With Osama bin Laden dead, does that mean we've won the war in Afghanistan and can pack up our things and go home? Sen. Lindsey Graham worries that in the wake of the Pakistan raid, we'll see "an unholy alliance of right and left on leaving Afghanistan," Politico's Jake Sherman and Manu Raju report. And he's right: Some lawmakers are already calling on President Obama to end the three Mideast wars. Not because the Afghan war is lost, as some have argued, but now, opponents say, because we've finally won.
Rep. Barney Frank told Think Progress's Faiz Shakir that old arguments against withdrawal are now moot. "People say, well, America can't look like it was driven out with the mission not accomplished. We went there to get Osama bin Laden!"
As Slate's Dave Weigel notes, that as more news about bin Laden trickled in, more Democrats echoed Frank. Among those expressing some desire to rethink our troop levels:
- Rep. Jerry Nadler: "We ought to stop wasting our troops and our money and our lives and get out."
- Sen. Carl Levin: Levin promised the size of the summer troop withdrawal would be "robust."
- Rep. Barbara Lee: Lee says she's "hopeful these developments will help to accelerate an end to the war in Afghanistan and the implementation of a smart security strategy."
- Rep. Andy Harris: "I think Americans will insist on the folks in power taking another look... We have achieved one of the major goals of having gone to Afghanistan."
- Rep. Bennie Thompson: "I think with this success of the killing of bin Laden, it is time to give [Afghanistan] additional review."
- Rep. Walter Jones: "Our reaction to the death of Bin Laden should be that we declare victory. ... I think this changes the whole dynamics of the war on terrorism. Let's go after them. Let's not occupy a country for 10 years for nothing but a waste of lives."
- Rep. Cliff Stearns: "Most people I talk to say that we need to address our nation's budget deficit, and we are spending a lot of money in Afghanistan. ... Now that bin Laden has been executed, we must go home."