Obama’s Afghanistan Drawdown: From Good War to Subprime War

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In thinking about the trajectory of President Barack Obama’s approach to the Afghanistan War, from the initial March 2009 strategy review to the December 2009 troop surge to last night’s address, it occurred to me that, when it comes to the politics of the war, Afghanistan has gone from being the “Good War” to being what is now the “Subprime War.” The administration’s initial March 2009 review was the equivalent of a “nothing down” mortgage. As I noted at the time, it threaded a political needle, articulating a strategy — a counterinsurgency approach to counterterrorism — that allowed everyone to […]

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