The Future Bad War

Under an Obama administration, liberals will oppose the Afghan War, call for withdrawal, condemn Bush for getting us into it, and codemn it as they attack the Iraq War now:

The Weekly Standard
nd then there’s this finding from yesterday’s ABC/WaPo poll:

On Afghanistan, however, independents side more closely with Republicans than with Democrats. Majorities of Republicans and independents think the war in Afghanistan was worth fighting and that the effort there is linked to the eventual defeat of terrorism more broadly. Majorities of Democrats disagree.

If a majority of Democrats disagree the war was worth fighting in the first place, you can wager a mega-majority of Netroots’ denizens disagree. And yet the left is silent regarding Obama’s belligerence towards the Afghanistan theatre. It’s positively puzzling. Could the explanation be that the left has suddenly developed, contra the ABC/WaPo poll, an unprecedented enthusiasm for extirpating Jihadists?

Liberals and the left need an Obama administration. Otherwise, it is unlikely that Americans will withdraw from Afghanistan.

15 thoughts on “The Future Bad War”

  1. What a ridiculous site this is. A complete crock of shizzle. This post is simply wrong on the facts. I won’t school you here, but will simply refer you to Obama’s major foreign policy speech today where he directly contradicts your claims.

    Nice try, hack.

  2. Really, so all those democrats out in Berkeley that tried to stop supplies from being shipped out of the BA in ’01, that resulted in building contractors refusing to buy in the confines, didn’t happen and therefor the facts are wrong?

    Look, there’s a wing of the dem party that never bought into Afghanistan. I wouldn’t go so far as to paint all of them with that broad a brush, but to deny they exist is simply laughable. to call another a ‘hack’ over it is, well, a have you looked in the mirror lately scenario.

  3. *scratching head* My friend is a lot farther to the left than I am (I routinely describe him as “An over-sized teddy bear spouting leftist propaganda”), and a big Obama supporter; he doesn’t mind the Afghanistan conflict. I subscribe to MoveOn’s emails, and they don’t usually criticize Afghanistan. And I’m not seeing in the poll results themselves where they’re getting that notion:

    So who and where is this great mass of Democrats who wants to leave Afghanistan?

  4. Since Dan typically likes people to back up what they say, here you go, from The Nation about how Afghanistan is already being labeled a ‘quagmire’ and something we should get out of:

    Hack? I don’t think so. I think the truth hurts. I think being betrayed by people within one’s party hurts. BUt lashing out at us for making you aware of it really is the penultimate of attacking the messenger.

  5. Liberals of the left oppose military power. They believe that military power cannot lead to positive results, which for them is wishful thinking.

    As long as Iraq is the central issue, they will of course support the Afghanistan War, because it’s a useful argument for de-funding the Iraq War.

    But as it’s clear that we are winning in Iraq to an extent unthinkable 2 years ago, calls for pulling out will be increasingly common.

    This week, from Time [1]:

    So what exactly should we do about Afghanistan now? First, the West should not increase troop numbers. In time, NATO allies, such as Germany and Holland, will probably want to draw down their numbers, and they should be allowed to do so. We face pressing challenges elsewhere. If we are worried about terrorism, Pakistan is more important than Afghanistan; if we are worried about regional stability, then Egypt, Iran or even Lebanon is more important; if we are worried about poverty, Africa is more important. A troop increase is likely to inflame Afghan nationalism because Afghans are more anti-foreign than we acknowledge and the support for our presence in the insurgency areas is declining. The Taliban, which was a largely discredited and backward movement, gains support by portraying itself as fighting for Islam and Afghanistan against a foreign military occupation.

    Nor should we increase our involvement in government and the economy. The more responsibility we take in Afghanistan, the more we undermine the credibility and responsibility of the Afghan government and encourage it to act irresponsibly. Our claims that Afghanistan is the “front line in the war on terror” and that “failure is not an option” have convinced the Afghan government that we need it more than it needs us. The worse things become, the more assistance it seems to receive. This is not an incentive to reform. Increasing our commitment to Afghanistan gives us no leverage over the government


  6. Umm, how does two paragraphs inside one three-page article constitute proof that liberals don’t want to be in Afghanistan?

  7. Michael,

    I don’t care about what liberals want now in Afghanistan. Now it does not matter.

    I care about what they will want when the Iraq War’s wound down. Then it will.

    I am not saying that liberals consciously choose to support the Afghanistan War out of a calculated decision that support the cause of American defeat in Iraq, and therefore Afghanistan. I don’t think they are that smart.

    Rather, there is a clear pattern of liberals supporting causes other than the current war effort. Their affiliation with these causes varies as a function of its ability to harm the war effort.

    It’s a function of political orientation interacting with the current environment, not a coherent preference schedule extended through time.

  8. I’ll readily admit a portion of the hard-core left does, in fact, think that way. They wouldn’t recognize a necessary war if it danced naked in front of them in a Kremlin tea-cozy. Ditto folks on the far-right who wouldn’t recognize an unnecessary war if it did a similar dance in front of them. There are also a number of people who’s definitions of ‘necessary’, unnecessary, ‘just’, ‘unjust’, etc, are based entirely on who’s in office at the time.

    Will there enough of the first type and Republican third types (Armitage III jokes not included) to force Obama in the direction you’re predicting?

  9. Will there enough of the first type and Republican third types (Armitage III jokes not included) to force Obama in the direction you’re predicting?

    I’m assuming Obama will be a creature of the Democratic Establishment [1], both opposed to change [2] and unable to carry it out [3].

    So what we’ll see is Democratic infighting, most likely with the Brookings Institute and the Washington Post on one side, the electoral base on another, and an Obama administration supporting whichever side is better at making itself indefensible.


  10. To be honest, Obama to me is the Bill Clinton of the Oughts. He’s somewhat a weather vein and a triangulator. As casualties rise ‘Stan will become unpopular generally(we saw that with the casualty uptics in Iraq, where when it was low the majority was for it, and when casualties rose the masses turned) Juan Cole( is already against an increase of manpower in ‘Stan along with places like The Nation and MOther Jones, so the intelligensia will be against it. Add those three, and yes, I think the likelihood of a Pres Obama turning on ‘Stan is likely.

    Political orientation may not have as important a role in this as assumed. Though, I tend to agree that certain flavors of the political left are Mythical Ghandi anti-war types who will attempt to torpedo any muscular FP attempts, even if it is R2P efforts.

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