There are two ways--and only two ways--to ensure that Al Qaeda can't use Afghanistan as a base from which to attack the US:"So when you have a non-state actor, a shadowy operation like Al Qaeda, our goal is to make sure they can't attack the United States."
- Kill every Al Qaeda member, or at the very least every member of the leadership.
- Garrison troops in Afghanistan as a permanent occupying force from now until Judgment Day.
The tone of the article suggests Dear Leader is more willing to accept the second than to attempt the first. Which means once again Dear Leader has the wrong goal.
Endless defensive war is a poor substitute for victory which lets the troops come home. The goal in Afghanistan must be nothing less than exterminating Al Qaeda, exterminating the Taliban, so that matters can be turned over to the government in Kabul and that our troops can come home.
Since a "non-state actor, a shadowy operation like Al Qaeda" has no diplomatic standing from which to proffer surrender, the strategy must proceed from the realization that Al Qaeda, like any other tribe of terrorist thugs, is never hors de combat--they chose a fight to the death, and so our troops' mission is to make sure the dying is on them and not on us.