June 20th, 2010
09:50 AM ET
5 years ago

Emanuel: Netanyahu reschedules Washington visit for July 6

Washington (CNN) - Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will next meet with President Barack Obama in Washington on July 6 for talks originally planned for earlier this month, White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel said in an interview broadcast Sunday.

Emanuel told ABC's "This Week" program that Netanyahu's fifth visit of the Obama administration would discuss the Middle East peace process and other regional issues.

Netanyahu had been scheduled to meet with Obama in Washington on June 1, but the Israeli prime minister postponed the trip after Israel's military raid on an aid flotilla headed to blockaded Gaza resulted in the deaths of nine Turkish activists aboard one of the ships.

June 20th, 2010
09:23 AM ET
5 years ago

Success in Afghanistan operation must be defined, Lugar says

'We've never got to that point,' Sen. Lugar told CNN when asked how he'd know what success in Afghanistan looked like.
'We've never got to that point,' Sen. Lugar told CNN when asked how he'd know what success in Afghanistan looked like.

Washington (CNN) – The top Republican on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee says that, even after more than nine years of war, there is no clear definition of success in the U.S. military’s operation in Afghanistan.

“If you had to say on this day I will know that the U.S. has succeeded and we can begin bringing troops home, what would that day look like?,” CNN Chief Political Correspondent Candy Crowley asked Lugar in an interview broadcast Sunday on CNN’s “State of the Union.”

“Well, your question implies that we've defined success and we've never got to that point,” Lugar replied. “That's a part of our problem, that we're going to have to, as a government, whether it be the president or the Congress, define success in a way in which the American people find this to be satisfying. Otherwise, we'll continue to argue about the date of withdrawal or how fast or how - whether we surge more or less - without ever having defined exactly what it is we hope from Afghanistan.”

Related: Failure isn't an option, Dem says

In the same interview, the Democratic chairwoman of the Senate Intelligence Committee proposed the kind of definition that Lugar said was lacking. Asked about the Obama administration’s July 2011 benchmark for beginning to draw down U.S. troops, Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-California, said the situation has to allow the Afghanistan government and people to build their country.
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June 20th, 2010
09:20 AM ET
5 years ago

'Failure is not an option,' Dem says of Afghanistan


Washington (CNN) – The chairwoman of the Senate Intelligence Committee is painting a grim picture of the U.S. effort in Afghanistan, but Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-California, insists that the effort must continue.

“Failure is not an option,” Feinstein said in an interview broadcast Sunday on CNN’s “State of the Union.”

Related: Success must be defined, Lugar says

Feinstein agreed that the training of the Afghan army continues to face significant challenges, but she said the Afghanistan-Pakistan theater is too strategically important to U.S interests not to continue the U.S. military operation.

“Also, there's one, I think, irreversible truth - the Taliban is on a march,” Feinstein also told CNN Chief Political Correspondent Candy Crowley. “If you lose Afghanistan, Pakistan is the next step.”

She added, “So the question becomes, either the Taliban becomes a force for good, participates in government - we're not there yet - or it has to be defeated.”

Sen. Richard Lugar of Indiana, the Ranking Republican on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee who joined Feinstein during the interview, agreed that training Afghan security forces remains a challenge.
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