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This Seal is Real

No one reaches for the snooze button more frequently than Barack Obama. He has a genius for delaying confrontations with reality. Earlier this week, the president approved 17,000 additional U.S. troops for Afghanistan, but today he’s found a way to blur the significance of the decision and keep alive the suspense about a proper troop “surge”:

President Barack Obama says the additional troops he’s ordering to Afghanistan are necessary to stabilize that country in advance of upcoming elections. And he says just how many U.S. troops will be needed, and for how long, will become clearer after a review of the Afghan mission is completed.

The list of things that will become clear after a review is growing: the future of America’s commitment in Iraq; the fate of Guantanamo detainees; a system for trying non-state terror suspects; and the future of tough interrogations all come to mind. Maybe after having invested so much in the festoonery of “The Office of the President-Elect,” Obama is not yet willing to relinquish his delicious on-deck status.



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