Are we keeping enough troops in Afghanistan?

The ghost of Iraq was all over President Obama's Afghanistan announcement, as Peter Baker noted. No one on the Obama team will say it but Iraq's premature withdrawal did not work out well, as you can see in any map of the region. We left a vacuum in Iraq and bad people filled it.

It's good to see that President Obama has learned his lesson and plans to leave a force in Afghanistan. However, is it the right strategy? Are we leaving enough troops to protect the men in the country?

To be fair, 5,000 US soldiers and air power can be very very effective. Nevertheless, Rowan Scarborough feels that President Obama is not listening to his military advisers:

In the end, President Obama was forced to listen to his generals — not his political instincts — on Afghanistan troop levels, and he decided to split the difference.

Mr. Obama is keeping 5,500 troops inAfghanistan beyond his presidency, about half the strength recommended by his top general in-country. It marks the sixth time he has rejected the advice of a ground commander on the force size in the long Iraq andAfghanistan wars. Military experts call that streak unprecedented for a commander in chief.

We are not saying that a president should listen to his commanders without skepticism. However, President Obama should keep in mind that keeping a larger force will send a message to our enemies that we are serious about our commitment.

My guess is that most of our enemies in the region will read President Obama's decision as a sign of weakness. In other words, President Obama is still concerned with the anti-war Democrat base. He knows that the base wants to get out of the region regardless of consequences.  

Once again, President Obama is about politics not national security.

P.S. You can listen to my show (Canto Talk) and follow me on Twitter.

The ghost of Iraq was all over President Obama's Afghanistan announcement, as Peter Baker noted. No one on the Obama team will say it but Iraq's premature withdrawal did not work out well, as you can see in any map of the region. We left a vacuum in Iraq and bad people filled it.

It's good to see that President Obama has learned his lesson and plans to leave a force in Afghanistan. However, is it the right strategy? Are we leaving enough troops to protect the men in the country?

To be fair, 5,000 US soldiers and air power can be very very effective. Nevertheless, Rowan Scarborough feels that President Obama is not listening to his military advisers:

In the end, President Obama was forced to listen to his generals — not his political instincts — on Afghanistan troop levels, and he decided to split the difference.

Mr. Obama is keeping 5,500 troops inAfghanistan beyond his presidency, about half the strength recommended by his top general in-country. It marks the sixth time he has rejected the advice of a ground commander on the force size in the long Iraq andAfghanistan wars. Military experts call that streak unprecedented for a commander in chief.

We are not saying that a president should listen to his commanders without skepticism. However, President Obama should keep in mind that keeping a larger force will send a message to our enemies that we are serious about our commitment.

My guess is that most of our enemies in the region will read President Obama's decision as a sign of weakness. In other words, President Obama is still concerned with the anti-war Democrat base. He knows that the base wants to get out of the region regardless of consequences.  

Once again, President Obama is about politics not national security.

P.S. You can listen to my show (Canto Talk) and follow me on Twitter.