Last night Fox News, host Greta van Susteren asked former GOP presidential candidate Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) what he thought of reports that President Obama plans announce his intention to send 34,000 additional U.S. troops to Afghanistan. McCain said he’s not concerned about how many troops Obama is sending, he just wants to succeed — regardless of whether we have an exit strategy or not:
VAN SUSTEREN: What do you think about that? Is that a decision that — that you think is a wise one or do you want the full 40,000 that was originally requested?
MCCAIN: Well, I’m not so much concerned about the number because I understand that it may be additional allied troops to help out, too. I’d like to look at the overall strategy. I would like to see the emphasis on succeeding, not on an exit strategy.
Greta, the exit strategy takes care of itself once you succeed just as it did in Iraq. But I’d like to hear the whole thing. I hope the president will make the right decision here. And I would like to support him if he does.
At least McCain is consistent; an exit strategy for the war in Iraq has been of little concern to him as well. When running for president, the Arizona senator and fervent Iraq war supporter said he would “be fine with” the U.S. military staying in Iraq for “a hundred years” and later “excitedly declar[ed] that U.S. troops could be in Iraq for ‘a thousand years’ or ‘a million years,’ as far as he was concerned.”
Indeed, as the Wonk Room’s Matt Duss has noted, McCain’s knee-jerk reactions to the crises in Iran last June and in Georgia last October, and now with his “no exit strategy necessary” policy, reminds the U.S. of the bullet it dodged last November by not electing him president.
Obama reportedly plans to announce an exit strategy in the coming days.