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Recursion Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-15-11 08:57 AM
Original message
Before Medal of Honor, beer with Obama
Edited on Thu Sep-15-11 08:59 AM by Recursion
http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2011/09/15/politics/main...



Dakota Meyer saved 36 lives from an ambush in Afghanistan and the former Marine will collect the nation's highest military honor at the White House on Thursday. While he is receiving the Medal of Honor, Meyer's slain comrades will be memorialized in hometown ceremonies at his request.

...

Meyer charged through heavy insurgent gunfire on five death-defying trips in an armored Humvee to save 13 Marines and Army soldiers and another 23 Afghan troops pinned down by withering enemy fire. Meyer personally killed at least eight insurgents despite taking a shrapnel wound to one arm as he manned the gun turret of the Humvee and provided covering fire for the soldiers, according to the military.

President Barack Obama will bestow the medal at a White House ceremony. The two have also met privately, having a beer on a patio outside the Oval Office on Wednesday.

"Over the weekend, the President's staff called Meyer in preparation for Thursday's Medal of Honor ceremony at the White House. Meyer asked the staffer if he could have a beer with the President. POTUS invited Dakota to come by the White House this afternoon," spokesman Jay Carney tweeted.


:patriot:

Meyer apparently asked Obama for advice on "how to be successful"... not sure he needs any help on that one... Semper fi.
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Mimosa Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-15-11 09:00 AM
Response to Original message
1. Nice photo! n/t
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Romulox Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-15-11 09:00 AM
Response to Original message
2. What exactly is the mission in Afghanistan, Mr. President????
:wtf:
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rgbecker Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-15-11 09:04 AM
Response to Reply #2
5. Kill people, save people then have a beer to talk it over.....like every other war.
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Romulox Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-15-11 09:05 AM
Response to Reply #5
6. That's why I found the picture macabre, rather than inspiring--the President is the one
who ordered this man's comrades in harms way. For reasons that I have not heard the President fully articulate...
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Recursion Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-15-11 09:12 AM
Response to Reply #6
7. He articulated them pretty clearly during the campaign
In Meyer's case, the Battle of Ganjgal happened because the village elders in Ganjgal had asked US forces to come to the town and drive the taliban out after the taliban turned abusive and violent towards them. Unfortunately the Battalion commander ignored intel about the strength of the taliban forces; he has been reprimanded and taken out of command after an investigation.
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Romulox Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-15-11 09:15 AM
Response to Reply #7
8. We're to refer to Obama's campaign speech's to understand his Afghanistan mission?
That's tough to swallow.
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Recursion Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-15-11 09:19 AM
Response to Reply #8
9. The ones about Afghanistan, sure
He talked a lot about the need to have many fewer troops in Iraq and many more troops in Afghanistan, and why. The intel screw-up aside this battle was a pretty good example of that; the US forces established enough security for the Afghan security forces to eventually take over security for the area. Kunar is one of the main conduits into Pakistan and the villages are starting to push out the Taliban.
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Romulox Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-15-11 09:22 AM
Response to Reply #9
11. Perhaps you misunderstand what a "mission" is--I mean the "goal", the "endgame" of all this killing.
:shrug:
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Recursion Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-15-11 09:36 AM
Response to Reply #11
18. Well, "mission", "goal", and "endgame" are all different things
Which one are you asking about?

The mission of ISAF is publicly available and was defined by the United Nations. It is currently conducting Post-Phase-IV operations to train Afghan security forces and conduct agricultural development to help farmers grow and export crops other than poppies (the US National Guard has created Agricultural Development Teams for this; they're pretty interesting units).

You don't have to agree with the mission but pretending it's some big secret is kind of silly.
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Romulox Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-15-11 09:50 AM
Response to Reply #18
24. Right. I used the word "mission". I only expanded to clarify.
"The mission of ISAF is publicly available and was defined by the United Nations. "

This is utter nonsense. The United States' military mission in Afghanistan is not defined by the United Nations; it is defined by the Commander in Chief.
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Recursion Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-15-11 09:54 AM
Response to Reply #24
26. Did I imagine UNSCR 1386?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_Nations_Security_Co...

Since Kabul still hasn't come up with a Status of Forces Agreement, that's the resolution that gives NATO troops the legal authority to be in Afghanistan. The US and the rest of NATO are in Afghanistan at the request of the UN, engaged in a mission defined by the UN.
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Romulox Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-15-11 10:10 AM
Response to Reply #26
27. You seemed to have misunderstood how a UN resolution is translated into US military action.
Nobody asked about the UN resolution. We asked what the "mission" was from the perspective of US involvement, as articulated (or not) by the Commander in Chief of US armed forces. Hope this clarification helps.

"The US and the rest of NATO are in Afghanistan at the request of the UN, engaged in a mission defined by the UN."

No. US troops are in Afghanistan because they are ordered there by the US Commander in Chief; neither the UN, "village elders", NATO, nor anyone else has the authority to deploy US troops.
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Recursion Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-15-11 10:23 AM
Response to Reply #27
28. It's not that hard
The mission of ISAF was defined by the UN and the US is providing troops to fulfill that mission. What's so difficult to grasp about this?

US troops are in Afghanistan because they are ordered there by the US Commander in Chief

Right... and he ordered them there to fulfill the mission the UN tasked NATO with.
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Romulox Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-15-11 10:26 AM
Response to Reply #28
29. You either don't understand the topic, or you are attempting to change it.
It matters little which it is. You don't seem to be interested in the truth of this matter, instructing me to look to campaign speeches, village elders, NATO, or the UN to understand the President's position. I think you are confused on this matter, as are we all, as the man who can directly answer this question--namely, the President of the United States, has been virtually silent on the topic.
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Recursion Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-15-11 10:28 AM
Response to Reply #29
30. I've stated the mission five times in this thread
And somebody downthread has posted Obama himself talking about it at West Point

If you want to put your fingers in your ears and pretend "I don't like the answer" actually means "an answer was never supplied" be my guest, but it's just kind of silly.
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MineralMan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-15-11 09:21 AM
Response to Reply #8
10. Only if you're interested in finding an answer...
:shrug:
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Romulox Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-15-11 09:23 AM
Response to Reply #10
13. His positions on health care, Wall Street taxes, and trade have "evolved" significantly since then
:hi:
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MineralMan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-15-11 09:26 AM
Response to Reply #13
15. Yes, I know. I listen to his speeches. All of them.
He's also talked about Afghanistan in some of them. Did you hear them? I'm not defending the war. I'm telling you that the information you keep asking for is available. Pretending it's not is disingenuous.
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mike_c Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-15-11 09:37 AM
Response to Reply #15
19. you're the one who's being disingenuous....
Edited on Thu Sep-15-11 09:37 AM by mike_c
Obama has NEVER articulated what he hopes to achieve in Afghanistan. Sure, he's talked a lot about needing to "complete the mission," increase troop strength, and similar nonsense, but NEVER with any hint of why. Just what IS the mission? What will "winning" look like? What objectives will release us from our national obligation to continue killing brown people who've never posed the least threat to Americans? Whose surrender do we need in order to declare victory and remove our military from their country?

The war in Afghanistan is pointless. It continues through a combination of institutional inertia and reluctance to face uncomfortable truths. Further, it is a war of aggression, a crime against humanity.
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Recursion Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-15-11 09:40 AM
Response to Reply #19
21. Sure he has
Edited on Thu Sep-15-11 09:40 AM by Recursion
First off, ISAF's mission was defined by the UN, not Obama, and it is:


Mission

In support of the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, ISAF conducts operations in Afghanistan to reduce the capability and will of the insurgency, support the growth in capacity and capability of the Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF), and facilitate improvements in governance and socio-economic development in order to provide a secure environment for sustainable stability that is observable to the population.

Security

In accordance with all the relevant Security Council Resolutions, the main role of ISAF is to assist the Afghan government in the establishment of a secure and stable environment. To this end, ISAF forces conduct security and stability operations throughout the country together with the Afghan National Security Forces and are directly involved in the development of the Afghan National Security Forces through mentoring, training and equipping.


Reconstruction and development

Through its Provincial Reconstruction Teams, ISAF supports reconstruction and development (R&D) in Afghanistan, securing areas in which reconstruction work is conducted by other national and international actors. Where appropriate, and in close cooperation and coordination with GIROA and UNAMA representatives on the ground, ISAF also provides practical support for R&D efforts, as well as support for humanitarian assistance efforts conducted by Afghan government organizations, international organizations, and NGOs.


Governance

ISAF, through its Provincial Reconstruction Teams (PRTS), helps the Afghan Authorities strengthen the institutions required to fully establish good governance and rule of law and to promote human rights. The principal mission of the PRTs in this respect consists of building capacity, supporting the growth of governance structures and promoting an environment within which governance can improve.


I understand a lot of the party doesn't agree with Obama on Afghanistan, but claiming he hasn't been clear about what he wants to do there and why doesn't make any sense to me.
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mike_c Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-15-11 09:46 AM
Response to Reply #21
22. that's a description of what the forces DO, not what they need to achieve...
...in order to be DONE. I mean "conducts operations in Afghanistan to reduce the capability and will of the insurgency, support the growth in capacity and capability of the Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF), and facilitate improvements in governance and socio-economic development" all sounds really nice, but at what point will the "capability and will of the insurgency" be reduced sufficiently? When will "improvements in governance" be complete?

You've posted a description of open ended, perpetual war. There will ALWAYS be more "improvements" to be made, and as long as U.S. troops continue their occupation, there will always be "insurgents" in need of capability reduction. And it's STILL a crime against humanity.
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Recursion Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-15-11 09:49 AM
Response to Reply #22
23. That's what a mission statement is in the military
Edited on Thu Sep-15-11 09:51 AM by Recursion
First off, just as an operational point some missions have end goals and others do not (which is why I distinguished between "goal" and "mission" above). But what's so mysterious about the end goal? A government in Kabul that is capable of maintaining control over the territory of Afghanistan. You might think that's not a goal worth having troops in Afghanistan for, or even that the presence of US troops makes that less likely (there are good arguments for both) but I just don't get why you're pretending this goal hasn't been clearly articulated over and over again.

When will "improvements in governance" be complete?

As a practical matter, when the Afghan government asks ISAF to leave.
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Renew Deal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-15-11 09:52 AM
Response to Reply #6
25. This should help.
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mopinko Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-15-11 09:27 AM
Response to Reply #5
16. yup.
since we lost our fur coats and our slouch.
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FSogol Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-15-11 09:01 AM
Response to Original message
3. Very cool. n/t
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HappyMe Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-15-11 09:03 AM
Response to Original message
4. Courage, thy name is Dakota.
:patriot:
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Mr Gerrity Donating Member (51 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-15-11 09:22 AM
Response to Original message
12. The best
This President really knows how to relate. People really love him.
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madokie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-15-11 09:25 AM
Response to Original message
14. I like my President
I don't give a fuck what anyone else thinks or says either
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NightWatcher Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-15-11 09:35 AM
Response to Original message
17. Beer Nerd Query: What were they drinking?
And why are they sipping from such small mugs?
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Recursion Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-15-11 09:38 AM
Response to Reply #17
20. I think he makes a point of keeping Goose Island in the White House (nt)
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