Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Always unquestioningly Awesome

John McCain's awesome record of Afghanistan, nearly as bad (yet portrayed as 'awesome') as his record on predicting success in Iraq.

Of course, McCain was calling for attacking Iraq from virtually the moment September 11th happened and he's never been terribly enthused, organized, or cognizant of Afghanistan or anything that fell outside of where the bombs drop.

But this moment in 2003 reflects McCain's philosophy in Afghanistan right up until the time he decided to copy Obama's long-time call (and most Democrats) for a commitment to going after the real Al Qaeda where 9/11 was hatched as opposed to providing a training ground for them at a loss of more than $10 billion a month out of the mythical magic off-budget fairy (or as it is known in our modern world of corporate branding "The Halliburton Off-Budget Fairy"). Meanwhile the war McCain's never come to grips with continues to go down the crapper:

Taliban insurgents mounted their most serious attacks in six years of fighting in Afghanistan over the last two days, including a coordinated assault by at least 10 suicide bombers against one of the largest American military bases in the country, and another by about 100 insurgents who killed 10 elite French paratroopers.

The attack on the French, in a district near Kabul, added to the sense of siege around the capital and was the deadliest single loss for foreign troops in a ground battle since the United States-led invasion chased the Taliban from power in 2001.

Taken together, the attacks were part of a sharp escalation in fighting as insurgents have seized a window of opportunity to press their campaign this summer — taking advantage of a wavering NATO commitment, an outgoing American administration, a flailing Afghan government and a Pakistani government in deep disarray that has given the militants freer rein across the border.

And why? Because our alleged buddies in Pakistan are far more concerned about "their" national interest than in ours. A fact that seemingly has never dawned on the Bush Administration (or McCain for that matter) other than as an excuse to lie about their motivations.

Pakistan’s military has agreed to a series of peace deals with the militants under which it stopped large-scale operations in the tribal areas in February, allowing the insurgents greater freedom to train, recruit and carry out attacks into Afghanistan.

More foreign fighters are entering Afghanistan this summer than in previous years, NATO officials say, an indication that Al Qaeda and allied groups have been able to gather more foreigners in their tribal redoubts.

The push by the insurgents has taken a rising toll. Before the attack on Monday, 173 foreign soldiers had been killed in Afghanistan this year, including 99 Americans. In all of 2007, 232 foreign troops were killed, the highest number since the war began in 2001.

Earlier this year as he emerged as the clear front runner in the Democratic race Obama made a speech that recognized the reality that Pakistan is following their own interest and not ours:

I understand that President Musharraf has his own challenges. But let me make this clear. There are terrorists holed up in those mountains who murdered 3,000 Americans. They are plotting to strike again. It was a terrible mistake to fail to act when we had a chance to take out an Al Qaeda leadership meeting in 2005. If we have actionable intelligence about high-value terrorist targets and President Musharraf won't act, we will.

...and how did self-proclaimed national security expert John McCain respond?

"Sen. John McCain of Arizona, close to clinching the GOP nomination, called Sen. Barack Obama 'naive' today and...blasted him for advocating a bombing of Al Qaeda hide-outs in Pakistan"

That was in February 2008, six months later, once again, who was correct in pointing out this situation and how it would manifest itself in Afghanistan?

And McCain is a long-time unquestioning hugger of Musharraf, including praise for the awesome job he did in not confronting Al Qaeda.

Yet, the media never allows this prescience to be reported and McCain NEVER gets any criticism on his reflexive hugging of every Bush foreign policy failure by arguing for more of the same.

[cross-posted at Firedoglake]

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