The Afghan Drawdown: Explain Yourselves!

Reporting on Politics and Policy.
June 23 2011 10:10 AM

The Afghan Drawdown: Explain Yourselves!

The president's Afghanistan speech is being followed up by hearings with Hillary Clinton, Adm. Mike Mullen, and Undersecretary of Defense Michele Flournoy. The latter administration officials are in the House, which promises to lead to more contentious questions. In the run-up, Mullen and Flournoy are explaining that the plan got the sign-off of commanders -- including David Petraeus* -- and is obviously proof of success.

"We did have it right," said Mullen. "The strategy is working." If the U.S. didn't draw down, "we would have made it easier for the Karzai administration to increase their dependence on us."


Flournoy explained that the country would be better off as the drawdown -- 33,000 fewer troops by the end of 2012 -- concludes.

"By the time we complete our drawdown, we anticipate that the Afghan security forces will have added an additional 55,000 members."

A whole lot of optimism in there. 

*Unsurprising, but something that they need to say.

David Weigel is a reporter for Bloomberg Politics



The Ebola Story

How our minds build narratives out of disaster.

The Budget Disaster That Completely Sabotaged the WHO’s Response to Ebola

PowerPoint Is the Worst, and Now It’s the Latest Way to Hack Into Your Computer

The Shooting Tragedies That Forged Canada’s Gun Politics

A Highly Unscientific Ranking of Crazy-Old German Beers


Welcome to 13th Grade!

Some high schools are offering a fifth year. That’s a great idea.


The Actual World

“Mount Thoreau” and the naming of things in the wilderness.

Want Kids to Delay Sex? Let Planned Parenthood Teach Them Sex Ed.

Would You Trust Walmart to Provide Your Health Care? (You Should.)

  News & Politics
Oct. 22 2014 9:42 PM Landslide Landrieu Can the Louisiana Democrat use the powers of incumbency to save herself one more time?
Continuously Operating
Oct. 22 2014 2:38 PM Crack Open an Old One A highly unscientific evaluation of Germany’s oldest breweries.
Dear Prudence
Oct. 23 2014 6:00 AM Monster Kids from poorer neighborhoods keep coming to trick-or-treat in mine. Do I have to give them candy?
  Double X
The XX Factor
Oct. 23 2014 8:51 AM The Male-Dominated Culture of Business in Tech Is Not Great for Women
  Slate Plus
Tv Club
Oct. 22 2014 5:27 PM The Slate Walking Dead Podcast A spoiler-filled discussion of Episodes 1 and 2.
Brow Beat
Oct. 23 2014 9:00 AM Exclusive Premiere: Key & Peele Imagines the Dark Side of the Make-A-Wish Program
Future Tense
Oct. 22 2014 5:33 PM One More Reason Not to Use PowerPoint: It’s The Gateway for a Serious Windows Vulnerability
  Health & Science
Bad Astronomy
Oct. 23 2014 7:30 AM Our Solar System and Galaxy … Seen by an Astronaut
Sports Nut
Oct. 20 2014 5:09 PM Keepaway, on Three. Ready—Break! On his record-breaking touchdown pass, Peyton Manning couldn’t even leave the celebration to chance.