Chesterton Tribune                                                                                   Adv.

Sen. Coats takes issue with Obama on release of Afghanistan timetable

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Sen. Dan Coats, R-Ind., a member of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, issued the following statement Wednesday night following President Obama's speech on Afghanistan:

"Despite the progress made since the troop surge, we cannot take our eye off the ball. We must learn from history and not allow Afghanistan to become a sanctuary for terrorists again. There is no doubt that the Afghan government needs to accept more responsibility for security, development, and above all, governance. The job of nation building is that of the Afghans and not Americans.

"I do not agree with the President's decision to announce the number of troops and the timing of 2012 withdrawals. While goals should be set, I believe we need to assess the situation as it changes, allow for flexibility, and not presume to know what will be needed on the battlefield in next years fighting season. We must be attentive to the advice of our military commanders on the ground, not political calculations. A drawdown of troops must not adversely affect our ability to apply maximum pressure on the insurgency.

"I applaud the brave military men and women of our armed forces for their sacrifice and perseverance, which has enabled us to stop the Taliban's momentum in key areas. The War on Terror has been long and strenuous for our nation, particularly our military and their families, but we cannot repeat past mistakes and allow Afghanistan to become a safe haven for terrorists that want to harm innocent Americans."



Posted 6/23/2011




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