As I write this, Sean Hannity is griping about President Obama taking too long to make a decision on Afghanistan, only deploying 30,000 troops instead of 40,000, and showing weakness in talking about withdrawal. This sort of talk among conservatives strikes me as petty. To be clear, there are those on both the right and left who believe that it’s time to pull out of Afghanistan and who don’t believe deploying more troops will accomplish anything. It’s perfectly understandable if they were not swayed by tonight’s speech. But those who support the war effort and believe in sending more troops to implement Gen. McCrystal’s strategy should give credit to Obama for taking on the base of his own party to make a decision that he believes is in the national security interests of the United States. Obama may not have delivered his speech in the way that a lot of conservatives would have preferred, and they may have problems with aspects of the new policy. But it’s an approach that, broadly speaking, is consistent with what war supporters had been advocating. So, supporters of the effort, broadly speaking, should give Obama credit.
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