The last time America had to borrow money to finance a war was during the Revolution and a cash-strapped Continental Congress took loans from France to fund a surge against the British.
That worked out pretty well.
But it’s hard to feel the spirit of 1776 in President Obama’s journey to China. He went as a representative of a borrowing nation to its primary lender amid a call for yet another costly military surge in the Long War that is escalating in Afghanistan even if it is hopefully winding down in Iraq.
As the president completes his journey to Asia, he returns to Washington to face what is the most consequential foreign policy decision of his presidency, a decision that this administration has not yet fully thought through.
That is whether to heed the counsel of his top commander in Afghanistan, General Stanley McChrystal, and call for a surge of 40,000 more troops in Afghanistan.