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Troop levels reach record high in Afghanistan

April 10th, 2008 . by TexasFred

BAGRAM, Afghanistan (AP) - The 101st Airborne Division took command of American forces in eastern Afghanistan on Thursday, helping to boost U.S. troop levels in the country to their highest number since the 2001 invasion.

Marching in step, paratroopers from the 82nd Airborne retired the unit’s flag during a ceremony under a light rain beside the main runway at Bagram Air Field. Then 101st paratroopers unfurled their flag, officially marking the start of their 15-month tour.

The 101st has 7,200 troops in Afghanistan, several hundred more than the 82nd. Its arrival, coupled with the deployment of some 3,500 Marines to the country’s south, has pushed the total number of U.S. troops in Afghanistan to over 32,000, part of a steady rise in force levels as violence has increased over the last two years.

The top American commander in Afghanistan has requested three more brigades, about 7,500 more troops, and the Pentagon has promised that more troops will be sent next year.

Following the 2001 ouster of the Taliban, the U.S. had fewer than 10,000 troops in the country, and no real presence in the volatile south.

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Troop levels reach record high in Afghanistan

Pay special attention to that last line, “Following the 2001 ouster of the Taliban, the U.S. had fewer than 10,000 troops in the country, and no real presence in the volatile south.” because the next line is the payoff, “What has become clear as the insurgency has picked up steam over the last year or two is that an increasing number of forces are needed to clear and hold territory,” said Seth Jones, an analyst who follows Afghanistan for the RAND Corp. “In fact, I think a significant number more are needed. I would like to see those U.S. numbers come up.”.

In my opinion George W. Bush, and his desire to traipse off to Iraq and take on Saddam is the very reason that Afghanistan has escalated once again, we didn’t complete the job we needed to in Afghanistan, we hit the Taliban and we hurt them, but we didn’t destroy them and their capability to wage guerrilla warfare, and all the while the Bush Bots continued to chirp that al-Qaida IS in Iraq, well, YES, they are, NOW, because WE went there and they came to fight US, they were NOT in Iraq before Saddam was deposed.

The Bush Bots cry that al-Qaida IS the reason we went TO Iraq, forgetting that the Senate, Congress and the Defense Department have ALL published reports on their studies that have determined that Saddam had nothing to do with the attacks of 9-11 nor any serious association with al-Qaida or the Taliban.

So, here we go again, we have to go back and do a job all over again, and this time it’s not because the Iraqi army couldn’t hold a position, it’s all because our illustrious leader has the attention span of a 3 year old, and he is NOT smarter than a 5th grader.

Don’t take this the wrong way, I am glad to see our troop buildup in Afghanistan, I was terribly disappointed when troops were withdrawn from Afghanistan to be re-tasked to The Debacle in Iraq, maybe this time our guys will be allowed to do the job they were sent to do, maybe they will be ordered to wipe out the Taliban and al-Qaida once and for all.

Yeah, I know, but a guy can dream can’t he??

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4 Responses to “Troop levels reach record high in Afghanistan”

  1. comment number 1 by: GUYK

    The democrats gutted the military and the intelligence gathering capability during the Clinton years. Many of us warned then that drawing down the forces too much might come back to haunt us if we ever had to fight a war on two fronts. Although I agree with you that Iraq probably could have been put on hold we are in fact fighting a war on two fronts and we are several battalions short of having the strength to do it effectively.

    But, then remember that Vietnam was the first was we fought where there was a finite tour length. Prior to that enlistments were for the duration and the assignment to the war zone was for however long it took to accomplish the mission.

    But then we had a mission objective..to kill the enemy until the enemy totally submitted. Now it seems to me the mission objective is not only cloudy the rules of engagement are just plain fucked up. How are our troops supposed to tell the difference between a friendly and a non friendly if neither are in uniform and both are carrying weapons…

  2. comment number 2 by: Ranando

    To me that’s really quite simple.

    Kill every Arab looking MF with a weapon and not in uniform.

  3. comment number 3 by: Ranando

    Maybe they are winning….

    Seems to me that our enemy really out-played us on this one. In order to win a war you need to cut off the head that feeds your enemy.

    Osama bin Laden knew that if he attacked us that we would start a war. He knew that he could hide and wait this war out. He knew that Bush was an idiot and would not go after the ones responsible. His goal in attacking us was to bring us down and all you have to do is open any newspaper, turn on any channel and you will see what kind of shape we’re in.

    He wanted to bring down our economy, sit back and watch us make all the wrong moves and we did. GE one the brink, Air traffic all but shut down, housing market in the crapper, stocks about to collapse, Gas is at $4.00 a gallon, border wide open and on and on.

    We think of these two wars on how many terrorist we kill. If we kill a few in one day we think we’re winning. If they kill a few of our troops in one day we think we’re losing. It’s much bigger than Iraq or Afghanistan and we really played into their hands. They see a much bigger picture, they have a plan and they see the end of America.

    Do we see a much bigger picture? Do we have a plan? Do we see the end of al-Qaeda and terrorism?

    The answer is NO, we don’t.

    Now we are about to elect one of the three most Anti-Americans as our President. If you think God is blessing America, you should really think again. I for one think God has had it with our stupidity.

    Non of this needed to happen, we could have seen victory long ago in this so called War on Terror. Every move our leadership has made has been the wrong move, every one.

    We will never win this War, ever. We will never win it until we are ready to cut off the head that feeds it.

  4. comment number 4 by: TexasFred

    Ranando Says:
    April 11th, 2008 at 9:53 am
    We will never win this War, ever. We will never win it until we are ready to cut off the head that feeds it.

    And as long as that stuttering stumble bum Bush is in office, you are correct…

    And NONE of the 3 assholes running for POTUS now can or will accomplish a victory either, even the much touted Elmer Fudd, uh, oops, I meant John McLame…