5:19 PM, May 20, 2015 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
Susan Rice, speaking at the German embassy, on Tuesday night:
“Now that we have ended two wars responsibly, and brought home hundreds of American troops, we salute this new generation of veterans …”
As Paul McLeary with Ariel Robinson of FP’s The Cable write:
Rice also heralded the sacrifices that American troops (hundreds of thousands who served in Iraq and Afghanistan, not hundreds) have made since 9/11. “They all made us proud,” she said. That left some wondering if she would still include soldiers like Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, who is facing a court-martial for deserting his post in Afghanistan in 2009, but was feted in absentia in the White House Rose Garden in May 2014 after the Obama administration secured his release from the Taliban in a prisoner exchange for five detainees who had been held at Guantanamo Bay.
Rice herself last year initially said Bergdahl served with “honor and distinction” — comments that sparked widespread criticism — before clarifying that she’d meant to praise his enlistment, and not necessarily his service. Might she again want to watch her words when speaking about troops?
Ms. Rice has a way of saying these things at the most inappropriate times. As she made her remarks about ending wars “responsibly," Ramadi was falling and, as Jim Michaels of USA Today reports:
More than a decade of war and billions in U.S. funds to build up an Afghan military force have failed to defeat a Taliban insurgency that remains a threat across the country, according to interviews with U.S., NATO and Afghan military leaders.
2:09 PM, May 4, 2015 • By JERYL BIER
Most American wouldn't know a donkey drop from a paddle scoop, but nevertheless, half a million taxpayer dollars will be going to support a cricket league in Afghanistan. The current grant opportunity looks to build on what was considered a successful 2014 program. The plan is for at least five regional cricket teams from throughout Afghanistan to compete in what is called the Sixers tournament in the fall of 2015.
A better way forward in the Middle East.Apr 20, 2015, Vol. 20, No. 30 • By MAX BOOT and MICHAEL DORAN
The ouster of ISIS fighters from Tikrit, Saddam Hussein’s hometown, has been widely celebrated. Although this victory was brought about in no small part by American airpower, it was a triumph for Iran more than for the United States. The vast majority of fighters on the front lines belonged to Shiite militias, many of them trained, equipped, and advised by the Iranians. Their de facto commander is Gen. Qassem Suleimani, head of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps’s Quds Force, which is charged with exporting the Iranian revolution.
3:43 PM, Mar 25, 2015 • By MICHAEL WARREN
The United States Army has charged Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl with desertion and "misbehavior before the enemy." Bergdahl allegedly abandoned his post in Afghanistan and was held captive by Taliban-aligned forces for nearly five years before the Obama administration negotiated a deal with the Taliban forces.
Show availability of Iran for al Qaeda training, plotting.12:27 PM, Feb 27, 2015 • By THOMAS JOSCELYN
This week, prosecutors in New York introduced eight documents recovered in Osama bin Laden’s compound in Pakistan as evidence in the trial of a terrorism suspect. The U.S. government accuses Abid Naseer of taking part in al Qaeda’s scheme to attack targets in Europe and New York City. And prosecutors say the documents are essential for understanding the scope of al Qaeda’s plotting.
7:01 AM, Feb 23, 2015 • By JERYL BIER
While answering questions from service members in Kandahar, Afghanistan, newly sworn-in Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter revealed that he is "open-minded" about transgendered individuals serving in the military, adding, "I don't think anything but their suitability for service should preclude them."
2:51 PM, Dec 28, 2014 • By DANIEL HALPER
President Obama released this statement, marking the end of America's "combat mission" in Afghanistan:
"Today's ceremony in Kabul marks a milestone for our country. For more than 13 years, ever since nearly 3,000 innocent lives were taken from us on 9/11, our nation has been at war in Afghanistan. Now, thanks to the extraordinary sacrifices of our men and women in uniform, our combat mission in Afghanistan is ending, and the longest war in American history is coming to a responsible conclusion.
6:57 AM, Dec 26, 2014 • By DANIEL HALPER
Speaking with troops in Hawaii on Christmas, President Obama repeated his pledge to end the "combat mission" in Afghanistan "next week."
“We’ve been in continuous war now for over 13 years. Next week we will be ending our combat mission in Afghanistan,” Obama said at the military base, according to the White House pool reporter.