Imagine my surprise on Sunday morning when I read the news that Obama had spoken at the Human Rights Campaign dinner on Saturday night to a crowd of more than 3,000 and promised that he "will end 'Don't ask, don't tell'. Do not doubt the direction we are heading and the destination we will reach." I am so glad that he wants to focus energy on changing military policy while in the middle of two wars rather than actually trying to fight and WIN those wars. This was excellent news in light of the fact that he still has not pledged to commit the necessary additional troops to Afghanistan as requested by his hand-picked General, Stanley McChrystal. As the wife of a career Navy sailor, it is very personal to me that he has not put our troops' needs first and that he has taken over two months to even begin meeting with his "War Council" to determine what his level of commitment is going to be to winning the war in Afghanistan. Our soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines' lives are in grave danger and he wants to continue to talk about it rather than act like a President and send them the help they so desperately require.
While having a conversation with a friend yesterday whose brother-in-law is deploying to a war zone in Afghanistan with the Army this month, it occurred to me that the situation there is exactly the same as the situation was in Iraq just a couple of years ago. I asked her if he was going to Iraq or Afghanistan and when she responded "Afghanistan", my heart skipped a beat. This was the exact same response that I had when my nephew deployed with the Marines to Iraq two years ago. I thought how ironic that now the concern lies with those serving in Afghanistan more so than Iraq and all because the deteriorating situation is not being properly handled by our leaders, namely our President.
Even Senator Diane Feinstein, one of THE MOST liberal members of Congress, actually came out in support of General McChrystal on Sunday and said, "I don't know how you put somebody in who is as 'cracker-jack' as General McChrystal who gives the President very solid recommendations and not take those recommendations if you are not going to pull out". Perhaps, she knows more than the rest of us and that is exactly his plan - to pull out of Afghanistan and accept defeat, or more likely, she recognizes the caliber of McChrystal and the fighting prowess of our soldiers and believes that President Obama should follow the recommendations given by his General.
If Obama truly wants to help members of the military he should increase troop levels in Afghanistan so that the lives of their fellow brothers and sisters in arms will be better protected and put more money into defense spending so they are better equipped to fight and win against a cunning enemy. That is a policy every military member can appreciate, no matter their sexual orientation.