While in Toronto this past weekend, President Obama offered a revealing observation about our anxieties over Afghanistan and our plans to withdraw in July 2011. With an air of exasperation, he suggested there's been "a lot of obsession" about when we'll leave, and what it means.
It's an interesting word choice. "Obsession" is, in fact, a term borne out of clinical psychology, and it's a fitting entree into a conversation that needs to be had. What kind of impact does setting a withdrawal date have on the troops' collective psyche?
See, despite those irrational few in the far-left fringes who want us to get out now
, most of us understand that leaving Afghanistan in a year isn't that simple. And we reach that conclusion largely because of the political ramifications: How will this play out to the Afghans? What will it say to our enemies? Will this dishearten our allies? And how will history and the world judge us?
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