The Washington Post is reporting today on two classified cables from the US Ambassador to Afghanistan to Washington, expressing deep concerns about a possible escalation of troops.
The cables came from Ambassador Karl W. Eikenberry, a former military man who commanded US troops in Afghanistan for two years. Before that he was in charge of the Afghan army training program. Sounds like someone the White House should listen to.
In addition to his concerns regarding a possible escalation, Eikenberry criticized the lack of emphasis on non-military tools.
In the cables, Eikenberry also expressed frustration with the relative paucity of money set aside for spending on development and reconstruction this year in Afghanistan, a country wrecked by three decades of war. Earlier this summer he asked for $2.5 billion in nonmilitary spending for 2010, a 60 percent increase over what Obama had requested from Congress. But the request has languished even as the administration has debated spending tens of billions of dollars on new troops.
Unfortunately, all the options being considered by the President reportedly include large increases in troops, and CBS reported the plan could include a commitment of at least another four years. A chilling thought.