Jim Jones to US commanders in Afghanistan: WTF?

posted at 11:34 am on July 2, 2009 by Ed Morrissey

During the presidential campaign, Barack Obama repeatedly accused the Bush administration of allowing the US to get distracted from the real war on terror in Afghanistan and Pakistan by getting bogged down in Iraq.  Attempting to shed an image of an anti-war zealot, Obama insisted that he would put many more troops into the Af-Pak theater and fight against al-Qaeda and the Taliban with robust numbers of American and NATO troops.  When he first took office, he added 21,000 troops to the theater, but got no support at all from his new friends in Europe.

Now it appears that we have reached another Obama expiration date, punctuated by a Whiskey Tango Foxtrot from National Security Adviser Jim Jones to the commander of the Marines Obama sent to Afghanistan (via Jules Crittenden):

Now suppose you’re the president, Jones told them, and the requests come into the White House for yet more force. How do you think Obama might look at this? Jones asked, casting his eyes around the colonels. How do you think he might feel?

Jones let the question hang in the air-conditioned, fluorescent-lighted room. Nicholson and the colonels said nothing.

Well, Jones went on, after all those additional troops, 17,000 plus 4,000 more, if there were new requests for force now, the president would quite likely have “a Whiskey Tango Foxtrot moment.” Everyone in the room caught the phonetic reference to WTF — which in the military and elsewhere means “What the [expletive]?”

Nicholson and his colonels — all or nearly all veterans of Iraq — seemed to blanch at the unambiguous message that this might be all the troops they were going to get.

In other words, don’t expect any more help if you run into trouble.  What a great message to send the Marines as they begin their biggest operation in Afghanistan:

Thousands of U.S. Marines descended upon the volatile Helmand River valley in helicopters and armored convoys early Thursday, mounting an operation that represents the first large-scale test of the U.S. military’s new counterinsurgency strategy in Afghanistan.

The operation will involve about 4,000 troops from the 2nd Marine Expeditionary Brigade, which was dispatched to Afghanistan this year by President Obama to combat a growing Taliban insurgency in Helmand and other southern provinces. The Marines, along with an Army brigade that is scheduled to arrive later this summer, plan to push into pockets of the country where NATO forces have not had a presence. In many of those areas, the Taliban has evicted local police and government officials and taken power.

Once Marine units arrive in their designated towns and villages, they have been instructed to build and live in small outposts among the local population. The brigade’s commander, Brig. Gen. Lawrence D. Nicholson, said his Marines will focus their efforts on protecting civilians from the Taliban and on restoring Afghan government services, instead of mounting a series of hunt-and-kill missions against the insurgents.

No one doubts that the NATO effort has to include a vast modernization of Afghanistan in order to succeed.  The country has just one modern highway.  Even if Afghanistan had a modern armed security force, which it is slowly building, it has no way to get around the country reliably in winter.  Farmers cannot rely on summer crops to last them through the winter, thanks to a lack of electricity and refrigeration.  Opium allows them to store their harvest and sell it year-round to survive the harsh winters.   The Taliban uses that to build loan-sharking services that enslave the farmers and their families.

But before we can build a modern Afghanistan, we have to ensure security throughout the country.  That may take more than the 21,000 extra troops we sent.  At the very least, a wise CinC would not rule out that possibility, especially one that promised a more energetic fight against the radical Islamists that live in the Af-Pak region.  It will take a long time to succeed in Afghanistan on a military and economic basis, and 21,000 was not a magic number for success.  It was just a good start in refocusing our effort.

Besides, telling the new troops that no one has their back on the eve of a major offensive is just plain stupid in terms of morale.  More than a few Marines must have a few Whiskey Tango Foxtrots of their own at the moment.


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Comment pages: 1 2

Leadership.

Akzed on July 2, 2009 at 12:18 PM

Oh c’mon people…there is an endless supply of reinforcement in the Af-Pak theater. Just think of all the libs that are enlisting at this very moment for the war they support.

booter on July 2, 2009 at 12:19 PM

What do the recruitment and reenlistment stats look like for 09?

james23 on July 2, 2009 at 12:10 PM

They are good thanks to Obama’s poor economy. People are opting to re-up than look for a job where Obama is pushing joblessness above 10%

highhopes on July 2, 2009 at 12:20 PM

Just think of all the libs that are enlisting at this very moment for the war they support.

booter on July 2, 2009 at 12:19 PM

Not to mention the legions of homosexuals who will join once DADT is lifted.

highhopes on July 2, 2009 at 12:21 PM

Adults are in charge?

Dr.Cwac.Cwac on July 2, 2009 at 12:21 PM

BUBAR – Baracked-up beyond all recognition.

whitetop on July 2, 2009 at 12:22 PM

People are opting to re-up than look for a job where Obama is pushing joblessness above 10%

highhopes on July 2, 2009 at 12:20 PM

Perhaps this is Barry’s way of increasing jobless rates in military too.

tims472 on July 2, 2009 at 12:22 PM

Just think of all the libs that are enlisting at this very moment for the war they support.

booter on July 2, 2009 at 12:19 PM

Not to mention the legions of homosexuals who will join once DADT is lifted.

highhopes on July 2, 2009 at 12:21 PM

Will the terrorists fear soldiers hitting them with a purse?

Jeff from WI on July 2, 2009 at 12:22 PM

We need a bunch of liberal human wave assaults. That should solve our biggest problem.

saiga on July 2, 2009 at 12:23 PM

God Bless America and our Troops. We’re all going to need his help–because there’s NOTHING coming out of Washington that benefits any of us. Happy Fourth of July….let’s remember and celebrate it’s meaning while we still can.

bicraftuallass on July 2, 2009 at 12:25 PM

Not to mention the legions of homosexuals who will join once DADT is lifted.

highhopes on July 2, 2009 at 12:21 PM

What about the legions of straight people, such as myself, who will leave once DADT is lifted, because we have no interest in sharing a shower with a homosexual?

TTheoLogan on July 2, 2009 at 12:28 PM

Omama making Helen Thomas an Afghan war correspondent.

Jeff from WI on July 2, 2009 at 12:28 PM

maybe this has been said before, but bears repeating.

the Marines are real fighters. if the mission is possible or only slightly probable & sometimes even impossible, they can get the job done.

we owe them our lives. and our thanks.

to all the military, past & present: here’s to you on Independence Day. raises cup.

kelley in virginia on July 2, 2009 at 12:29 PM

Barak Obama: I will listen to the generals on the ground.

Update: Just be sure to tell me what I want to hear.

AARGH!

cs89 on July 2, 2009 at 12:31 PM

I expect retirements to ensue from many top brass in the military. Why serve under a commander in chief who has no respect for you, your honor, or your sacrifices.

God bless them all. It is going to be a long 3 1/2 years.

portlandon on July 2, 2009 at 12:32 PM

Whiskey Tango Foxtrot and YOYO from the Great One:

YOYO = You’re On Your Own.

Steve Z on July 2, 2009 at 12:32 PM

What about the legions of straight people, such as myself, who will leave once DADT is lifted, because we have no interest in sharing a shower with a homosexual?

TTheoLogan on July 2, 2009 at 12:28 PM

Don’t drop the soap

Jeff from WI on July 2, 2009 at 12:34 PM

Sedition on the Part of Jones…nothing less.

coldwarrior on July 2, 2009 at 12:35 PM

Omama making Helen Thomas an Afghan war correspondent.

Jeff from WI on July 2, 2009 at 12:28 PM

She’d be better than Geraldo Rivera. Send her to Tora Bora.

Steve Z on July 2, 2009 at 12:35 PM

BHO and his ilk shot off their mouths about OBL. Well, it is going on 6 months. Where is OBL? …. crickets enter now

Wade on July 2, 2009 at 12:36 PM

Ok, if the military says they need more troops to get the job done, they need more troops and YOU SEND THEM.

Another acronym is in order, this for for Ogabe: POS.

Bishop on July 2, 2009 at 12:37 PM

Gen Jones is a collossal prick so his commentary really isn’t surprising. Problem is , I fear that an extra 210,000 let alone 21,000 will be enough to drag a whole country from the 7th century to the modern era.

We need to to facilitate Gen Kayani/ see;

http://papundits.wordpress.com/2009/03/20/general-kayanis-conundrum-and-pakistan-on-the-precipice/

/efforts in Pakistan and wash our hands of Afghanistan or all is lost.

Archimedes on July 2, 2009 at 12:37 PM

Omama making Helen Thomas an Afghan war correspondent.

Jeff from WI on July 2, 2009 at 12:28 PM

She’d be better than Geraldo Rivera. Send her to Tora Bora.

Steve Z on July 2, 2009 at 12:35 PM

lol

Jeff from WI on July 2, 2009 at 12:38 PM

The d***h*** obviously wants us to lose. My WTF is: “WTF is wrong with you morons who voted for him?” When it hits the fan, as it surely will someday, you’ll cry and wail like the little girls that you are. Sorry, but it’s true.

Mr. Grump on July 2, 2009 at 12:39 PM

But, but, Jones is a general. He always has the mens back.

davod on July 2, 2009 at 12:40 PM

What a c-i-c! Change the rules of engagement so troops are unable to fight back, deny the rest of anticipated troops. Sounds like we are headed for a massive Black Hawk Down period.

Oleta on July 2, 2009 at 12:40 PM

It grieves me that Jones was once Commandant of the USMC. He signed my DD214(discharge) when he was a 1st Lt at Camp Pendleton in 1969.

Tom

marinetbryant on July 2, 2009 at 12:42 PM

a massive Black Hawk Down period.

Racist.

Bishop on July 2, 2009 at 12:43 PM

were more troops supposed to go there? i know several that are due deployment to Iraq–i don’t know for what kind of mission.

kelley in virginia on July 2, 2009 at 12:44 PM

My guess, and I am serious, is 100 years of some type of presence in Afghanistan to make a permenent change to their society.

WashJeff on July 2, 2009 at 11:43 AM

What will have changed in 100 years? Afghan society is based on Islam and Islam is not going away now or a hundred years from now.

aengus on July 2, 2009 at 12:45 PM

bambi can’t send more marines to Afghanistan since he’ll need to declare war on the constitutional govt. of Honduras.

kelley in virginia on July 2, 2009 at 12:46 PM

I think Jones has been set up. He says this and then the White House swoops in to put out the fire.

Two months ago the White House people were swatting at him because he “doesn’t fit in”. Jones admitted his opinions often differ from the rest of the Obama team.

Last month the whispers started that Jones was in early stage Alzheimers and that he would likely be pushed out by autumn.

myrenovations on July 2, 2009 at 12:46 PM

I’d like to view a group photo of all the voters that elected this guy so I can see for myself the true diversity of this country’s moron population.

rplat on July 2, 2009 at 12:48 PM

I’d like to view a group photo of all the voters that elected this guy so I can see for myself the true diversity of this country’s moron population.

rplat on July 2, 2009 at 12:48 PM

Photo? I want brain scans and IQ tests.

myrenovations on July 2, 2009 at 12:51 PM

Good to see the new CIC has so much faith in our military. Wonder if he still thinks they are “just air raiding villages and killing civilians?”

Star20 on July 2, 2009 at 12:52 PM

But, but, Jones is a general. He always has AT the mens back.

davod on July 2, 2009 at 12:40 PM

FIFY

Romeo13 on July 2, 2009 at 12:55 PM

I don’t know if this question was answered recently but packages to Afghanistan seem to take about 1-2 weeks. Closer to 2 weeks if the soldier is at one of the smaller FOBs. It has been a couple of years but packages to Iraq took about the same.

Occasionally, believe it or not, my DH has picked up packages for his unit that have only taken 3 days from the east coast.

proudarmywifeAK on July 2, 2009 at 12:57 PM

Mr. Morrissey, did you actually read the WaPo article? From the second graf:

The message seems designed to cap expectations that more troops might be coming, though the administration has not ruled out additional deployments in the future.

So our “wise CinC” did not “rule out that possibility”. It says so explicitly right there. How did you miss that?

orange on July 2, 2009 at 1:01 PM

I’d like to view a group photo of all the voters that elected this guy so I can see for myself the true diversity of this country’s moron population.

rplat on July 2, 2009 at 12:48 PM

Check out Al Capp cartoons from the ’60s featuring SANE (Students Against Nearly Everything), led by Little Joanie Phoney.

If you can find them, of course. Joan Baez went ballistic, and sued Capp. In the spirit of Freedom, of course.

warbaby on July 2, 2009 at 1:04 PM

We need a bunch of liberal human wave assaults. That should solve our biggest problem.

saiga on July 2, 2009 at 12:23 PM

Death by Kumbaya…….it could work…..

BobMbx on July 2, 2009 at 1:07 PM

Where is the Code Pink crowd??

Dire Straits on July 2, 2009 at 1:07 PM

21,000 fresh troops, who, under the new, kinder/gentler, hopeychange rules of engagement are expressly prohibited from firing upon Taliban fighters who take cover in buildings, for fear of giving ol’ Hamid Karzai a fit of the vapors.

guntotinglibertarian on July 2, 2009 at 1:08 PM

Now I know why Transformers got and is still getting such bad reviews. It called out Pres. Obama by name and predicted a Jim Jones like moment with the military leaders. Just hope Jones doesn’t tell the Taliban sensitive military intel…

Sultry Beauty on July 2, 2009 at 1:09 PM

Is this going to turn out to be Viet Nam Deux?

ColdWarrior57 on July 2, 2009 at 1:12 PM

I’d like to view a group photo of all the voters that elected this guy so I can see for myself the true diversity of this country’s moron population.

rplat on July 2, 2009 at 12:48 PM

Here’s another look at the 0bots.

warbaby on July 2, 2009 at 1:18 PM

“The [real] war on terror is the war in Afghanistan”
- Nancy Pelosi, 2007

el gordo on July 2, 2009 at 1:19 PM

Nicholson and his colonels — all or nearly all veterans of Iraq — seemed to blanch at the unambiguous message that this might be all the troops they were going to get.

After watching the democrats sell out this country and stab our Soldiers in the back by using the difficulties of war to get the White House and majorities in Congress,does anyone actually believe that they are going to do what it takes to win in Afghanistan?

I am sure that Obama is on the phone with ex-weatherman Ayers on how to “surrender with style” on a regular basis.

The democrats have already laid the ground work for retreat in Afghanistan:


Dems anxious about Af-Pak policy

By: David Rogers
April 23, 2009 01:15 PM EST
http://dyn.politico.com/printstory.cfm?uuid=D3F8018F-18FE-70B2-A873986135671377

“We can’t approach problems as if we’re permanent President of the Optimist Club,” he said in what some saw as a dig at the White House. “We have got to look at realities.”

The Wisconsin Democrat, who had been largely silent, spoke out first at a committee hearing Thursday and then elaborated on his position in an interview with POLITICO. He said he still expects this panel to act in early May on the president’s new war funding request but in his mind’s eye, sees this as only a one year commitment unless more progress is shown by especially Pakistan.

“This is a Richard Russell moment with LBJ,” he said, evoking memories of the two old Senate friends being drawn into an ever larger U.S. commitment in Vietnam in the 1960’s. “I don’t want this to be in for a dime in for a dollar…This will be a huge, huge uphill climb,”

The Obama administration will show an effort in the beginning but when the going gets tough and the polls start tanking (like they do in all wars),they will blame it on Bush and start talking about surrender.

Michael Yon has been the most objective and realistic voice on the War on Terror and although pleased by some of Obama’s moves (keeping Gates,Petraeus,and committing some troops),he is less than impressed:


YON: Obama plan for Afghanistan, Pakistan short on bold
Michael Yon, SPECIAL TO THE WASHINGTON TIMES
ANALYSIS/OPINION:

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2009/apr/02/obama-plan-for-afghanistan-pakistan-short-on-bold/

Most Americans know that Mr. Obama did not support the invasion of Iraq. But what should also be acknowledged, as long as some are dwelling on the past, is that Mr. Obama did not support the surge. Had we followed his advice, we would have lost the Iraq war. Other members in his current crew wanted to partition Iraq, an idea met with incredulity by the Iraqis.

This is a major point. Not only was Mr. Obama and crew appallingly ill-informed about the state of progress and possibilities in Iraq, but as late as July 2008 he was still opposing the troop surge, still trumpeting his wisdom in opposing the war, and in fact seemed to want Iraq to fail. Today he is careful in characterizing any success in Iraq, lest it be interpreted correctly that he was wrong about the facts, or worse still, understood the facts but misrepresented them. This administration carries severe credibility burdens concerning issues of foreign policy and national security.

We also know that Obama was supposed to improve our image across the world and bring us all together to accomplish things that crazy Cowboy Bush could not do.

Show me the beef:


Obama’s Debut on World Stage Yields Mixed Results

President Obama may have been swinging for a home run in his debut on the world stage, but European and other global leaders held him to what might be called a ground-rule double.

Obama failed to get European leaders to commit to U.S.-style stimulus packages or to get NATO allies to send more combat troops to Afghanistan.


But he got some great photo ops and the press just loved him.To bad pictures and pats on the back won’t defeat the jihadist.


Have you met the French, Mr. Obama?

Wed, 01/21/2009 – 10:58am

What’s that? There’s a Reuters story about this?
France will reject any immediate request by US president Barack Obama for reinforcements to Afghanistan because it has already deployed enough troops, French Defence Minister Herve Morin said on Wednesday.


Dam#, I can’t believe we can’t count on the French when it comes to a fight……

Poll shows EU resistance on Afghan war
By James Blitz in London
Published: January 19 2009 23:51 | Last updated: January 19 2009 23:51
http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/33fe1c50-e678-11dd-8e4f-0000779fd2ac.html

Any attempt by Barack Obama to get European Union members of Nato to send more troops to Afghanistan will be strongly rebuffed by EU voters, according to a new opinion poll for the Financial Times.


But they think Obama is still really cool!!!!

If anybody thinks Obama is seriously committed to winning in Afghanistan than they have not been paying attention.

Baxter Greene on July 2, 2009 at 1:21 PM

Sultry Beauty on July 2, 2009 at 1:09 PM

Don´t worry, the movie has made $ 450 million worldwide in less than a week. Serves the critics right.

el gordo on July 2, 2009 at 1:23 PM

It’s nice to know our battle-tested troops are finally being asked the hard questions about Barrack’s feelings.

Blacklake on July 2, 2009 at 1:23 PM

“Where is the Code Pink crowd??

Dire Straits on July 2, 2009 at 1:07 PM”

Good point. They seemed to have disappeared, since January 20th. Very strange.

Star20 on July 2, 2009 at 1:24 PM

Well…… what else can we expect from the Democrats. Certainly not staying power where it counts

kens on July 2, 2009 at 1:26 PM

get out of Afghanistan NOW.

Nobody should die as the diseased megalomaniac in the WH plays stratego with his dorm room buddies.

notagool on July 2, 2009 at 1:27 PM

orange on July 2, 2009 at 1:01 PM

This is what I got from reading both articles.

First side of Mr. Obama’s mouth: We have not ruled out additional deployments in the future.
Second side of Mr. Obama’s mouth: Oh, on those additional troops… Whiskey Tango Foxtrot guys. sorry you lose.

Now which side to believe? The side that dances lightly about or the side that kicks your teeth in?

Miss Molly on July 2, 2009 at 1:29 PM

Times have changed. 21,000 is an over sized division. We had two divisions at Omaha beach alone.

WitchDoctor on July 2, 2009 at 1:39 PM

If things become FUBAR in Afganistan, Bambi will be thinking about his exit strategy. Here’s Step 1 …

Step 1: Blame Booooosssshhhh

PackerBronco on July 2, 2009 at 1:40 PM

Now I know why Transformers got and is still getting such bad reviews. It called out Pres. Obama by name and predicted a Jim Jones like moment with the military leaders.

Sultry Beauty on July 2, 2009 at 1:09 PM

You called it. Not a few libtards are tying themselves in square knots over this…it’s pretty telling that they can’t stand a robot calling their precious president.

I wish the Autobots DID exist; they might have been a very handy ally when the s–t hits the fan in the US. Hell, I’d call for a constitutional amendment so one of them could run for president! Now wouldn’t THAT be ten kinds of awesome.

Dark-Star on July 2, 2009 at 1:43 PM

So the Commander in Chief just told the troops “you’re on your own”.

Not that Barry is sorry, they probably didn’t vote for him anyway.

GarandFan on July 2, 2009 at 1:48 PM

well, if bambi isn’t going to support our operation in Afghanistan, then we need to come home.

i never thought i could possibly be an anti-war protester,but if he doesn’t want to win, then we need to bring our soldiers home.

and btw, i know of black soldiers & their families that voted for bambi. because bambi is black or 1/2 black. are these people racist?

kelley in virginia on July 2, 2009 at 1:57 PM

maybe this has been said before, but bears repeating.

the Marines are real fighters. if the mission is possible or only slightly probable & sometimes even impossible, they can get the job done.

we owe them our lives. and our thanks.

to all the military, past & present: here’s to you on Independence Day. raises cup.

kelley in virginia on July 2, 2009 at 12:29 PM

Semper Fi!

Johan Klaus on July 2, 2009 at 2:17 PM

The whole nation is going to have a WTF moment, when we all collectively realize what we’ve done in electing this clown act as president, along with the worst Congress in history.

NoDonkey on July 2, 2009 at 2:20 PM

I am so glad that I finally retired from the AF Reserves and civil service ART (Air Reserve Technician)program just three days ago!

This Anti-Israel, pro Hamas/Muslim douchebag in the White House is going to get lotsof people in uniform killed.

Expect ‘Stop Loss’ to come back big time by the year’s end and a huge push for the Draft in early 2010.

Monday morning, I was asked by a Major ready to re-enlist me, if I wished to extend my High Year Tenure (More than 20 years in the Reserves and civil service) date of June 29th to December 29th. I politely replied that I’d 33 years in the Reserves and 3.5 years Active duty prior to that and I had no wish to stick around.

Jack.

Jack Deth on July 2, 2009 at 2:23 PM

the Marines are real fighters. if the mission is possible or only slightly probable & sometimes even impossible, they can get the job done.
kelley in virginia on July 2, 2009 at 12:29 PM

If the mission is killing America’s enemies, then yeah the Marines are ultimate go-to guys. And you can pretty much count on the job getting done come Hell or high water.

But if the mission is just a fuzzy confused mess having something to do with “making Afghanistan modern”… Eh, not so much.

On the bright side, though, Obama’s plan to replace the finest soldiers the world has ever known with Ice Capades rejects probably won’t make that big a difference in achieving the goals he is setting.

logis on July 2, 2009 at 2:25 PM

Back in 2002 then Gen Jones dropped by our HQ during an exercise in Spain. The Marines were gathered to hear him speak and he proceeded to talk about new uniforms that were coming out and all kinds of esoteric stuff. Not one word about what we were doing in Spain or the exercise or what a great job they were doing or anything.

When he left everybody kind of looked at each other and said who the hell was that guy and WTF was he talking about?

Sounds like not much has changed.

SoonerMarine on July 2, 2009 at 2:25 PM

Surely we can impeach BHO. What *hasn’t* been a crime that he’s done so far?

tanarg on July 2, 2009 at 2:38 PM

21,000 fresh troops, who, under the new, kinder/gentler, hopeychange rules of engagement are expressly prohibited from firing upon Taliban fighters who take cover in buildings, for fear of giving ol’ Hamid Karzai a fit of the vapors.

guntotinglibertarian on July 2, 2009 at 1:08 PM

New Marine orders are to “live among the people in small outposts which means the houses that they can’t fire into will be next door neighbors. Stupid.

journeyintothewhirlwind on July 2, 2009 at 2:39 PM

This convergence of Obama and matters military does off-handedly bring to mind the unofficial nickname of the C-5 Galaxy, which I think serves perfect double-duty as a nickname for Obama (in fact, I already use it frequently to refer to him, but nobody knows what I’m talking about): FRED. It’s an acronym for “F*cking Ridiculous Economic Disaster.”

All hail President Fred!

Blacklake on July 2, 2009 at 2:39 PM

What, wasn’t the Kool Aid really poisoned?

corona on July 2, 2009 at 2:46 PM

BHO = REMF

bluelightbrigade on July 2, 2009 at 2:58 PM

Mr. Morrissey, did you actually read the WaPo article? From the second graf:

The message seems designed to cap expectations that more troops might be coming, though the administration has not ruled out additional deployments in the future.
So our “wise CinC” did not “rule out that possibility”. It says so explicitly right there. How did you miss that?

orange on July 2, 2009 at 1:01 PM

Sending the highest ranking military advisor in the President’s stable (and that means the guy who actually passes the orders to SECDEF from President Obama, if he doesn’t do it himself) to tell the Commanders on the ground that, ‘Hey, if you ask for more Men to win, you are going to embarrass the President, and he won’t like you for that’, is about the worst display of Leadership I have ever seen in my life. GEN Jones may have to give orders he doesn’t like to give to the Men. He may have to direct the DoD to do all kinds of unpopular things with the troops and the public, and pass on orders he doesn’t agree with. But telling the officers in charge of the operations in Afghanistan that their requirements for personnel will NOT be approved or considered BEFORE they even ask, or BEFORE they find out how their campaigns will be progressing is one of the worst examples of leadership I have ever seen. Jones needs to be removed. That is disgraceful, especially since he was once in their position. The lives of our Men and the safety of the country depend upon proper consideration of the requests of the Commanders on the Ground, and a determination that the war is either worth winning or retreat is required. Unless Jones is ready to sound Retreat if any of Petraeus’ operations in Afghanistan fail, then his words undermine the mission and usurp the authority of SECDEF and the options available to the President of the United States, whomever he is.

I am way more pissed at Gen Jones than anyone else in this scenario. If Condi Rice or Steve Hadley had ever usurped USCENTCOMs prerogatives, or the officers under them, I would be demanding their resignations also.

If Jones doesn’t want to give these orders or denials of requirements, and doesn’t want to take responsibility for them himself, whether he agrees with them or not, then he needs to leave. If he disagrees with his boss, the only option he has is resignation. And I suggest he exercise it before a bunch of young Men decide he is part of the problem instead of the solution, and decide to leave the service in droves. This is viewed as betrayal by the troops, pure and simple. “Don’t send me into a war zone unless you want me to win and intend to support me in whatever I need to win”.

God, this shouldn’t have to be explained to a 4 star Marine General. Who knew he left his morals and his conscience at home when he joined this administration? Disgusting.

Subsunk

PS, There was never any question about who George W Bush was going to listen to, was there?. And it wasn’t the civilian in the White House over the Commander in the field! And that is why Iraq was won, and the Taliban is dying in droves. Giving up is NOT AN OPTION!

Subsunk on July 2, 2009 at 3:11 PM

So our “wise CinC” did not “rule out that possibility”. It says so explicitly right there. How did you miss that?

orange on July 2, 2009 at 1:01 PM

Those will be the attornies for the new ROE. Should be and extra 100,000 any day now.

N4646W on July 2, 2009 at 3:21 PM

kelley in virginia on July 2, 2009 at 1:57 PM

well, if bambi isn’t going to support our operation in Afghanistan, then we need to come home.

i never thought i could possibly be an anti-war protester,but if he doesn’t want to win, then we need to bring our soldiers home.

I understand your sentiment, but I don’t agree with it. I’m eight months into a year-long deployment in Eastern Afghanistan. I know we won’t win before I go home, but I don’t want this year to be wasted. I have family members who are still bitter (and rightly so) over Vietnam. We don’t need to do that again. Too many people have already given up too much to just quit and go home.

and btw, i know of black soldiers & their families that voted for bambi. because bambi is black or 1/2 black. are these people racist?

I know some too. Yes.

Bomber on July 2, 2009 at 3:23 PM

“The administration’s decision not to challenge this important civil rights ruling is a welcome sign that it intends to live up to its commitment to help end transgender discrimination in the workplace,” said Sharon McGowan, a staff attorney with the ACLU Lesbian and Gay Rights Project.

Finally, some leadership!

Akzed on July 2, 2009 at 3:38 PM

I can’t believe anybody could’ve thought Obama could be anything but a disaster as a C-in-C. He’s cutting military forces in wartime, he’s putting the troops in danger with his stupid ideas to release more pictures of prisoner torture, and he’s afraid to commit forces where they’re needed (North Korea, for instance). He’s shaping up to be nothing more than a black Carter, and I hope he suffers Carter’s fate: a landslide defeat after 1 term, and being known as one of the worst American presidents (if not THE worst) of his century. Hopefully a new Reagan (Thompson/Palin) will crush him, and undo the damage he does to the nation.

Virus-X on July 2, 2009 at 3:56 PM

A message to National Security Adviser Jim Jones:

Go foxtrot yourself !

ReagansRight on July 2, 2009 at 4:10 PM

But I thought all of the combat forces leaving Iraq would go to the “real fight”, against Al Qaeda, that Obama championed, in Afghanistan and Pockeestahn?

profitsbeard on July 2, 2009 at 4:26 PM

>But before we can build a modern Afghanistan, we have to ensure security throughout the country.

Building a nation. Too bad the nation is Canada.

wkgdyw on July 2, 2009 at 4:47 PM

I’m just a civilian who likes military history…but…

if our guys are going to be dispersed, forbidden to saturate their immediate surroundings with air support or artillery, won’t have the manpower to do sweeps of the surrounding territory, and can’t get armor in country…aren’t they going to die like Custer whenever the enemy chooses?

Ho Chi Minh proved our enemies don’t have to break the spirit of the Marines doing the bleeding…just the spirit of the US Senate.

Chris_Balsz on July 2, 2009 at 5:06 PM

As a Vietnam Veteran and the father of an active duty son who is currently home on leave before being deployed to Afghanistan I’d like to submit the following:

4TH OF JULY

Have you ever wondered what happened to the 56 men who signed the Declaration of Independence ?
Five signers were captured by the British as traitors, and tortured before they died.
Twelve had their homes ransacked and burned. Two lost their sonsserving in the Revolutionary Army; another had two sons captured.
Nine of the 56 fought and died from wounds or hardships of the Revolutionary War.
They signed and they pledged their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor.
What kind of men were they?
Twenty-four were lawyers and jurists. Eleven were merchants, ninewere farmers and large plantation owners; men of means, well educated,but they signed the Declaration of Independence knowing full wellthat the penalty would be death if they were captured.
Carter Braxton of Virginia, a wealthy planter and trader, saw his Ships swept from the seas by the British Navy. He sold his home and properties to pay his debts, and died in rags.
Thomas McKeam was so hounded by the British that he was forced to move his family almost constantly. He served in the Congress withoutpay, and his family was kept in hiding. His possessions were taken fromhim, and poverty was his reward.
Vandals or soldiers looted the properties of Dillery, Hall, Clymer,Walton, Gwinnett, Heyward, Ruttledge, and Middleton.
At the battle of Yorktown , Thomas Nelson, Jr., noted that the British General Cornwallis had taken over the Nelson home for his headquarters.
He quietly urged General George Washington to open fire. The home was destroyed, and Nelson died bankrupt.
Francis Lewis had his home and properties destroyed.
The enemy jailed his wife, and she died within a few months.
John Hart was driven from his wife’s bedside as she was dying. Their 13 children fled for their lives.
His fields and his gristmill were laid to waste.
For more than a year he lived in forests and caves, returning home to find his wife dead and his children vanished.
Some of us take these liberties so much for granted, but we shouldn’t.
So, take a few minutes while enjoying your 4th of July holiday andsilently thank these patriots.
It’s not much to ask for the price they paid.
Remember: freedom is never free!

It’s time we get the word out that patriotism is NOT a
sin, and the Fourth of July has more to it than beer, picnics, and baseball.

“The Value Of Freedom Is Not Realized Until It Is LOST!!!”

God bless all who serve this Great Nation!

Eagles Dominion on July 2, 2009 at 5:52 PM

I’m not suprised to hear such a declaration from the Obama administration. I’m shocked General Jones would be the one to say it.

Cool points took a dive for Jones on this.

Hog Wild on July 2, 2009 at 6:15 PM

I just spoke with my future son in law at 7:20 est, he says they are right this moment loading ord. on choppers around the clock bringing it to the tali’s. They are our finest and will get it done, say a prayer for them.

aceinstall on July 2, 2009 at 7:29 PM

Putting the Marines in small groups in remote outposts with restrictive rules of engagement. That sounds like a perscription for a Custer’s last stand franchise. Too bad the Big Zero CIC won’t be there in one of those small groups so he could take responsibility for his orders.

shmendrick on July 2, 2009 at 7:32 PM

DIRT doesn’t matter. You don’t defeat a trans-national terrorist organization by occupying medieval villages.

Yesterday, President Obama presented his “comprehensive new strategy” for Afghanistan and Pakistan. It was neither new, nor a strategy. Behind all the rhetoric, he just said, I’m sending more troops and more money.

Barack Obama? I heard Lyndon Johnson. The only LBJ touch that BHO lacked was the word “escalation.”

The rhetoric was masterly. The content was drivel. He said, “The situation is increasingly perilous.” Which situation? Why? For whom? Certainly, it’s becoming more perilous for our troops as we escalate in support of the wrong policy.

Or how about Obama’s ringing claim that the Taliban have “nothing to offer the Afghan people but terror and oppression?” Many Afghans — at least among the Pashtun plurality — don’t agree.

The tribals deep in those valleys and the Pashtuns in Pakistan feel a lot closer to the Taliban’s values than to ours. They might not mind a new road, but they’ll skip the bikinis and Budweiser, thanks. The Talibs are home-boys. We’re the foreign element. Why is that so hard to grasp?

All of this circles back to the core of the problem — and it’s not Afghanistan. Afghanistan’s not worth a mullah’s hemorrhoid. Putting the bulk of our effort into Afghanistan amounts to attacking a crisis in California by rescuing Nevada. It’s Pakistan that lies (and lies and lies) at the heart of this problem.

To his credit, Obama noted Pakistan’s importance. Then he got all the solutions wrong.

Start with his inane — but touchingly American — statement that “the people of Pakistan want the same things we want.” Oh, really?

How many readers think Sharia law would be a good idea? How about beating the crap out of women just for yuks? Or stoning them to death because they smiled at the wrong time? And let’s ban alcohol, bare arms, dating and jobs for women. And grow those beards, fellas!

And how about asking ourselves the fundamental question: “Why is India a success story and Pakistan a complete failure?” Any chance that backward Islam might have something to do with it? We can’t bribe people to succeed.

Our president identified al Qaeda as Pakistan’s No. 1 enemy. That’s wishful thinking. Pakistan’s leading enemy has always been corruption. No. 2 is its home-grown Islamist insurgency. Al Qaeda’s way down the list.

Our pathetically naive president articulated one sound goal — defeating al Qaeda — then told us how he wasn’t going to do it. Like LBJ, all he can think of is more troops and more aid. Can’t we ask ourselves why the Taliban’s thriving? After the military beatings we’ve given them? How many of our troops must die for an empty policy?

Hey, hey, ho, ho, BHO, why don’t your supporters go?

MB4 on July 2, 2009 at 7:48 PM

Marine Mission in Afghanistan: Drink Tea, Eat Goat, Get to Know the People

This deployment, the headline tells us, is “a Crucial Test for Revised U.S. Strategy.” (Uh-oh is right.) And what is that strategy? On the one hand, the Taliban is off the hook. On the other, we have given our men Mission Impossible. “Our focus is not the Taliban,” Brig. Gen. Lawrence D. Nicholson told his officers. “Our focus must be getting this government back on its feet.”

A few questions, just to get the brain working: Why? What do we care about putting “this government” back on its feet? And what government? And since when is it the Marines’ mission to stand up governments? (Since Iraq. Enough said.)

I don’t know how many times I’ve read a statement like this one today in The Post from the US: “Mullen said he is `extremely concerned’ about the paucity of Afghan National Army and Afghan police forces in the south and elsewhere….” Funny how, as the Post also reports, $5 a day gets the Taliban as many fighters as needed. Mullen doesn’t seem to wonder why the Taliban draw men with five bucks and the US-supported Afghan government doesn’t with billions. Or, why the Islamic jihadists draw fighters with five bucks and the infidel-supported government doesn’t with billions. In fact, Mullen thinks the problem is “the long-standing deficit in the number of foreign [read: infidel] military trainers….”

And what are we going to do?

Once Marine units arrive in their designated towns and villages, they have been instructed to build and live in small outposts among the local population.

This sounds familiar…where have we heard it before?

“We’re not going to measure your success by the number of times your ammunition is resupplied. . . . Our success in this environment will be very much predicated on restraint,” he told a group of officers from the 2nd Battalion, 8th Marines on Sunday. “You’re going to drink lots of tea. You’re going to eat lots of goat. Get to know the people. That’s the reason why we’re here.”

It’s a mad world.

MB4 on July 2, 2009 at 8:00 PM

WOW!! Undercutting the military?!?! WHO COULD’VE GUESSED???

Put that right up there on my shock meter with the realization by Alan Dershowitz that B. Hussein Obama is ready to sell out the nation of Israel!! QUICK!! Someone alert the media!

oldleprechaun on July 2, 2009 at 8:08 PM

As we’ve learned in previous wars of this type, killing the enemy’s fighters is the first requirement — you don’t get economic and political advances in an area without denying enemy fighters access to that area. As we’ve seen in Afghanistan, all those advances (schools, markets, etc.) are quickly destroyed if enemy fighters regain control. It’s a lesson well learned in Iraq and one we are having to re-learn in Afghanistan.

unclesmrgol on July 2, 2009 at 8:41 PM

If all you said is the documented truth…

…it’s time Mel Gibson make the movie.

Thanks for that post.

Saltysam on July 2, 2009 at 10:24 PM

All of this circles back to the core of the problem — and it’s not Afghanistan. Afghanistan’s not worth a mullah’s hemorrhoid. Putting the bulk of our effort into Afghanistan amounts to attacking a crisis in California by rescuing Nevada. It’s Pakistan that lies (and lies and lies) at the heart of this problem.

MB4 on July 2, 2009 at 8:00 PM

I disagree with this philosophy. We half assed Afghanistan once before, and what did we get for our trouble? 9/11.

While no one knows what the future holds, al Queda can and probably will find another place to base in. But al Queda can’t have Afghanistan, it would be a monumental victory for them and a similiar sized loss for the U.S.

My 2 cents.

Hog Wild on July 2, 2009 at 11:15 PM

This WTF moment is FUBAR. But then again, so was Grande Dame Boxer`s despicable treatment of Brigadier General Michael Walsh. Reminds me of Nicholson`s character demanding he be shown the proper respect in A Few Good Men–except he got a tough rebuke from the judge. These illiberals are a lot of people who really can`t handle the truth and are just punk poor pitiful and in power. Nope, a big itch that is very very hard, if not impossible now, to scratch. I know we have the best military and troops in the world (and we are protecting that less than thankful world), but they must increasingly be wondering exactly what they are protecting, and with good reason. More reason than some messenger boy jerk spouting off what his Oboss is telling him to spout.Tea Parties . . . . these events and the increasing spread of anti-Obama sentiment thru such blogs as these point to some real food for thought. I think some Revolutionary new treatments may be in order. Obummer swats flies without fear! My goodness, what bravery in the face of the enemy! Obummer had himself a good old civil war moment, in my view. What else would you call swatting your brethren down like that? I bet that fly was really shocked to get terminated by a member of his own crew, man!

Sherman1864 on July 3, 2009 at 12:26 AM

You gotta admit… it’s his war to lose. His economy to fail. His white house to turn black. His tennis court to turn into a basketball court. His wife to be a wimp for. His corruption to hide. His failures to deny. His media to own. His big blue airplane to take to dinner. His congress to run things. His stink to cover. His ignorance to persuade. His country to destroy.

Griz on July 3, 2009 at 3:14 AM

The idea of modernizing Afghanistan is ridiculous. Anyone who has been out here quickly realizes that. Afghanistan makes Iraq look like freaking New York. There is basically nothing out here but mudhuts, walls, muddy rutted roads, and a bunch of uneducated people with no means of bettering themselves. The country has almost zero resources, terrible weather year round, completely inhospitable terrain, and evil evil neighbors on all sides.

Even freaking Kabul is mostly dirt roads. The ’1′ modern highway looks like a state road in North Dakota that got abandoned about 25 years ago.

You pretty much have to go to Chad or Somalia to find a place worse than this…

chupa on July 3, 2009 at 5:43 AM

The troops need to come HOME.

Bring ALL of the troops home from abroad. We’re turning into the world’s policeman alright; yeah, for the world bankers and globalists.

Bring ‘em home.

Shut the borders.

Re-legalize the Constitution.

Buy one-way tickets for all anti-Americans to their favorite OTHER country and revoke their citizenships permanently.

Then start the criminal trials of the Federal Reserve Board, Wall Street, U.S. Congress, and the White House.

And finally: produce all of Soetoro/”Obama” records and fly his arse out on a military transport to whichever country this illegal alien resides from (Kenya or Indonesia).

Let’s roll.

ex-Democrat on July 3, 2009 at 8:37 AM

“If all you said is the documented truth…

…it’s time Mel Gibson make the movie.”

Don’t expect the truth from Mel.

davod on July 3, 2009 at 10:26 AM

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