July 5th, 2010
12:12 PM ET

Petraeus formally assumes command in Afghanistan

Gen. David Petraeus formally assumed command of NATO's International Security Assistance Force during a ceremony Sunday at the command's headquarters in Kabul.

In a speech Saturday, Petraeus called for unity on all fronts of the war in Afghanistan.

"I'm reminded we must achieve unity of effort and common purpose,"Petraeus told a crowd of about 1,700 at the U.S. Embassy in Kabul. "Civilian and military, Afghan and international. We are part of one team with one mission." Petraeus was tapped by President Barack Obama as the new top U.S. military commander in Afghanistan to replace Gen. Stanley McChrystal.

McChrystal was relieved of his duties after the general and his staff were quoted in a Rolling Stone magazine article criticizing and mocking key administration officials.

The Senate unanimously confirmed Petraeus for the new position in late June. He arrived in Afghanistan on Friday.

Petraeus has said he supports Obama's plan to begin withdrawing U.S. troops from Afghanistan in July 2011 - but insists it ought to be based on "conditions on the ground.

Filed under: Daily Developments • Petraeus
soundoff (19 Responses)
  1. Shifty P.

    Dont kill the moment. have a sense of humor once in a while will ya.

    July 8, 2010 at 2:16 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Larry Valecia, Calif.

    Vietnam (Sorry)

    July 8, 2010 at 11:36 am | Report abuse |
  3. Clinton

    Seriously, quit comparing Afghanistan to Vietnam, it shows a complete lack of understanding on your part. You are completely ignorant if you think Afghanistan and Vietnam are even close to comparable conflicts. We had more casualties in 1 week in Vietnam than in both Afghanistan and Iraq COMBINED. Not to mention the Vietnamese had direct support from China and vastly superior technology and manpower, the two conflicts are not even comparable on size and scope. If you really think these are apples and apples you're only showing your complete ignorance to what is really going on. Read a history book and quit trying to be a sensationalist. Don't forget that these are the very same people that attacked New York City. This little craphole country has some of the worst people in the world trying to run it. If we don't do something we'll end up repeating the mistakes of the past, that is, to let our guard down against seemingly rag-tag groups that end up killing our people. You trust your Government enough that you continue to pay them taxes, trust them enough to understand what we're up against. We will handle this war because the alternative is the potential for another terrorist attack of equal or greater magnitude to 9/11.

    July 7, 2010 at 3:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • Larry Valecia, Calif.

      The type of fighting in Vitnam and Afghanistan is completely different... One was a Jungle and the other is Mountains!!! It is a lot easier to fight the war now than we did then!!! If the United States was smart... They would have bomb the hell out of Virtnam before they put the troops in there!!!

      July 8, 2010 at 11:36 am | Report abuse |
  4. normanlake

    The "war" in Afghanistan is, quite simply, UNWINNABLE. The mighty USSR threw up their hands and walked away, realizing their folly, as it was their "Vietnam". Now, we are in the same position. I read recently that ONE BILLION dollars is spent for each AlQaeda killed or captured. NOT WORTH IT. Not to mention all the death of innocents and the destruction of our national credibility.

    July 5, 2010 at 12:55 pm | Report abuse |

      You pretty much said it all.

      July 5, 2010 at 4:30 pm | Report abuse |
    • parker666

      this war is a waste of time but we can't just up and leave we have imbedded ourselves to deeply in their society not to mention if the enemy sees us retreating, which we would have to form up and get together making a bigger targed/more casualties for a car bomb or ied to hit, we will suffer great losses so its not an easy decision how to withdraw when to to stay in or leave, there are alot of factors involved and can anyone say if the were in obamas shoes if you would do much better seeing all the reports cause i can almost 100% garuntee that he doesn't want us there either

      July 7, 2010 at 11:14 am | Report abuse |
    • Clinton

      Are you kidding me? Again you people have no understanding of History, nor do you understand the complex situation that we're in. Quit trying to compare this to other conflicts they don't match up. First off you say the "Mighty" USSR. They were also completely brutal, hardline, and made no effort to work with Afghanis to build a government, there was no doubt that the USSR was there to exploit these people whereas the United States doesn't want anything from the Afghans except to stabalize a Democratic Government so we have someone fighting extremist groups in the Middle East. You're completely sensationalizing this issue again, like all these other sensationalists posting comparisons to Vietnam you haven't researched at all in making your comparisons, this is not like the USSR's invasion, and they failed in part because WE were supporting the Afghan resistance against the USSR, there is no such support from any superpower for the Taliban, we're not in THAT kind of conflict, and I must remind everyone that you're using the same terms i.e. "unwinnable situation" that skeptics were using about Iraq only months before the Sunni Awakening that has nearly pacified the insurgency entirely in that country. So quit being pessimistic sensationalists and learn a little about the conflict and why it started, don't ever forget that THESE are the people that attacked our country, so WE do have a stake in what happens with this country. Wow, you all should move to France where they have a tradition of quitting and giving up when things are tough and outcomes matter the most.

      July 7, 2010 at 3:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • Larry Valecia, Calif.

      The differ4ence between how Russia went about doing it and the US... We are training them to take care of themselves!!! Not trying to take over their country...

      July 8, 2010 at 11:32 am | Report abuse |
  5. Onesmallvoice

    Good luck sir. May the force (and the Predator Drones) be with you.

    July 5, 2010 at 12:17 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jaybob

      Hahaha! Predator Drones.

      July 5, 2010 at 12:20 pm | Report abuse |
      • Larry Valecia, Calif.

        At least He will do what He knows is right to finish it!!! It worked in Iraq and will work in Afghanistan too!!!

        July 8, 2010 at 11:28 am | Report abuse |
      • Larry Valecia, Calif.

        News Briefs
        Israel National News Thu, 08 Jul 2010 08:53 AM PDT
        The Ramallah-based Al-Quds , Al-Ayyam and the Al-Hayat al-Jadida were all stopped by Hamas from distributing their newspapers in Gaza this week. The newspapers were originally prevented from entering Gaza three years ago when Israel closed the crossings after Hamas seized control of the region.

        July 8, 2010 at 2:43 pm | Report abuse |
    • Gary Johndro

      Yaba daba doo!!!

      July 5, 2010 at 4:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • Tom Posey

      Onesmallvoice.I,too felt the same way you do now until I wised up and left the military.I was blind and now I see and I want you to see the light,too.Please stop being naive.

      July 5, 2010 at 4:28 pm | Report abuse |
      • Larry Valecia, Calif.

        If the Military thought the way you feel... This Country would either been run by Hitler are the Communist!!! Thank GOD Our Officers and Military know different...

        July 8, 2010 at 11:31 am | Report abuse |
    • Shifty P.

      LOL. good one

      July 8, 2010 at 2:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • Larry Valecia, Calif.

      Abbas to Arabs: We'd Support a War Against Israel
      Israel National News Thu, 08 Jul 2010 08:54 AM PDT
      Follow Israel news on and . Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas told Arab leaders that the PA is ready to wage war on Israel if the rest of the Arab world does, according to the PA daily Al-Hayat al-Jadida as translated by Palestinian Media Watch.

      July 8, 2010 at 2:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • Larry Valecia, Calif.

      Turkey again warns Israel over flotilla attacks
      Middle East Online Thu, 08 Jul 2010 08:54 AM PDT
      Turkish FM says Israel should accept accountability for deadly flotilla attack if it wants to improve ties with Turkey.

      July 8, 2010 at 2:40 pm | Report abuse |