ABOUT-FACE

Make Love Not War, Pundit Says

George Will, the noted conservative columnist, will ask in his next column that the U.S. pull out ground troops from Afghanistan, Politico reports, even as the commander there is planning to ask for reinforcements. “America should do only what can be done from offshore, using intelligence, drones, cruise missiles, air strikes and small, potent special forces units, concentrating on the porous 1,500-mile border with Pakistan, a nation that actually matters,” Will writes. President Barack Obama added 21,000 troops to the ground forces in Afghanistan in February and March, and this August has been the deadliest month for troops there since 2001. Will invokes Otto von Bismarck's decision to halt German forces before reaching Paris in 1870. Obama should halt combat on the ground “before more American valor… is squandered.” Will’s column comes on the heels of a lukewarm assessment of the situation by Robert Gates: “I think it's a mixed picture in Afghanistan,” the Defense secretary said Monday. “I think that there aren’t too many people with too rosy a view of what's going on in Afghanistan.”