Trump Undecided On Committing More US Troops To Afghanistan

Marsha Scott
August 20, 2017

Donald Trump is weighing his options on formulating a new U.S. strategy in South Asia with the focus on Afghanistan, the White House has said, after the President held a key meeting with his national security team.

President Donald Trump tweeted Saturday that has administration has made a long-awaited decision about what to do in the war in Afghanistan.

President Trump met top military officials on Friday at Camp David, Maryland to discuss the situation in Afghanistan and a broader USA security strategy for the South Asia region.

Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee-Sanders gave no hints on what had been decided either, though she did say that a formal announcement will be made "at the appropriate time". National security adviser H.R. McMaster, U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, and other military leaders back a modest increase of between 3,000 and 5,000 U.S. troops from the current 8,400 level. In June, Defense Secretary James Mattis was reportedly developing a plan to pour 4,000 more United States personnel into Afghanistan.

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Steve Bannon, who was officially dismissed on Friday from his post as the White House's chief strategist, has said he wants to replace US troops in Afghanistan with private contractors.

At meetings with advisers earlier this year, media reported that Trump voiced frustration at the stalemate in fighting with the Taliban despite 16 years of war effort - something that US intelligence agencies in May said might not change even with a small increase in USA troops. There was also a move to outsource the war to a private army run by military contractor Eric Prince, the founder of the controversial security company Blackwater. US military commanders earlier had requested more troops in to battle the insurgents, while according to reports, Trump has been very cautious regarding USA presence in Afghanistan.

Through a letter, Taliban militants has urged Trump to interact with Afghans "generously" instead of imposing war, study the "historical mistakes" of his predecessors and withdraw troops from Afghanistan completely.

Other reports by MaliBehiribAe

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