Defense

November 28, 2012

Post-2014 Afghanistan troop levels remain undecided

Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta has yet to forward a recommendation to the White House on how many U.S. troops should remain in Afghanistan after 2014, Pentagon Press Secretary George Little said Nov. 26.

“It’s entirely premature to speculate on troop numbers in Afghanistan between now and the end of 2014 or beyond,” he said. “In September, we completed the full withdrawal of the 33,000 surge troops, and we will soon begin considering how we move forward on further troop level adjustments which will include planning for our post-2014 military and civilian presence in Afghanistan.”

Little told reporters the defense secretary will speak tomorrow with Marine Corps Gen. John R. Allen, commander of NATO’s International Security Assistance Force, to discuss a “range of matters on Afghanistan.”

Pentagon officials have asked for options to be considered, relatively soon, for what the post-2014 presence might look like, Little said.

“As we’ve made clear on several occasions, any U.S. presence would only be at the invitation of the Afghan government, and aimed at training Afghan forces and targeting the remnants of al-Qaida,” he said.

“Ultimately, it will be the president’s call,” he said. “[President Barack Obama] will make decisions on these issues in the near future based on what’s in our national interests, as he has done in the past.

“He receives options from our military leaders on the situation on the ground,” Little continued, “and considers the recommendations with his national security team, including [Panetta], in a consultation with the Afghan government and our international partners.”

Separately, Little said, U.S. military leaders soon will present options to the Defense Department on further troop drawdowns for the coming year.

“There are no discussions, at this point, on particular options for 2013 at this stage,” he said. “As the president made clear in June 2011, our forces will continue to come home at a steady pace as we transition to an Afghan lead for security.”

 




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
Lockheed Martin photograph by Tom Reynolds

F-35B successfully completes wet runway, crosswind testing

Lockheed Martin photograph by Tom Reynolds F-35B aircraft BF-4, piloted by Lockheed Martin Test Pilot Dan Levin, starts down the runway as part of wet runway and crosswind testing at Edwards AFB, Calif. In an important program ...
 
 
Air Force photograph by MSgt. J. Wilcox

Tyndall AFB takes F-22 pilot training to next level

Air Force photograph by MSgt. J. Wilcox Two F-22 Raptors and a T-38 Talon from Tyndall Air Force Base, Florida, fly together during a 43rd Fighter Squadron Basic Course training mission Oct. 7, 2013 over Florida. A sortie begin...
 
 
Army photograph by David Vergun

Senior leaders explain Army’s drawdown plan

Army photograph by David Vergun No commander is happy when notified that a soldier from his or her command has been identified for early separation. But commanders personally notify those Soldiers and ensure participation in th...
 

 
Lockheed Martin photograph by Beth Groom

F-35 Rollout Marks U.S.-Australia Partnership Milestone

Lockheed Martin photograph by Beth Groom Royal Australian Air Force Air Marshal Geoff Brown delivers his remarks at the roll out ceremony for Australia’s first F-35. The official rollout of the first two F-35 Lightning II...
 
 
Air Force photograph by A1C Erin OíShea

U.S. Forces display military might at Farnborough

Air Force photograph by A1C Erin O’Shea Capt. Tom Meyers discusses the F-15E Strike Eagle’s capabilities with spectators July 17, 2014, at the Farnborough International Airshow in England. Public access was granted ...
 
 
raptors4

Raptors, Falcons fuel up in desert skies

Three U.S. Air Force F-22 Raptors assigned to the 325th Fighter Wing, Tyndall Air Force Base, Fla., fly alongside a KC-135 Stratotanker assigned to the 93rd Air Refueling Squadron, Fairchild AFB, Wash., during Red Flag 14-3, Ju...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>