Thursday, November 12, 2009

Obama Rejects Advisors Advice

From the AP: (Comments in Red are mine)

Obama Wednesday rejected all four options presented by advisers in Pakistan strategy discussions, a White House source said.

The administration official told CNN the president was not satisfied with the proposals (because they don't fit the leftist agenda of the president and might anger his leftist base, not to mention his Muslim buddies) and specifically cited concern over an exit strategy. Obama met with his insecurity team Wednesday in the Situation Room.

In another major development Wednesday, the U.S. ambassador to Afghanistan is said to have expressed concern to Obama about sending more troops to the region until the government in Kabul deals with corruption and mismanagement, (and until the administration deals with corruption and mismanagement in the White House).

Previous media reports had indicated five options were on the table. Although the options aren't being developed, one has become fairly fleshed out, CNN said.

That option calls for sending about 34,000 U.S. troops to Afghanistan, deployed mainly in the south and southeast, where much of the fighting is, a senior administration official and U.S. military official independently confirmed for CNN. The plan reportedly would include three Army brigades, a Marine brigade, a headquarters element and support troops.

The other options, the Pentagon official said, would be "different mixes," or "different components of it."

Obama also is expected to discuss the kind of cooperation the United States could expect from Afghan President Hamid Karzai, the type of civilian support the United States would be willing to provide and the kind of support the United States could expect from other countries, the administration official told CNN.

"The president will have an opportunity to discuss four options with his national security team," Press Secretary Robert Gibbs told reporters.

Gibbs said the timeline for Obama's decision remained fluid, but that capturing Osama Bin Laden and preventing a Taliban resurgence was not the top priority that it was during the campaign. In fact, Obama no longer cares whether or not al Qaeda re-establishes training camps in Afghanistan, so long as he gets health care passed and transfers as much power from the private sector to government as possible before his administration ends and the American public votes him out of office in 2012.


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