John Peeler: Obama appears determined that the wars not overwhelm his domestic agenda, even as, pragmatically, he cannot walk away from either without exposing himself to withering political attacks. If Bush saw himself as a war president, Obama wants to be a reformer with two wars to manage.
Tom Hayden: Obama may succeed in withdrawing 100,000 American troops from Iraq this year, and the rest by 2012. But even this goal faces opposition from the Green Zone to the Beltway, and any peace dividend will be swallowed by Afghanistan and the Long War.
At the present rate, historians will be speaking of the dozen years of the OBushma administrations. It’s getting very fast to look as if the only thing that MIGHT save the Obama presidency for a second term is the Gop death wish to nominate Ms Death Panel – i.e. Ms Death Palin – herself.
I am afraid to say that President Obama is even risking his presidency by this decision. From this point forward, he will lack the support of the rank and file Democratic majority and become dependent on the very Republicans whose highest priority is to defeat him in 2012.
The Congress, always in hock to Wall Street, is dragging its feet in passing anything near the sweeping regulatory restructuring that is needed if we are to prevent Goldman Sachs and the rest of the gang from exploiting their “moral hazard” by using the federal treasury as the mother of all “credit default swaps.”
There are notorious dictatorships and terrorists in the world, but their threat to the United States has been exaggerated as an excuse to fulfill the foreign policy agendas of certain politicians, bureaucracies, or interest groups.
To really put a dent in the $1.2 trillion dollar deficit, the U.S. must end the counterproductive wars in Afghanistan and Iraq and, instead of bringing the forces home, simply dismantle them.