A must-read except from a press conference by our Secretary of Defense:
I don’t want to comment in detail on the situation in Afghanistan because it is a complex one. I think the Ambassador said there were 43 wars there. It’s a very complicated situation involving political, economic, and military factors. I don’t think we can give day to day accounts of the improvement or regression of the situation.
I draw your attention again to the one important point. The rate of Taliban attacks is high. By incidents I mean a terrorist attack. as long as that rate of incidents is high, it means the security of the people is low in certain areas of the country. As long as the security of the people is low, their allegiance to the government is in doubt. It is that which makes the problem for us.
Brilliant, showing a new depth and subtly of analysis. Esp the population-centric view!
The speaker is SecDef Robert McNamara, sometime in 1963-1964. Almost everything about the Afghanistan has close parallels in the Vietnam War. We don’t see that because we prefer not to know.
Other notes from the past
- Is Obama running for the office of Chief Shaman?, 6 June 2008 — Weirdness from our next President.
- Does America need a charismatic President?, 15 July 2008
- More about charisma, by Don Vandergriff…(#2 in the “getting ready for Obama” series), 16 July 2008 — About charisma: know it before you buy it!
- Obama might be the shaman that America needs, 17 July 2008 — At what point does criticism of Obama’s charisma and rhetoric become criticism of leadership itself — and blind faith in technocratic solutions so loved by policy nerds?
- Obama describes the first step to America’s renewal, 8 August 2008 — Obama’s statement about America may be the simple truth; this may be why so many find it disturbing.
- America gets ready for new leadership (or is it back to the future?), 14 November 2008
- About Obama’s coronation – wisdom from Fred, 23 January 2009
- What past President does Obama most closely resemble?, 31 May 2009
- Obama knows how to lead America by exploiting our fears, 5 June 2009
- Obama is just like Jack Kennedy!, 13 October 2009
- Thoughts about President Obama, 17 December 2009
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