Obama Firm On Afghanistan Deadline
CBS News' Chip Reid reports President Barack Obama is going to stay firm on the July 2011 for troop withdrawal in Afghanistan.
I asked White House spokesman Robert Gibbs if senators were incorrect calling the date a "target."
After the briefing, Gibbs went to the president for clarification. Gibbs then called me to his office to relate what the president said. The president told him it IS locked in – there is no flexibility. Troops WILL start coming home in July 2011. Period. It's etched in stone. Gibbs said he even had the chisel.
I do not see Obama being able to keep that promise. The Hamid Karzai government is corrupt. Former Deputy Special Representative Peter Galbraith says he was ordered to cover up the fixed election.
“At other critical stages in the election process,” he wrote in The Washington Post, “I was similarly ordered not to pursue the issue of fraud.
The New York Times reports Ahmed Wali Karzai, the brother of Afghanistan's president, is a major player in the heroin trade. Afghanistan's CIA station chief attempted to have President Karzai move his brother out of the country to no avail.
The current number of Afghan born troops is 90,000. The police force is 93,000. Police jobs are auctioned off. High ranking police officers use their positions to enrich themselves. Afghanistan is ranked as the second most corrupt country in the world. There is no realistic way for Afghanistan to reach the benchmarks Obama has set.