Obama urged to replace its calendar driven draw down
WASHINGTON (Pajhwok): Top Republican Senator John McCain on Monday urged the Obama Administration to replace its calendar-based draw-down of troops from Afghanistan with a plan based on conditions on the ground.
“The Administration must replace its calendar-driven draw-down of U.S. forces with a plan based on conditions on the ground. If this is not done, and if the Administration insists on pulling all U.S. forces out of the country for political reasons, Afghanistan will deteriorate just as Iraq has since 2011,” McCain warned in a statement.
He warned that “that would not just be a tragedy for the Afghan people; it would put the American people in far greater danger.” No one should mistake the Administration's declared end of combat operations in Afghanistan with an end of the mission there, he noted.
“While our troops and civilians are making steady progress in supporting our Afghan partners in securing their country and defeating our common terrorist enemies, the truth is, this work remains unfinished. Indeed, steady reports of Taliban offensives are a painful reminder of that fact,” he said.
He said that in order not to squander the hard-fought gains that our fellow citizens have made in Afghanistan, the Administration needs to give the thousands of U.S. forces that will remain in the country beyond this year the authorities they need to train, advise, and assist our Afghan partners in finishing the mission.
The State Department said it is focused on growing capability of Afghan Security Forces and their growing leadership role.
“The President said yesterday that this ceremony marks the end of the combat mission in Afghanistan, and it’s a milestone for bringing to an end the longest war in American history and bringing it to a responsible conclusion,” the State Department spokesman Jeff Rathke said.
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