It looks like America’s troops deployed in Afghanistan might finally be coming home. On Saturday, the Daily Caller reported that the U.S. signed an agreement with the Taliban that could end military operations in Afghanistan after nearly 20 years of fighting.
If the Taliban commits to tamping down on terrorism, the U.S. would reduce the number of troops from 13,000 to 8,600 over the next few months. If the Taliban continues to control terrorism in the region, the U.S. will withdraw its troops completely within 14 months. If all goes according to plan, this deal could end America’s longest war.
The U.S and the Taliban hammered out the deal in Doha, Qatar. with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo overseeing the negotiations. About a week ago, Pompeo announced that a “reduction in violence” (RIV) deal had been signed. TOLONews posted a tweet showing the contents of the agreement:
The US-Taliban deal released text. pic.twitter.com/cZwjQiJ6KV
— TOLOnews (@TOLOnews) February 29, 2020
President Donald Trump released a statement announcing the signing of the deal explaining that the agreement would lead to the end of the war. “When I ran for office, I promised the American people I would begin to bring our troops home, and seek to end this war,” he said. “ We are making substantial progress on that promise.”
In the statement, Trump affirmed that “If the Taliban and the government of Afghanistan live up to these commitments, we will have a powerful path forward to end the war in Afghanistan and bring our troops home.”
While there is no guarantee that the Taliban will adhere to its commitment to curb terrorism in Afghanistan, this deal is still a step in the right direction. During the 2016 campaign, Trump promised to end America’s involvement in “endless wars,” but so far, he has not followed through on that commitment, which has sparked the ire of many who have grown weary of engaging in seemingly unnecessary military endeavors. Many of these individuals — myself included — have been disappointed in the failure to bring about the end of the war in Afghanistan.
But now, it appears we might be moving towards the conclusion of the nation’s longest war, and if it works out, the president deserves kudos. Of course, there is always the possibility that the Taliban will simply wait until American pulls out its troops to renege on its promises. However, it is clear that the United States cannot transform Afghanistan into a western-style democracy; that type of change must start with the people in the country. “America First” means focusing on issues in our nation, not becoming embroiled in unnecessary conflicts abroad.
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