Today the leaders of NATO endorsed the US strategy of counter-insurgency in Afghanistan. Similar endorsements have come from key members of the UN.
Two months ago, General McChrystal presented his request for 40,000 additional troops to implement the counter-insurgency strategy that has now been endorsed by these leaders. As of this post, President Obama has yet to commit to that strategy.
However, Rahm has gone on the talk-shows and blasted - who else - the Bush administration for not having an effective strategy in Afghanistan, thus leaving Obama to "start from scratch". We now know that as early as March of this year, President Obama presented his strategy on Afghanistan. Interestingly enough, it mirrored Bush's strategy of a surge-like counter-insurgency. Obama appointed McChrystal to execute the plan. McChrystal established his command and soon after delivered his assessment that implementing the strategy originally designed by the Bush administration, adopted by the Obama administration, and now endorsed by our European allies, would require 40,000 troops. All of a sudden, Obama isn't sure.
McChrystal is waiting. Our dedicated troops are waiting. Obama believes the decision should be put off until the next Afghan election (or, more likely, the gubernatorial elections in NJ and Virgina).
McChrystal has made it clear what he needs. Even the Europeans agree. Obama isn't sure. This is our commander-in-chief. And each day he delays, military morale plummets.
Obama has one of two options: 1) send the troops McChrystal has requested, 2) pack up and get out of Afghanistan. My fear is that it will be somewhere in between, ie 10-20,000 troops. Folks, this is exactly how Vietnam escalated.
If Obama fails to meet his General's request, then I think both McChrystal and Petraeus should resign. And I think they will.
God bless our troops who are fighting and dying while their commander-in-chief deliberates on whether or not to give them what they need to win.