The Left Looks For The Door In Afghanistan

After spending four years getting all fired up about Iraq, the issue almost completely dropped off of the radar screen the moment Barack Obama was elected. However, that’s only because Bush’s success with the surge made it clear that Obama was taking over a war we were winning handily. A loss at this point would reflect very badly on Obama, so those on the Left have cooled their jets. If they believed they could blame the whole mess on Bush, they’d be clamoring for a pull out as we speak. The war issue may get hot again if the deadline for a pullout gets nearer and things look like they might fly apart if we leave, but for the moment, it’s almost a non-issue.

…….Which brings us to Afghanistan. I’ve been saying for a long time that the Left’s talk about getting out of Iraq so we could really engage in Afghanistan was all politically motivated bunk. The Left honestly doesn’t care all that much about foreign policy other than as a club to beat Republicans with. I’m not saying that they don’t have certain views or differences with the Right; they do, but as an animating issue, it’s way down the list for them unless they can use it politically.

Last year, I wrote several posts talking about how the Left would react in Afghanistan if and when they got into charge. Here’s a representative excerpt from one of them that I wrote back in August of 2008:

One of things that liberals often say, but don’t believe (There’s a lot of that going on with the left) is that we need to get out of Iraq so we can focus all of our attention on Afghanistan.

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However, once you understand liberals, you come to realize that they believe in talking with America’s enemies, sympathizing with them, and trying to understand “how we made them hate us,” but they don’t believe in aggressively confronting them.

So, with that in mind, I’ve long thought that if liberals got their way and managed to prevent us from winning in Iraq, they would slowly, but surely turn on the “good war” in Afghanistan, too.

Fast forward to today and you’ll find that the Left has turned on the war in Afghanistan and all their talk about ramping up the war was just that — talk:

A majority of Americans now see the war in Afghanistan as not worth fighting, and just a quarter say more U.S. troops should be sent to the country, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll.

…Overall, seven in 10 Democrats say the war has not been worth its costs, and fewer than one in five support an increase in troop levels.

Republicans (70 percent say it is worth fighting) and conservatives (58 percent) remain the war’s strongest backers, and the issue provides a rare point of GOP support for Obama’s policies. A narrow majority of conservatives approve of the president’s handling of the war (52 percent), as do more than four in 10 Republicans (43 percent).

Among all adults, 51 percent now say the war is not worth fighting, up six percentage points since last month and 10 since March. Less than half, 47 percent, say the war is worth its costs. Those strongly opposed (41 percent) outweigh strong proponents (31 percent).

Note that unlike Democrats, who abandoned their support for the war in Iraq as soon as it became politically inconvenient, Republicans meant what they said.

Meanwhile, all the same Democrats who spent months caterwauling about Iraq and talking about how we needed to really get the job done in Afghanistan, changed their positions on a dime the moment Barack Obama was elected.

That brings up a whole host of questions. How much of their criticism was really motivated by genuine concerns and how much of it was their playing politics with our national security? Was Bush actually doing a lot better on foreign policy issues than most of his critics gave him credit for? Can you trust people with this kind of mentality to handle our nation’s security? If Al-Qaeda succeeds in launching another attack, will it be because the people in charge now are so fundamentally non-serious about our security?

What it all comes down to is that Afghanistan has been a fractious pesthole for decades and to expect it to turn into a stable, prosperous democracy is too much to ask. However, we do need to continue the fight in Afghanistan against Al-Qaeda. To abandon that country to the Taliban and Al-Qaeda would not only be a defeat for us and a huge victory for Al-Qaeda, it would help destabilize Pakistan which could lead to the worst terrorists on the planet gaining control of functional nuclear weapons. Keeping up the fight in Afghanistan is vitally important to our national security and we need to see it through as a nation.

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