30,000 more troops. Smaller than other proposals, but an escalation nevertheless. Some items through this link, including a letter from Michael Moore and some threats from progressive House Democrats.
Will it build democracy in Afghanistan? No. Will it make Afghan women safer from acid throwing crazies? Probably. Will it defeat Al Qaeda and the Taliban? No. Those aren’t forces which can be defeated militarily.
Watching the Republicans on television over the past week has been kind of comical. They’ve been dodging the question entirely. Do they want to be interpreted as supporting anything from Obama when they’re so invested in anti-Obama rhetoric? Where will the tea partiers fall? I’ve already debated a neo-con on Facebook who argues that Obama’s policies are all part of a Bernsteinian Marxist program of incrementalism, boosted in part by a policy of “gunboat liberalism.” But that’s a fairly complex narrative for political purposes.
In the meantime, my sister-in-law’s 19-year-old nephew is to be deployed to Kandahar at the end of the month. I’m not sure if he’s officially part of the surge.
Democrats seem to be scratching their heads as to why their base is unmotivated for 2010.