News Columns & Blogs

Administration deeply divided on Afghanistan

The Obama administration was even more deeply divided on escalating the war in Afghanistan than has been previously reported, according to the new book, "Obama's Wars," by the journalist Bob Woodward. President Obama reportedly said that "I have two years with the public on this," but several top officials, such as Richard Holbrooke, the president's special representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan, believed the military strategy would not work. Meanwhile, Vice President Joe Biden is quoted as describing Holbrooke as "the most egotistical bastard I've ever met." The book also reports that Afghan President Hamid Karzai is taking medication for manic depression, and that Obama said he had to have a deadline for withdrawing troops or else he would "lose the whole Democratic Party."