to Afghan President Hamid Karzai had calmed everything down in Afghanistan.
CBS NEWS: . . . Six Americans have now been killed and at least 15 wounded in attacks in Afghanistan since the Islamic holy books were burned at a U.S. base there. Dozens of Afghans have been killed or wounded in riots.
Two U.S. military advisers were shot and killed Feb. 25 inside their office at the Afghan Interior Ministry. Days before that, an Afghan solider shot and killed two other U.S. troops during a protest over the burning of Korans at a U.S. base.
The U.S. says the Korans were burned with trash by mistake, and multiple American officials – including President Obama – have issued apologies.
On Wednesday, “CBS Evening News” anchor Scott Pelley spoke to U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan, Ryan Crocker, and Marine Gen. John Allen, the commander-in-charge of the war.
“Clearly it’s been a bad week,” Crocker told CBS News, “but I’m quite confident we’ll get through this. The pace of protest has slowed dramatically. A decade’s worth of relationships doesn’t go away in a single week, so we’ll move forward.”
Clark reports that, while the angry protests which drew thousands of Afghans into the streets in the days after the Koran burning was made public have died down, targeted attacks against U.S. forces by their supposed Afghan military partners seem to be on the rise. . . . Read More
Here is a video report on Newt Gingrich criticizing President Obama’s parade of apologies over the accidental burning of Korans in Afghanistan – Korans used by prisoners to pass terrorist messages. Gingrich pointed out he has heard no apology from anyone when Christian churches are burned by Muslims all over the world.
Reporting on violent protests in Afghanistan following accidental Quran burnings for Monday’s NBC Today, correspondent Atia Abawi declared the incident “…follows a long line of insults that has intensified the public outrage towards the U.S., including last year’s intentional burning of a Koran by a pastor in Florida and the video of U.S. Marines urinating on the corpses of Taliban fighters.”
Compare that declaration to how Abawi portrayed Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai as the peace-keeper amid the crisis: “Karzai once again tried to diffuse the anger, saying, ‘Our emotions were shown all over the country regarding this, it is time now to return to calm and keep it.’” There was no mention of Karzai’s demand that the soldiers responsible for destroying the religious texts should be put on trial and punished.
In their defense, these liberals are actually trying to grasp reality – a hard thing for them to do. But they do seem shocked that Radical Muslims in Afghanistan are unreasonable, and that President Obama’s parade of apologies for our troops have not stopped the violence there.
Four U.S. Troops have been killed in retaliation for the inadvertent burning of some Korans used by prisoners to write terrorist messages inside as communication with one another.
Two more Americans are dead today in the wake of the week-long focus on inadvertent burning of some Korans in Afghanistan – Korans that had been used by prisoners to pass terrorist messages. President Obama and his administration have apologized repeatedly this week for America – both in Afghanistan and to Muslims in America – but it is clearly doing no good whatsoever. This time, a U.S. Colonel and a U.S. Major were shot in the head by what appears to be an Afghan police officer working with the Taliban. Two other soldiers were killed earlier in the week – the same day President Obama sent a letter of apology to Afghan President Hamid Karzai:
WALL STREET JOURNAL: Two high-ranking U.S. military advisers were killed Saturday during a clash with an Afghan national at Afghanistan’s Interior Ministry headquarters, according to Afghan and Western officials.
An American colonel and major were both found shot in the head at the busy ministry compound that is the nerve center for the Afghan law enforcement, according to one Western official in Kabul.
Afghan and American officials shut down the compound as they launched an investigation into the killings in one of the most heavily guarded parts of the capital.
Top U.S. military officials said they were still trying to determine the identity of the attacker. But one Western official in Kabul said that the two Americans were shot by an Afghan policeman upset about the burning of Qurans earlier this week at a U.S. military base.
Hours after the shooting, the Taliban issued a statement claiming that the attacker was an insurgent infiltrator who killed the Americans in retaliation for the Quran burning. In the statement, the Taliban said the assailant called to inform the insurgent group that he had carried out the attack and escaped unharmed.
Details of the incident remained sketchy.
Coalition officials in Kabul dismissed claims by some Afghan officials that the two Americans were killed by a Western colleague.
Earlier this week, an Afghan soldier shot and killed two U.S. soldiers at a small military base in eastern Afghanistan. The attacker escaped through a crowd of anti-Quran burning demonstrators outside the base. . . . Read More
The report indicates Afghan President Karzai is calling for those responsible for the Koran-burning to face a “public trial” in Afghanistan. Will President Obama go along with that madness too? When will President Obama condemn the radical Muslims carrying out these killings of our soldiers? When will he demand an apology from, and action by the Afghan Government, to stop these attacks on our troops?
Here is video of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Asia and Pacific Affairs going to a Virginia Mosque to ask Muslims for forgiveness for the accidental burning of some Korans that took place at Bagram Airbase in Afghanistan.
The video report shows Dr. Peter Lavoy going in person to a large mosque in Virginia (D.C. area) where he apologized to the Muslims there.
Lavoy becomes at least the fourth high-ranking U.S. official this week to apologize for the incident – including President Barack Obama. Lavoy told the Muslims:
“I come here today to apologize on behalf of the Department of Defense for the incident that took place in Afghanistan this week.”
The report says Lavoy also told those at the mosque that those responsible would be “punished,” and that “all 140,000 coalition troops would be retrained” on “religious protocol.”
What a complete embarrassment. We have definitely left “apologizing” and entered “groveling.” This is complete insanity. Apologizing over and over again to people in Afghanistan who are totally irrational will not only not calm them down but embolden them. If they can get our highest officials to grovel by rioting, burning, and killing American Soldiers, this kind of weakness only pushes them to do more of the same.
Still no word on Obama or anyone in his administration – at any level – demanding an apology from the Afghan Government for the killing of two U.S. Soldiers in retaliation for the unintentional burning of the Korans.
Here is video of Newt Gingrich yesterday slamming President Barack Obama for apologizing to Afghan President Hamid Karzai for the inadvertent burning of Islamic materials there. Gingrich said that while Obama was quick to apologize, “I haven’t seen the President demand that the Government of Afghanistan apologize for the killing of two young Americans.”
Gingrich further said that if Afghan President Karzai “doesn’t feel like apologizing, then I think we should say, ‘Goodbye and good luck. We don’t need to be here risking our lives and wasting our money on somebody who doesn’t care.’ The time has come to tell the truth about the threat of radical Islamism, and to tell the truth about the degree to which the Obama Administration routinely and consistently lies to the American people about what’s going on.”
Over at Powerline, Scott Johnson has posted a final dispatch from one of our brave U.S. Soldiers (Pete Hegseth – founder of Vets for Freedom) serving in Afghanistan. Be sure and go over there to read the entire dispatch, but in it he provides a stark assessment of where Afghanistan may be headed in the months and years ahead:
POWERLINE: . . . Rather than break down my assessment categorically as I did in previous emails, I will instead look at the war through a lens provided by an insurgency expert who visited us this past summer. His name is Gérard Chaliand and the day we spent with him was fascinating. In addition to authoring over 40 books on guerilla warfare, he has also been a participant/observer of over a dozen insurgencies around the world—including Afghanistan in the 1980s, and again during the current conflict. Listening to him was like sitting in a semi-circle around Yoda himself, absorbing the insight and knowledge of a rare specimen.
Mr. Chaliand visits Afghanistan yearly, but said his 2011 trip was his last. When asked why, he said, “Because I know how it will end. The Taliban control the countryside and are growing in support throughout the country by providing an effective underground government structure. The seeds of their return were planted long ago—much before Gen. McChrystal’s 2009 counterinsurgency strategy—and their ascension is now inevitable. International forces started doing the right things at ‘half past eleven’ and now it’s too late.”
While I certainly didn’t share his pessimism then, I’ve come begrudgingly to agree with his assessment today. The Taliban—by mitigating their negatives (brutality, ethnic exclusion, and overt association with al Qaeda) and accentuating their perceived positives (swift justice, longevity, and ideological cohesion)—have gained, and maintained, a psychological grip on the Afghan population. While most Afghans, especially non-Pashtuns, do not want the Taliban to return (“hearts”), they are grappling with—and calculating accordingly—the looming reality that the Taliban will outlast U.S. forces (“minds”) and eventually challenge a weak, corrupt, and fractured Afghan Government for control of the country.
This isn’t to say that we couldn’t achieve a more advantageous outcome for the United States; of course if we got rid of the 2014 withdrawal deadline completely, were truly willing to remove Taliban and Haqqani safe-havens in Pakistan (we know where they are!), and purged the Afghan government of its most corrupt nodes we could “change the game” of this conflict. But for various reasons—be they domestic politics, a nuclear-armed Pakistan (a lesson for Iran, I would suggest), and a trepidation with undermining corrosive “Afghan sovereignty”—it is highly unlikely we will make the hard choices necessary to level the playing field. A bad outcome in Afghanistan isn’t inevitable, but in light of current realities, it is likely. . . . Read More
Reports out of Afghanistan indicate 13 American Troops have been killed by a car bomb attack in Kabul. A Senior U.S. Official said a suicide car bomb attack hit a U.S. convoy. The Taliban is claiming responsibility for the attack.
MSNBC: A Taliban suicide bomber rammed a van into an armored NATO bus Saturday in Kabul, killing 13 American troops and four Afghans, U.S. and Afghan officials said, in the deadliest attack on coalition forces in more than two months.
The explosion, which occurred as the convoy was passing the American University, sparked a fireball and littered the street with shrapnel. Heavy black smoke poured from burning wreckage at the site.
The armored personnel carrier, known as a Rhino, was sandwiched between of a convoy of mine-resistant military vehicles traveling on a four-lane highway frequently used by NATO forces in a southwestern section of the city.
Pentagon spokesman Jim Gregory confirmed to Reuters the 13 service members killed were Americans.
The Afghan Ministry of Interior said three Afghan civilians and one policeman also died in the attack. Eight other Afghans, including two children and four other civilians, were wounded, said Kabir Amiri, head of Kabul hospitals.
The Taliban claimed responsibility for the Kabul attack, as well as for another suicide bombing outside a government intelligence office in the northwest province of Kunar. . . . Read More
Rockets fired; 5 Suicide Bomber Detonations; “Large Number of Civilian Casualties”; At Least 10 Explosions Heard in the City:
FOX NEWS: Insurgents are firing rockets towards the U.S. Embassy, NATO headquarters and other official buildings in Kabul, Afghanistan Fox News confirms.
Taliban militants are claiming responsibility for the attacks. Police said the gunmen were firing from a tall office building that is under construction at Kabul’s Abdul Haq square, which is about 300 yards from the U.S. Embassy. American officials could not immediately be reached for comment.
At least ten explosions and much gunfire have been heard. The surge of violence was a stark reminder of the instability that continues to plague Afghanistan nearly a decade after the U.S. invcastion that ousted the Taliban in the way of the Sept. 11 terror attacks on the U.S. . . . Read More
(Fox News) — The Taliban insurgents responsible for shooting down a U.S. helicopter in Afghanistan — killing 30 Americans — have been killed in an airstrike, U.S. Gen. John Allen said Wednesday in Afghanistan.
“The strike killed Taliban leader Mullah Mohibullah and the insurgent who fired the shot associated with the Aug. 6 downing of the CH-47 helicopter, which resulted in the deaths of 38 Afghan and coalition service members,” NATO-ISAF said in a statement.