Patterico's Pontifications

11/30/2009

Obama’s Afghanistan Speech: Selling the War

Filed under: International,Obama — DRJ @ 6:19 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

ABC News says President Obama’s speech tomorrow night at West Point is the first step in selling his Af-Pak strategy:

“Senior Administration officials tell ABC News tomorrow’s speech will include a new way of doing business that President Karzai is unlikely to welcome. Instead of U.S. funds going to Karzai’s central government as they do now, much of it will go to the provincial and district level and to specific ministries such as those devoted to Afghan security.

Investments will be based on performance, a senior Administration official told ABC News. And if Karzai continues to run a government that’s full of corruption and fails to provide basic services, he may find himself out of the loop entirely. *** The era of the blank check for Karzai is over.”

I hope Obama’s performance-based strategy works. Why not do the same with the American government?

— DRJ

28 Responses to “Obama’s Afghanistan Speech: Selling the War”

  1. I would love to see Karzai’s government become less corrupt and more effective. But what kind of counter-insurgency strategy starts off by slagging our ally government’s legitimacy?

    What a clown.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  2. Do we have War-Lords to pay off?
    For that is certainly what is implied in this “new” policy, which to this humble observer, is the old policy less the payment of bak-sheesh to Karzai.

    AD - RtR/OS! (eab8f3)

  3. Hey, what do the warlords need Karzai for now? The money hoses are all local now, so instead of trying to snag pieces of far-off graft, they can just concentrate on controlling local graft. Should make everyone much happier with no middle-man.

    The Chicago Way.

    Kevin Murphy (805c5b)

  4. If Karzai has any brains, he’ll take his family and a few suitcases full of bearer bonds and go live in France. Because without the US money to keep everyone happy, he’s a dead man in Afghanistan.

    Kevin Murphy (805c5b)

  5. Perhaps he can find a chalet in the neighborhood where the last Afghan King lives?
    They’d have a lot to talk about.

    AD - RtR/OS! (eab8f3)

  6. What number prime time address is this by the Celebrity Narcissist Responsibility-Avoiding Ditherer-In-Chief?

    daleyrocks (718861)

  7. Ah

    Sort of like sending cash to New Orleans after Katrina.
    what graft? what corruption?

    she’s so fine ain’t no telling where the money went, is lyrics to a song, not a foreign policy

    SteveG (97b6b9)

  8. If Obama had any sense, he would put the funds in the commanders fund so they can dole it out to local communities the way Petraeus did when he was commanding the 101 in Mosul. After he left, the State Dept masterminds screwed the place up it is still not right.

    Of course, based on Obama’s record, ACORN will be in charge of it.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  9. This is the foreign policy of a man who has no concept of dignity.

    happyfeet (0003d3)

  10. I mean other people’s

    happyfeet (0003d3)

  11. or his own

    Angelo (5df281)

  12. Why do I have absolutely no confidence that Congress will be sending a flood of IG’s to Afghanistan to monitor the disbursement of funds under this new policy,
    unlike the way they attempted to micro-manage the “rebuilding” of Iraq?

    AD - RtR/OS! (eab8f3)

  13. I think Mike K is right that this will end up as Organizing for Afghanistan. I hope the military can save it but I’m not sure Obama will let them.

    DRJ (dee47d)

  14. I basically have given up on Afghanistan. I think we should get out because I think there is no chance he will do this right.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  15. If we get out, Mike K, what happens next?

    Dana (e9ba20)

  16. Maybe Obama will announce an Afghan Lotto. Those Taliban fighters would get so interested in playing and checking their numbers that they would lose interest in fighting. Obama sees how many people play Lotto in Chicago. I can see it happening. Desiree Rogers, Michelle’s social secretary ran the Illinois Lotto for a while.

    He’s already announced he wants to pacify the Afghan Taliban, so why not?

    daleyrocks (718861)

  17. Maybe he’s going to install an acornite or Van Jones. They need jobs at this point.

    Patricia (b05e7f)

  18. It’s a definitive statement of who we are, what we do.

    happyfeet (0003d3)

  19. Patricia – Van Jones is a commie and after the Russian invasion I’m not sure how popular they are in Afghanistan, plus he’s even too loony for the Taliban I think.

    daleyrocks (718861)

  20. feets – Who is we @ 18.

    daleyrocks (718861)

  21. feets – Plus I don’t want to get all we we’d up over something else stupid the stupid socialist president man says.

    daleyrocks (718861)

  22. Dana, I think Pakistan is the key. It is possible that we may have to take John Derbyshire;s advice.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  23. “Obama’s Afghanistan Speech: Selling the War”

    Who’s paying? Bring on the war tax.

    imdw (545f4a)

  24. sure imdw. Pack up all your possessions, especially your computer. We are giving it to a more deserving monkey.

    PCD (1d8b6d)

  25. We need to give Obama a chance here. He did not cut and run. He is not a statue – let him grow into the office.

    At first blush I like his accountability idea, but it does not inspire confidence in or support of the national government – we become their overlords, dispensing money beyond the elected government’s control. Maybe this will work, if it is temporary and wisely implemented – but it certainly goes against Obama’s opposition to colonialist administration of the mechanics of other nations and consequent support for corrupt governments elsewhere.

    Amphipolis (b120ce)

  26. Imdw does a good job exposing leftist ideology as being nothing other than a moneygrab from the successful. Every problem, in Leftist thinking, can be solved by taking more of your money.

    JD (f67b76)

  27. It’s a good idea to spend the money locally and have it administrated locally by the military.
    It strengthens the bond between military and locals, unlike tarp, does create jobs.
    It also strengthens local leadership.

    But why be an ass and call out the central government at a time when that needs some careful building of a different kind.
    The Afghans respect power and authority and if you strip the central government of those then you just have a bunch of competing tribes and regional alliances… you may have those anyway (and do) but the national army, police etc. get their power from a strong central government.

    Anyway, a fractured Afghanistan will always be a incubator for religious extremists

    SteveG (97b6b9)

  28. I’ll point, again, to One Tribe at a Time, and the accompanying discussion, on Steven Pressfield’s blog. This looks to me like one of those problems that has to be solved “from the bottom up”; those involved (we’re not) have no faith in “top down” (noting that there are a lot of people here who have little faith in “top down”.)

    htom (412a17)


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