Just Foreign Policy News
August 16, 2010
Today, By U.S. Deaths, Afghanistan is Obama's War
According to the data tallied by the website icasualties.org, which is regularly cited in the news media, as of today 575 U.S. soldiers had died in the Afghanistan war since Obama took office - the same number that died in the war under President Bush. News media often report on such landmarks; they should report on this one, and press secretary Robert Gibbs should be asked to comment on it.
Academics, authors and analysts urge France to repay debt to Haiti
In an open letter published today in the French national newspaper Libération, more than 90 leading academics, authors and other prominent figures from around the world are publicly calling on the French government to reimburse the 90 million gold francs France extorted from Haitians following Haiti's independence.
Bacevich: Washington Rules
Andrew Bacevich's new book, "Washington Rules: America's Path to Permanent War," is a call for Americans to reject the Washington consensus for permanent war, and to demand instead that America "come home."
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September 24th: JFP "Virtual Brown Bag" with Andrew Bacevich
575: That's how many U.S. soldiers have lost their lives in the Afghanistan war since Barack Obama became President at noon on January 20, 2009, according to the icasualties.org website, which tracks U.S. soldiers' deaths using reports received from the Department of Defense - and which is widely cited in the media as a source of information on U.S. deaths.
According to the same website, 575 is also the number of U.S. soldiers who lost their lives in the Afghanistan war during the Presidency of George W. Bush.
Therefore, total U.S. deaths in Afghanistan have doubled in Afghanistan under President Obama, and when the next U.S. soldier is reported dead, the majority of U.S. deaths in Afghanistan will have occurred under President Obama.
This grim landmark should be reported in the media, and White House reporters should ask Robert Gibbs to comment on it. It is quite relevant to Gibbs' implicit attempt to marginalize critics of the war in Afghanistan by claiming that they wouldn't be satisfied with anything less than the abolition of the Pentagon. The majority of Americans - including the overwhelming majority of Democrats, and at least 60% of House Democrats - are deeply skeptical of the Administration's Afghanistan policy not because they are knee-jerk pacifists - obviously they are not - but because the human and financial cost of the war is rising, we have nothing to show for the increased cost, and the Administration has not articulated a clear plan to reach the endgame; indeed, Administration officials, led by General Petraeus, have just launched a public relations campaign to undermine the substantial drawdown in troops next summer that Democratic leaders in Congress, including Speaker Nancy Pelosi, have said that they expect.