Columbia International Affairs Online: Policy Briefs

CIAO DATE: 07/2014

Closing the Mission Gap: Effectively Communicating the President's New Afghanistan Strategy

Andy Johnson, Kyle Spector, Scott Payne, Matt Bennett

December 2009

Third Way


Speaking at West Point, President Obama clarified America’s mission in Afghanistan and announced a new strategy designed to defeat al Qaeda, respond to the security threat posed by chaos in the Afghanistan-Pakistan region, and set a clear path for turning the war over to the Afghans. Third Way believes that the President’s approach is worthy of strong support from Congress and other leaders. Still, the public is deeply divided on the future of the war. The American people support the mission of eliminating the terrorist threat in Afghanistan, but many remain skeptical about our ability to complete that mission.