Afghanistan, Georgia, Ukraine Top Agenda For NATO Defense Ministers



U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates (left) meets with Polish soldiers after signing a memorandum on cooperation between the Polish and U.S. militaries in Krakow.

‘Disappointing’ Reaction

U.S. President Barack Obama announced earlier this week that he will send an additional 17,000 troops to Afghanistan — raising the total number of U.S. troops deployed there to more than 50,000.

Analysts say the timing of Obama’s announcement, just ahead of the Krakow talks, could increase pressure on other NATO countries to send more troops.

Speaking on February 18 as he flew to Krakow, U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates said Washington expects its NATO allies to contribute more troops ahead of the election. Gates said the response so far has been “disappointing.”

NATO Secretary-General Jaap Hoop de Scheffer also has been urging alliance members to contribute more — either with troop deployments or fresh aid disbursements.

“2009 will see an infusion of United States forces in this operation,” he said. “And I strongly hope that we will also see the other allies step up with more forces, and where that is not possible, with more civilian aiddevelopment cooperation and reconstruction aid. I think it is fair and I think also politically healthy for the alliance if we have a fair sharing of the burdens in this alliance and in this mission between all of the allies.”


The U.S. commander in Afghanistan, General David McKiernan, said the 17,000 additional forces that President Barack Obama authorized will likely be needed for at least three years and as many as 10,000 more troops will be required later in 2009.

The top U.S. military commander in Afghanistan, General David McKiernan, says extra troops are badly needed. McKiernan told journalists in Washington on February 18 that the coming year will be “tough” for foreign forces in Afghanistan.

“I will use most of those [additional U.S.] forces in the southern part of Afghanistan, an area where we do not have sufficient security presence, an area that has deteriorated somewhat, an area where we need persistent security presence in order to fight a counterinsurgency and to shape, clear, hold, and build in support of the rapidly developing Afghan capacity,” McKiernan said.

McKiernan said the deployment of 17,000 additional U.S. troops should be completed in time for them to help provide security for the presidential vote.


From AlJazeeraEnglish

February 19, 2009

US General David McKiernan says concerted efforts, both military and civilian, are urgently needed to overcome Taliban fighters.

25 Responses to “Afghanistan, Georgia, Ukraine Top Agenda For NATO Defense Ministers”

  1. CJ Says:

    Can my last post be brought over? Sorry Rose, I didn’t pay attention to the new thread notice and I don’t know how to do it myself. Thanks.

  2. CJ Says:

    Hey I’m not first am I?

  3. rosettasister Says:

    CJ Says:
    February 19, 2009 at 5:30 pm

    Rush is talking about revolution today. Mentioned protests in Denver and Arizona. Mentioned the CNBC interview. He’s on fire today. Says the silent majority is aware and rumbling. Wow, this is great.


    No problem!

  4. rosettasister Says:

    ‘Sustained’ Push Seen in Afghanistan

    U.S. Commander Says Troop Level of 60,000 Is Needed for at Least Three to Four Years

    The insurgency in Afghanistan is “very resilient” in terms of its numbers and the growing complexity of attacks, in particular against nonmilitary targets such as government facilities, police and supply convoys, he said.

    It is fueled by funding, weapons, training and suicide bombers supplied from across the eastern border in the tribal areas of Pakistan, he said.

    The new influx of U.S. forces will be employed in part along Afghanistan’s 1,550-mile-long border with Pakistan, concentrated on the most strategic of the hundreds of traditional border crossings used by the populations on either side.

    “We’ve got to put them in the right places,” he said.

    McKiernan said the U.S. military lacks sufficient intelligence and surveillance gear to make those border forces as effective as possible.

    Moreover, he said, it is essential to further expand collaboration along the border among U.S., Afghan and Pakistani forces, which currently have only one of several planned joint border-coordination centers.

  5. rosettasister Says:

    What truly worries me about all of the unnecessary spending in the stimulus package is — can we afford now to prosecute the war in Afghanistan as it should be prosecuted?

    If we’re not going to support our fighting men and women the way they should be supported, a part of me is saying get them the hell out of there!

    It took George W. Bush’s tremendous willpower to lead the way in Iraq.

    And I’m just not sure Obama’s heart is in this fight.

    I hope that it is.

    We’ll just have to wait and see.

  6. sliderblaze Says:

    i doubt it rose, commanders wanted 30K troops

  7. CJ Says:

    Thanks Rose!

  8. rosettasister Says:

    Thanks, slider, I hadn’t realized that.

    “Obama Takes Seismic Shift on Afghan War”

    Although President Obama signed orders to deploy 17,000 additional U.S. troops to Afghanistan, including 8,000 Marines, his thinking on the Afghan war has changed significantly.

    It’s no longer the gung-ho view of a surge-type operation routing al-Qaida’s terrorists.

    The reinforcements also fall shy of the 30,000 troops requested by Gen. David McKiernan, the commander of U.S. forces in Afghanistan.

    The 30,000 would have doubled the U.S. force levels in a country of 35 million the size of France.

    Juggling troop requirements between two wars leaves one theater short-changed.

  9. rosettasister Says:

    This was a really stupid statement for Karzai to make.

    What an ingrate!

    An immediate worry is the ability to defend Kabul, the Afghan capital, with NATO troops who are not authorized to fight.

    The first 3,000 U.S. reinforcements will be deployed around the city to thwart the Taliban’s plans to stage a Tet-type offensive, which was when Viet Cong guerrillas infiltrated major Vietnamese cities in 1968.

    Even though defeated, the Viet Cong scored a major psychological victory that demoralized America’s home front.

    Afghan President Hamid Karzai keeps complaining about U.S. troops he says are turning the population against them by breaking into homes looking for Taliban guns and ammo, and killing any civilian who resists.

    “They will get plenty of flowers and gratitude when we send them safely back home,” Karzai opined sarcastically.

  10. rosettasister Says:

    On Tuesday, after announcing the US troop increase in Afghanistan, Obama spoke to Karzai by phone for the first time since taking office a month ago.

    Humayun Hamidzada, a Karzai spokesman, said the Afghan leader and Obama discussed ways of improving security and the training of the national army, along with the troop increase.

    “We have opened a new page,” Hamidzada said.

    But Karzai also warned that “if foreign troops do not listen to us, we will call a Loya Jirga [grand council] and we will also include the Taliban and [Afghan commander Gulbuddin] Hekmatyar to decide whether foreign troops should stay in Afghanistan.”

  11. Tenacity Says:

    Who has not seen this?

    If you haven’t watched The Gig Is Up, it is a mandatory course of study. If you don’t learn something…you ain’t really watching and listening. It is the best 1 hour and 24 minutes of education you may ever spend. If you are listening closely, you may discover why a couple of our Presidents were snuffed and why another may have been shot. There seems to be a lengthy consistent thread in our country’s history from inception. And the beat goes on.

    Troy Says:
    February 19, 2009 at 8:20 am

    Tenacity is right….This video needs to be mandatory viewing, no matter who you are….So for all you lurkers that visit this site, that means you too….Anyone that does not watch this video has robbed themselves of a great education in history and finance….Make some popcorn and enjoy!!!

    After you have watched ALL of the video, make sure you read the comments in the previous thread.

  12. rosettasister Says:

    This whole “we inherited it” thing is getting really old.

    Does the Obama administration honestly believe they’re the first U.S. administration to have inherited the seeming impossibly hard task?

    Not very Lincolnesque.

    “This is what we inherited.” Richard Holbrooke

    US ‘troubled,’ ‘confused’ over Pak-Taliban peace treaty

    Pakistan journalist killed in Swat Valley

    Having just returned from South Asia wherein he met leaders of Pakistan, Afghanistan and India, Holbrooke said the Pakistanis are shocked at the fall of the picturesque Swat, which is after all a resort they all went to for vacations.

    “So we have a situation in the area which is very serious. This is what we inherited,” he said.

    “Previous ceasefires have broken down and we do not want to see territory ceded to the bad guys. The people who took over Swat are very bad people,” Holbrooke told the PBS news channel in an interview.

  13. rosettasister Says:


  14. jrh Says:

    Troy, Tenacity, I watched the gigisup video and agree that all should spend the time with this (long time at that). I agreed with the large majority of the presentation although I doubt I would agree with the presenter on most other things. It could have been better done perhaps, but this is one of the best historical leadins I have run into so far. It’s chilling when you hear that the financial house of cards could be a QUADRILLION dollars worth! What have we allowed to happen, America? Very scary. Be afraid, be very afraid.

  15. rosettasister Says:

    Just went to youtube and this was recommended for me.


    UFO – Belladonna

  16. hockeyfan530 Says:

    just listening to a local talk show complaining about barry and someone called up about the BC issue. The host said i don’t want to talk about that. There are plenty of problems and i don’t want to talk about conspiracy theories! Man this pisses me off

  17. hockeyfan530 Says:

    he said the people voted for change so there is no reason to talk about it

  18. Tenacity Says:

    I’m glad you found the video informative. I am curious however as to how the lecture could have been better done and held to less than an hour and a half. Are you familiar with Gary Fielder? What other opinions of his might you take exception with?

  19. Tenacity Says:

    Essentially, Hugh Hewitt gives the same response. It blows my mind how people that represent themselves as intelligent conservatives just don’t get it. It is enough to make you just want to slap them. Thank God we’ve got a couple of talking heads in Denver willing to at least discuss it.

  20. susiezen Says:

    Thank God were seeing winters end in sight. being holed up for so long makes me pale and depressed…no skiing or outdoor activities due to the little one, does sledding count….PatriotAmy, I have just been told this past fall I have the same infliction w/ iron…have to blood-let every couple of months…seemed barbaric, but what a difference, very helpful.


  21. rosettasister Says:

    Tenacity Says:
    February 19, 2009 at 9:24 pm

    I agree, Tenacity.

    How hard is it to ask the question, “Why can’t we see a copy of your birth certificate?”

    Or, “Were you adopted by your Indonesian step father?” “Have you ever been a citizen of Indonesia?”

    When it became clear that apparently no one knew that it was their job to certify that, in fact, Obama is a NBC, that should have been a red flag alert.

  22. hockeyfan530 Says:

    the media is covering for it’s own because this should have been settled long before barry was the nominee for the dems. We shouldn’t be worried about this but the media refused to do it’s job.

  23. rosettasister Says:

    See you later, alligators!

    New Thread:

  24. susiezen Says:

    Ten, so true asking the questions of those not so informed.
    If you pose the questions correctly, your giving the other a sense of power, as if they are making there own political opinions….but the lay up has to be there or they dont follow through with a sensible conclusion….

    otherwise, If I push my beliefs im sometimes taken as a paranoid Henrieta, ans the sky is falling.
    sometimes I wish I were a dog, my dogs are treated like queens..both staring at me on each end of the couch….must be dinner time…
    BY THE WAY, my sons first spoken word was..”bark bark”…I dont know if thats a word but I guess repeating momma 5 000 times didnt work, it was the dogs barking that he found more amusing

  25. jrh Says:

    Tenacity Says:

    February 19, 2009 at 9:16 pm
    I’m glad you found the video informative. I am curious however as to how the lecture could have been better done and held to less than an hour and a half. Are you familiar with Gary Fielder? What other opinions of his might you take exception with?

    Yes, very informative. I think my comment about being better was just nitpicking. He went to the trouble of inserting good historical video so I thought he would also have benefited from charting his attempts on the easle in some powerpoints that would have better made his points. I agree that the subject required the time to properly develop.

    Sorry, I haven’t heard of Gary Fiedler. Help me out on that.

    Overall I share his opinions. I did sense that he has a liberal mindset and some of that bled through and I think it muddled some of his momentum. That probably centered around the castigations of free market as being totally greed driven. There’s a case to be made for that but it needs context that I didn’t think he developed.

    I also felt that he believes Obama can actually do something about all of this. I don’t share that belief mainly because I think Obama may be revelling in this. That probably reflects my bias in believing Obama to be Marxist and an Alinsky disciple and I shouldn’t hold that against him perhaps.

    The real meat of this is the exposure of the evolution of and the current domination of central bank control of the world economy and the horrendous excesses that have emanated from that.

    If the populace could learn these facts (doubtful) then a return to a value based economy might be possible although there will be many decades needed to recover from this house of cards falling down.

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