Thursday March 26,2009
In the opinion section of theLA times today a journalist expresses his theory on the 13 question coincidence.
13 questions. Coincidence? I think not.
I have three theories here. The first is that the president considers Q&A sessions to be unlucky, so he takes 13 questions as some kind of occult countermeasure. Admittedly, that's not a likely explanation. More probable is that his team has calculated somehow that a number around a dozen sends the right message to the public. But the simple answer may be that Obama can't fit in more than about 13 answers per event because he just can't stop himself from filibustering. Er, I mean, lecturing. (Under this theory, if Vice President Biden moves up to the top job, the tally will fall to 5 or 6.)
In the NY Times President Obama plans to further bolster American forces in Afghanistan and for the first time set benchmarks for progress in fighting Al Qaeda and the Taliban there and in Pakistan, officials said Thursday.
In the Washington Post day Lawmakers Hear Obama Afghanistan-Pakistan Strategy..
“The era of the blank check is over,” Mr. Obama told Congressional leaders at the White House, according to an account of the meeting provided on the condition of anonymity because it was a private session.The new strategy, which Mr. Obama will formally announce Friday, will send 4,000 more troops to train Afghan security forces on top of the 17,000 extra combat troops that he already ordered to Afghanistan shortly after taking office, administration and Congressional officials said. But for now, Mr. Obama has decided not to send additional combat forces, they said, although military commanders at one point had requested a total of 30,000 more American troops.