The President's speech on Afghanistan was called adult by some commentators.
Only I'm afraid it wasn't.
That's because, like President Nixon's Silent Majority speech on Vietnam 40 years earlier, it told only half the truth.
The President's strategy of a quick build-up, and then a quick draw-down, in Afghanistan only makes sense as part of a larger Afghanistan-Pakistan strategy.
Just as Nixon didn't tell America about his secret war in Laos or his plans for Cambodia, so President Obama did not discuss the dirty war the CIA is waging now, and will continue to wage, in Pakistan.
This is not because we're children, and it's not because we can't handle the truth. It's because telling the truth about a secret war means it's no longer a secret, and this must remain a secret.
Ostensibly, Pakistan is a democracy. It is sovereign. Interference from Americans, or anyone else, is thus forbidden.
But it's also necessary if Pakistan or the United States are to achieve the real objective here, which is to eliminate the Al Qaeda threat in the region.
Right now an attack by Pakistan or anyone else in the tribal areas will just cause Al Qaeda to jump into Afghanistan, where the central government is weak and where they have Taliban allies on the ground. But at the same time, an attack by Americans in Afghanistan would cause those same Al Qaeda operatives to jump back across the border into Pakistan.
The two attacks must be coordinated. They must occur simultaneously. There must be no way out of the box.
But is Pakistan capable of carrying out its part of the bargain? Not entirely. Not by itself. A second, secret front must be opened there, an intelligence front, inside the souks, through all the major cities, a front in which Pakistani, American, and European agents are all sharing intelligence and acting in a coordinated manner.
That's the plan. But the President could have, and should have, done more. If he has, then he is really the Jedi Master he pretends to be, and it would be wrong for him to tell us about it.
China and Russia need to be brought on board.
China and Russia face a much greater threat from a nuclear-armed Al Qaeda than we do. American commentators may wake up from nightmares of suitcase bombs, but Russian children know the reality of Chechen bombings in their own capital city, and Chinese children are probably told, late at night, about the internal threats from Uighur unrest that came up just a few months ago, and scared the shit out of the authorities in Beijing.
Admitting this interest, and coordinating efforts in all three powers, would run into opposition in all three countries and threaten all three governments. But it is necessary if the objective of those three governments is to be achieved, if the safe havens of Pakistan and Afghanistan are to be wiped out, and if conditions are to be put in place that keep them from re-appearing.
If those conditions are put in place then it doesn't matter, in 2011, if Taliban are ruling in Kabul. The game is Al Qaeda.
If what the President said yesterday is all there is to this, then it's crap. He just pulled a Nixon on all of us -- it was a political speech that will not work strategically. If there are a lot more moving parts under the water, however, that's different.
But to say so is to give away the game. So, like Nixon again, President Obama must tell us only part of the story, while working the Great Game secretly, beneath the surface, and taking the phrase "using all our resources" to include secret diplomacy and secret wars.