With the announcement made by President Obama that he is going to start to withdraw troops from Afghanistan, GOP presidential candidate Herman Cain came out with a press release stating the following:
President Obama’s statement tonight is a stark reminder that while one might campaign in poetry, one must govern in prose.
While all Americans hope and pray for a speedy, victorious resolution to the war in Afghanistan that prevents the continued loss of our national treasures— our men and women in uniform— and our national treasury, how we define an honorable exit remains to be seen.
The President suggested that we cannot become isolationist or engage in every international conflict, but instead, we must charter a “middle course.” How does he define this? It seems to be yet another foggy foreign policy coming from this administration.
Instead of providing the American people with clarity, President Obama proposes an abrupt withdrawal of our troops that could potentially compromise the legitimate gains we have made in Afghanistan. Sadly, I fear President Obama’s decision could embolden our enemy and endanger our troops.
President Obama is correct on one account: it is time for nation-building at home and high time the Afghan people take more responsibility in bringing peace and stability to their own country.
With the focus put on Afghanistan, All of the pundits are missing one thing when it comes to Afghanistan: A Nuclear Iran.
In October 2009, I had written in response to the troop build-up in Afghanistan:
This is a headline from ABC News: Is the U.S. Preparing to Bomb Iran?
Is the U.S. stepping up preparations for a possible attack on Iran's nuclear facilities?
The Pentagon is always making plans, but based on a little-noticed funding request recently sent to Congress, the answer to that question appears to be yes.
There are those who have been using the talking points that troop numbers in Afghanistan should be increased.
As has been written on this site, caution should be used when citing the need for an increase in troops in Afghanistan.
There are those in the Pentagon who believe there is an urgent need to strike at Iran.
As stated on this site, any retaliation by Israel or the U.S. against Iran should be done with minimal troops in Afghanistan.
To have them stationed in Afghanistan, would put them in harm’s way of Iran using chemical weapons against American and NATO troops and could cause an escalation in the war in the Middle East.
There is a time for Afghanistan, but that time isn't right now. It is with Iran.
And I would question Obama's change in willingness to put more troops in Afghanistan with knowing that there are some in the Pentagon who want to hit Iran's nuclear facilities.
Is this troop increase a delay tactic and an excuse being designed by Obama?
With more troops in Afghanistan, is there an excuse to not bomb Iran?
At the time when my commentary was written in 2009, a few months earlier, Iran’s nuclear facilities were being hit by the Stuxnet virus:
The Stuxnet software worm which infiltrated the Iranian nuclear program systems was introduced into the system in order to infect five industrial facilities in Iran between June 2009 and May 2010, the New York Times reported Sunday.
This virus was used to shut down the nuclear reactors and it would have enabled the U.S. to launch military strikes at Iran’s nuclear facilities.
While it is understandable to get the facts and intelligence with certain military engagements before making a call, Herman Cain if he becomes president, he most likely will have to address the issue of a nuclear Iran and he may have to do so with depending on his own instincts instead of what some military commanders may say.
The reason why I say this is because as I wrote in my commentary in October 2009, I felt General McChrystal was paving the road to hell in Afghanistan:
There is the saying the devil is in the details and the details are coming out on McChrystal's plan for troops in Afghanistan.
h/t to the Woodward Report
Most public attention has focused on the pending request by McChrystal for troop reinforcements. But more significant than the troop numbers is his blueprint for a radical shift in the way the United States and its allies intend to fight the war.
Key among his proposed changes: rather than trying to fight everywhere, shifting forces to "critical areas,'' where the Afghan population is most at risk. Another key change: getting American troops -- and increasing numbers of U.S. civilians -- out of their armored vehicles and fortified bases into Afghan communities, and getting them to shuck body armor and helmets and to walk among the population unprotected, like the Afghans themselves do.
To the conservatives who are championing McChrystal putting more troops in Afghanistan, read the last paragraph and think long and hard on what the details are in McChrystal's plan.
That is nation building, not fighting the enemy.
When you look at the bigger picture, you can see more details of McChrystal's plan of using more troops for nation building falls in line with Obama's horse trading.
There are good generals and there are bad generals and for Herman Cain, there will come a point when he will have to answer the question in a debate on how he will handle a nuclear Iran.
After I wrote the commentary on McChrystal, I wrote an “I-told-you-so” commentary:
Here is an I told you so moment...
TALIBAN commanders have revealed that hundreds of insurgents have been trained in Iran to kill Nato forces in Afghanistan.
The commanders said they had learnt to mount complex ambushes and lay improvised explosive devices (IEDs), which have been responsible for most of the deaths of British troops in Helmand province.
The accounts of two commanders, in interviews with The Sunday Times, are the first descriptions of training of the Taliban in Iran.
According to the commanders, Iranian officials paid them to attend three-month courses during the winter.
Many had said the health care issue would be Obama's waterloo, it never was, it is with Iran....
To hear General Petraeus speak about Afghanistan, a question should be asked: what is the goal in Afghanistan when Iran is moving towards a nuclear weapon and has signed agreements with Afghanistan on conducting anti-terrorism operations?
Tehran, Jun 22 (FNA) Iranian and Afghan officials have agreed to carry out simultaneous and coordinated operations against terrorist and extremist groups in the region, an Iranian official has said. “According to the agreement, we exchange information to carry out simultaneous operations against terrorist and extremist groups," Iranian Deputy Interior Minister Ali Abdollahi told reporters at the end of a series of security meetings between the two countries here in Tehran today. Abdollahi also pointed to the sour increase in the number of terrorist and extremist groups in the region, and said during the security meetings between Tehran and Kabul officials, the two sides decided to boost their cooperation to better fight against these two dangerous phenomena. He described cooperation in campaign against drug-trafficking and also intensified control over the two countries' borders as among the other main issues touched and stressed during the Iran-Afghanistan Joint Security Workgroup meetings in Tehran. Abdollahi had announced yesterday that Tehran and Kabul plan to carry out joint operations against drug-traffickers.
It is well known that Iran will influence the region to include Afghanistan and once we leave, the Taliban will be used as Iran’s proxy in the Jihadist's goal of controlling the Middle East.
As it stands, with Iran gaining a foothold in obtaining a nuclear weapon, there will be no winning in Afghanistan and the question needs to be asked and answered by Herman Cain: How would you handle a nuclear Iran?