Afghanistan Drawdown

Thursday, June 23, 2011 - 9:06am

President Obama calls for a drawdown of American troops from Afghanistan.

Today in new york, president Obama meets troops just home from Afghanistan, after announcing his plan to wind down the war there by bringing home a third of our troops by next summer, and now at least one other country is following suit.

The pentagon advised against a quick drawdown, but the president says it's time for this war to come to a responsible end.

With the American economy in mind, president Obama says the war in Afghanistan is coming to an end beginning next month, "We have spent a trillion dollars on war, at a time of rising debt and hard economic times. It is time to focus on nation-building here at home,” said President Obama.

His plan is to pull 10,000 troops out by the end of this year, and a total of 33,000 by next summer.

It's a more aggressive pullout than military advisers wanted, but even some democrats aren't satisfied, "We've got a deficit issue you want to save a third of a trillion dollars? Get this war over SOON." We need that money back in the United States," said Rep. John Garamendi, (D) California.

"70,000 American troops have to stay there so one faction of Afghans can be equal to another? I don't understand that," said Rep. Barney Frank, (D) Massachusetts.

This morning, afghan president Hamid Karzai said his young troops are ready to take over.
And in a rare statement, a Taliban spokesman urged all foreign troops to leave.

Following the U.S., France also announced this morning a progressive withdrawal of its 4,000 troops in Afghanistan, beginning this summer.

With a smaller military in Afghanistan, diplomacy will take on a much greater role. Today, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton updates the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on our relations with Afghanistan and Pakistan.

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