From the Wall Street Journal: “This is not just Obama’s war,” he [NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen] said. “Once the U.S. president has made his decision, Europe must do its utmost to support him.” This is why the NATO chief has been busy these past few weeks traveling around the Continent and calling Allies to get them to pledge more boots on the ground. So far, they’ve made few firm commitments…

Most other NATO members consider their soldiers as some sort of armed aid workers. Germany, for example, has the third-strongest presence in Afghanistan, with 4,500 troops. But the Bundeswehr’s marching orders come with tight restrictions, or “caveats” in NATO lingo, limiting its firepower mostly to self-defense rather than active counterinsurgency.

Mr. Rasmussen says this will have to change, although he phrased it slightly more diplomatically. “Apart from sending more troops, I’d like to see Allies contribute by lifting those caveats and allowing for more flexibility in the use of their forces.”

Good luck with that. For years he U.S. has pleaded with its NATO partners to do more of the heavy lifting—to no avail. President Obama—despite sky-high poll ratings in Europe he could never hope to match at home—has so far not had any more success in this respect than his much-derided predecessor. It appears Europe’s preference for American casualties over their own does not really depend on who occupies the White House. (photo: AP)