Kerry Might Buck Obama on Afghanistan Troop Increase

There’s speculation in the WaPo today that Senator John Kerry, Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, may be prepared to “buck” the Obama Administration if his “fact-finding leads him to conclude that Afghanistan could turn into another Vietnam.”

Video of Kerry’s interview with Lois Romano of the WaPo is available here and the transcript of the interview is here.

I expect we will be hearing more from Kerry on the topic of Afghanistan, as the Senate approved proposal today, “that would require the military’s top commander in Afghanistan to testify before Congress — but not until after President Barack Obama announces whether he will increase troops to the war-torn state.”

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One Response to Kerry Might Buck Obama on Afghanistan Troop Increase

  1. As a Vietnam War veteran, I can fully understand Sentor Kerry’s reluctance to give President Obama an Afganistan blank check. The United States simply cannot get bogged down in another protracted guerrilla war. Both the Soviet Union and the French, before us, were defeated in Afganistan due to the terrain and guerrilla tactics required. At the conclusion of such a war, we would likely be erecting another memorial with the names of servicemen-again sacrificed in vain.
    We could have won the war in Vietnam if the Generals (not ther politicians) had been permited to fight it as a CONVENTIONAL war. Sustained bombing from the air would have totally wiped out North Vietnam economically. Scatter bombing industries and port citys would have paralyzed their ability to fight. So,you might ask, why didn’t we do it. The reason was our concern about the possibility of killing “innocent civilians.” It’s kind of like boxing with one arm tied behind your back. Your chances of winning are next to nothing.
    I was stationed with the 25th Infantry Division at their headquarters in Cu Chi. On the first night in country, our camp received over 40 rounds of incoming mortar and 122mm rocket fire. As a military intellience specialist, I read the morning report on the following morning and quickly noted that WE RETURNED NO FIRE. Upon asking my commanding officer as to why we did not “fight back”–he informed me that the incoming fire was coming from a “no fire zone.” We could not fire back because an innocent civilian might have been killed or injured!! In other words we were sitting ducks. As a Civil War general once said, “War is hell.” If you don’t fight to win, you might as well stay home. We can win in Afganistan if Obama allows the generals to fight it convetionally,without fear of collatoral damage or casualities. Bill