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Editorial: Afghan plan is the right move for troops

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opinion Willmar, 56201
Willmar Minnesota 2208 Trott Ave. SW / P.O. Box 839 56201

President Obama spoke to the nation Tuesday concerning the future of America's effort in Afghanistan.

In short, Obama ordered 30,000 more U.S. troops to Afghanistan and announced the start of a withdrawal in July 2011.

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The debate over this new Afghanistan strategy began Wednesday. In the end, Congress will approve and fund this new U.S. troop surge.

The United States is in Afghanistan for the right reasons - to strike at the heart of the bin Laden terrorist organization that planned and conducted the attacks of Sept. 11, and remove the Taliban regime that gave them shelter. The majority of the Sept. 11 attacks planning occurred within Afghanistan.

Unfortunately, America took its eye off the mission in Afghanistan as it focused on a second war front in Iraq. The Taliban have fought back and regained their regime's momentum within Afghanistan.

We as many Americans do not want to see more U.S. troops placed in harm's way in Afghanistan.

However, to pull our troops out of Afghanistan before the mission of re-establishing its government and security is completed would be ignoring the U.S. sacrifice of the past eight years.

Obama met with his military and civilian advisers to review all the available options. This new strategy meets the needs of troops on the ground now in Afghanistan. That is the first objective.

The target date of July 2011 to start troop withdrawals sends a clear message to the people and government of Afghanistan. They must step up and assume the security needs of their own country. That is the second objective.

The success of this Afghanistan surge will be crucial to completing our mission there and bringing our troops home sooner. This will save American lives in the long term. That is the third objective.

The cost of the Afghan war will explode past the cost of the Iraq war in 2010. This proposed surge should help stabilize the country sooner and assist a U.S. troop withdrawal sooner. This will in turn decrease the cost to the American taxpayer. That is the fourth objective.

Now is not the time to turn tail and leave Afghanistan. If this happens, the terrorists would only complete their rebuilding effort and likely strike at America once again.

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