House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) said on Monday that the Bush administration "turned tail" in Afghanistan during their time in office.
get angry when I hear Vice President Cheney talking about a job they
didn't finish," Hoyer said.
Hoyer's remarks came in response to questions about Cheney's statements that President Barack Obama has projected "weakness" to the nation's adversaries in his dealings with Afghanistan. Cheney made those remarks in an interview with a website, adding that more Afghans will join the Taliban if the United States is perceived as pulling out of the country. Prior to that, Cheney had accused Obama of "dithering" on the decision.
In the interview, Cheney also denied, without elaborating, that the Bush administration's shift in focus to Iraq was responsible for the disintegration in Afghanistan.
Cheney's interview came on the eve of Obama's speech on
Afghanistan in which he is expected to announce that he'll send more
than 30,000 additional troops to the region. That would place the U.S. troop
level higher than 100,000.
Hoyer said that the Bush administration figured it had "won" after the Battle of Tora Bora, in which U.S. and allied forces tried to overrun the suspected hideout of Osama bin Laden, but failed to kill or capture him.
Hoyer also noted that Obama sent 21,000 additional troops to Iraq shortly after taking office.