Hey liberal groups and 2010 campaigns. You know what? That base you are pandering to? They voted for more troops in Afghanistan. So did you. Do me a favor and stop the breathless pandering to the anti-war bloc of the Democratic Party and get back on the O-train. It is, after all, what you busted your ass to get elected. My how soon we forget:

FirefoxScreenSnapz002

I highlight this image because it’s from a resulting search for “obama campaign afghanistan”. Side by side are results from July 20, 2008 and November 25, 2009. On July 20, 2008 during the summer of of the Presidential Campaign Barack Obama was very clear about Afghanistan:

“The Afghan government needs to do more. But we have to understand that the situation is precarious and urgent here in Afghanistan. And I believe this has to be our central focus, the central front, on our battle against terrorism,”

… Obama said troop levels must increase in Afghanistan.

“For at least a year now, I have called for two additional brigades, perhaps three,”

Flash forward to earlier this week:

The defense official said Tuesday that the military is planning to send three U.S. Army brigades, totaling about 15,000 troops; a Marine brigade with about 8,000 troops; a headquarters element of about 7,000; and between 4,000 and 5,000 support troops — a total of about 34,000 troops. CNN reported last month that this was the Pentagon’s preferred option.

You should not be surprised and you should stop sending me emails expected me to join in your outrage. Elections have consequences, we say. The consequences is this is the precise policy on Afghanistan your President advocated while campaigning. You remember, right? The guy you sent countless emails urging us to get out the vote for? The guy you sent email after email congratulating on his historic win? The guy who said outright he’d escalate in Afghanistan and begin to disengage with Iraq.

You know. That guy.

Lucy moving the football on Charlie Brown indeed. I’m keeping track of all of you. Brave New Foundation. Vote no on spending that would send troops to Afghanistan? Are you out of your fucking minds? Yes. Let’s do that. Elect a guy who says he wants to send more troops to Afghanistan and get out of Iraq then petition our members to oppose funding it. Holy fucking nose to spite your face batman!

MoveOn needs to make up it’s mind. You’re trying to ride the fence here. You don’t oppose a first round of troop increases, but you send your members a note encouraging them to screen the Brave New film against war in Afghanistan. Now after Obama’s speech you send out a tightrope walking note to members encouraging them to sign a petition (cough…list build…cough) to support this call to Congress:

“Congress must push the Obama administration to outline firm benchmarks and a binding timeline to bring all of our troops home from Afghanistan as soon as possible.”

Stake out a position guys. LOL. Why don’t you send out a petition drive calling on Obama to be a decent enough President and hold him accountable to trying his best.

Listen. Half of these groups and campaigns sending out their little whining base pandering emails built their lists on the back of the historic Obama campaign. Now they cut him loose to pander to a base who voted for the precise thing the President is doing?

Please. Guys. Stop.

Spare us this charade of righteous indignation against a war that everyone knew we’d have to fight. Everyone is against war. Even those who fight it. No. ESPECIALLY those who fight it. Stop acting like you are somehow above it. I’d rather see you send notes of support for Obama having kept his word and his eye on the ball. I’d rather you appreciate the hard work we did to elect someone who could deliver the speech he did at West Point. It’s as if you completely missed the news.

There is new leadership in the White House. Principled, thoughtful leadership. We all busted our ass to get him there. I’m not going to join in your silly little parade of nonsense in trying to move the goal posts. Your team won and you blocked your guy into the end zone and you are already abandoning him in the locker room because he did exactly what he said he’d do?

Again, I’m keeping track of all you progressive groups, non profits, and campaigns. So stop. Please.

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  • Another thing forgotten by the panderers – without this position on Afghanistan, there wouldn't be a Democrat in the White House, Barack Obama or otherwise. Period.

  • We know that Obama supported continuing the war effort in Afghanistan. We aren’t stupid. And whether or not we agreed with him on that at the time, the issue alone would never have been enough for us to think about not supporting him all the way, because everything else that he stood for was what we stood for.

    I just think that some of us were hoping that somebody as pragmatic and thoughtful as Obama would change his mind. After winning the NPP, and having Biden urge him not to send more troops, it is not hard to imagine the President making a very different decision.

    Of course nobody knows what the final outcome will be, and nobody has access to all of the information that the President does. Therefore it is a little silly for anybody to make a case that it was a good decision or a bad one at this point. That said, with the seeming lack of terrorists in Afghanistan, it just seems questionable to put so many of our resources there. That’s all.

  • jeffhess

    Shalom Tim,

    Never equate a vote cast for any politician with a blanket endorsement of that politician's stated or future policies or actions.

    While President Barack Hussein Obama's positives steamrolled his negatives and anything a man who would name Sarah Palin as his vice presidential running mate might do, every person who voted for him retains the right, nah the obligation to watch the man like a hawk and make clear where they differ.

    B'shalom,

    Jeff

  • jeffhess

    Shalom Tim,

    I think we would both be hard pressed to find more than a handful of people who voted for President Obama because of his campaign position on Afghanistan.

    I just don't see it in the mix when people hit the voting booth.

    B'shalom,

    Jeff

  • um……how far do you think any Dem would have gotten in the primaries, let alone the general election, if they'd advocated for withdrawal from Afghanistan?

  • I can respect that. I find Obama's deliberations and intent here to be pretty positive overall and I think if he finds there to be a fight not worth fighting he'll not have a problem quitting it. That's left to be seen. At least this time we have a plan.

  • you hoped he'd change his mind? then you voted for the wrong candidate.

  • I can understand this position I guess. Hoping a candidate would alter a stance on one issue given you agree with him on most all others. I can dig that.

    What we're also saying in making this argument is that said disagreement did not rise to the level of not supporting the candidate. So all the base pandering is on an issue not really all that important to those who would have otherwise opposed the candidacy over it. I can live with that. Let's move on. Dot org.

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  • bc

    holy blogposts, batman. agree 110%.

  • w00zard44

    absolutely, throughout the campaign he was committed to supporting the war in afghanistan. Yesterday on NPR they were interviewing some idiot that said “we voted for change” Obama said that he would support the war in Afghanistan the entire time! You voted for this! We should be in Afghanistan and we should have stayed there after our proxy war with the Russians in the late 80's. We left them out to dry, we allowed extremism to propagate. We should have stayed and built schools, fostered education and equal rights but you can, yet again, thank Reagan for some stellar foresight

  • mvirenicus

    thanks for reminding me i don't have to vote for it again.

  • w00zard44

    absolutely, throughout the campaign he was committed to supporting the war in afghanistan. Yesterday on NPR they were interviewing some idiot that said “we voted for change” Obama said that he would support the war in Afghanistan the entire time! You voted for this! We should be in Afghanistan and we should have stayed there after our proxy war with the Russians in the late 80's. We left them out to dry, we allowed extremism to propagate. We should have stayed and built schools, fostered education and equal rights but you can, yet again, thank Reagan for some stellar foresight

  • mvirenicus

    thanks for reminding me i don't have to vote for it again.

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