The Democratic National Committee, in a statement released today in a press release, says that President George W. Bush ignored Afghanistan while he was escalating the War in Iraq. Here’s their official statement:
Five years after September 11, 2001, as experts predict that Afghanistan could slip back into chaos and Osama bin Laden is still on the loose, President Bush today tried to divert attention from the fact that his administration has virtually ignored Afghanistan while escalating the war in Iraq.
“The Bush Administration took its eye off the ball in Afghanistan, leaving a deteriorating situation to worsen and Osama bin Laden on the loose more than five years after 9/11,” said Democratic National Committee Press Secretary Stacie Paxton.
“While ignoring Afghanistan, President Bush has focused on escalating the war in Iraq and in the meantime, his failed policies have stretched our troops too thin and sent them to war without the proper life-saving equipment and training. Now he is also escalating his rhetoric against Iran. Democrats are holding President Bush accountable for his foreign policy failures, whether it’s his efforts to escalate the Iraq War or his failure to properly equip our troops or fight the real war on terror.”
Afghanistan Could “Slip Back Into Chaos”; Five Years After 9/11 “Still Embroiled In War, Drug Trafficking And Instability.” “While President Bush and Congress argue over Iraq, experts warn that Afghanistan could slip back into chaos. U.S. commanders are bracing for a spring offensive by Taliban insurgents that will test the staying power of the fragile U.S.-backed Afghan government. In a sign of the administration’s concern, President Bush will deliver a speech today highlighting plans for a dramatic increase in military and economic aid, but skeptics fear that the renewed focus on Afghanistan may be too little and too late. … Administration officials and U.S. military commanders agree that Afghanistan is grappling with potentially crippling challenges. Five years after U.S. troops ousted the Taliban regime and its al-Qaida allies in retaliation for the Sept. 11 attacks, Afghanistan is still embroiled in war, terrorism, drug trafficking and instability. The government of President Hamid Karzai has a shaky hold on power; the Taliban and al-Qaida continue to launch attacks from their haven along the Afghan-Pakistan border; and opium production has increased dramatically. Attacks by Islamic extremists spiked last year, making 2006 the deadliest year since the U.S. invasion.” [McClatchy, 2/15/07]