March 27th, 2009
09:47 AM ET
14 years ago

Obama announces Afghanistan plan

WASHINGTON (CNN) - President Barack Obama announced a "comprehensive" new strategy Friday confronting the growing threat in Afghanistan and now Pakistan.

Obama said "situation is increasingly perilous" in the region and 2008 was the deadliest year of the war for U.S. forces in Afghanistan.

"It's an international security challenge of the highest order," he said in an address at the executive office building. "The safety of people around the world is at stake."

He called on Congress to pass a bipartisan bill co-sponsored by Sens. John Kerry and Richard Lugar authorizing "$1.5 billion in direct support to the Pakistani people every year over the next five years – resources that will build schools, roads, and hospitals, and strengthen Pakistan's democracy."

He is also urging Congress "to pass a bipartisan bill co-sponsored by Maria Cantwell, Chris Van Hollen and Peter Hoekstra that creates opportunity zones in the border region to develop the economy and bring hope to places plagued by violence. And we will ask our friends and allies to do their part – including at the donors conference in Tokyo next month."

Filed under: Happening Now
soundoff (157 Responses)
  1. Thomas

    I would like to see more of a commitment (Actions not words) from Pakistan before we give them any more money.

    March 27, 2009 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  2. Bob the Observer

    I thought we were going to bring the troops home.

    March 27, 2009 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  3. Libertarian

    It's about time we got back on track and actually started looking for the perpetrators of 911. What Bush did in IRAQ was wrong. Remember, there was NO SUCH THINK AS AL-QAEDA IN IRAQ until we destabilized the country and brought hatred upon America. BUSH/CHENEY CREATED AL-QAEDA in IRAQ.

    Go Obama....we'll probably smoke out Bin Laden a few months after we get back on task in Afghanistan now.

    March 27, 2009 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  4. ron

    THE WAR on TERROR, aka the overseas contingency operation will be won by decades of persistence, ground intel, and hit on their strongholds and training camps.

    killing terrorists often means air-raiding villages in the middle of the night. obama won't have the stomach for the criticism. he's an idealist that'll listen to the blogosphere before the generals.

    in the end, he'll chose weak generals who suggest withdrawl, and then agree with them.

    March 27, 2009 01:58 pm at 1:58 pm |
  5. BRC

    With this deployment of troops to the Kandahar area the Canadian ISAF forces are getting ready with the base they will share. Now Canada has always been out numbered with the amount of US troops on the ground, but it’s a relationship that has been going on since 2001 and camp Julian in Kabul. I had the honour of being a civilian at Julian, supporting not just the Canadian Forces, but the multi national forces that were there also. The Americans in particular were always very complimentary about the Canadian base, and I am sure that the current building and upgrades to Kandahar will be very much appreciated by the Forces of Canada.

    March 27, 2009 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  6. Lynn

    I guess all of you who are criticizing President Obama have read the same intelligence reports and the advbice of the generals on the groundas he has.VBush and his Republican pals chose to ignore Afghanistan as it went into an unnecessary war in Iraq.

    All of you would be crying if there was another 911 saying he didn't protect America by dealing with the terrorists in Afghanistan and Pakistan.

    March 27, 2009 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  7. Felonious Monk

    Iraq is not a success, unless you are counting bodies. Iraq had nothing to do with 9/11. For 3,000 American lives we have taken hundreds of thousands of Iraqi lives.

    Afghanistan is now the world's leading producer of poppy/heroin. Thanks to the Bush administration. The Taliban opposed poppy/heroin. Why are our permanent bases in Afghanistan along the oil pipeline? Blood for oil, that is what is happening.

    I feel the majority of you either don't know the entire story, or you are incapable of understanding what is occurring.

    If you speak of Bush in favorable terms you are either blind, or blinded by hatred from loss of the election.

    You have to spend money to make money.

    The plain and simple truth of the matter is: Bush is a war criminal. I cannot see how anyone can defend that monster.

    March 27, 2009 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
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