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  • What Are America's Interests?

    It is not clear what the President meant when he said, “Ending the war was in our interest.”

    First, wars just don’t end. They are a win, a loss, or a draw. By implying that he simply “ended” the war by just following a plan – as if he were imposing a managerial solution over a public policy problem – Obama gave the American people a very a simplistic and wrongheaded notion of war.

    No plan survives contact with the enemy. Obama ought to understand this better than anyone. After all, he bitterly opposed the surge which helped break the cycle of violence and made the withdrawal of U.S. troops – without Iraq collapsing into civil war – possible.

    Indeed Obama’s opposition to the surge was the centerpiece of his 2008 presidential campaign. And he was dead wrong too. Arguably, if we had followed the plan he advocated as a Senator today’s speech might never had happened.

    It was not his plan that turned the war. It was fighting and defeating the insurgency. To suggest anything else is hubris.

    Nor is it clear that the war has “ended”—The enemy still gets a vote. There may be more fighting ahead. And there is a war in Afghanistan that still must be won.

    Second, the President’s rhetoric seems to suggest that fulfilling a campaign promise to “end the war” is the measure of defending U.S. vital national interests.

    It is not.

    If defending U.S. interests in Iraq requires additional combat, then we expect the President will fulfill his responsibility to lead the fight and protect our national interests.

    The President’s opposition to the war was shrewd political calculation that helped him get elected.

    After hearing how he talked about “ending” the war in tonight’s speech he may just be making another one.

    This speech, to be frank, smacks too much of politics at the expense of presidential leadership. This is no small thing, and frankly it has tremendous policy implications (not just political ones). Obama is sending signals that “ending” the fight is more important than protecting America’s interests, just as he did when he opposed the Iraq war to appease the Left wing of his party, the same Left wing now trying to drive him out of Afghanistan. This manner of framing U.S. interests does not bode well for U.S. policy in Afghanistan. If the fighting does not go well there the President could begin focusing on the bogus interest of ending the conflict rather than the real mission in Afghanistan: protecting vital U.S. national interests.

    Posted in Security [slideshow_deploy]

    9 Responses to What Are America's Interests?

    1. Westport, CT says:

      As I understand it, the surge "worked" due to the bribes given to Al Sadr and others to ease up on the sectarian targeting.

      Also, how can you win a war when Bush et all never defined what victory was?

    2. Westport, CT says:

      As I understand it, the surge "worked" due to the bribes given to Al Sadr and others to ease up on the sectarian targeting.

      Also, how can you win a war when Bush et all never defined what victory was?

      And, what "interests" do we have in Iraq except those we've created since the invasion and occupation of a country which, to anyone who can think clearly, was never a threat to us.

    3. Dennis Georgia says:

      The war has not ended, it is now only beginning. This country will be hit again in the future, the dems and obama are a lost cause. The plans have been sent to those we fight, hold on untill this date and all is yours, I WILL STOP THE WAR.

      We have a very inept person as a leader, one that is so full of himself and his ideas, backed by those that are just plain idiots. Those that are in charge in Congress and obama have no idea what real life is, how to live it, how to survive, nor how to make a living in the real world.

      Westport, I have one question, how will you feel when the next attack comes, when you have friends or family that may be injured or worse?? I would bet you will one of the first to cry out for revenge and blood from those respoisible. America has been very lucky in the past, there has not been a war on our land since the Civil War, we have not had to fight door to door to see freedom from those that want to destroy our way of life. I pray to GOD we will never see war in our streets, but withn the idoits in charge, I wonder.

    4. Al in Fl says:

      I guess it is consistent with the liberal view that intent is the ballgame and the outcome seems not to matter. While one may argue about the wisdom of going into Iraq, there is no mystery to the fact that a stable and pro Western Iraq is definitely in our interests.

      By his actions wrt Iraq and his insistence in proclaiming a deadline in Afganistan he is also setting the stage for a Taliban takeover when we leave. The Obama doctrine wrt foreign policy suggests that the next president may well have a major war on his/her hands.

    5. Lloyd Scallan (New O says:

      I'm always amazed at the ignorance of the left. Apparently Westport didn't hear about Saddam Hussein. The aid and comford he gave to terrorist and their training camps in Iraq, that he sponsored, equiped, and supported. The development of biological weapons (that are still burred in Syria) that he used to kill hundreds of thousands of his own people and threaten the entire region. The military invasion of neighboring countries. The Iraq war was won (despite Obama will not use the term) because of Bush's policies despite Obama's and VP Bite-Me strenuous efforts to stop the surge and/or stop the funding. They conveniently forget the facts when Obama said Afghanistan is "the good war", yet he hinged for 3 months to send additional troops, then decreased the numbers requested. I am always amazed how the left rewrights the truth when one of theirs is running the country into the pit of socialism. I am always amazed that the left will support Obama's war yet continue to criticize Bush for winning the war at the same time take credit for Bush's policies.

    6. LTC(R) Tod Chiles US says:

      Mr Obama has no real depth of understanding of the position to which he was elected or the awesome responsibilities it carries. He had never been more than a community organizer in the past. And as a legislator, he had no real pwer without consensus from the rest of the Senate. His actions give aid to our enemies, who are religiously bound to continue to attack us. They now have a timeline to which to train and equip their forces for an attack. I fear for the remaining troops. I believe they could be overwhelmingly outnumbered and overrun in their bases, with little or no help from their Iraqi hosts. We have heard the argument that the Iraqis had elections and have failed to form a true government; check your history books and see how long it took us to form our government after we won the Revelutionary War, it took 8 years.

    7. Greg B. Vail, AZ says:

      Westport CT: Sadam was aiding and helping finance terrorist cells. The questions surrounding WOMD may have been over blow, but Sadam had shown he was willing to use them if he could get them. Just ask the Kurds. It was for this reason that the UN, NOT just the US wanted him removed from power. I say, if you question our motives in Iraq, the next time some crack pot dictator wants to use Weapons of mass destruction, i. e. poison gas and viral agents, we give that leader a list of names of all those who opposed taking Sadam down and tell him to have at it. As to your reference that the surge went to placate or bribe Iraqi officials, let me know which troops we gave to those individuals. The surge was combat operations, NOT financial aid. That is a separate ball game altogether.

    8. Westport, CT says:

      Wow Dennis. Quite emotional. Were you that emotional when you were lied to and 4500 of our service men and women were killed? What about hundreds of thousands of Iraqis? Oh, sorry. Who cares as long as you feel safe.

      None of you get it. We are a Christian army occupying a Muslim country.

      Tod, you can't compare it to our country and it's stupid to try.

    9. Leon Lundquist, Dura says:

      Has Obama accumulated 100 Political Acts not in the Nation's Interest, and actually in the Foreign Interest? So many lies are hard to count, but what Progressive Infiltraitors try to do? The Internet kill switch? The destruction of Industry after Industry in America? Somebody apply the Plain View Doctrine, Prima Facie or something on this Gang! My head is too big for the tin foil hat that Democrats have planned for me. Just being informed can get you a diagnosis (if you aren't furious you don't know what is going on). Ask me, the Evidence is everywhere, even to the History. I wish Glenn Beck's material were in front of an Impeachment Committee, and the Investigation included Conspiracy. You would think the Democrats would cloak their perfidy, they steal elections in plain sight!

      Heritage has lots of interesting back pages, I highly recommend exploring them. If there is one thing keeping me sane is the hope (I mean real hope) that the truth presented on this Site creates. Nobody does it better. "Heritage Analysts Do It Deeper!"

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