January 22, 2009

George McGovern: Call a Time Out on the War

Posted: 12:22 PM ET

By George McGovern, former senator from South Dakota, who was the Democratic nominee for president in 1972.

As you settle into the Oval Office, Mr. President, may I offer a suggestion? Please do not try to put Afghanistan aright with the U.S. military. To send our troops out of Iraq and into Afghanistan would be a near-perfect example of going from the frying pan into the fire.

There is reason to believe some of our top military commanders privately share this view. And so does a broad and growing swath of your party and your supporters.

True, the United States is the world's greatest power - but so was the British Empire a century ago when it tried to pacify the warlords and tribes of Afghanistan, only to be forced out after excruciating losses. For that matter, the Soviet Union was also a superpower when it poured some 100,000 troops into Afghanistan in 1979. They limped home, broken and defeated, a decade later, having helped pave the way for the collapse of the Soviet Union.

(Read More of McGovern's commentary HERE)

Filed under: Afghanistan • George McGovern • Iraq

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Vincent Nizzardi   January 22nd, 2009 12:56 pm ET

Larry-Baby, I have to differ with Mr. McGovern on this. Yes, others have tried to take on these natural born warriors, and failed horribly, but we must find new and creative ways to exterminate this relentless foe.
If we do not, they will be back to terrorize America once again.
Some say just isolate them, and they won't be able to attack us.
Well, it hasen't worked for Israel, and it won't for America. When it's war, and your enemy has stated they will continue to try to kill you every chance they get, then it's time for a no holes barred fight , for our lives, and the lives of our families. This enemy is never going away with nice words, and gestures. They only see this approach as weekness.

Lenny Pearson   January 22nd, 2009 2:42 pm ET

I think that new president Should be talking to The American people to remind them If we start to think back to the 50s and 60s that when we saw made in the USA it was what we were proud of and it was what we bought not made in china or somewere else.we can bring back much of the wealth we sent over seas. We as americans need to think if its made here we all win. Thanks for your ear.
Lenny Pearson

frances from GA   January 22nd, 2009 8:10 pm ET

I voted for McGovern when he ran against Nixon..wish he would have WON !

John Franklin Mason   January 22nd, 2009 8:57 pm ET

In taking a look at the most significant developments that have occured in Afghanistan we see that corruption and the drug trade have fulrished and the Taliban have regrouped and become a bigger threat and we just don't know where the heck bin Laden is. I guess it's a good thing we got Saddam "Mission Accomplished" because he already had WDM"s we were told. Maybe if we had spent the time and resources on dealing with Al Queida we still might be in the same situation or worst given the leadership we had. I don't believe Obama will just throw a bunch of our resources that way just because we are the worlds most powerful country. I think he'll sit down and make some true alliances with those who are affected, not try to buy or abuse our way out of the situation.

carol   January 22nd, 2009 9:18 pm ET

During the campaign, Sen. McCain said he knew how to end the war and fix the economy. Has he revealed this information to Pres. Obama and if not, why?

Al Zwikker   January 22nd, 2009 9:52 pm ET

I would say the major difference between the British and Soviet wars was that they were wars of conquest. The US is not attempting to conquer Afghanistan.Just attempting to eliminate terrorists emanating mostly from Pakistan. The majority of the Afghans are not opposed to the Wests attempt to rid the country of the Taliban.

Shelia   January 23rd, 2009 12:14 am ET

How about the old fashioned draft? Get some of these lazy generation men and women off the sofa and break up some of the gangs. We need to build our forces again, and become the strong country we once were.

ed ,vancouver canada   January 23rd, 2009 12:25 am ET

The u.s uses 25% of the world's oil and produces 3%
Full scale wars like the israelis did in gaza will not work.
The palestinians were killed 100 to 1 and their leader claims victory.
How do you win over people like that?They are martyrs not people.
If they were bombed flat,the oil would be gone.
There will not be oil to run the country with.
These people do not talk peace.
The terrorists are hard to discern from the civilians.
The only answer is get the troops out and let these people terrorize themselves.
The u.s. needs to gaurd the country and not let citizens related to these people into the country,let alone flight schools ,and start over.

ed ,vancouver canada   January 23rd, 2009 12:30 am ET

Who is giving the money and weapons to these poor countries anyway?
The money you put in the gas tank.
That is the root of the problem.
If not,20 tons of anthrax into the mountains would do it.
Anyone up there with a gun killing americans is a terrorist.

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