Veterans Group Tells President Obama: Don’t Escalate in Afghanistan

Veterans for Rethinking Afghanistan is gathering signatures for a simple message they plan to deliver to the White House: Don’t escalate.

Here’s the text of the petition, which you can sign at the Rethink Afghanistan website:

Dear President Obama,

News reports indicate that you plan to send between 34,000 and 40,000 more troops to Afghanistan.

We urge you to reconsider this decision.

Expanding the war in Afghanistan will make Americans less safe, not more so.

Less than 100 members of Al Qaeda remain in Afghanistan. The Karzai government we once supported is controlled by warlords and is riddled with corruption. Pakistan’s stability will be gravely imperiled by an expansion of the war. Hundreds if not thousands of troops will be killed, along with countless civilians. Anti-American sentiment throughout the Muslim world will be inflamed by civilian bloodshed, facilitating recruitment by terrorist organizations.

The war will cost billions of dollars when we can least afford it, and will stymie your domestic agenda.

The cost of sustaining a military force in Afghanistan is $1 million per soldier per year – that’s close to $100 billion dollars annually with the troop increase. With the economy in shambles, the deficits generated by these enormous costs will compromise your domestic legislative agenda both fiscally and politically.

The United States has no vital interest in Afghanistan. If you choose to further escalate troop levels in Afghanistan, you will be making the biggest mistake of your presidency.

Please reject General McChrystal’s troop requests and begin the process of exiting U.S. forces from Afghanistan.

I’ve signed it. Have you?

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