Afghanistan: Republicans Alarmed By Troops Withdrawal Plans

In Iraq, the number of US troops will be cut by 500 to 2,500, while the number of service personnel in Afghanistan will fall from 4,500 to about 2,500.

Afghanistan: Republicans Alarmed By Troops Withdrawal Plans
Image via Imgur

As the US decides to withdraw some of its troops from Afghanistan and Iraq, some senior Republican politicians have voiced their concerns. According to the US Department of Defense, the country is planning to reduce its number of troops in the two-nation by 2,500.

The incumbent has long criticized the American interventions abroad and has previously called for army troops to come back home. However, Mitch McConnell, the Senate majority leader, who is a staunch Trump supporter, described the move as a “mistake.”

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McConnell further advised the president not to make any more “earthshaking” changes in national defense and foreign policy before leaving the presidential office. Meanwhile, Trump is yet to concede to Joe Biden’s victory, and the troop cuts are scheduled to come into effect just five days before Biden takes the oath.

President-elect Biden has also said that he is wary of America’s wars overseas but added that the US has the responsibility to end the war responsibly. In Afghanistan, the number of military troops will fall from 4,500 to about 2,500, while the number of service personnel in Iraq will be cut by 500 to 2,500.

Chris Miller, the acting US Defense Secretary, said that the decision to cut the troops in the two countries shows Trump’s commitment to bring the decades-long wars in Iraq and Afghanistan to an end. Interestingly, soon after the announcement of the plan, several rockets were fired in Baghdad’s Green Zone and reportedly landed at the American embassy.

Since last month, when Iraqi militia linked with Tehran agreed to stop targeting the US embassy compound, it was the first such attack. So far, there are no reports of any causalities or any substantial damage caused. The US forces have been in Afghanistan since 2001 when an American-led coalition ousted the Taliban regime following the September attacks.

But now as part of the historic peace deal with the Taliban, the US is planning to withdraw its troops from Afghanistan. Meanwhile, many lawmakers from Trump’s party have criticized the plans of early withdrawal. Apart from that, on Tuesday, the NATO Secretary-General Jen Stoltenberg warned against the consequences of the move. The acting Defense Secretary did not confirm that the Joint Chief of Staff agreed with the plans, but he said that the top military commanders were ready to execute it.

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