U.S.

July 10, 2013

President reviews options for U.S. presence in Afghanistan

President Barack Obama is reviewing options from his national security team on what the possible U.S. footprint in Afghanistan will look like after 2014, Pentagon Press Secretary George Little said July 9.

The president has the “time and space” to make the decision, Little told reporters at the Pentagon.

“Any potential U.S. military presence beyond 2014 will focus on two basic missions: targeting al-Qaida and its affiliates and training and equipping the Afghan security forces and partners,” Little said.

The size of U.S. forces will be covered under the Bilateral Security Agreement, which is under discussion between the United States and Afghanistan.

The United States supports a full, fully sovereign, democratic, and united Afghanistan, Little said.

“We’re committed to peace and reconciliation in the country,” he said. “And we remain prepared to negotiate with our Afghan partners to conclude the BSA, one that supports our shared objectives.”

These discussions continue, and Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel continues talks with Afghan partners and with the NATO/U.S. commander in Afghanistan, Marine Corps Gen. Joseph F. Dunford Jr., on the subject.

“We will continue to work through these issues,” Little said.

He emphasized there is plenty of time for the two nations to negotiate the security agreement.

“It’s July of 2013, and our drawdown won’t be complete until December 2014,” he said. Discussions will be influenced by intervening events and issues, including the Afghan elections next April.

The United States is not frustrated with the progress [or lack of progress] on the agreement, Little said.

“We continue to work through issues,” he said. “We realize that there are going to be points of contention from time to time. That’s natural of any partnership. But we think we can get through them.”

All options are on the table in regards to a post-2014 U.S. presence in Afghanistan, Little said. This includes the so-called “zero-option” that White House official Ben Rhodes spoke about in January, Little said. This option, he said, is a possibility.

Afghan forces now lead the security effort throughout the country, and U.S., NATO and partner-nation troops are working with, training and equipping the Afghans, Little said.

“And we’re seeing progress being made by the Afghan forces,” he said. “They are making great sacrifices on behalf of their own country. They have demonstrated great resolve to take the fight to the enemy, and we’re impressed by what we’ve seen.”

 




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


 
 

 

President proclaims Memorial Day as ‘Day of Prayer’

President Barack Obama May 22 saluted the service and sacrifices of America’s military members–past and present–and proclaimed Memorial Day, May 25, 2015, “as a day of prayer for permanent peace, and I designate the hour beginning in each locality at 11 a.m. of that day as a time during which people may unite in prayer....
 
 

Air Force leaders’ Memorial Day message

Secretary of the Air Force Deborah Lee James and Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Mark A. Welsh III send the following Memorial Day message to the Airmen of the Air Force and their families: To the Airmen of the United States Air Force and their Families: On Memorial Day, Americans pause in solemn remembrance...
 
 

Headlines May 22, 2015

News: Second Marine killed in Hawaii Osprey crash identified - Marine Corps officials have identified the second Marine to die as a result of the May 17 MV-22B Osprey crash as Lance Cpl. Matthew J. Determan of Maricopa, Ariz.   Business: Israel defense exports plunge to seven-year low - Israeli defense sales last year plunged to their...
 

 

News Briefs May 22, 2015

Ukrainian officer hit with third charge in Russia A third charge has been filed against a Ukrainian military officer who has been behind bars in Moscow for nearly a year over the deaths of two Russian journalists in Ukraine. Nadezhda Savchenko, who worked as a spotter for Ukrainian troops fighting separatist rebels in eastern Ukraine,...
 
 
Army photograph by C. Todd Lopez

Smart-mortar will help Soldiers more effectively hit targets

Army photograph by C. Todd Lopez Nick Baldwin and Evan Young, researchers with the Armament Research Development and Engineering Center at Picatinny Arsenal, Pennsylvania, discuss the 120mm Guided Enhanced Fragmentation Mortar ...
 
 

Air Force assigns new chief scientist

The Air Force announced the service’s new chief scientist to serve as a science and technology adviser to the secretary of the Air Force and the chief of staff of the Air Force, May 21. Dr. Greg Zacharias will be the 35th chief scientist and is ready to “dive in” to his new role. “I...
 




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>