Top Democrat on the Senate Armed Services Committee Carl Levin (D_MI) spoke out yesterday about Barack Obama’s planned Afghanistan
surrender withdrawal date. Levin said withdrawing troops was essential to success.
The Hill reported:
The chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee pressured President Obama on Friday to stick to his commitment to begin withdrawing troops from Afghanistan in July 2011.
Sen. Carl Levin (D-Mich.), the chairman of the influential committee, urged Obama to be inflexible on the target date he’d set to begin troop reductions.
“The president is now under pressure from inside and outside the military to build flexibility into that July 2011 date,” Levin said in prepared remarks he’s set to deliver to the Council on Foreign Relations. “I want to tell you why I believe sticking to that date is essential to success, and why President Obama should not, and I believe will not, modify the July 2011 date.”
Levin, an opponent of the original surge of troops into Afghanistan that Obama ordered last fall, said that sticking to the date was critical to “strengthen Afghan resolve” to build its own internal military and policing systems to fend off Taliban-led insurgents once the U.S. leaves the country.
Levin also said that he’d become convinced Obama wouldn’t back down on his commitment to begin withdrawing U.S. troops from Afghanistan, after almost 10 years of military involvement in that country.
“I am convinced, after talking to President Obama and to administration officials, that the president will not waffle in his decision to begin reducing our force levels by July 2011,” he said. “I’m sure there will be lots of pressure to do so.”