troop withdrawal

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NATO Chief Responds to Trump's Troop Cuts

ISIS could take advantage of the vacuum in Afghanistan, secretary-general says

(Newser) - President Trump's plan to reduce US forces in Afghanistan and Iraq in the next two months drew a warning Tuesday from NATO. "The price for leaving too soon or in an uncoordinated way could be very high," said Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg, per the BBC . He said Afghanistan...

Trump Plans to Order Troop Withdrawals

Cuts would wrap up 5 days before Biden becomes president

(Newser) - The Trump administration is expected to cut the number of US troops in Afghanistan almost in half to 2,500 by Jan. 15, US officials said Monday. The order would stop short of outgoing President Trump's goal to have all troops withdrawn by the end of the year, which...

US to Keep 500 or So Troops in Syria: General

Defeating ISIS is still the goal, Milley says

(Newser) - At least 500 US troops are staying in Syria to fight ISIS after the withdrawal ordered by President Trump, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs said Sunday. "The objective will remain the same: the enduring defeat of ISIS," Gen. Mark Milley said on ABC's This Week, the...

Pentagon Trying to Plan for Trump's Next Sudden Move

If president suddenly decides to pull troops out of Afghanistan, DOD officials want to be ready

(Newser) - There's no current instruction from the White House to yank troops out of Afghanistan. But amid recent developments in Syria , the Pentagon is taking no chances and has been setting up a contingency plan in anticipation of any surprise directives from President Trump on Afghanistan. Current and former Defense...

US Troops Leaving Syria Will Head to Iraq

In Kabul, Defense Secretary Mark Esper says troops will not be coming home

(Newser) - Defense Secretary Mark Esper says that all US troops leaving Syria will go to western Iraq and the American military will continue operations against the Islamic State to prevent its resurgence. Esper, who arrived in Kabul on Sunday, did not rule out the idea that US forces would conduct counterterrorism...

Report: Trump Plans to Pull Troops From Afghanistan

Sources say this played a big role in Mattis resignation

(Newser) - President Trump's Syria decision wasn't the only reason behind the abrupt resignation of Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, insiders say. The New York Times reports that defense officials say Trump has ordered the military to begin pulling 7,000 troops from Afghanistan, about half the current US forces there....

Putin Announces Russian Withdrawal From Syria

'The fatherland is waiting for you, my friends'

(Newser) - Vladimir Putin declared victory in Syria on a surprise visit to the country Monday and announced that he'd ordered the withdrawal of Russian troops. He was joined by Syrian President Bashar al-Assad during his visit to the Khmeimim air base, which was Putin's first known trip to the...

US Eyes Slow Afghan Exit
 US Eyes Slow Afghan Exit 

US Eyes Slow Afghan Exit

And Afghanistan readies for new Taliban talks

(Newser) - The US is considering slowing its military exit from Afghanistan by keeping a larger-than-planned troop presence this year and next because the new Afghan government is proving to be a more reliable partner, US Defense Secretary Ash Carter said yesterday. Carter, on his first overseas trip since starting the Pentagon...

Ukraine Forces Give Up Key Town

Separatists gain control of Debaltseve rail hub

(Newser) - A ceasefire in Ukraine didn't stop fighting in the rail hub of Debaltseve, which links two rebel strongholds. Now, government troops are withdrawing from the area in what the Wall Street Journal calls a big setback; Ukraine had previously said it would hold the town as it grappled with...

Gaza Ceasefire Begins; Israel Troops Withdraw

Next step: talks on lasting truce

(Newser) - Just before an Egypt-brokered ceasefire took hold in Gaza this morning, both sides exchanged fire. Several hours into the truce, however, things have been calm, the Washington Post reports, while the Guardian sees a chance at a "definitive end" to the latest conflict. Israel says it has withdrawn all...

Obama Warns Karzai US Ready to Pull All Troops Out

If Karzai won't sign security deal, plans for a contingency force may be scrapped

(Newser) - President Obama scolded Hamid Karzai by phone today and warned him that the US is preparing to bring home all its troops at the end of the year, instead of leaving a contingency force behind, reports Politico . Karzai refuses to sign a security deal that, among other things, would grant...

Full Withdrawal From Afghanistan Grows More Likely

As US prepares to suspend failing negotiations

(Newser) - The US is getting nowhere in its negotiations with Afghanistan over the future of America's military presence in the country, rendering the prospect of a total troop withdrawal in 2014 ever more likely. Officials say they're getting ready to suspend talks unless there's a breakthrough in the...

'Frustrated' Obama May Yank All Troops in Afghanistan

Relations with Karzai going downhill fast, insiders say

(Newser) - President Obama is so sick of dealing with Afghanistan's President Hamid Karzai that he is seriously considering bringing American military involvement in the country to a speedy and complete end, senior administration officials tell CNN and the New York Times . The "zero option" of leaving no American troops...

UK Lawmakers Warn of Afghan Civil War

Plan appears to be to 'hope for the best,' committee finds

(Newser) - Afghanistan is in danger of descending into civil war after coalition forces end their frontline role next year, and the UK government's strategy appears to be simply to withdraw and hope for the best, a group of British lawmakers warns. A report from a cross-party defense committee warns that...

Hagel Meets Karzai After Threats, Friction

Pushes back against Karzai's US-Taliban comments

(Newser) - Chuck Hagel finally did meet privately with Afghan President Hamid Karzai yesterday before returning to Washington today, and despite the security concerns that initially canceled the meeting , Hagel told the press he and Karzai discussed key issues, the AP reports. "I think he understands where we are and where...

Hamid Karzai: US Is Giving Us a Drone Fleet

But division remains over Afghanistan troop withdrawal

(Newser) - In his first public comments since his visit to Washington, Afghan President Hamid Karzai announced yesterday that the US is giving Afghanistan a fleet of unarmed aerial spy drones, the New York Times reports. A pleased Karzai said his meetings with President Obama gave him most of what he wanted;...

US Considers Total Afghan Withdrawal

'Zero option' after 2014 raised before Karzai talks

(Newser) - How many US troops should stay in Afghanistan after the NATO combat mission ends next year? For the first time, officials are now saying zero is an option. Commanders recommend keeping a force of up to 15,000 in the country, but Deputy National Security Adviser Ben Rhodes, speaking to...

Post-2014 Afghanistan: US Has 3 Options

Gen. Allen presents scenarios to Pentagon

(Newser) - Gen. John Allen has submitted three options to the Pentagon for how to maintain a presence in Afghanistan after the 2014 military withdrawal, defense officials tell the New York Times :
  • 6,000 troops, highest risk of failure: At this level, the US mission would focus on counterterrorism. Special Ops commandos
...

Post-2014 Plan: Keep 10K Troops in Afghanistan

But Karzai must still agree

(Newser) - The White House has settled on the number of troops it wants to leave in Afghanistan post-2014: 10,000. Gen. John Allen had recommended keeping between 6,000 and 15,000 troops there after formal combat ends to train Afghan troops and fight terrorism. The Obama administration's final choice...

Afghan Police Bases US Built for $19M Sit Empty
Afghan Police Bases
US Built for $19M Sit Empty
new report

Afghan Police Bases US Built for $19M Sit Empty

Report: some infrastructure projects could even prove detrimental

(Newser) - When US inspectors looked at four border police bases in Afghanistan—funded by the US at a cost of almost $19 million—they found most of the facilities on three of those bases had either been abandoned or weren't being used as intended, the Wall Street Journal reports. The...

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