Martha Coakley -- Not the brightest bulb in the box
MODERATOR [David Gergen]: “Do you think we should withdraw? [from Afghanistan]”
COAKLEY: “I think we should plan an exit strategy, yes.”
MODERATOR: “And how would we succeed?”
COAKLEY: “I am not sure there is a way to succeed. If the goal was and the vision in Afghanistan was to go in because we believe the Taliban was giving harbor to terrorists, we supported that, I supported that goal. They are gone, they are not there anymore, they are in apparently Yemen and Pakistan. Let’s focus our efforts on where Al Qaeda is.”
Oh? They're not in Afghanistan? Really? Is she sure about that because ten days ago there was a terrorist attack in Afghanistan that killed eight CIA officers. And there's a record of continued attacks in Afghanistan. Since the Iraq Surge's success, and focus has now been turned to Afghanistan, the attacks in Afghanistan have escalated. US combat deaths in Afghanistan more than doubled from 2008 to 2009 going from 155 to 317.
We have Taliban/AQ terrorists that do operate in Afghanistan. They jump across the border from Pakistan to engage coalition forces, then go back to Pakistan for relative protection. We can't just march into Pakistan and take them out, which is why we use Predator drones to do that dirty work, but for Ms. Coakley to claim there aren't any terrorists in Afghanistan is beyond obtuse; it's just plain stupid, and dangerous. There are terrorists in Afghanistan, both foreign and domestic, and they are clearly taking the fight to our soldiers. We don't need an exit strategy. We need a plan for success. We can hope the 30,000+ soldiers that Barry sent to Afghanistan will help, but we know that the numbers aren't nearly enough to make a significant difference. (They'll help, folks, but not in the way the Surge brigades in Iraq did.)
This should be the end of her national political career. No one this foolish should be sitting in the US Senate. Hopefully the voters in Massachusetts realize just how dangerous this sort of thinking is. Remember, the Senate -- the Congress -- doesn't just deal with domestic issues like health care reform, immigration reform, and taxation. They do have a role, albeit limited, in foreign affairs, especially with regard to our foreign engagements. The last thing we need is a clueless senator who believes that we face no serious enemy in Afghanistan. Our enemies are spread throughout the globe, and sticking one's head in the sand and pretending the enemy doesn't exist is beyond foolish. It's reckless.