In Afghanistan, U.S. senators call for coherent policy from Trump
KABUL (Reuters) – A bipartisan delegation of US senators who visited Afghanistan on Tuesday called for a new Trump administration strategy to run the tide against the increasingly strong Taliban insurgency and end the longest war in the history of the United States.
The delegation headed by Senator John McCain was in Kabul on a regional trip that included two days in neighboring Pakistan.
The tour preceded by a revision of Trump waits later in the month of the strategy for the longest war in the United States, now in its 16th year, a large part absent from the presidential campaign last year.
Since the launch of most foreign troops in 2014, the US-backed Afghan government has lost ground to the Taliban insurgency in a war that kills and mimics thousands of civilians every year and has made Afghanistan the second country of people Looking for shelter abroad Year behind Syria.
McCain told a news conference in Kabul Tuesday at the NATO coalition headquarters that “none of us would say we are a big hit here in Afghanistan.”
“This has to change, and quickly,” said McCain, a sharp critic of Trump in his Republican Party.
McCain was joined by Senators Lindsey Graham, Elizabeth Warren, Sheldon Whitehouse and David Perdue during the regional tour.
US Senator John McCain Speaks at a Press Conference in Kabul, Afghanistan July 4, 2017.
Warren, a Massachusetts Democrat, said he had just had “the field view of what happened” in Afghanistan.
“We need a strategy in the United States that defines our role in Afghanistan, we define our purpose and how we can get from here,” said M. Warren.
US officials told Reuters Defense Secretary Jim Mattis present Trump with strategic options for Afghanistan in mid-July.
Last month, Trump gave authority Mattis to establish US troops in Afghanistan, but as commander in chief, Trump must join in a global strategy for war.
US security officials have privately said that the most compelling option would be to increase the training and air support of 3,000 to 5,000 untrained Afghan security forces while tracking al Qaeda, the Islamic state and Other global Islamist militants based in Afghanistan.
The commander of US and NATO forces in Afghanistan, Gen. John Nicholson, said “thousands more foreign troops – mostly trainers – are needed to break a military stalemate with the Taliban.
In 2001, a US-backed military intervention in Afghanistan overthrew the Taliban, whose ultra-hard Sharia interpretation forbade the majority of women from public life and executed people who did not consider themselves as pious as men with Beard that are not considered long enough.
More than 15 years later, some 10,000 US troops and their allies are in Afghanistan to support an elected government that has lost ground to a Taliban insurgency that controls or disputes over 40% of the territory.