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November 12th, 2009
08:57 AM ET

President’s War Strategy

President Barack Obama is asking for revisions to options he previously received for sending more troops to Afghanistan, according to a senior administration official. The war council – made up of top Cabinet, Pentagon and administration officials – met with the President for the eighth time Wednesday to discuss a request by the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan for up to 40,000 more troops

What do you think the president’s military strategy should be in Afghanistan?

Post your comments here, and Heidi will read some of them in the Newsroom, from 9-11am ET.

Filed under: Heidi Collins
soundoff (176 Responses)
  1. don

    Get out now! This country and it's citizens deserve to have America fixed first, before we try to "bring democracy" to anyone else.

    November 12, 2009 at 9:37 am |
  2. Linda E.

    Why are you asking us what the strategy should be? We're not military experts. What he needs to do is *listen* to the heads of the branches of the military, they know how to get the job done and get the heck out.

    November 12, 2009 at 9:42 am |
  3. sherika

    Those people have been fighting the way they have since the bible times.How many do we need to lose,and how people forgot this fact?

    November 12, 2009 at 9:42 am |
  4. mary

    I Strongly disagree with more troops being sent to Afghanistan or Iraq either. The dangers are apparently growing worse here on our home turf. We need our soldiers here for our own protection. Open your eyes goverment, see the danger here right under our noses.

    November 12, 2009 at 9:43 am |
  5. Rick in Florida

    Biden's plan is the most sensible to me. The Karzai government is a hopeless cause.

    November 12, 2009 at 9:43 am |
  6. Bernadette Loesch

    Dear Heidi, Good interview with the general. For once we are hearing the right words from a military man. McCrystal can only ask, it is the President that will commit or not to more troops, etc. I am hoping against hope that our president decides not to send anymore troops over to a goverment that is corrupt and a mess. As the general states, it's not like we don't have any coverage. The President needs to bring pressure to bear on Karzi to get his act together or we will pull out altogether. Karzi is getting not only soldiers, but lots and lots of money. Is it going to improve the country...they are as poor as dirt. Where have all of the dollars gone? Whose pocket is being greased? We don't need to be in another country that has insurmountable problems. We are not the world's FIXER!

    November 12, 2009 at 9:45 am |
  7. Bill

    too many cooks in the kitchen on this one already.......he is our leader and is as bright as they come... my instinct is to trust him and let the man breathe and body is perfect

    November 12, 2009 at 9:45 am |
  8. Just Say No...

    I was thrilled when the President said no to the Generals. The Generals are part of the military industrial complex, who want to perpetuate wars, no matter what. We should have had the close thorought evaluation before Viet Nam, Irag, Afghansistan and now we need to do it before we start a war with Pakistan. Yah, Obama.

    November 12, 2009 at 9:45 am |
  9. Bob Burton

    Heidi, I t hink little of the the President's strategy due to the fact I have seen little evidence of strategy,tactics or plans since the November 2008 election day. Bob Burton,Montecito, Calif.....

    November 12, 2009 at 9:46 am |
  10. Pvt Aaron MC

    As a DEP Recruit about to head to Basic Training, I hope that President Obama agrees to send more troops over. It not only means that we will be going over, but also that several of the troops there will get to come home. We often forget how long some of those brave men and women have been over serving, and this will hopefully be a relief and chance for them to come home, to plant their feet on familiar soil.

    November 12, 2009 at 9:46 am |
  11. brad merrill

    I personally think that we should get out of Afghanistan. We are basically looking at another war we can't min just like Viet Nam. People dying for no reason. Plus we don't truly know WHO we are fighting against.

    November 12, 2009 at 9:46 am |
  12. william

    Right now we're looking at another Vietnam . Let's be honest, the USA cannot change this nation's ancient tribal and moslem culture . Soldiers will continue to be injured and killed . We cannot afford to spend hundreds of billions trying to fund involvement in a civil war. alCaida like Matthew Hoh has said is scattered internationally, INCLUDING the USA as we just found out . Continuing to bleed in Afghanistan is what the terrorists want. Get OUT !!

    November 12, 2009 at 9:47 am |
  13. Jane Gray

    I think President Obama should use the same strategy in Afghanistan that President Clinton used in Kosovo. No troops on the ground. Take out all of the country's infrastructure and tell them when THEY get rid of the Taliban and Al Queda, we will come in and rebuild their country. If they let the Taliban and Al Queda back in, we will repeat the process. This tells all that harbor terrorists that we will hold them accountable. We do not need them as friends, but we do need to show them that they don't want us as and enemy.

    November 12, 2009 at 9:47 am |
  14. Pastor D

    Heidi, I believe that the President should use the highly-technical drones to fight against the terrorists in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Keep as many troops needed to operate these designed drones that can disable/kill anyone coming from the mountains and get the rest of our troops OUT- DO NOT send ANY more troops there. Great show every morning Heidi! Pastor D

    November 12, 2009 at 9:49 am |
  15. IB

    Heidi what is wrong with us even the media can no longer ask the right question???
    The question that Americans including the president should ask ourselvesis not shloud we send more troops??? but will our enemies plot agains us in the mountains of afghanistan...let me say this again will they or can they plot agains us from the mountains of afghanistan if your answer is no then lets come home.... if not then lets support the president and our troops in making those deccision.

    November 12, 2009 at 9:51 am |
  16. Gwen

    The President and his immediate advisors are confused about why we are in Afghanistan. We did not go there to install a stable government. We don't care about their politics.
    We went there because the 9-11 terrorist attacks came from there. We are there to kill terrorists. His confused thinking apparently is confusing the news media and some of the American people. Since the President gets so easily confused, maybe he has a very advanced form of Alzheimer's and should resign...or maybe he and his administration don't want to oppose the terrorists.

    November 12, 2009 at 9:51 am |
  17. Karin Leffler

    Obama is absolutely doing the right thing in taking considerable time to weigh options. Unfortunately, saving face may be the real issue, as he pronounced Afghanistan as a "war on necessity" and probably realizes that winning in Afghanistan is an impossibility. Afghanistan will never have a corruption-free central government necessary for stability and continued military efforts will only end in more US deaths and casualties. The main efforts should be focused on Pakistan, and protecting the nuclear weapons while supporting the Pakistani government with aid and intelligence. Fighting Al Queada requires in depth international intelligence sharing, as it has footholds from Africa to Europe and throughout the rest of the world.

    November 12, 2009 at 9:52 am |
  18. Dave


    President Obama is making the right decision. The previous administration committed our military into two major conflicts without doing a comprehensive study to clearly state our objectives or plan for an exit strategy. As an Active duty military member I would rather know what the mission is and what the expectations are, rather than committing hundreds of thousands of american men and women for a undefined purpose.


    November 12, 2009 at 9:52 am |
  19. Kathleen P. McLaughlin

    Not one more military solider, male or female should be sent to Afghanistan. Instead of the U.S. forcing the people to accept a democratic society, Afghanistan would probably do better with having the FOUR Chiefs from the different areas that cover the country, rule it. Karzai does not seem to have the ability to do any thing good for his people or his country. We are not wanted there, we are hated there and we would do a much better job militarily bombing strategic areas from a safe place with planes that fly under the radar and just bomb them. McCrystal and Patreaus are military men and want to keep their jobs and therefore want 40,000 additional men and women to sacrifice their lives to make them look important! We have to protect our young men and women and our own country. Kathleen

    November 12, 2009 at 9:52 am |
  20. Mark Lile

    First: quit calling it a war. It's not a war and calling it one is playing into the hands of the gihadists. (there can't be a holy war if there isn't a war)
    Second: Plan on a long term American presence there. We need to integrate our values with theirs so we can learn that they are not all evil and they can learn that we are not all evil.
    Third: create a Department of the Offense. Our offensive strategy should be to win the hearts and minds of the Afghan people (and of course, other countries as necessary) Market freedom and the pursuit of happiness through peaceful efforts.
    The best defense is a good offense


    November 12, 2009 at 9:52 am |
  21. Forrest


    We should get out all together!!! Bottom line is this........if another countries own government isn't going to do what THEY need to do and it's own people not do what THEY need to do to uphold THEIR government on being non corrupt and being legit, why should WE sacrifice our women and men to do THEIR job? What is being done now should have been done years ago when it would have been an easier task than it is now. If this is suppose to help all of the world against terrorism then ALL the other allied countries should give equal help in this ordeal! It's past time for our resources to be brought back home so for once, WE can be made a priority instead of helping everyone else!!!!!!

    November 12, 2009 at 9:54 am |
  22. b parker

    It's difficult to know all that's involved with any course taken as we are not privi to all the information and implications (long term and short term) of choosing one path over another. I voted for our President because I believed that we would end these two wars. I continue to believe we should extracate ourselves from both countries as soon as possible. We should never have gone to Iraq and we should have consentrated totally on Afganistan and have been out by now.

    This is too similar to Vietnam ( unstable host government, uncooperative population, unclear objectives, unconventional war, etc.) not to learn from that experience.

    November 12, 2009 at 9:54 am |
  23. loretta

    I beleave that obama knows more then we do. i think we should let him do his job.

    November 12, 2009 at 9:56 am |
  24. Thomas Ragusa

    I would certainly hope the administration looks at history of both Afghanistan and the U.S. prior to formulating an approach to the issues confronting both countries.

    Personally it would seem to me if we dropped live chickens rather than live bombs, the fortunes of both countries might improve. We might make a few friends, something bombs have difficulty doing, and lord knows, our poultry farmers could use the business.

    November 12, 2009 at 9:56 am |
  25. Joseph

    Leave the Middle East alone and bring back all our soldiers home. We are not fighting to protect the USA over there, we are fighting to protect the Middle East, while they sit there and watch our men and women die for their country. We can train them to fight for their freedom and then they can do their own fighting.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:00 am |
  26. Clinton R Bowen

    Good morning Heidi
    Mr president
    Please do not fall for all the talk of war escalation, the American, people wants our troops out of the Mid-east period. The general, s want war, their mission is to win and rightly so . The question is should we be involved in war that is not in our national interest.?
    We need to abandon the mid east conflict , and pay more attention to our country,s domestic problems.


    November 12, 2009 at 10:04 am |
  27. Mike Dunbar

    I was at first in agreement with the request for more troops, but with more info. about the goverment and the corruption and the problems and uncertainty in Pakistan, I think it is time to bring the troops home. I believe we are in a no win situation, I think our CIC is doing the right thing in evaulating the situation and I agree the retired former NATO commander that we cannot place much trust in a corrupt goverment. Bring them home.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:08 am |
  28. Troy E. Page

    Our strategy should be pegged to our mission/objectives there, which is the usual and customary answer to this question. There seems to have always been widespread support domestically for the notion that our mission has been, is, to minimixe or neutralize Afganistan's ability or potential ability to produce or sponsor exportable terroristic actions.

    We are supposedly now there for this purpose. Tactics and strategies of course take this into account. Presumably, General McChrystal's request was not ignorant of this, still he recommended the need for an additional 40,000 troops to continuing executing this mission which he must havt thought was expected of him. The absence of any time limit as part of his request, or, any other particular reason requiring a "timed" decision means response to the request is totally open-ended. True, there are some intervening consequencies, i.e. incidents of conflict as injury, fatality, monetary expenditure, etc. etc. But for any of these to be influential they would have to be at an unacceptable level for the public, internationals, etc. They are clearly not at that level. So, the status quo can continue indefinitely as long as the American people continue to have the level of support he now enjoys. Thank you!

    November 12, 2009 at 10:08 am |
  29. Cristina

    Bring them all home!

    November 12, 2009 at 10:08 am |
  30. Charles

    Our strategy in Afghanistan should be to pull out, completely and immediately.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:09 am |
  31. E

    I think this so called war has been carried on for long enough! Listen to the people, not just us Americans but the afgan people as well. Our continued presence there is just adding fuel to a fire! The message is if we continue to fight we will loose more people, on both sides, and just may be their excuse for Nukes. Yes you heard me a Nukelar war. Well my advise is to leave now, turn their government over, and if they decide to provoke annother attack, then it will be their fault. Because we left in peace. If they were to attack again then the world will see them as the enemy. But if we remain there then the world will say we had it comming! No more lives need to be lost!!

    November 12, 2009 at 10:10 am |
  32. Ira

    To my recollection, we never went to war with the Taliban. So why don't any of the news stories mention Al Queda. If they are still there, and I don't doubt that they are, then that's who we should be pursuing. We don't need over 100,000 US troops to do that. If the Karzi government will not hold discussions with the Taliban, then we should. But to me, we should start winding down ALL military operations against the Taliban, that's an internal struggle or civil war...does the Viet Cong sound familiar? It is not the U.S. job to fight an internal struggle. We didn't in Rwanda or the Sudan, so why Afghanistan? We took our eye off the ball in 2002 and now are mired in another civil war scenario. Thanks to the prior administration for this current fiasco.
    As a former Marine, I find it hard to support our current policy in Afghanistan.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:10 am |
  33. Jane

    I am not in favor of sending troops to Afganistan or Iraq. Bring them all home and we can have health care and reduce the debt.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:10 am |
  34. Tray

    I think the President should remember he has zero military experience and trust his Generals.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:10 am |
  35. Marilyn in Texas

    Bring them home! Our soldiers are dropping like flies.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:11 am |
  36. David Evans

    Afghanistan: Compelling Reasons to Disengage

    There are powerful political reasons for remaining in Afghanistan. The US has considerable sunk costs in lives and resources in the Afghan conflict. Withdrawal could damage America’s global image. The Taliban would claim to have driven out the Americans, just like they drove out the Soviets. The Administration would be accused of cowardice. Saving face would be a challenge.

    There are more compelling reasons for the US to disengage from Afghanistan.

    First, Al Qaeda has left. They are in Pakistan and in other countries.

    Second, Al Qaeda will not return. It is easier for the US to capture and kill them in Afghanistan. The Afghans do not want Al Qaeda because they attract foreign military force. Al Qaeda does not want to leave Pakistan because living conditions for Al Qaeda members are much better in Pakistan, including food, water, electricity, banking, communications, etc.

    Third, the Afghan Taliban are not a threat to the US. They are Islamists, not Jihadists. Their objective is to control and govern Afghanistan. (Al Qaeda is a Jihadist organization whose objective is to create a new Islamic caliphate that will rule the Muslim world and beyond.) The Taliban simply want the US to leave Afghanistan.

    Fourth, Afghanistan is engaged in a civil war that began with the Saur Revolution in April 1978. Interestingly, the US is on the same side as the Soviets, fighting against the Taliban. With 110,000 well-equipped soldiers and nine years of time, the Soviets were unable to “win.” An additional 40,000 American troops will not provide victory for the US.

    Fifth, Afghanistan has a GDP of $22 billion. The US is unable to provide security with a budget of $65 billion. Ultimately, to maintain security at a fraction of $22 billion, the Afghans will have to find a different solution.

    Sixth, Afghan conflict costs American lives and money for no achievable purpose.

    Seventh, and most importantly, remaining in Afghanistan increases the risk of a terrorist attack against the US. A large American military presence in a Muslim country fuels anti-Americanism, promotes the growth in the number of terrorists and fosters increased funding for Islamists and Jihadists.

    Finally, for President Obama, there is an additional compelling reason. If he remains in Afghanistan, he will be a one-term president.

    The reasons for disengaging from Afghanistan are compelling. None of the political arguments for remaining should compel the US to expend American lives and money when that effort that will increase the risk of terrorist attacks on Americans.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:11 am |
  37. gene simmons

    Some of us "out here" ARE military experts. In fact, there are a lot of us.... retired military comprise some.

    The President's job is to establish the military objective, then provide the resources demanded by the theatre commander to achieve that objective.

    The President has NO military experience, should have NO input into the strategy.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:11 am |
  38. Lee

    I like what he is doing and most of all looking for an exit plan as well, everyone just wants him to just send in more troops with no logical thoughts of the future for exit with is to me reckless.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:11 am |
  39. Cadet Moriarty

    Sending more troops is the best option Obama has right now. Here at West Point, there is wide debate over the best route to take in Afghanistan. However, I and many others feel as though the most effective strategy is counterinsurgency. Key to this strategy is having actual troops on the ground going into each village, earning the trust and loyalty of local villagers. Presently we do not have enough troops to cover the vast geography of Afghanistan. Putting more troops on the ground in addition to more Afghan troops will only help legitimize the Afghan government and win over hearts and minds.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:12 am |
  40. Drew Smith

    Get out, get out, get out

    November 12, 2009 at 10:12 am |
  41. Amos Annan

    GET OUT!
    Afganistan (and Iraq) are quagmires without end. These wars are bankrupting the United States.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:13 am |
  42. Teero McSan

    Hold the line, but get global support for the war on terror. Hold the UN to task - if this is a global threat, we should be united in our fight against it. We should also invoke Marshall Law in Afghanistan and Pakistan until the al-Quida threat is eliminated – their political systems are totally corrupt and cannot be relied on to make the inroads needed to rebuild their countries.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:13 am |
  43. Brandi

    The President should make sure that he has an exit strategy that is feasable before he decides to send more of our sons, daughters, fathers, mothers, and family members to fight in Afghanistan. Hopefully, he has learned from the previous adminstration that sending our family to other countrys to fight in wars without an exit strategy is unacceptable.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:14 am |
  44. Eduardo Mitchell

    Our country and this President are already being perceived by our enemies as weak and unwilling to stay the course. The very worst thing that our President could do would be HALF MEASURES. The Taliban and al Qaeda are hoping we will abandon Afghanistan and let them have free reign there. Doing so would come back to haunt us in ways far worse than the 9/11 disaster. President Obama needs to act with strength, courage, and conviction. If he fails to do what is necessary to prevail against the people who want to destroy our government and our way of life, then they will succeed in doing exactly that.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:14 am |
  45. Joshua

    As an Infantry soldier eyeing a third deployment, this time to Afghanistan, I can only hope that we will not abandon all of the work we've done there. My brothers and sisters have paid for the advances there in blood, sweat and tears, and I can only pray that President Obama will have the courage to let us finish the job. We are not afraid to finish the fight, let us have the tools and we'll get it done.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:14 am |
  46. Pam Kirby

    I think President Obama should go to "The Wall" and ask those names what we should do about Afghanistan. It seems to me the answer is clear. GET OUT YESTERDAY!!!

    November 12, 2009 at 10:14 am |
  47. Richard DeGarmo

    The President is in a real quandry. On the one hand he faces that possibly if he pulls out (like the Russians did) that terrorism 'might' increase both around the world and in the US. But that is not a fact. Russia withdrew and terrorism has NOT increased in Russia. But he and his advisors might think that adding more troops might destroy the Taliban but let's face it ...Al Qeida and the Taliban will be around for years to come. Then if we withdraw, Al Queida and the Taliban might conduct killings of all peace-loving people in Afganistan and then what would the world think. Frankly my opinion is for President Obama to take this to the UN and have other countries right now contribute troops etc. We should not do this alone even though 9/11/01 occured. We cannot be the policeman of the world.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:14 am |
  48. Emily

    The President's war strategy needs to be this: get the heck out of Dodge. We should have never gone into the Middle East to begin with, and these past eight years have accomplished very little. Too many young Americans are dying in a needless and unpopular conflict.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:14 am |
  49. Michelle, military wife in Germany

    I think this President will make the correct decisions on Afghanistan. Sending more troops without a coherent strategy is just pointless...putting our troops into harms way for no apparent reason. I like having a President who thinks, FOR JUST A SECOND, about this before he sends in our military. It is obvious that our strategies for the past 8 years have NOT won this war for us. I'm tired of every armchair warrior in our country thinking they have a right to whine about it.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:14 am |
  50. Merlyn Law

    Thanks for this opportunit. Our tropps should leave Afghanistan as quickly as possible to avoid more carnage. I am 86 years old and have seen a lot of wars and this one is backed by an enemy who has unlimited resources from the selling of heroin. That and the fact that Osami bin Laden couuld be living anywhere in the world at this moment directing enemy enclaves who also reside in countries other than Afghanistan–they could live next door!

    Not another American soldier should lose their life or be injured in a lost cause,


    November 12, 2009 at 10:15 am |
  51. Jay Wayne

    I, and I believe the american people would agree, unless there is a clear mission and more importantly, the eradication of the poppy/opium crop which is the REAL threat to to freedom, worldwide.

    Jay Wayne
    Escazu, Costa Rica

    November 12, 2009 at 10:15 am |
  52. Robert

    War strategy should always be to make your enemies bow down, no mercy. In war, you are either the horse or the jockey, Obama will show them that he's not playing around when he has them crawling out of the sanding waving the white flag of surrender. Doing a great job today, Heidi!

    November 12, 2009 at 10:15 am |
  53. Mohammed

    war will only won if the Afghan people decide to step up and take control of their on future......this is the strategy that allowed Iraqis to win and secure their country!!!

    the best thing the US could do is train and support the afghanies because no matter how good our soldiers and marines are they still don't know as much as the locals

    November 12, 2009 at 10:16 am |
  54. NetWizKid

    We can't start something like this and then just give up (Vietnam), Obama knows what to do, what he implements is another story! What I would suggest is, Nationalizing the police & border patrol, close the borders as much as possible, eliminate the threat internally then work on remaining issues – get the country stable, everything else is secondary.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:16 am |
  55. Edward Taylor

    We should withdraw from Afganistan. We missed our opportunity to get Bin Laden at Tora Bora, many yearsoul ago, and diverted our blood and treasure to Iraq. We should own up to this huge mistake and not stay for a lost cause like we did in Viet Nam. No one has ever conquered the Afgans, it is a civil war we should not be involved in. Take our losses and get out!

    November 12, 2009 at 10:16 am |
  56. Paul T


    Reflecting yesterday and watching the Veteran Memorial on CNN, has anyone analyzed Russia's occupation of Afghanistan? They threw everything they had at this country and it's people and were eventually forced out, they couldn't win.
    The other issue is; What is the objective of this war? Do people really think that we will stop terrorism by occupying this country. The true terrorist move from place to place including inside this country.
    Pull our troops out and focus our resources on preventing terrorism within our borders.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:17 am |
  57. Patty Neidert

    Troops should mark a boundary they can hold and protect in Northern part of country. Clean up country, make life great for people and starve the Taliban both physically and mentally. Don't be tempted to fight their battle, fight our battle and win!

    November 12, 2009 at 10:17 am |
  58. Sari

    It is time to bring our men and women home. It is obvious that what ever the plan was in the has failed. I see no reason to send more troops to die or to prolong the suffering of the people who live there with our occupation of their land. End it. We (The People) grow weary.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:17 am |
  59. Drew Smith

    You can't change people, places, or things. Get out, get out , get out.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:18 am |
  60. Wesley Masten

    This is a difficult decision, but I am reminded that the British were there 100 years and never gained control of that area. The Russians failed , also. Why should we think we can do better? I believe we have to get out as soon as possible. Too many factions. Too much corruption. The more troops we send in , the more they will resent us.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:18 am |
  61. kwells

    i think the president should ask the european union to help. i also believe our military should declare new major battles for the next two years to push all extremist up the mountains and start shooting missles

    November 12, 2009 at 10:18 am |
  62. Tyrone


    Wars have been waged for hundreds of years in the middle east. Whether or not the U.S occupies Afghanistan, there will still be fighting. 50 years from now I still see tribal wars or civil wars in the middle east. I think we should bring our sons home to protect our borders and make our country better. They are senselessly dying.


    November 12, 2009 at 10:18 am |
  63. Amos Annan

    Stop the war. This war is a Republican party idea to make defense contrators rich.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:18 am |
  64. betty

    we need to get out. they do not seem to want to defend their own country. why should we keep sending soldiers to that area to die, when the men and the government there don't care.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:18 am |
  65. Stan

    It's been 8 years of very questionable gains at a great loss to many lives. Karzai's government seems to be corrupt and it's people not willing to sacrifice for their own freedoms. I say get out completely and quickly, it's time to bring many of our troops home from around the world. We need to fight terrorism here as we have just seen at Ft. Hood. Our foreign policies have been convoluted since the end of WWII. Korean War, Vietnam, Shah of Iran, Taliban against Soviet Union and the list goes on. I am tired of paying for these causes which have no end and no real resolutions. How do you define victory and who will surrender?

    November 12, 2009 at 10:18 am |
  66. Steve R

    Get the troops out of Afghanistan as soon as possible. Notify countries in the region that the US will withdraw within a set date and those countries will need to resolve the regions problems themselves. Viet Nam Vet here. We've been through this before.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:19 am |
  67. Bill

    Hi Heidi,
    I find it curious that, if your picture is correct of the President sitting in counsel, there was not one member of the military present.
    My opinion? Surge, focus on Bin Laden, declare victory, then get the heck out. Don't make this another Vietnam.
    Bill Conn (LTC, retired)
    Medford, WI

    November 12, 2009 at 10:19 am |
  68. Lyle Painter

    It is time to leave the mid east. We have enough situations to deal with on our own soil. We cannot continue to make other people be "like us/US".

    November 12, 2009 at 10:19 am |
  69. Robert McCauley

    Opinion on afgan war. WITHDRAW. Protect our boarders & ports,and know who & were the people that enter this nation are.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:19 am |
  70. carole

    I think we need to get out of all these countries and bring our soldiers back home! This has gone on way too long and sending more troops to Afghanistan under a corrupt Karzai government just doesn't make sense. Maybe instead we should take care of our own country since it's falling apart. Had we not been tricked by Bush into the Mid-East thousands of lives would have been saved and our deficit would not be trillions of dollars right now. It's sickening what the Bush Administration did to our country and I pray Obama stops this madness now. Wouldn't it be funny if we left the Middle East and they all killed each other because that's what needs to be done. Let them take each other out and in the meantime we can rebuild our own country. B. Parker above is right on, this is too much like Vietnam! Is Pakistan going to be the next place McCrystal says needs 40,000 troops? I think he just wants to keep his job and that means staying the course, not coming home.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:19 am |
  71. Linda Sturgis

    We need to change the focus of our military strategy from "Armed FORCES" to "Armed SERVICES". The US (through the UN and NATO) should focus on Intelligence, Diplomacy, Humanitarian Support and Timely Defense Readiness. Then maybe other countries would be more willing to send their troops and take some of the burden off the US.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:19 am |
  72. Ben

    Heidi,the best Afghan strategy and most cost effective as well as being politically wise for President Obama, is what I shall refer to as the Gorbi Strategy of Gradual Withdrawal. This sends a clear message to the Afghan people and the Government that 1) we do not wish to permanently occupy your country and 2) please try and get your act together ASAP.....Stop the Corruption...and get serious about the training and numbers of your security forces but give him a silent deadline for our ultimate withdrawal. And for God's sake why don't we learn from Iraq?? Ben
    P.S. When we fail to learn from our mistakes of the past, we are then apt to repeat them !!

    November 12, 2009 at 10:21 am |
  73. Victor Bobier

    The President should send more troops, As many as possible and as quickly as possible, Afghanistan is not populated by people who are like in Vietnam, These are Muslims and they are culturally different from Buddhists, And these Muslims will harbor Al-qaeda and/or come after us, So do We want to give our enemies a propaganda victory so that They can attract more recruits to their illegitimate cause? I hope not, Look at Ft. Hood, the Major was influenced by those Terrorists and They do not recognize any law outside of Their Korans, To them Jihad(War on infidels/unbelievers in Islam) is a righteous and legal cause, Our laws they hate, We must not show any weakness, The Franks under Martel the Hammer didn't show weakness back in France(ca. 688 – 22 October 741) according to History and the Muslims back then were defeated.

    I'm sorry But I had to use My gmail address which I guess some at CNN object to, But then It's no joke, As last night My verizon one was acting up. :p

    November 12, 2009 at 10:21 am |
  74. ben ditta

    "get out of Dodge"
    relieved to hear Obama's request for add-on to current strategy
    options, re: absolute exit date & plan for drawing down troops.
    Let the UN orchestrate the world peace plan, not a near
    bankrupt nation allowing its people to die for what appears to be a futile cause.
    get out, and get out soon- no more than 12 months drawing down on the current troop level

    November 12, 2009 at 10:22 am |
  75. Stan

    Complete Grease Fire..........Run For Your Life!

    November 12, 2009 at 10:22 am |
  76. Dr. Juan V. De la Sierra

    Western Nations with their fairly homogenous populations have since the Renaissance established viable nation-states. We falsely assume that the rest of the world, with its diverse religious and ethnically divided populations can neatly fit into the nation-state model.

    Afghanistan has never been a nation in the Western sense of a nation-state. It is a loose confederacy of regions and valleys, tribes, religions, and at least three major language groups. The current plan of imposing the nation-state model on Afghanistan will fail because the Afghanis will never accapt a central authority, especially one created in foreign capitals. They will fight us, not because they are aliied with al-Qaeda, but simply because tribal leader and regional warlords will never accept domination from Kabul. We have created the enemy we can never defeat..

    November 12, 2009 at 10:22 am |
  77. Amos Annan

    The military leaders should NOT be making all the decisions on this war. Military people only understand killing and not the nations best interest. Get out of Afganistan... we can not afford it.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:22 am |
  78. Smith

    The arguments we hear in support of the war in Afghanistan remind me of the arguments used to support the war in Vietnam. History tells us that not only can we not win but we cannot break even in Afghanistan. I've had both a nephew and a son-in-law fighting in Iraq/Afghanistan. I say bring the troops home home and cut the defense budget in half. Perhaps, then, we will not be in such a hurry to involve ourselves where we don't belong.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:25 am |
  79. Amos Annan

    The majority of Americans are against this war. I think I would follow the decision of the majority.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:25 am |
  80. Ruth

    I think that President Obama is wise to take time to make the decision about sending more troops to Afghanistan. The way things stand, he is between a rock and a hard place. I support the idea of sending in more troops with a time line for withdrawal, whether or not our goals are being met.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:27 am |
  81. G L R

    The different factions of people in Afghanistan have been at war with each other for hundreds of years. The best thing we can do is get our troups out of their country and let them go at it. There is nothing in Afghanistan that is worth losing one more American solider for. President Bush made a mistake by sending in troups 8 years ago and we are still paying for it with American blood. How much blood needs to be shed before the president says "enough".

    November 12, 2009 at 10:28 am |
  82. Colette

    Why is President Obama not listening to the expertise of the men in his war counsel? They have both the knowledge and experience, he has none. The president is playing craps with the lives of the soldiers in Afghanistan by not giving them the support that has been advised. What would happen in the private sector if the CEO of a corporation asked his board of directors to "give him different options" that cost millions? He'd be wearing a sandwich board in new york city!

    November 12, 2009 at 10:28 am |
  83. Vince ponder

    Here is the bottom line. Times have changed. We here in the united states are going to have to live with the reality that terror is a threat and has been for decades. We here in the united states too often want to live in a dream world instead of reality. With that said we really should get out of afghanistan. A win against terror cannot be won on the battlefield. This is the mistake bush made. Obama is doing the right thing by considering the situation and from what I understand asking advisers to clarify an exit strategy. Bush lead us into a situation where we responded in conventional methods to a problem that requires more creative thinking. Hopefully obama and his advisers can make a bad situation better because I hate to say it but our soldiers are dying for nothing. Does anyone really believe there will be no terror threat or even less after we pull out? Not even if we are there for ten years. Just more senseless american deaths

    November 12, 2009 at 10:29 am |
  84. gee ride

    I think the president should trust the man on the ground and not the men in the room and if thats not good enough take the men in the room and go their for yourselves to see why the general is requesting more troops,and as far as fort hood i think that these types of things are going to continue to happen as long as we are relaxed about who we let in our house think about it they are getting jobs and training that later is used against us,BLOOD IS THICKER THAN WATER

    November 12, 2009 at 10:29 am |
  85. Alexander Mackenzie

    I believe the Al Quida is not a nation but a Hydra. Not necessarily with just the nine heads Hercules faced. We cannot give by our presence the understanding of the need to combat the Taliban to non Taliban Afgans, who are their fellow citizens. ( in this, the South Vietnamese are a good example of surviving in a war they did not see as theirs) For eight years we have fought, and in the beginning drove the Taliban from power, but they festered during the lull of the Iraq diversion, and regained the upper hand in territory. Now we are supposed to do what 33,600,000+ Afgans won't do, keep them out of power again. Against the many headed Al Quida terrorist network covert (ie: CIA) action not military might is needed to win.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:32 am |
  86. Gary Stewart

    The President's reluctance to make a decision is now allowing those who should remain quiet to enter into the public debate. If this is a military operation, allow the military to do their job; HIllary should instruct State Dept officials to keep critizims out of the public debate. If this is not a mil op, pull the military out and allow the State Dept to take over. Retired generals should stay retired.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:32 am |
  87. Bobbi Stein East Kingston NH

    we should not remain in afghanastan. the government is not legitimate.we should protect our ports,our air space and our borders and have the FBI continue their best efforts as they did in finding the person in Colorado who seemed to be planning a bombing in the US.
    we can track down the Taliban using other allies who have the same goal to defeat the Taliban. Too many of our soldiers have given their et lives or have been injured already in the past 8 years..

    November 12, 2009 at 10:33 am |
  88. ken venn

    No major war in the twentieth or twenty- first century was won by the country initiating the war. It is time we all Emailed Obama to tell him it is detrimental to the United States and the people of the world to further engage us Afganistan. The deaths of our soldiers are in vain. The financial cost is counter to financial recovery. Diplomacy, and improving intelligence is the best way to achieve national security.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:35 am |
  89. Alice

    G'day Heidi,
    I believe the president will make the best decision to keep our troops as safe as possible and I also agree with Clint's comment. Most importantly states that are still struggling after the stimulus they've received so far are states that I believe were not managed properly for years. One of the key issues here is, a lot of people think government is too big... I believe that because so many decisions are made at state level and not federal is the reason for so much confusion across the country. People are blaming washington for all the ills when in fact a huge amount of their problems are at the state level.. All senators that have been in government for too many years and want to continue to trim the government will continue to hold people back at the state level. And maybe CNN should start investigating how the states are managing this crisis. Also one good thing the president has brought to the forefront is tranparency of government... I am very sure that most people did not know that so many decisions were made in the house and congress with no knowledge of how certain policies would be paid for which has created a huge deficit inherited by this president... and now all of a sudden these "been in office too long" senators want to say no to everything.
    Republicasn or Democrates It would be so great if people would simply wean out those that are not working for the good of the American people. Republican or Democrate is just a title, I would like to see decent human beings in office working on behalf of all the people of this country.
    CNN could support the people by continuing to expose the decision of the congress that do not serve the "we the people" with responsible and accurate information.
    I don't know about the rest of America but I am sick and tired of senators in the congress and the house making statements without following them up with facts and descriptions that the american people can understand. We can make better choices when we are better informed.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:36 am |
  90. Osborn B Miranda

    Untie our our hands and let us do our jobs,and we'll get the job done,just let us do our jobs by cleaning out these villages and stop playing games with those Afghanies,right now they're taking us for a joke cause our hands are tied by this NATO bull

    November 12, 2009 at 10:36 am |
  91. Greg

    i just wanted to say you are so gorgeous sweetheart definitely the most beautiful woman in the mainstream news i see you are from minnesota im from the west side of st paul i have lived all over this country and i can definitely say you are the most beautiful woman i have seen on tv very sexy and very good at what you do keep up the good work gorgeous

    November 12, 2009 at 10:36 am |
  92. ron berry

    I believe we should not send any troops or any aid to Afganistan
    These are the people who danced in the streets when 9/11 happened.Why should we fight to liberate people who want to kill US
    They protect their terrorists, I t would be impossible for the terrorists to
    continue without the help of the general population

    November 12, 2009 at 10:37 am |
  93. Tracy G. Jordan

    The president should pull all troops from afganistan

    November 12, 2009 at 10:39 am |
  94. Joan Healy

    Afghanistan is Where Empires Go to Die

    Genghis Khan could not hold onto Afghanistan. Neither will the United States.

    I am opposed to send more trops to Afghanistan and there by supporting a corrupt government.

    This is a region of the world that has never been defeated militarily. It is where empires go to die. The Greeks, Indians, Persians, Mongolians, British and Russians have tried to hold Afghanistan, but never succeeded.

    George Santayana said "Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it"

    Congressman Joe Sestek,, Admiral in the Navy for 31 years, believes new troops are not needed. He believes returning to the strategies of 2001 and limiting our goals to defeating the Al Qaeda is the way to go.

    Sunnyvale, CA

    November 12, 2009 at 10:40 am |
  95. Jeff

    Send no more troops and bring the current troops home.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:40 am |
  96. Nicholas Lipow

    Afghanistan Is an impossibly complex nightmare for our country; let's give our deliberative and patient president a fair chance to make it right.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:41 am |
  97. Frank


    Use smart bombs and Delta Force to attack terrorest leadership when they pop their head up after we get out.. Let the Countries in question take lead fighting terrorest in their countries and fund them.


    November 12, 2009 at 10:41 am |
  98. Jeffrey Rothstein

    More troops in Afghanistan will simply chase terrorists different locations. Terrorists will not be eliminated. Hence the war in Afghanistan will not eliminate any threat to the US. It is hopeless.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:42 am |
  99. Carolyn

    We elected President Obama to lead and that is exactly what he is doing. We did not elect the generals to decide what is ultimately in the best interest of our country; they have only the military perspective.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:42 am |
  100. Hannah

    If we need a few more troops send them, just make sure that tours of duty are not un-necessarily extended. The line we have been fed from day one is that we are there only to supplement the Afghanistan army. That is what should be done. We need to help them gain respect, ability to do what they need to and be trusted by the Afghanistan people.
    Simply put, do what you've been telling us you've been trying to do. Instead of pacifying us with this line and running around doing whatever you want.
    I support and respect all active duty, reserve, and veterans; you are doing something I could not. What I do not support is the misuse and abuse of these brave men and women. Stop lying to the American people and those in service. Do what you said you would. Help the Afghanistan army stand on their own.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:43 am |
  101. Larry Keegan

    I sent an e-mail to the President 3 weeks ago. I told him I was behind all his efforts, but on Afghanistan, I believe we should not send in any more troops, since it will turn out to be another Vietnam.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:43 am |
  102. Peter Roger

    We do not know who we are feighting and can someone tell me how we will know when we have won this war?

    November 12, 2009 at 10:44 am |
  103. Bill Plummer

    The President is blindsighted by the warmongers that surround him. We CANNOT WIN the Afghan war. The Soviets tried and failed and did the smart thing, pulled out. So, what does American think we can do better, other than watch needlessly as our troops die and work with primative and unreliable weapon systems??

    November 12, 2009 at 10:44 am |
  104. karen smith

    I just came back from Afghanistan and believe that Obama should start pulling out of there. The Afghans have a very corrupt government that no amount of soldiers will reform. We need a new strategy that does not involve killing..which is such an archaic way of solving world problems. There is not one single life worth losing over a war that needs a new strategy for a solution.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:44 am |
  105. Martha Hildreth

    Heidi and producers, thank you for giving us the opportunity to give our feedback. I DO NOT want more troops sent to a country whose government is corrupt.

    HOWEVER, before an informed decision can be made, we need to ask the experts WHAT CONSTITUTES A WIN????? Is it even possible to win this type of war?

    A flip side to consider, the military is an industry, and think how many people would be out of work if we didn't go to war . –Oh, perish the thought!! Lets put the military to purposes AT HOME, in more protective measures.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:44 am |
  106. Sabrina

    What is wrong with you people!!!! We are there because of what happened on 9/11 and is still happeining today.

    He needs to do the generals advise and do it NOW! Our troops are dieing every day while he ponders what to do next. Mr. President, if you are not going to make up you mind then bring them back NOW!
    Stop the procrastation. Keep your promise to our troops!

    November 12, 2009 at 10:45 am |
  107. Rob Sepe

    We stumbled into Iraq with no real thought of 'should we', but 'when'. I like that we have a president who is giving great thought to all details before committing American lives. In my opinion...the definition of winning will not be setting up democracy and a national military given the weak Afghan government and not being able to invade the Pak tribal lands. More than likely, it will be just to maintain a presence to deny Al Qaeda a base there.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:46 am |
  108. Mary

    We need to get out of all the wars, and take care of our own borders, and problems here at home . When we voted for Obama, He PROMISED he was going to being the troops home. This is either a oil war, or religion war. HE PROMISED to been them HOME.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:47 am |
  109. Victor Bobier

    Some seem to think wrongly that, Cause History shows the Afghans have defeated their enemies in the past, Doesn't mean the people there are undefeateable and that the country is populated by Giants, As there is a 1st for everything, We have the Best Military on Earth here in the USA and We have not really even tried using It to any large degree yet in that part of the world and yet some think Oh lets run away and hide and maybe they won't find us, Well I've got news for You, They know where We live already, Heck can even half of You say correctly where in the world Afghanistan is? Or where Yemen or Somalia is at? I seriously doubt It, I at least have a good grasp of geography and so do they. This world uses airliners for transporting people and cargo(09/01/2001 in NYC and WashDC), The oceans can be crossed in hours today and they are no longer a barrier anymore. So where can We hide? No where, that is where We can hide at.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:47 am |
  110. Russell W. Bates

    Dear Heidi,
    We need to change the rules for fighting this war, which never should have been started. We dropped the atomic bomb on Japan, and ended the conflict. I was in line ready to go over seas when the surrender came. We cannot afford to sascrifice our men and women the way we are doing. The war will never end doing it this way. The innocent will just have to suffer with the guilty. Please, please, let us do what ever it takes to stop this carnage.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:48 am |
  111. Carl B.Laking

    Good Morning Heidi,
    I do not profess to be a specialist in war strategy even though I have served in the military and am now retired; however,
    1) I believe this conflict is impossible to win (in its current state)because we have to fight with human rights strategies and such action cannot win any conflict or war.
    2) In order to win any war; we must move in, defuse the enemy, and move out. Nice people finish last! ! Human rights, bleeding hearts and the sort have no place on the battle field.
    3) We cannot see our soldiers charged with inappropriate behaviour when they have killed civilians especially if the warriors are hiding behind or amongst said civilians.
    May God protect our troops
    God Bless America

    CB LaKing, retired

    November 12, 2009 at 10:48 am |
  112. Bob Brush

    I suggest that all of ouir elected representatives send one member of their family to fight on the front lines as they propose other families to do.
    Then weill see how they would vote to extend this war that we can't win.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:48 am |
  113. Ron Nagel New Paltz,NY

    Would it be possible for CNN to invite feed back from the troops in Afg. ? Troops "feet on the ground" Troops. What do they feel? What is needed? Regarding the more or less troop deployment hurdle.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:50 am |
  114. Rob Sepe

    To: Bill, who posted this:
    "too many cooks in the kitchen on this one already.......he is our leader and is as bright as they come... my instinct is to trust him and let the man breathe and body is perfect"

    Great comment. Well said.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:51 am |
  115. Linda Stevens

    I am a US Army veteran and completely support the troops. But, we have no business in Afganistan! If we there to destroy terrorists, we are undertaking an impossible job. Terrorist are everywhere! Iraq and Afganistan are only 2 small countries. We don't know these people. They don't think like we do. We don't understand their morals or beliefs. No more troops and bring the rest home! George Bush's policies have already killed more than the terrorist killed on 9/11.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:51 am |
  116. dennis linville

    first the obvious questions. Where is the air support ? Iraq was pretty much destroyed before ground troops were sent in(except to guard the oil fields of course) Our troops are in the valleys in afganistan being fired on at will by the taliban in the mountians.
    We have been fighting this war for 8 years now. Who is supplying the taliban with ammo and weapons?
    Why are we giving pakistan1.5 billion a year to fight their battle. We are not allowed in pakistan so for all we know we are supplying the money to the taliban ourselves.
    The bs war on drugs,we have been there for 8 years and the poppy fields are stronger than ever,CIA has a major drug dealer on their payroll and Obama is dealing with his brother(who by the way is trying to make a deal with the taliban(are these not the guys we are fighting?)
    If we are going to finish this war then finish it. If we are just going to let our troops get fired at for no reason then get the hell out!
    For some reason our government has refused to secure our borders even to the point they refuse to inforce immagration laws and although they have been given many warnings that terrorist are setting up in this country, they still refuse to close the borders and even let terrorist recruit on our city streets.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:52 am |
  117. Martha Hildreth

    I have now read other's comments and AGREE WITH THE POPULAR OPINION TO GET OUT. Fighting since time began over there, alQuida here at home, unnecessary losses, disrupted famlies who become dependant on the government one way or the other , impossible to protect against, they want to bleed us to weaknesses in MANY unseen ways - so many reasons to REBUILD OURSELVES AT A TIME THAT WE ARE WEAKENED.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:53 am |
  118. G L R

    Get the troups out now and cut our losses.

    The tribal factions in Afghanistan have been at war with each other for hundreds of years and there is nothing we can do to stop it.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:53 am |
  119. Frank


    Military strategy should include one year deployment only for troops. If we can't do that get out.


    November 12, 2009 at 10:54 am |
  120. Edward Glaser

    Reasons to Leave Afghanistan Immediately:
    1. When doing the wrong thing for the wrong reasons you STOP.

    2. We cannot afford any war. We are almost bankrupt.

    3. Democracy is rule by majority. It cannot be spread with force. If they took a vote in any of these countries, they would want us OUT.

    4. You don't worry about what would happens when you leave. Canada, India, Ireland etc. etc. did not fall apart when the foreign occupation ended. Occupation Never works. England could not occupy Ireland and it was only 12 miles away.

    5. We are only in war to benefit the US war machine and rape them of their oil. America needs to export something more than Death and Debt. What if the rest of the world does not want to buy Death and Debt.? Look who had gotten rich: Bush, Cheney and the Neo-cons who were heavily invested in the Military Industrial Complex.

    6. Promoting a culture of violence is detrimental to world peace and distracts us from the real American and Global problems we face. There is something fundamentally wrong with a society that spends 51% of its discretionary income on military and only 7% on education.

    7. Evidence is mounting rapidly that America demolished the Trade Centers. Nanothermite (discovered by Neils Harret, Phd in dust samples), the falling of building 7 five hours after the twin towers, vertically in 6.5 seconds, etc. etc. and our ridiculous sham of an investigation 2 years later after all of the evidence was destroyed. We spent 80 million investingating Clinton's BJ and 17 million on 9-11. I guess this is what happens when the criminals investigate the crime.

    8. Osama Bin Laden is probably back living it up in his daddy's palace, with the rest of the Bin Laden family that we ushered home immediately after 9-1, in Saudi Arabia where 15 of the 19 terrorist in 9-11 came from. Why didn't we attack Saudi Arabia. According to Richard Clark, anti terrorist Czar under 5 presidents, we created 1000 Bin Ladens through an unprovoked, preemptive attack on an Arab nation whose government we placed in power and supported.

    I am a patriot. I love America. When you love something, you want to make it better. If you love your correct them when they make mistakes. America being the policemen of the world is a mistake. It is time we stopped imperialistic empire building and took care of Americans. But first we would have to stop our entire Senate and Congress, the the exception of Dennis Cucinich and Ron Paul, from taking graft in the form of "campaign contributions". Then WE would have a democracy and we could lead by example.

    ESG in TN

    November 12, 2009 at 10:55 am |
  121. gretchen manetta

    I think all of our soldiers should be brought home. It is a hopeless, pointless war. It is a shame we have lost and ruined so many lives.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:56 am |
  122. Brett Gibson

    Within a year of 9/11, George Bush had 84% of Americans believing that Saddam Hussein perpetrated that attack. He fooled us into believing that a military strike against Iraq would be the correct retribution. Meanwhile, Osama Bin Laden ran free to strike us another day. I understand that Americans want no more war – I don’t either. The truth is that we should have been in Afghanistan from the start – NOT Iraq. Finding the people responsible for 9/11 should always have been the mission not a personal war of misinformation.

    November 12, 2009 at 10:59 am |
  123. Richard Wilson

    Before any more soldiers lives & US money is spent in Afganistan/Irag, we & our President must ask the question--What is our purpose in these countries, what do we hope to accomplish & at what cost?
    Thank you

    November 12, 2009 at 11:01 am |
  124. Robert W

    1,000 years of wars in the Middle East should clearly teach us that there can be no victory over terriorism. We must concentrate all our
    efforts on diplomacy and home land security. The invasion of Iraq
    was and is unforgivable. Americans were convinced the invasion
    was a war against terriorism. More correctly, the invasion made us
    more of a target for terriorism. Now we are considering making that
    target larger with further intrusions into Afganistan and possibly
    Pakistan. What is going on with our Government?

    November 12, 2009 at 11:01 am |
  125. Mary

    The money we are spending on the wars, would pay for the health care plan, plus Medicare, and the stimulus Being the troops home like promised. It's not our war, and we should come home, for good!!! .

    November 12, 2009 at 11:02 am |
  126. Pops Rose

    Common sense-be-darned ??? From your own reporting through the years.... good reporting I have to say !! You have constantly reported that Drugs are a major factor for fueling $$ to the enemy we fight. Being a bit old with time in the military and civilian police, I've seen what happens when the drug supply is short, "less enemy at the gates". Lou has always had it right, "protect the borders". DO-THIS and watch how fast the enemy will back-off. Thanks Heidi, your great.

    November 12, 2009 at 11:02 am |

    Attn: Heidi,

    We recommend that our Military Government Officers, break Afghanistan into Tribal Political Zones and make their Leader, the governor and be responsible (with our Military help) to maintain the Peace, organize a productive Police Force that will not tolerate the terrorists, have them cooperate with our military to build a hospital in each zone and secular schools (if the children want religion, have them go to the Mosque on Saturdays), and create Cottage Industries throughout each zone making products that can be sold domestically and for export. There is no reason why the retail stores of the Mid-East, Europe and the Americas cannot earmark some of their purchases from these cottage industries – and farmers – to start a productive economy to provide employment to the Afghan people.

    Patrick R. Sbarra – Combat Veteran – Recipient of the Purple Heart

    November 12, 2009 at 11:05 am |
  128. Gordon T. Gates

    I am so sick of people saying we can't win the war. As a verteran it hurts me to hear people say it's a war that can't be won. We are the United States of America, we can do whatever we put our minds too. However, the war of today is NOTHING like the wars of past years. We are adapting to new types of combat and in some cases, learning as we go. The president has many considerations in deciding how many more troops to send. The costs, the type of combat troops and of course the risks. Let the President do the job we hired him to do.

    November 12, 2009 at 11:07 am |
  129. Harriet Pollon

    I believe it is time to bring the troops home from Afghanistan. The Russians were there for 10 years before us with no victory and now we have been there 8 years with no end in sight.
    America is in a severe economic crisis-we need to concentrate on the welfare of our own citizens first- we have homeless and jobless people with no savings or health insurance and fading dreams of employment. When we have solved our own problems- then and only then should we continue to spend money on other countries. Right now we cannot afford it and we need to help ourselves.
    Harriet Pollon

    November 12, 2009 at 11:09 am |
  130. Gary Duffield

    More and more Americans troops are getting killed as a result of President Obama dragging his feet on making a decision about Operation Enduring Freedom. It would be fair to say while the war is unpopular, most Americans DO care about the success of counter-terrorism roles in Afghanistan. The popularity of war is easier to judge the further away from the battlefield you are.

    November 12, 2009 at 11:09 am |
  131. J.D. Folkens

    With all the technology the Air Force possesses, including the ability to pin point activity from miles away, why are we not using the Air Force more and saving the lives of the ground forces? Do we really need all the ground forces there when we really need them in places like the streets of Chicago?

    November 12, 2009 at 11:19 am |
  132. R Hopp

    Obama should pull out,the Russians couldn't handle this military. We need a political solution through the UN.

    November 12, 2009 at 11:21 am |
  133. eyvel

    I voted against the war. I think we should not send more troops. We should help to reconstruct the main cities, educated then, train their forces and get out.

    Did we learn anything about fighting the Afghanis.! Ask the Russians.

    We make a mistake fighting the Taliban. Did we win the war-against-drugs at home? NOOO Well..

    November 12, 2009 at 11:22 am |
  134. Randy

    lets get out, send the people from the gangs from this country over their since they always want to fight and kill and see what they can do

    November 12, 2009 at 11:26 am |
  135. R J Mitchellette

    Attn: Heidi: I hope Pres. O'Bama decides to not send combat troops to Afghanistan. We need to win this war but it will not be with bullets, it will be winning the minds and hearts of the Afghani people by building up their infrastructure and training their own troops. More combat troops will just feed the fires of discontent and do very little to solve to real issue therein.
    The Afgani people have proven their resolve and committment in combat when they ousted the Russian forces so they can certainly do a repeat performance against the terrorist, who are a fraction of the power of the Russians.
    We also need to extinguish the poppy crops once and for all to cut-off the key source of revenue for the terrorist. We need to quit hegging on this issue by reimbursing the farmers for lost income from their then non-existing crops. The money spent in reinbursement will be far less and more effective than the money to be spent sending 34,000 more troops and be a giant step in defeating the terrorist.

    R. J. Mitchellette Veteran.

    November 12, 2009 at 11:37 am |
  136. Victor Bobier

    Some here say We have no business there and that We started this war and that this war is illegitimate, Bah humbug, Al Qaeda attacked New York City, Washington DC and then there was flight 93 that crashed in Pennsylvania, Those attacks were launched from Afghanistan and the Taliban were harboring Al Qaeda and allowing Al Qaeda to work from Afghanistan, The Taliban and Al Qaeda can be defeated and must be defeated there, To leave is to give them a large victory that they can crow about to get more recruits with, Remote Drones are nice, But they are no substitute for taking and holding the high ground on nearby mountain ridges as the Taliban are doing just that when they attack now(they don't need to hold the ridges, just to attack from them), As was demonstrated by a small base of ours that was in a valley, We need to have good strategy and that strategy is to take high ground(the flanks of a valley/passes), any mountain passes and then advance some more all while taking more territory just like the island hopping campaign in the Pacific in WWII when the US fought/defeated the fanatical forces of Imperial Japan back then.

    November 12, 2009 at 11:40 am |
  137. Joan Healy

    Afghanistan - Where Empires Go to Die

    Genghis Khan could not hold onto Afghanistan. Neither will the United States.
    I am opposed to sending more troops to Afghanistan and there by supporting a corrupt government.
    This is a region of the world that has never been defeated militarily. It is where empires go to die. The Greeks, Indians, Persians, Mongolians, British and Russians have tried to hold Afghanistan, but never succeeded.

    George Santayana said "Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it"

    US Representative Joe Sestek (Pennsylvania), former Admiral in the US Navy for 31 years who was in Afghanistan, believes new troops are not the answer to the problems there. He believes returning to the strategies of 2001 and limiting our goals to defeating the Al Qaeda is the way to go.

    November 12, 2009 at 11:42 am |
  138. Amanda G.

    I think our troops should come home. I not only have friends in different branches but a husband in the US Army. Everyday my friends overseas are losing their's time to come home!!!

    November 12, 2009 at 11:56 am |
  139. Gary Hurd

    Our civilian leadership, in their infinite wisdom surrendered to the North Vietnamese in 1975 and we suffered nothing more than humiliation around the world. However, if we abandon Afghanistan and essentially wave the white flag on the war on terror, our enemies will be emboldened and we saw on 9-11-2001 what they can do. So it would appear that the presidents choices are to deal with them now in Afghanistan or later in the U.S.A.

    November 12, 2009 at 12:04 pm |
  140. Victor Bobier

    In the Military ones life can end at anytime, Home or abroad as Ft Hood has so recently proved. My Dad and Uncle served in WWII and yes I know they were shot at, How much I don't know, But one serves and hopes for the best, Although that may not always happen as War is Hell, Hell needs to be fought over there where the enemy is at, Not here. The Taliban don't liberate people, Nor do they talk to Diplomats, Remember Daniel Pearl? He was beheaded on TV, That's who We're dealing with over there, They have blood feuds and teach their kids to kill those who aren't Muslims, Leaving now is stupid, It's a mess over there and the place needs the rats cleaned out first before We leave. But then We didn't start this war there, They(the Taliban and Al Qaeda) did so on 09/11/2001. Never forget that date, It's our 2nd Pearl Harbor as nearly 2900 people died on that day in 4 airliners in our skies and in 3 buildings(The Pentagon[repaired] and the World Trade Centers Twin Towers[which have not yet been replaced as that 1776' tall building is currently being built on Ground Zero]).

    November 12, 2009 at 12:13 pm |
  141. Alan

    Can someone tell me what "WIN" means when referring to Afghanistan? Previous administrations mentioned "winning" as the strategy for our troops in multiple wars, but no one, to my knowledge has ever clearly defined what "winning" means.

    November 12, 2009 at 12:27 pm |
  142. Bijay

    War has to end only after restoring peace and ensuring prosperity for the local communities. Extremist are geting more voilent and endagering the peace and progress for the entire world. I believe that very first thing is to block all the funding sources that goes to extremist. If US is facing funding crisis for the war then how come such a small but volatile extremist is able to sustain the war. Next we need to have our strategies top secret and attack their major training areas. Last but not the least we have to stop this generation from joining them and get the maximum support and faith from the local communites.

    November 12, 2009 at 12:43 pm |
  143. Trung Nguyen

    Sun Tzu's art of war states clearly, it is the job of a countries leader to make policy. Once the policy has been determined it is the job of the general to determine strategy.

    I believe doing the right thing in taking his time on determining the strategy to take in Afghanistan. We shouldn't be making hasty decisions when sending up to 40000 men and women into harms way. Once Obama has decided on his policy in Afghanistan, as stated in the Art of War, he should step aside and give the general every resource that is necessary to realize that policy. This is were Rumsfeld failed. civilian leadership should stick to policy and let the military expert determine strategy.

    November 12, 2009 at 1:09 pm |
  144. Victor Bobier

    Winning means to kill more of the Enemy than the enemy is killing our forces, For 8 years Afghanistan has been neglected and now some say We're losing the war over there, So the US should run away and hide(defeatists, quislings and peaceniks) and want to have peace at any cost, Al Qaeda(Osama bin Laden) said peace would be possible, If people in the US were Muslims and only Muslims, Of course then He'd ask those same Muslims to be Jihadists(Terrorists) and so the fighting would sadly continue. Am I a Muslim? Nope, Do I dislike Muslims? No, I've seen only two(maybe 3) and they didn't bother Me or anyone that I saw nearby, Are all Muslims Jihadists? No. Could some Muslims be Jihadists? Yes. Are the Jihadists over there and are some over here? Yes. Can they be stopped, Yes. Does the rest of the world out number Muslims? Yes, As there are about 5.2 billion people who are not Muslim and about 1.5 billion who are Muslims, So It's best to defeat the Taliban & Al Qaeda now, Rather than later, While the Taliban & Al Qaeda are like a small yellow flowering weed to be wiped out from ones lawn, Instead of a pandemic disease.

    November 12, 2009 at 1:10 pm |
  145. E

    First of all "DUH!"

    Do you really think that sending in more troops will "Win" this war??
    Is this a war to be won? If we send 40,000 more troops then we loose that many more lives! Then what? send more?

    Hear's the facts: Billions of American lives are lost every year to Mother Nature, due to climate change.
    Thousands of American lives are being lost to H1N1.
    Sleeper cells are poping up all over the US. 1 in fact killed 13 American troops and left many more critically wonded, and HE was supposto be American! What was the turnout of that? He's being appaluded in the very country we are trying to defend!!!!!
    GET OUT!
    As I have always known, this war is pointless! Listen to your fellow Americans, save the money. Because there are many other things that are going to come, that we, just might need the money for.

    November 12, 2009 at 1:11 pm |
  146. leo Porter

    I voted for Obama to get us out not to send more troops. When all the military has is a hammer everything looks like a nail. De clair victory and Get totally out now! leo

    November 12, 2009 at 1:16 pm |
  147. Jan

    I believe that a decisive victory in Afghanistan cannot be accomplished without overwhelming, sustained force, combined with large scale spending to build a viable economy, so that the Afghani people can thrive without the illegal drug trade. We and our current allies in this conflict cannot afford the resources that are necessary to accomplish either goal on our own.

    What is needed is for China, Russia and other nations, large and small, who are in a position to help, to get up from the sidelines and step up with massive support and numbers of troops. This requires effective, swift diplomacy. If this is not done, we have no choice but to withdraw as soon as possible, before more of our lives and increasingly scarce resources are lost.

    I hope President Obama sees this message and takes it into consideration.

    November 12, 2009 at 1:42 pm |
  148. Andy Leone

    To President Obamma, Sir, to our Militrary Leaders, to the Citizens of U.S.A.. I ask? Is the war all about Ali, (God), Or is it the the love of the Drug Money the Taliban , is making around the world? If it is the latter. America, and all our Allies, should back out of the war and protect our own Borders, stop the smuggling of the drugs, into our Country which will snuff out the Mighty Drug Dollar. Its the Drug Dollar which is financing their side of the war. America is the biggest contributor to both sides of the war. If we just bring our troops home, and protect our Borders, and keep their drugs out of our Country, by protecting our own Borders, and stop the Smuggling. Stoping them from making the money to finance their side of the war. By letting them make Drug Money, keeps this war going. America can keep our Troops Home and fight the war behind our own borders. Where they will be safe from the Taliban, by keeping the Taliban and their Drugs out of our country. It would cost alot less in money and lives. Bring our troops home. Pay our troops to protect our borders, keeping our money here, at home in America.
    Giving our troops jobs all the way around our country, and all the way threw our Country. North, South, East,& West. This also would stop the Crime in America. Using the same concept with the OIl Companys. If America devellopeds our own Energy, America can stop spending our Money on Oil for Energy. It would stop the pollution, Give our troops, and our people of this country jobs, producing our own clean Energy. Making America, and our Allie Countrys stronger and safer.
    If America and our Allies would protect our own Borders, and stop the Finacing the Taliban, and the Oil Ticoons. They don't have a war to fight. The Money just won't be there to fight for. It's all about Money. The evil of all things.
    We need to pull out of Afganastan, keep the Money out of the Talibans hands, and the hands of the Oil Company.
    Perhaps, America and Along with our Allies, Maybe we can stop all wars. At least the wars we're in now. Thank you, Mr. President Obamma, and to all American Millitary Leaders.
    Thank you CNN, to consider my message. Andy Leone

    November 12, 2009 at 1:50 pm |
  149. E

    What is an Insurgent?

    It is a person who does not want his or her country to be occupied.

    If some foreign country came to America and busted into your house in full military garb, screaming at you in a foreign language and took away your family members to be taken to a prison camp and tortured without even being charged with a crime for years on end, would we have an insurgency in the USA? YOU BET WE WOULD!!!!

    They have been in a civil war or hundreds of years. We had a civil war. Did we want some foreing country to come in and say the war is now over because we are occupying you. NO.

    We have no Business there and should leave immediately.


    November 12, 2009 at 2:09 pm |
  150. MR.AL

    The stratergy should be come home. Havent we spent enough lives time and money on two Wars we should not be in. GEORGE W.BUSH started these wars and I don't believe the reasons given were justified In eight years Bush spent more money and can't tell anybody where he spent it because HE DOESN'T KNOW HIMSELF or so conservatives say or won't tell. These two wars are being fought out of GREED.and the lower class in America are taking the brunt. with no jobs nowhere to live and all because of these two wars.

    November 12, 2009 at 2:30 pm |
  151. Albert Sutphin

    Have we not learned any lessons from the past? Nine years in Vietnam (I was there) and nothing gained? You know the history there. Eight years and counting in Afganistan? Are you kidding me? Bring the troops home and to h... with an exit strategy! Guard our borders, keep the terrorists out, and we'll be fine. 9/11 came about from people already in the US, not from anywhere else. Use these troops at home! Maybe Fort Hood would not have happened.

    November 12, 2009 at 2:55 pm |
  152. David

    I think that there should be a hotline installed so that Afghanistan and the US can communicate whenever they need to and so the US can give to Afghanistan everything that country needs when it is needed. It may be possible, there may be an avenue to work through conflict in Afghanistan peacably and that could be the hold up on strategy. Figuring out that avenue. The idea being that more troops ensure the troops' safety but plunge the country into conflict unless we satisfy some of the complaints and conflicts with ready and back and forth personal two way communication.

    November 12, 2009 at 2:56 pm |
  153. David

    This is kind of my point about the hotline. and p.s. the hotline should be one where a living being answers the phone, not just a chance for a country's leader to record a 30 second message. Not being rude. I feel that's something we can't do without.

    November 12, 2009 at 3:06 pm |
  154. Barbara Collison

    I saw the story about Kara. Advise ALL patients to show their name band to the care giver. If the care giver does not ask to see it, have the patiesn tell them "You did not ask to see my name band" Fairly simple. One step.

    November 12, 2009 at 3:27 pm |
  155. Pastor Dennis


    Like I said in an earlier comment- WE have the technology to go after the terrorists with high-powered drones! Why waste human LIFE- our human LIFE in a country where its not in our best interest. We are not fighting communism, we are fighting fools who blow up each other and anyone who gets in the way. I was in Viet-Nam for nineteen months, I know when its time to pull out. I was in a Marine Recon unit, I seen lives lost-plenty. All General McDummy wants to do is play war games with our young men!! That's what they did in Viet-Nam and 58,000 came back in body bags!!!

    Pastor D

    November 12, 2009 at 6:23 pm |

    WE need to pull out now and i pray that our president will listen to the very respected MARINE captain who resigned from the state department the other day.I will always trust people like him before any political leader any day of the weak! I was in a very secure place in the AIR FORCE at HICHAM AFB at the beganing of the senseless vietnam war and i will never forget seeing the very faces of our young soldiers in the terminal going through HICHAM AFB – AND SOON AFTER THE BODY BAGS WERE COMINING BACK! THERE was no news of it back in the states than and the military was telling no one! I WORKED ON A PLANE ONCE that had a loaded bomb planted on it that our OSI told me that when the aircraft went through inspection at TRAVIS AFB someone put it in #1 fuel tank but it failed to go off and he thought it was put in it in the PHILLIPINES.THE air force used a lot of civilians on our MATS AFB so i suddenly realized as a young 23 year old airman a very good learning experience.I loved the AIR FORCE but seeing body bags coming back i suddenly i became a man because the air force tried to get us to re-inlist for what they called a littleBRUSH-WAR! THIS was way before cnn and fox news! I WAS 18 fresh off the farm in MINNESOTA BUT i witnessed GARY POWERS coming through on the U-2 and he stopped over at hikam for r&r and when he left i was working on a plane by the runway and withnessed the plane take off like a rocket straight up in the air andn he later got shot down over THE SOVIET UNION. I say all this because i really want to know why AMERICAN WARRIERS should be sacrifice for WHAT?? WE WILL NOT CHANGE the muslims in there radical religion ! fort hod is a prime EXAMPLE! LETs hold our PRESIDENT AND HIS (YES-MEN)LIKE BUSH HAD ACCOUNTABLE! ITS A NEW day and its someones SON OR DAD OR DAUGHTER ,BROTHER whos life is gone.THE LAST TIME I CHECKED IRAQ DID NOT INVADE US nor DID THIER NEIGHBOR.OUR lack of leadership from THE BUSH ERA AND NOW I fear with this PRESIDENT will only make us weaker.I belive our ennemys see the occuppiers as the young MARINE CAPTAIN IS TRYINY TO TELL US that i will belive him and get serious about imigration and illegal ones crossing over in TEXAS AND CANADA WHERE their are very little check points and if we have to be carefull and support our brave people in the FBI and let them do thier job.

    November 13, 2009 at 6:47 am |
  157. LeeAnn

    I feel that if we escalate by sending in more troops we will exacerbate the situation in Afghanistan. I think if we consider keeping a lighter footprint in the country we can always watch over our strategic interests there and monitor the Afghan Gov't which as it stands now is not a Viable partner in this WAR. We need to put more Resources with the aide of NATO countries and make this a more Worldly mission than an American mission that is just causing more uprising ie.. Fort Hood and the hatred of America. We need to de-escalate and monitor the border region with Pakistan by getting more border countries involved since they have a strategic interest in the refugee problems and border crossing. India and Russia should play a vital role along with our NATO allies to create a more peaceful region.

    November 13, 2009 at 10:39 am |
  158. Pops Rose

    I wrote you the other day and I try not to let the so-called-war thing bother me. From what I read in the History books..... NO-CIVILIZATION has EVER defeated these people..."let alone the terrorists within". Whats wrong with calculated troop withdrawl.... put a hammer on the drug traffic and keep our support presence in the country with un-maned drones and their great fire power. Seems like a Win-Win for us all. God bless America and our brave troops.

    November 14, 2009 at 12:48 pm |
  159. David

    Heidi, I read an AP article that said that the President is, by taking time making the decision sending the message that Afghansitan has to get itself together, that the President won't just rubber stamp plans, and that the public should know that sending more troops isn't the only answer in that country. Sort of complicated. I feel he just wants to see success and peace come to Afghanistan and he's looking for a readjustment to best possibly help that country, support the govt as it gets on its feet and becomes able to hold the country together and start making progress on a number of issues, medical facilities, education, schools, safe travel, for instance. That makes sense to me.

    November 14, 2009 at 4:25 pm |
  160. Simon Abla

    In my humble opniion, this President promissed a change whcih so far has not been see. You cannot call me a racist becuase I was born outside the US, however I thank God that I call this country the best country in the world, and willing to die for the principles of freedom.
    Now let me as you all .-If your government cannot handle a simple FLu vacine and we have 4000 dead how are we going to take care of Health and the rest of the world. See people Obama might be wrong but the most problem that we have are those people in Washington that are pushing for thier Socilistic ideas, all of them have had sweat deals or other.
    I would like to ask all of you how many are willing to go and Live in Russia China or Belarus- the answer is none becuase No matter what AMERICA is the best country in the world. The only problem some people have not read World history and only knows what happens in thier state.

    November 14, 2009 at 6:17 pm |
  161. Nirav A Desai

    There has been a lot of discussion about Pres. Obama's plan in Afghanistan with most of the focus being on whether there will be a troop surge or not. A longer term problem that he faces is of a stable government in Afghanistan after the US Troops leave.

    Hamid Karzai's government has been reported to be one of the most corrupt governments which has not been able to contain its own people especially the Pashtuns.

    I was seeing an interview with Pervez Musharraf on GPS this week and he had by far the most practical suggestion that I have heard to forming a stable government in Afghanistan.

    Based on his extensive experience in this region he suggested the following:

    The Pasthuns, which comprise a vast majority of the Afghans, have never been governed in history and the whole concept of a central government is alien to them. They still live in small self sufficient groups and have no vision or wish for a greater Afghanistan.

    Since the only solution which will be stable in the long run, will have to include these Pashtuns, it would be the right thing to get all the Pashtun leaders from all these communities together and make them come at a consensus as to what they want the Afghan future to be.

    Any form of government imposed from the top will not work. If there is to be change in Afghanistan, it will have to come from within as has happened in all the revolutions in this world's history.

    November 16, 2009 at 1:16 am |
  162. Nirav A Desai

    As far as the military strategy goes, there will be a lot of information necessary to make the decision that will be classified. So we should support the US commanders on the ground in whatever way we can. The only decision that was in the power of the civilians, was to whether we go to war or not. After that, the execution has to be done the way the commanders on the ground want it to be done.

    November 16, 2009 at 1:23 am |
  163. William

    What in the world is this president doing in communist China 2 stepping with the Chinese when we have dying troops screaming for help?????????

    This entire administration is completely out of touch with reality and America. I guess "We the people" have absolutely no say at all anymore. Can't wait for 2012 elections. Need to vote EVERYONE out of office and get new blood in there!!

    November 16, 2009 at 9:24 am |
  164. Keith

    All of America agrees, going after the terrorists who supported and financed these people should be caught , tried and locked up . So why not house and try them in an American Max Prison? Wake up America. President Obama and his administration are doing the right thing.

    November 16, 2009 at 9:29 am |
  165. jo

    They should not be tried in public courts.

    November 16, 2009 at 10:27 am |
  166. G Austin

    We should go wherever the enemy goes; so If Al Queda has moved to another region we should take the war to them.

    November 16, 2009 at 10:30 am |
  167. Don

    All I can say is "get-r-done" and lets move on...

    November 16, 2009 at 10:38 am |
  168. Gayle in New York City

    Why should we be concerned about these guys ranting publicly? As if followers need any further persuasion?

    November 16, 2009 at 11:00 am |
  169. Anthony Marine

    I believe we need to let the Generals do the job they are trained to do and that is to engage the enemy and destroy them. I believe the politicians are turning this war into another Vietnam. Lets get in there full force and destroy the Taliban and do whatever it takes to destroy Al Queda. We must show strength and determination or our enemies will think we are weak as a people and a nation and will continue to try to destroy us. Our free society is exactly what they hate. They believe that if we do not accept their faith and their beliefs, then we are to be destroyed. That is what the weak-willed people in our society do not understand. The goal of the Muslim Extremists is to work for world domination. Wake up people. these extremists have no problem killing innocent people to achieve their goals. If the extremists had their way, we would not be able to write these comments on fear of death.

    November 16, 2009 at 11:09 am |
  170. Jean Hillemann

    I believe the official rationing of health care is about to begin. Jean Hillemann, MO

    November 17, 2009 at 1:21 pm |
  171. MenfesQidus

    Comments are moderated by CNN, in accordance with the CNN Comment Policy, and may not appear on this blog until they have been reviewed and deemed appropriate for posting. Also, due to the volume of comments we receive, not all comments will be posted.
    When any acts of the government ae called in question, it ensures publicity and discussion the utility of which does not require that the public at large should comprehend the piont at issue, provided there are any individuals among them who do for, a merely moral responsibility not being responsibility to the collective people, but to every separate person among them who forms a judgment, opinions may be weighed as well as counted, and the approbation or disapprobation of one person well versed in the subject may outweigh that of thousands who know nothing about it all.

    Keep on the good work Heidi

    November 18, 2009 at 5:02 pm |
  172. Betty McKinley

    Whatever the decision, if we are going to be at war, let's be at war. Why not have a draft, so that our armed forces are not returned to the battleground over and over. The population of the US does not even realize we are at war, unless they are involved because of a loved one serving. No wonder our suicide rate is so high, they are exhausted, and depressed.

    November 20, 2009 at 5:42 pm |

    lets all keep the pressure on our government toget out that corupt land now while we can save lives and better useu our resorces here at home and use drons like our VICE PRESIDENT SUGGESTED.give our boys a break ! I will soon be 70 and most of my life we were at some sort of war. WHO HAS EVER BEEN SUGSESEFUL THERE!

    November 21, 2009 at 5:11 am |
  174. GERALD


    November 22, 2009 at 7:49 pm |
  175. rene

    Many Americans forget two important factors in this war .. Troops are not being DRAFTED into the military for this war, so anyone who compares this war to Vietnam needs to return to school and get another history lesson...our troops swear an OATH to protect from all terrorism DOMESTIC AND FOREIGN!
    Two– The terrorist we are fighting high jacked planes on our soil, and killed thousands of innocent people ,they strap bombs to themselves and walked into populated places and kill as many people as they can<It simply comes down to -Fight them HERE or FIGHT THEM THERE!!
    If Obama addressed America and said "We are going to bring all troops home , and fight Terrorism here.We will have all our troops home, but we will have to throw all your freedoms out the window and police every everybody maybe we can infiltrate cells and maybe find a terrorist going to college, or learning to fly,or running a hidden cell before they walk into a church and kill a congregation, or hijack a plane with the intention of flying it into an civilian target,or walk onto a military base and kill our soldiers before they can even be trained.Maybe we will get lucky."I think a lot more people would support policing the terrorism problem in Afganistan.

    November 23, 2009 at 9:58 am |
  176. roger johnson

    THE PRESIDENT is in an awkward position and i do not think he sees for the forest! 30or 35000 more troops to be killed for what?? use the droans and have hit squads if you must and use our AIR POWER LIKE WE DID IN WW11, at lest we had a government with the south vietnamese. WE WILL NEVER WIN A GROUND WAR IN THAT GOD FORSAKEN COUNTRY!! HISTORY is a good teacher and we should build a BIG UNDERGROUND WITH OUR ALIES to hunt and kill the scumbag muslims who kill thier own people!! THERE ARE GOOD MUSLIMS BUT A RADICAL HAS A DIFFERENT MINDSET! THE klukux clan carried the cross in thier stupid gatherings and killed and tortured inocent black people in AMERICA NOT SO LONG AGO.I CAN TELL YOU I HAD A LOT OF BLACK FRIENDS back in the day but in AMERICA we as a people realized it was wrong! THESE RADICAL MUSLIMS HAVE BEEN DOING THIS FOR CENTURIES. DO you think AMERICA is going to stop it.DUH??NO we will be forced to go to manny funerals for our troops and spend more money on our war machine and pretend we are making change over there but may i suggest a book to read that i doubt manny of you have not bothered to dust off and read its called THE BIBLE!!

    November 25, 2009 at 9:47 am |