We've covered the extensive discussion over the effectiveness
of President Obama's new Afghanistan war strategy and the rising fears
over President Hamid Karzai's corruption. The Atlantic's Marc Ambinder explains the strategy here
. But how will Obama's war plan fare domestically? The fight for public opinion
and congressional support, after all, is an important one in a democracy.
Here's the best strategy advice for Obama's battle on the front of
- The Politics Matter The Atlantic's Marc Ambinder explains. "A non-political decision has
political effects. To try and figure out what those effects are without
influencing them is one goal -- one goal of many -- that political
journalists will be aspiring too this week," he writes. "The way Americans answer vital
questions like whether a war is just --
or whether, even if it is just, it is in our national interest to fight
it -- is informed by their political ideologies."
- Reiterate Our Commitment The Weekly Standard's Fred Barnes tells Obama
to clarify. "The point is legitimate doubts about Obama’s tenacity in
-- his level of commitment -- abound in the military, among allies whom
Obama wants to deploy more troops, and with the American public. More
than anything else, he needs to lay those doubts to rest in his
address," he writes. "How committed is he? That’s what the world wants
to know. NATO allies
won’t be inclined to send more troops if Obama sounds half-hearted. The
downward drift of public support for the war here at home won’t be
- 'Window Dressing' At West Point The New York Post's Ralph Peters thinks
it isn't enough. "In the art-auction world, the trick to selling a bad
painting is to put it in a terrific frame. That's the logic behind
President Obama's West Point speech tonight," he writes. "Aware that
his strategy's a muddled compromise that won't come to
grips with our top security challenges, Obama's staging a media event.
But he still won't deliver leadership. His primary strength remains a
hollow charisma to which the media remain embarrassingly susceptible."
- Truth Is 'The First Casualty' Politics Daily's David Wood laments,
"presidents calling the nation to arms have often resorted to
overheated rhetoric, sly evasions, and downright doubletalk." Wood
writes, "[I]t's instructive to look back at how previous
negotiated the tricky no-man's land between optimism and realism –
between what the voting public wanted to hear and what the man in the
Oval Office suspected was a harsh and unwelcome truth. Sadly, it's the
rare chief executive who can muster the courage to
admit that the situation is grave, the impending costs staggering, and
the outcome uncertain."
- 11 Points Obama Should Make The Atlantic's Matt Cooper lays them out.
Here are the first two: "1. Why We went to Afghanistan in the first
place. A useful reminder of 9/11, the Taliban and their guests, Al
Qaeda. 2. What's working and what's not."
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