U.S. Soldiers and Airmen from Provincial Reconstruction Team Zabul return to base after a high quality assurance, high quality management patrol close to the town of Qalat, Zabul province, Afghanistan, Nov. 1, 2010.
Staff Sgt. Brian Ferguson | U.S. Air Force
WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump’s nationwide safety advisor stated Friday that the administration has set a timeline for bringing U.S. service members house from America’s longest struggle, however moved the purpose publish into early subsequent 12 months.
Speaking to a digital viewers on the Aspen Institute, nationwide safety advisor Robert O’Brien defined that Trump’s long-held marketing campaign promise to carry U.S. troops house from “ridiculous endless wars” in the Middle East was in the works.
O’Brien stated Trump has ordered the Pentagon to draw down to roughly 2,500 service members in Afghanistan by early 2021.
“I can guarantee that’s the order of the commander in chief,” O’Brien stated, including that Secretary of Defense Mark Esper was totally on board with Trump’s coverage.
O’Brien’s feedback got here every week after he and Trump publicly laid out completely different timelines for pulling troops out of the war-weary nation. Trump’s announcement, made through tweet, referred to as for bringing U.S. service members house by Christmas.
“The troops always want to be home on Christmas,” O’Brien started when requested to make clear the various timetables. “The president wants them home by Christmas, and what I’ve said on this and I think the president has said as well is that we’d like the troops out as soon as possible.”
Trump, who’s working for reelection, campaigned in 2016 on withdrawing the U.S. navy from Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria. His Democratic opponent, former Vice President Joe Biden has referred to as for leaving a residual U.S. navy presence in addition to intelligence belongings in Afghanistan.
“We need to stop spending the kind of money that we’re spending in Afghanistan,” O’Brien stated, including that it was “unsustainable for us to be in these countries forever.”
The struggle in Afghanistan, which has dragged on to change into America’s longest battle, started 19 years in the past and has value U.S. taxpayers $193 billion, in accordance to a Defense Department report.
The collective wars in Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria have value taxpayers greater than $1.57 trillion since Sept. 11, 2001, in accordance to the identical report.
Of the three present operations, Operation Freedom’s Sentinel in Afghanistan takes the lion’s share of prices at $193 billion.
Earlier this 12 months, the United States brokered a peace deal with the Taliban that might usher in a everlasting cease-fire and cut back the U.S. navy’s footprint from roughly 13,000 to 8,600 by mid-July. And by May 2021, all international forces would go away the war-torn nation.
“We need to get out of Afghanistan,” O’Brien stated. “Ultimately Afghanistan has to be run by the Afghans and the Afghan people have to come together and come up with a solution for Afghanistan.”