President Obama’s plan to precipitously start drawing down U.S. military forces from Afghanistan before the war against Radical Islamic jihadists has truly been won – and doing so against the advice of some of his field commanders — is a serious mistake, misguided and dangerous. The move is a sign of White House fatigue. It will be perceived by our enemies as weakness. It will embolden the enemy and put more Americans, Israelis and other Mideast allies of ours at greater risk. We should be letting Gen. Petraeus and his team — including the in-coming commander, Lt.-General John Allen, who will take over when Petraeus moves to head the CIA — finish the job and only then bring the troops home.
Iran’s political and religious leaders are not getting tired of preparing for their genocidal, apocalyptic war against the Judeo-Christian West. They continue talking about the End of Days and the coming of the Twelfth Imam. They are also accelerating the enrichment of uranium and development of ballistic missiles. In this context, increasingly unsure if they can depend on their American allies, Israeli leaders this week “launched a major five-day home front defence exercise intended to prepare its population and emergency services to respond to massive missile attacks,” Agence France Presse reports. “Named ‘Turning Point 5,’ the exercise involves testing nationwide siren systems and the cellular network, distributing emergency kits, improving coordination and practising evacuation and shelter procedures….Among the scenarios being prepared for are sustained rocket attacks on the Tel Aviv region, the electrical grid or a geriatric hospital, local media reported….For the first time, lawmakers will also be called on to participate in response to a simulated attack on the parliament building in Jerusalem.”
- Israel security cabinet ‘meets in nuclear bunker’
- Israel launches major home front defence drill
- Israel’s defense drills put Hezbollah on alert
Such preparations are critically important. But much more is needed. Israeli leaders are not calling the nation to prayer, fasting and repentance, despite the Biblical admonition to do so.
HEADLINES TO TRACK:
- From Politico: “’Petraeus loses. Biden wins,’ Graham said on CNN. He was referring to reports that Gen. David Petraeus, the commander in Afghanistan, sought a slower pull-out, while Vice President Joe Biden has long favored a smaller U.S. military footprint there and a switch to a counter-terrorism strategy. ‘I think we’ve undercut a strategy that was working,’ Graham warned. ‘Having all the surged forces leave by next summer is going to compromise next summer’s fighting season.’”
- New York Times: “2012 Troop Pullback Worries Military Experts”
- Wall Street Journal, “Unplugging the Afghan Surge”: “President Obama delivered a remarkable speech last night, essentially unplugging the Afghanistan troop surge he proposed only 18 months ago and doing so before its goals have been achieved. We half expected to see a ‘mission accomplished’ banner somewhere in the background. Not long ago, Secretary of Defense Robert Gates spoke about only a token drawdown this year, but he’s now on his way out of the Pentagon. This time Mr. Obama overruled his military advisers and sided instead with Vice President Joe Biden and his political generals who have their eye on the mission of re-election. His real generals, the ones in the field, will now have to scramble to fulfill their counterinsurgency mission, if that is still possible.”
- Bill Kristol, Weekly Standard: “Why bring home the surge troops by the summer of 2012? It had been widely expected that President Obama would announce the planned removal of some—perhaps even all—of the surge forces by early 2013. No serious person expected a drawdown of all 33,000 troops—one-third of the total force—within about 15 months. So why did the president overrule his military commanders and order such a hasty and rapid retreat?”
- NEW: Watch the President’s speech, or read the transcript