Mattis Said “Very, Very Close” To Decision
Secretary of Defense James Mattis once again delayed the Trump administration’s Afghanistan strategy, which had initially been scheduled for mid-July briefing. Mattis told reporters they are “very, very close,” but said they haven’t made a decision because there are several options on the table.
However, National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster said that the President has made some definitive decisions on the matter. Some of these decisions include withdrawing troops and possible using private contractors.
“The President’s already made some important decisions on Afghanistan,” said McMaster, earlier this month.
Afghanistan Strategy Still In The Works
The Daily Caller reports:
“Just over a month has elapsed since the Afghanistan strategy was officially due in mid-July, and since the administration has not issued any formal strategy, GOP Sen. John McCain has forwarded his own amendment to the annual defense bill stipulating a long-term plan for the region, which involves increasing the number of U.S. troops in Afghanistan over the long-term and boosting U.S. air power.”
“The current situation in Afghanistan is at best described as a stalemate. An Afghan official said Sunday that the Taliban had taken over a district headquarters in northern Faryab Province.”
John McCain Unhappy With Results
McCain said in a statement:
“America is adrift in Afghanistan. President Obama’s ‘don’t lose’ strategy has put us on a path to achieving the opposite result.”
“Now, nearly seven months into President Trump’s administration, we’ve had no strategy at all as conditions on the ground have steadily worsened. The thousands of Americans putting their lives on the line in Afghanistan deserve better from their commander-in-chief.”
Mattis said “all options” are still on the table, in terms of their approach to Afghanistan, but they’ll likely choose the best options as soon as possible.