Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Tuesday's trackings

It now seems clear that someone--either high up in the military or perhaps even within the Obama administration itself--leaked the McChrystal report yesterday in order to pressure the administration into increasing our efforts in Afghanistan:
“It’s an effort — whether by [McChrystal] or by somebody in the Pentagon or maybe the White House — to say, ‘You’ve asked the military to give you not what you want to hear but what you have to know. Now it’s up to you as commander in chief to decide if you think you have a better idea.’” The leak is a shot across the bows, [former Clinton administration Secretary of Defense William Cohen] said, of Vice President Joe Biden and of leading congressional Democrats who oppose a buildup in Afghanistan."

There are divisions within this administration. It happens to all presidencies...but it's occurring rather early in this one.

Well, sometimes it's hard to come up with new superlatives or descriptions of Indianapolis Colts games, such as last night's contest. They hardly have the ball, the Dolphins run for well over 200 yards and dominate time of possession, but again...Peyton Manning finds ways to win, helping the Colts beat Miami, 27-23. The Colts must find a way to fix that run defense, though; giving up that kind of yardage is no way to win consistently, especially in the playoffs. One wonders why, as Jon Gruden suggested during the game last night, the Colts didn't move their safety up into the box every time the "wildcat" formation came up, to help stuff the run. Clearly the Dolphins weren't going to pass out of that formation. At the same time, on a positive note, last night's game showed how important it is for Manning to have Dallas Clark in the game at tight end. He had over 150 yards in receptions last night. And the defense did give a tremendous effort on that last drive of the game to hold the Dolphins out--they had to be tired.

BASEBALL DIARY: the Tigers were off last night. The Twins beat the White Sox, so the Tigers' lead in the AL Central is now at 2 and 1/2 games. Nervous time.
Meanwhile the Cubs at least have not quit--they beat the Brewers last night 10-2. They'll likely finish at over .500 for the season. Next season will find them without Milton Bradley--thank goodness. Derek Lee has had an outstanding year--he now has 107 RBIs.
And the Texas Rangers haven't quit either--they finally scored some runs last night and beat Oakland, 10-3. It was good to see Kevin Millwood rally and pitch a good game--he's really struggled. This is a team that has a lot of good young players--next season, it will be fun to watch them develop.

Rich Lowry makes a great point today: over the past couple of years, Democrats--and President Obama especially--insisted that they were committed to Afghanistan, that it was important for the U.S. to win there, to defeat the terrorists there, to stick it out there until we won. But now? Now they sound a different tune--especially the president:
"The Democratic vote that counts most is that of Pres. Barack Obama, who looks as wobbly as the old Tacoma Narrows Bridge. It’s understandable that he’d want to deliberate carefully about a decision to send as many as 45,000 more troops. But on his Sunday-show marathon, Obama questioned the premises of the war. He complained of “mission creep” in Afghanistan and claimed, “I wanted to narrow it.”If so, this is the only news from his mind-numbing round of interviews. In August, he told the Veterans of Foreign Wars that Afghanistan is “a war of necessity,” because “if left unchecked, the Taliban insurgency will mean an even larger safe haven from which al-Qaeda would plot to kill more Americans.” In March, he announced “a comprehensive new strategy for Afghanistan and Pakistan.” He called for reversing the Taliban’s gains by taking the fight to the insurgents, training the Afghan security forces and promoting a better Afghan government. If the mission “creeped,” Obama did it.If Obama never meant what he said about Afghanistan — or has changed his mind — this is the time to say it."

Just so--and Republicans and conservatives need to start hammering away on this point. Once again, our liberal friends are going wobbly when it comes to the use of force, when it comes to keeping our national security commitments, when it comes to defeating the enemy (remember Vietnam?). They can't be allowed to get away with it.