Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Says Afghanistan War ‘Serious and Deteriorating’

August 23, 2009

(ChattahBox) — You have to note when the top uniformed U.S. military officer describes the current situation in Afghanistan in such dire terms.

“I think it is serious and it is deteriorating, and I’ve said that over the past couple of years, that the Taliban insurgency has gotten better, more sophisticated in their tactics”,  Admiral Mike Mullen, chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff said on Sunday.

Admiral Mullen, speaking on CNN’s “State of the Union” television show, said the new commander of U.S. and NATO forces in Afghanistan, Gen. Stanley McChrystal, is still completing his assessment of the situation.

“Actually we’re not at a point yet where he’s made any decisions about asking for additional troops,” Mullen said.

Gen. McChrystal has said earlier this month that the Taliban have gained the upper hand in the eight-year-old conflict. The Obama administration is awaiting for an assessment about the situation from Gen. McChrystal, which is expected in about two weeks.

While President Obama has already ordered a troop buildup (we now have triple the forces of three years ago) to confront the resurgent Taliban, polls show U.S. public backing for the eight-year war has softened. Mullen, a Vietnam veteran, said he’s aware that public support for the war is critical. “Certainly the numbers are of concern,” he said. But, he added, “this is the war we’re in.”

Arizona Sen. John McCain, in an interview Friday with ABC’s “This Week,” which aired Sunday, said said he would not change any of the things the Obama administration is doing in fighting the two wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. But as the top Republican on the Senate Armed Services Committee, he wants the military leadership in Afghanistan to use the same aggressive approach that Gen. David Petraeus used successfully in Iraq. He said the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan, Gen. Stanley McChrystal, should say exactly how many troops he needs in Afghanistan, let the Congress debate it and Obama would make the ultimate decision. The senator predicted that with the right number of troops, “within a year to 18 months you could start to see progress. We cannot allow Afghanistan to return to a base for terrorist attacks on the U.S. and its allies.”

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Comments

One Response to “Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Says Afghanistan War ‘Serious and Deteriorating’”

  1. wags101 on August 23rd, 2009 11:33 pm

    I am surprised there is ANY support for this war. Obama pledged to bring the troops home not reroute them to this war. Neither war is winable or worth it. BRING THE TROOPS HOME NOW. If anyone thinks this situation is going to change with more troops and money , and by the way, if this is a war of “terror” why are we the only country fighting it, go see “Hurt Locker” it will open your eyes.

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