It's no secret what mainstream pundits think of President Obama's just-unveiled Afghanistan war strategy: the blogosphere is enraged
while a contingent of newspaper columnists is receptive but still divided
. But what do military writers,
many of whom will dedicate their lives to this strategy, think of it?
From sour grunts blogging in their spare time to wary veterans to Twittering admirals, it's a varied field.
- McChrystal Loves It Top military commander in Afghanistan General Stanley McChrystal supports
Obama's strategy fully. "The Afghanistan-Pakistan review led by the
President has provided me
with a clear military mission and the resources to accomplish our task.
The clarity, commitment and resolve outlined in the President's address
are critical steps toward bringing security to Afghanistan and
eliminating terrorist safe havens that threaten regional and global
- 'Right Strategy, Wrong Message' Official Military.com blogger Jamie McIntyre sighs,
"The strategy he has settled on, even with its limitations and
reservations, may be the best of bad options. But the speech fell
short of making the case. Bottom line: Right strategy, wrong
message." McIntyre, a seasoned military reporter, writes, "this falls
short of the soaring rhetoric that galvanized the nation behind the
difficult but worth task."
- Vet Group Condemns VetVoice, a liberal veteran's organization and publication, break with Obama.
"Veterans of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq are not ready to support
the strategy for the war in Afghanistan," they write. "[T]he strategy
left unanswered too many questions regarding strain on the
Armed Forces, and didn't address other issues that would help ensure
that the entire mission wouldn't be put on the backs of the troops."
Chairman John Soltz, an Iraq veteran, said, "We have been supportive of
every move the President has made since he
was elected, and have supported an increased focus on Afghanistan since
our inception, but given the serious questions that are unresolved, we
aren't ready to support what he's laid out."
- Obama Copies Bush Jonn Lilyea
of surly conservative military blog This Ain't Hell slams Obama.
"President Obama’s speech last night was generally a cut and paste job
from some early GWB speeches interspersed with apologies to the Left
for making the politically expedient decision," he writes. "It all
comes down to credibility and since staffing only 75% what the
generals requested is a muddled political compromise (which took 94
days, by the way) from where will the magic credibility spring?"
- Not Enough Troops Prominent conservative military blog Blackfive derides Obama's rush to commit troops rapidly. "Deploying troops to a theater of war takes a long lead time.
Preparation and training are key. While it is probably true that there
were no calls for deployments before 2010, a 3 month delay means 3
months in which the alerted units are shorted vital training time. And
now the deployment cycle is going to be speeded up because he's trying
to cover his tail? Guess who suffers to make him look better?"
- Twittering Admiral Enthused Chairmen of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Mike Mullen got a little excited about the strategy, on Twitter. "Fully support the President's strategy for Afghanistan. Ready to EXECUTE."
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