What Will We Leave Behind in Afghanistan After 2014?

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Less than a year ago, the US and NATO promised continued assistance and training for ten more years, with the Pentagon talking of 6 to 9000 soldiers.  Then, the White House said a “zero” troop option was “on the table.” Could drones and limited special forces prevent the country’s collapse?

Afghanistan’s President Hamid Karzai met yesterday with Defense Secretary Leon Panetta and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.  Today, he lunched with the President at the White House, and afterwards they spoke to reporters. Today’s meeting between Presidents Obama and Karzai was billed as crucial to mapping the end of America’s longest war. At the Pentagon yesterday, Afghanistan’s President Karzai said he hoped the US would make sure his country would “not ever again be threatened by terrorists.”  But many factors have reduced his clout in Washington and with the American people.




Warren Olney