Petraeus Lauds Afghan War in ‘State of the War’ Address

Downplays Prospect of 2014 Withdrawal

With America seemingly in a state of perpetual war, General David Petraeus has taken it upon himself to issue his own “State of the War” address, which will stand alongside the State of the Union address as an upbeat collection of platitudes praising the war in general and predicting an eventual victory, even as it downplays the possibility of it ever ending.

In that regard, Gen. Petraeus didn’t disappoint, cheering on the “progress” in the war and insisting that the military was achieving major victories across Southern Afghanistan, and inflicting “enormous losses on mid-level Taliban and Haqqani Network leaders throughout the country and took away some of their most important safe havens.”

Nowhere in Petraeus rosy estimate of the conflict was any mention of the NATO estimate from just two weeks ago, which confirmed that the Taliban forces have the exact same number of fighters now as a year ago.

Instead Petraeus focused on his “hopes” that the Afghan forces would be ready to take over some of the warfighting duties by 2014, which seems once again a nod to Pentagon statements ruling out a withdrawal from Afghanistan by 2014, despite official promises to that effect.

Last 5 posts by Jason Ditz

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.