Washington, D.C. – Today, Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee Chairman Vic Snyder (D-Ark.) convened a hearing to examine the various options proposed for U.S. strategy in Afghanistan and how each option may affect and be affected by U.S. strategy in Iraq.


“I have been pleased with the thoughtful analysis of all the witnesses from the three hearings.  Probably the one area of agreement is on the importance of evaluating the national security implications of our strategy beyond the borders of Afghanistan, not just within its borders,” said Chairman Snyder.  “The degree of diversity of opinion among our twelve very distinguished witnesses highlights the need for a deliberative review of what the strategy should be.”


Witnesses at today’s hearing included retired U.S. Army General Wesley Clark, Dr. Kimberly Kagan from the Institute for the Study of War, Dr. Gilles Dorronsoro from the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, and Dr. Andrew Krepinevich from the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments.


The hearing provided a broad range of views on the key strategic options for Afghanistan, the challenges and chances for success of various strategies, the similarities and differences between Iraq and Afghanistan, and how lessons learned in Iraq may or may not be applicable to Afghanistan. The hearing also addressed how U.S. choices in Afghanistan and Iraq should fit into and be influenced by U.S. grand strategy, including the ability of the U.S. government to sustain public support for whatever path is chosen for Afghanistan.


This was the third hearing in the Subcommittee’s Fall 2009 series on U.S. strategy in Afghanistan and Iraq. “I hope this series of hearings was useful to the public and to my colleagues in Congress as we consider the future of our efforts in Afghanistan,” said Chairman Snyder after the hearing.  “ The House Armed Services Committee will continue its oversight of U.S. strategy in Afghanistan and Iraq as the President announces his decision.”