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April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Feb 27, 2014 / 27 Adar I, 5774

The Good War and the Bad Afghan Leader

By Debra J. Saunders




JewishWorldReview.com | President Barack Obama called Afghan President Hamid Karzai's bluff Tuesday.

Obama let it be known that because Karzai is unlikely to sign a bilateral security agreement — essential to keeping some U.S. troops in Afghanistan after 2014 — he had asked the Pentagon to work on a plan to withdraw all troops before 2015.

Obama has good reason to want to cut Karzai off at the knees. Karzai won't sign the security agreement despite unanimous support from the Loya Jirga, a council of elders with political say in Afghanistan. He released 65 Taliban from the Bagram prison despite U.S. protests that the detainees had been involved in attacks that wounded coalition and Afghan forces.

"The Afghan people have been amazing allies," House Armed Services Committee Chairman Buck McKeon told the National Press Club on Monday. "President Karzai has not." Even before the Karzai phone call, McKeon was concerned that Obama might go soft on the mission.

In 2008, Obama was something of a hawk on the region. He appalled Hillary Clinton when he said that he would pursue "actionable intelligence about high-value terrorist targets" in Pakistan whether President Pervez Musharraf liked it or not. He argued that unlike Iraq, Afghanistan was a "war of necessity" and "the right battlefield."

At the 2008 Democratic National Convention in Denver, he pledged, "I will end this war in Iraq responsibly and finish the fight against al-Qaida and the Taliban in Afghanistan."

Toward that end, Obama ordered a surge of 30,000 troops in 2009. Unfortunately, he signaled a lack of resolve when he also announced that he would start to withdraw surge troops in mid-2011.

As he wrote in his memoirs, "Duty: Memoirs of a Secretary at War," former Defense Secretary Robert Gates concluded that the president "doesn't trust his commander, can't stand Karzai, doesn't believe in his own strategy and doesn't consider the war to be his. For him, it's all about getting out."


McKeon is baffled as to why Obama doesn't talk up the good news coming out of Afghanistan. As the April presidential election looms, major candidates support the security agreement. Afghan national security forces have come a long way, although they still need U.S. support.

But with Operation Enduring Freedom's death toll exceeding 2,300, U.S. support is weak. In November 2001, less than 1 in 10 Americans saw the war as a mistake. Now, Gallup reported this month, "Americans are as likely to say U.S. military involvement there was a mistake as to say it was not."

Tom Umberg, a former Democratic state assemblyman in California and an Afghanistan War veteran, disagrees. "We still have a clear national interest there," he told me. At this very moment, there are children attending schools where they are planning to kill Americans and U.S. allies. "They are our sworn enemies."

The question Americans should ask themselves, he added, is whether they want Afghanistan to return as "the petri dish for terrorism that it once was."

Obama has every right to demand a signed agreement as a condition for continued but limited U.S. military support. But voters should be aware that if Washington were to withdraw all troops from Afghanistan, the war might be over, but the threat would not.

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Debra J. Saunders Archives

© 2014, Creators Syndicate.

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