It is clear that the only reason for Obama to publicly disclose that 18-month exit date in Afghanistan was to address his own Leftist base and say to them: “please don’t hate me too much; this distasteful war thingee won’t last very long.”
It is also clear that the world also happens to be listening to his communication, including the enemy, the Afghans, and our allies and potential allies. The inescapable conclusion they must all reach is that Obama does not mean business. In strategic terms, that is a very bad thing for them to actually know, even if true.
So why telegraph it in this way? Because Obama puts his own political future before the good of the nation, the Afghan people, and the world. Funny thing is, I don’t believe it will work. If the chatter on the Leftist blogs today is any indication, his base is spitting mad at him.
[NOTE: This German wasn't impressed by Obama's speech, to say the least:
One didn't have to be a cadet on Tuesday to feel a bit of nausea upon hearing Obama's speech. It was the least truthful address that he has ever held. He spoke of responsibility, but almost every sentence smelled of party tactics. He demanded sacrifice, but he was unable to say what it was for exactly.]