Tuesday, October 27, 2009

That's the good news

Max Boot, reporting in the Weekly Standard on the Afghan part of his Afghan-Iraq trip --

It may seem like we've been at war in Afghanistan for eight years, but given the lack of resources for most of that time, the war effort is really less than six months old in critical parts of the country. "We are essentially where we were in Iraq in 2004," one American colonel told me. "We're just getting started."

Matthew Yglesias was recently discussing a similar point. Since it took George Bush 3 full years from the start of 2004 to find a workable Iraq policy, let's not overemphasize the "rush" on Obama's Afghan decision.

UPDATE: Fascinating opinion piece by Afghan war veterans David Adams and Ann Marlowe in the Wall Street Journal. Bottom line: the question of more or less troops is irrelevant. It's the strategy for working with the tribes that matters. Which could also be taken as the lesson of the Surge in Iraq.

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