FROM David Wood
Obama, Karzai and the War in Afghanistan Before this weekend's NATO summit , Afghan President Hamid Karzai told reporters he wants fewer foreign troops in his country to reduce what he called "intrusiveness" of the war against the Taliban into daily life. After the meeting, President Obama said he'll have to settle for increased drone strikes and nighttime raids whether he likes it or not.
US, NATO Agree to Stay in Afghanistan until 2014 President Hamid Karzai wants US and NATO forces reduced, but he'll have to settle for increased drone strikes and nighttime raids whether he likes it or not. That's according to President Obama after he and other NATO leaders set 2014 as a firm date for ending major combat in Afghanistan. However, behind the scenes, US and European officials doubt General David Petraeus' claim that he has "broken the Taliban's momentum." Is Karzai getting mixed signals? What about the civilian population in Afghanistan, the nations in Europe and the United States?
Obama's Two Fronts in the Afghan War At his re-confirmation hearing today, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Admiral Mike Mullen, said it's likely that commanders in Afghanistan will ask for more troops “very soon…”
Politics in America and Reality in Afghanistan At his re-confirmation hearing today, Admiral Mike Mullen, Chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, indicated that commanders are likely to ask for another increase of troops in Afghanistan. But, after eight years, public support for the war is fading fast, and Democrats are suggesting that, if the President asks, they might have to say "no." Republicans, backed by militant neo-cons, insist that more force is the only way to win. What would "winning" look like? How long would it take? Will the White House have any options to seek common ground?
Tour Extension for Troops in Afghanistan Twenty-two hundred Marines who were scheduled home in October, will have to stay in Afghanistan for as much as thirty days longer. That announcement came a day after Admiral Mike Mullen, Chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said he needs more troops in Afghanistan but doesn’t have them—because of Iraq. David Wood, national security correspondent for the Baltimore Sun , was imbedded with the 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit and broke the story that their tour would be extended.
President Pushes Back against Iraq Progress Report President Bush delivered to Congress today his latest assessment of US progress in Iraq. At a combative press conference, the President said he would stick with the military surge in spite of polls showing that Americans have lost faith in the war effort. Bush insisted that, while improvements have been slow, leaving Iraq would make the US more vulnerable. David Wood is national security correspondent for the Baltimore Sun .
All Eyes on Congress as House Votes on War Funding Bill The House today set a deadline : US troops home from Iraq by the end of August next year. Some liberals who want to end the war now went along, even though the deadline is part of a spending bill to support the troops in the meantime. Is it political posturing or the start of something big? In addition to soldiers, there’s a staggering quantity of arms and equipment. Would a pull-out be a logistical nightmare? Is it all moot anyway, because the Army’s running out of deployable troops? What would a pull-out look like, especially one conducted under the pressure of a binding deadline? We hear from journalists, peace activists, defense and security experts.
Little to Show for Billions Spent on Iraq Reconstruction President Bush is pressing Congress for $1.2 billion more for Iraq reconstruction. At the same time, the latest audit of money already spent reveals an Olympic-sized swimming pool for a police academy that's never been used. David Wood is National Security Correspondent for the Baltimore Sun .
Political appointments and the reshaping of the judiciary President Trump has the chance for a long-term impact -- not just on the US Supreme Court, but on the entire federal court system. And his nominees are likely to get the support of a massive spending campaign by donors who don't have to reveal their names. Can President Trump "pack" the federal court system?
Getting answers on phone taps, Russia and leaking The Directors of the FBI and the NSA testified on Capitol Hill today there's no evidence for President Trump's claim he was wire-tapped by former President Obama. We'll hear about that and the investigation into Russian tampering with last year's presidential campaign.