Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Obama: Maybe being methodical has its virtues . . .

About 18 months ago, I wrote a blog post entitled "I Support the President's July 2011 Promise" in an attempt to deal with my frustration that Obama decided to send 30,000 MORE troops to Afghanistan. My approach was to say, "OK, let's deal with the hard facts here. The one good fact we have is that at least he has put a stake in the ground about starting to withdraw troops at date certain."

Frankly, despite my attempt to put a positive spin on things, I have to admit to a lot of despair since then over whether even that 7/11 promise was worth anything.

Yesterday, the NY Times' lead story was "Steeper Pullout Raised As Option for Afghanistan". The underlying premise of the article is that there is a genuine expectation that July 2011 represents a firm commitment of some kind. Maybe the 7/11 promise isn't just a throwaway?

Is there a way to gain advantage from the fact that Obama -- despite being too much of a compromiser and too much of a deliberator (and I could say a lot of other things here about drone attacks and Guantanamo and unilateral war-waging in Libya) -- is also methodical and sticks to his path once he sets it in motion?

The 2012 election is fast upon us. (Super Tuesday is a little more than 6 months away.) Bottom line: Obama will likely be re-elected. (Agree? Disagree?)

What's the best way for all of us who have been experiencing despair, confusion, anger, etc. to re-focus our energies and contribute to an effective antiwar discourse?

Looking forward to everyone's thoughts on this.