Obama’s Plan of Action

12 12 2009

Afghan Refugees, photo taken by Elizabeth Rubin

If you’re like any of the thousands of Americans who watched President Barack Obama’s speech on Tuesday, December 1st, you’re probably struggling a bit with whether to be upset by the new plan of action, or content with it. Most people seem to be a little bit of both.  He didn’t use words like “victory.” Instead he spoke about peace, understanding, and he tried to allow us to understand where exactly he was coming from. It was quite different from any other war speech i’ve heard, that’s for certain.

Sources such as the Los Angeles Times have a very cynical view of the whole effort:

“All a carefully-calculated, well-phrased tactical talk. But no words of winning a victory for the war’s immense dollar costs — $30 billion more just for the latest surge this fiscal year. Or for all the lives and limbs lost so far — and the additional losses yet to come, possibly from among his audience of young Army cadets.

Meaning what? This is really a holding action? The professorial president doesn’t expect victory? He’s uncomfortable with talk of actually winning a war that he’s sending more troops into?” (Source: The Los Angeles Times, December 2nd, 2009, Written by Andrew Malcolm )

Time Magazine, for example, is able to see the positive notes of his new strategy:

“The president laid out the circumstances where war is justified — in self-defense, to come to the aid of an invaded nation and on humanitarian grounds, such as when civilians are slaughtered by their own government or a civil war threatens to engulf an entire region.

“The belief that peace is desirable is rarely enough to achieve it,” he said.

(Source: Time Magazine, Thursday, December 10th, Written by AP/Ben Feller )
Time magazine in a recent article also compared Obama’s war plan to Nixon’s, though. The article reflected on how it seemed as though instead of bludgeoning our enemies to death, ( such as in a George Bush war strategy,) Obama has decided to try and make peace with them. It has been questionable whether this tactic is because Obama has a different set of agendas for the US, or whether it’s because we have finally realized that we simply cannot defeat terrorism altogether. Either way, in my opinion, anything is a better strategy than going into enemy lines and blowing up everything in sight. Although, some may argue that’s exactly what we’re doing anyway.
In a surprisingly in-depth and informative article written in Vogue Magazine, December Issue, 2009, war correspondent Elizabeth Rubin heads into the deepest and scariest parts of the war in Afghanistan, three months pregnant. Not only are her fellow soldiers not supportive, but while she’s in the front lines of the war, she gets to experience first-hand the women and children in Afghanistan who are dying in this war and what they really think about our efforts to invade their country and stop the Taliban: