June 24th, 2010
06:20 PM ET

Petraeus, the Ph.D. warrior, faces big test

In a commentary piece, Peter Bergen, CNN's national security analyst, recounts the challenges Gen. David Petraeus faced in Iraq and takes a look at whether he can accomplish the mission in Afghanistan.

Bergen writes:

It's as big a challenge as plugging the BP oil spill, and to do it right might take as long as reversing the environmental catastrophe that is already in progress in the Gulf - a very long time, measured more in decades than in years.

No one is better equipped to handle the challenge than Gen. David Petraeus. But as a student of history, the general is surely aware that what worked on the banks of the Tigris and Euphrates in 2007 could still crash on the shoals of reality on the banks of the Kabul and Helmand rivers several years later.

As the philosopher pointed out: You can't step twice into the same river. Not even someone as talented as David Petraeus.

Read the full commentary


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soundoff (8 Responses)
  1. dave knutson

    I think the drug lords are the only ones that have the kowledge and power to end the war. Sorry to say but they have the freedom, money, and desire to succeed

    June 29, 2010 at 5:59 pm | Report abuse |
  2. dave knutson

    Well we get betrayed by Petraeus AGAIN! None -Obama -Biden – Petreus have a clue. They took the only person that could have done the job out as he told the truth about the clueless bunch. What a bunch of idiots. Now the whole dieing and money for nothing because a few clueless idiots had their feelings hurt and let out they were cluless on the stiruation

    June 29, 2010 at 5:53 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Onesmallvoice

    Getting nervous are we?

    June 29, 2010 at 10:23 am | Report abuse |
  4. William

    America needs to leave the East. America's occupation of Iraq and Afghanistan is immoral and illegal according to the Geneva Convention. This is imperialism. Our military is responsible for the deaths of thousands and thousands of civilian men, women, and children. The crimes of our government and military are unforgivable. The lousy and morally depraved misinformation campaigns our media spreads in collusion with government to enable and legitimize these crimes is reprehensible. WAKE UP.

    June 27, 2010 at 11:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • Anabel

      Do you have any proof for anything you are saying? If any criminal act is carried out in/by the west a court of law will judge and if found guilty will pass sentence. The brutal killing of almost 100 Ahmadis in Pakistan recently isn't being treated as a crime because to do so would 'cause civil unrest'

      June 28, 2010 at 4:28 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Jared

    I'm glad someone with applicable knowledge is taking control. I'm optimistic that Petraeus will get the job done. Good luck. You have our support.

    And Mr. "Smith in Oregon", you do not speak on behalf of all taxpayers. I support this war, and believe it is winnable. Once a society tastes freedom, structure, and security, they won't want to give it up. This coming from a liberal-leaning moderate. Get 'em boys!

    June 27, 2010 at 12:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • dave knutson

      Petraeus is olike Obama and Biden absolutely cluless. THREE BLIND MICE!!!

      June 29, 2010 at 5:54 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Smith in Oregon

    Gen. Petraeus,

    Afghanistan is not going to become America's 53rd. State.

    The US soldiers are not going to in-mass become Afghanistan citizens.

    There is no total removal of the Taliban soldiers and fighters from Afghanistan, the Afghanistan residents are the Taliban soldiers and fighters.

    If the goal of America's Occupation of Afghanistan was to root out the Al Qaeda members, Mission Accomplished, they moved to Pakistani ISI-CIA safe-houses years ago.

    Time to declare victory and bring the US troops home from Iraq and then in Afghanistan Gen. Petraeus.

    Gen Petraeus, American taxpayers would appreciate it if you ordered ALL troops in Iraq and Afghanistan to return the majority of their equipment back to USA instead of dumping it or simply leaving it for the Taliban to use in Iraq or Afghanistan then demand the American taxpayers pay for replacing 95% of the gear with new and hyper-expensive replacements.

    June 24, 2010 at 9:00 pm | Report abuse |