Feingold To Oppose Troop Increase In Afghanistan
by Josh Orton, Wed Aug 05, 2009 at 10:31:58 AM EDT
Ackerman has it:
If Gen. Stanley McChrystal proposes, as expected, an increase in U.S. troops for the Afghanistan war, Sen. Russ Feingold (D-Wis.) is "likely to oppose it," the senator told TWI.
Feingold's opposition to what would be the second U.S. troop increase in Afghanistan this year is the most forceful Senate dissent so far to a war that President Obama has embraced. It represents a preemptive warning to both Obama and to McChrystal, the new commander of U.S. and NATO forces in Afghanistan, who is scheduled to give the Pentagon an assessment of what additional resources he requires for the war next week. And it highlights what some progressives also opposed to escalation see as an opportunity this summer to change public debate about the eight-year war.
"I don't think the case has been effectively made for continuing to send more and more troops into Afghanistan," Feingold said in a Wednesday interview. "I am very unhappy with the answers I've received about the issue of whether constantly increasing troops is helping the situation in Pakistan or making it worse. I suspect it could be making things worse."
Feingold is calling out what others won't: an escalation without a strategy is a potentially huge mistake. Just two weeks ago, Feingold accused the administration of "whistling past the graveyard" on Afghanistan. Will others listen?