On the Radar: June 23, 2011

President Announces Afghanistan Troop Pullout
By Martha Raddatz, ABC News
Martha Raddatz reports on Obama's decision to begin bringing soldiers home. View

Plan Was Compromise; White House Wanted Troops Out by Early 2012
By Yochi J. Dreazen and Marc Ambinder, National Journal
President Obama's announcement on withdrawing troops from Afghanistan reflected little of the heated debates between the White House and the military in crafting a plan. Read more

Drawing Down, With A Vigilant Eye On Pakistan
By David E. Sanger, The New York Times
Hours after the Sept. 11 attacks, Pakistan’s leaders were given an ultimatum by the Bush administration: Because the looming war in Afghanistan could not be won without Pakistan’s help, Islamabad would have to choose between continuing its alliance with the Taliban or joining forces with the United States. Read more

Doyle McManus: A pivot point in Afghanistan
By Doyle McManus, Los Angeles Times
In 1966, as President Lyndon B. Johnson was becoming ever more enmeshed in the war in Vietnam, a Republican senator from Vermont named George D. Aiken proposed an audacious alternative strategy. The United States, Aiken said, should declare victory and withdraw. Read more

As Politics Of War Shift, Risks For Obama Ease
By Jeff Zeleny and Jackie Calmes, The New York Times
When President Obama expanded the Afghanistan war a year after taking office, Republicans fiercely criticized his deadline to bring troops home. But his decision on Wednesday to accelerate their withdrawal came with few reprisals, a sign of a remarkable shift in the politics of war. Read more

GOP Hopefuls Stake Out Afghanistan Positions
By Nia-Malika Henderson, The Washington Post
As President Obama called Wednesday night for scaling down troop numbers in Afghanistan over the next year, differences over how to approach the conflict emerged among GOP presidential hopefuls, with some calling for a faster withdrawal and others arguing for a more conditions-based drawdown. Read more

Cantor Pulls Out Of Biden-Led Budget Talks
By Janet Hook and Corey Boles, The Wall Street Journal
House Majority Leader Eric Cantor Thursday said he was pulling out of the bipartisan budget talks headed by Vice President Joe Biden for now because the group has reached an impasse over taxes that only President Barack Obama and Speaker John Boehner (R., Ohio) could resolve. Read more

U.S. Releases 30 Million Barrels Of Oil From Petroleum Reserve
By Coral Davenport, National Journal
Energy Secretary Steven Chu announced Thursday that the U.S. and its partners in the International Energy Agency will release 60 million barrels of oil onto the world market over the next 30 days to offset the disruption in the oil supply caused by unrest in the Middle East. The U.S. will release 30 million barrels of oil from the nation’s Strategic Petroleum Reserve. The SPR is currently at a historically high level with 727 million barrels, according to the Energy Department. Read more

Posted: Thu, 06/23/2011 - 12:37pm