FROM Joseph Collins
What's Next in Afghanistan? When President Obama's 33,000-troop surge in Afghanistan ended a week early, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta made the announcement during a trip to New Zealand. In today's speech to the UN , the President mentioned Afghanistan only once, when he told the General Assembly that the war in Afghanistan will end on schedule in 2014. What did he leave out? We talk about a war that could get a lot more complicated before it's finally over.
What's Next in Afghanistan? When America's 33,000- troop "surge" in Afghanistan ended a week before President Obama's deadline this coming Sunday, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta made the announcement during a trip to New Zealand. In today's speech to the UN , the President mentioned Afghanistan only once. Sixty-eight thousand American soldiers are scheduled to stay in Afghanistan until 2014. What did hundreds of lives and tens of billions of dollars accomplish over the past two years? Soldiers, diplomats, and other observers don't agree. It's unclear if it's safe for remaining coalition troops to train Afghan security forces, or if the Taliban are just waiting for final US withdrawal. What's likely to happen between now and then? Does America have the political will to make good on its promise to maintain Afghanistan's integrity long after that?
Mixed Messages from US diplomats on the new hard line on Syria Since President Trump's surprise retaliation against Syria's use of chemical weapons, Bashar al-Assad has used the same airport to launch conventional attacks on his own people. It's not clear what the US, its allies — or Vladimir Putin's Russia -- plan to do now.
Truth and Lies in Trumpland Donald Trump is using mis-information like no President has before him. It's an unprecedented challenge to the news media, and a potential threat to democracy. We hear how the "leader of all the people" is dividing Americans and confusing the rest of the world.
Trump's ethical conflicts pile up as transparency diminishes President Trump's refusal to reveal his income tax returns is just one example of a lack of transparency that could be hiding conflicts of interest. Other conflicts are already obvious from his appointments. And he's being sued for using his job to increase his profits.