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Obama Unveils Afghanistan Plan

President says U.S. must ‘disrupt, defeat and dismantle’ al-Qaida


Obama to terrorists: ‘We will defeat you’ (MSNBC, March 27, 2009) — President Obama unveils his plan to bolster the number of U.S. troops deployed to Afghanistan and provide assistance to Pakistan with the vision of dismantling al-Qaida in the region. (20:37)

March 27, 2009

WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama on Friday ordered 4,000 more military troops into Afghanistan, vowing to “disrupt, dismantle and defeat” the terrorist al-Qaida network in Afghanistan and neighboring Pakistan. …

Obama called the situation in the region “increasingly perilous” more than seven years after the Taliban was removed from power in Afghanistan.

“If the Afghanistan government falls to the Taliban or allows al-Qaida to go unchallenged,” Obama said, “that country will again be a base for terrorists.”

He announced the troop deployment, as well as plans to send hundreds of additional civilians to Afghanistan, with Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, Defense Secretary Robert Gates and top intelligence and national security figures at his side. The announcement followed a policy review Obama launched not long after taking office. …

There are clear risks and costs to Obama’s strategy.

Violence is rising. The war in Afghanistan saw American military deaths rise by 35 percent in 2008 as Islamic extremists shifted their focus to a new front with the West. Obama’s plan will also cost many more billions of dollars.

And the president’s plan includes no timeline for withdrawal of U.S. troops.

‘Disrupt, dismantle and defeat’

Obama bluntly warned that the al-Qaida terrorists who masterminded the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks were actively planning further attacks on the United States from safe havens in Pakistan. And he said the Afghanistan government is in peril of falling to the Islamic militants of the Taliban once again.

“So I want the American people to understand that we have a clear and focused goal: to disrupt, dismantle and defeat al-Qaida in Pakistan and Afghanistan, and to prevent their return to either country in the future,” the president said.

“That is the goal that must be achieved,” Obama added. “That is a cause that could not be more just. And to the terrorists who oppose us, my message is the same: we will defeat you.” …

President: World safety at stake

Obama called the mountainous border region of Afghanistan and Pakistan “the most dangerous place in the world.”

“This is not simply an American problem — far from it,” Obama said. “It is, instead, an international security challenge of the highest order. Terrorist attacks in London and Bali were tied to al-Qaida and its allies in Pakistan, as were attacks in North Africa and the Middle East, in Islamabad and Kabul. If there is a major attack on an Asian, European, or African city, it, too, is likely to have ties to al-Qaida’s leadership in Pakistan.” …

That strategy fits with Obama’s operating premise — that the U.S. failed mightily in the years following the Sept. 11 terror attacks by focusing on Iraq instead of Afghanistan. …

The U.S. will launch an intensive and expanded diplomatic effort to gain international cooperation, including reaching out to Russia, China, India, Saudi Arabia and even Iran.

The 4,000 military trainers that Obama is sending to Afghanistan will come from 82nd Airborne Division at Fort Bragg in North Carolina. …



U.S. Military Deaths in Iraq

As of Friday, March 27, 2009, at least 4,262 members of the U.S. military had died in the Iraq war since it began in March 2003, according to an Associated Press count.

Latest identifications:

Sgt. Jose R. Escobedo Jr., 32, Albuquerque, N.M., died March 20, 2009 in Baghdad of injuries sustained from a non-combat incident the night before at Forward Operating Base Kalsu in Iskandariyah, Iraq. He was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 77th Field Artillery Regiment in Schweinfurt, Germany.

Army Staff Sgt. Raphael A. Futrell, 26, Anderson, S.C., died March 25, 2009 in Baghdad from non-combat injuries. He was assigned to the 13th Military Police Detachment, 728th Military Police Battalion, 8th Military Police Brigade, 8th Theater Sustainment Command, Fort Shafter, Hawaii.


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Security Developments in Iraq

Following are security developments in Iraq on Friday, March 27, 2009, as reported by Reuters.

JALAWLA – Gunmen shot dead Sunni tribal leader Abdul-Kareem Juma and seriously wounded his son as they were leaving a mosque after finishing their night prayers in Jalawla, 70 miles northeast of Baghdad, on Thursday, police said.

MOSUL – Gunmen wounded a liquor store owner and his son when they hurled a hand-grenade into his shop in central Mosul, 240 miles north of Baghdad, on Thursday, police said.

SAMARRA – A bomb planted near a high-voltage tower wounded four electricity ministry personnel on Thursday in Samarra, 62 miles north of Baghdad, a statement from the ministry said.

2 Responses to “‘Disrupt, Defeat, Dismantle’ Qaida”
  1. Immelman for Congress » Blog Archive » Obama Nuclear Deal with Russia Says:

    […] ‘Disrupt, Defeat, Dismantle’ al-Qaida […]

  2. Immelman for Congress » Blog Archive » Afghanistan Update Says:

    […] ‘Disrupt, Defeat, Dismantle’ al-Qaida […]

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