Petraeus Defends Afghanistan War In Senate Hearings
General David Petraeus isn’t the problem; everyone knows he’s a competent and talented military man. The problem is the war, itself.
Petraeus hedged on the July 2011 withdrawal date set by President Obama and suggested that he would ease up on the strict guidelines for the use of firepower imposed by Gen. Stanley McChrystal, who lost his job last week for mocking the civilian leadership.
Petraeus said he backed Obama’s policy to put 30,000 more U.S. troops into Afghanistan and begin a drawdown next summer, but any pullouts would be based on how the war was going.
Armed Services Committee Chair Carl Levin said a pull-out date would imbue a sense of urgency to Afghanistan that they couldn’t count on us forever. John McCain said knowing we’re withdrawing empowers the Taliban.
Expect more casualties:
Petraeus also said he would likely loosen the Rules of Engagement set by McChrystal that gave paramount importance to avoiding civilian casualties.
“I am keenly aware of the concerns of some of troopers on the ground” that they are taking needless casualties by holding fire to satisfy the demands of headquarters,” Petraeus said.Click here for reuse options!
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