News / Asia

Top General Says US to Assess Afghan Troops Level After Summer

Marine Gen. Joseph Dunford (2012 photo)Marine Gen. Joseph Dunford (2012 photo)
x
Marine Gen. Joseph Dunford (2012 photo)
Marine Gen. Joseph Dunford (2012 photo)
Reuters
— The U.S. commander of international forces in Afghanistan said on Tuesday he will make a recommendation of how many American troops should remain in Afghanistan after he sees how well Afghan security handles the summer fighting season.
       
"We need to see how the Afghans do in their first summer in the lead, and make an assessment in November 2013,'' Marine Corps General Joseph Dunford told a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing.
       
He said other variables such as the state of the enemy and Afghanistan's political transition would also inform his decision.
       
Dunford stressed repeatedly that the United States could not make a troop commitment until it had signed a bilateral security agreement with the Afghan government. Washington and Kabul have been negotiating such a pact, which would address the relationship of the two countries for years to come.
       
Lawmakers have been pressing U.S. commanders to release recommendations for how many troops should remain in Afghanistan after 2014, when President Barack Obama has pledged to withdraw most U.S. forces.
       
The decision is a delicate one. Obama wants to put an end to the conflict launched after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, but also to ensure enough troops stay behind to train and support Afghan forces and carry out counterterrorism operations against al Qaeda and its allies.
       
Senator John McCain said the refusal to announce a troop commitment made the U.S. mission in Afghanistan more difficult.
       
"One of the reasons we're having so much difficulty in some areas is because the Afghans don't know what our commitment is,'' he said, sharply.
       
"I can't tell you how disappointed I am in your testimony, general,'' the Arizona Republican said.
       
General James Mattis, who leads the U.S. military's Central Command, said last month that he has recommended keeping 13,600 American troops in Afghanistan after 2013.
       
Dunford told reporters after the hearing that he would not comment on that figure.

You May Like

At Khmer Rouge Court, Long-Awaited Verdict Approaches

First phase of trial, which is coming to an end, has focused on forced exodus of Phnom Penh in 1975 - and now many are hopeful justice will be served More

Video When Fighting Eases, Gazans Line Up at Bakeries

When there is a lull in the conflict, residents who have been hunkered down in their apartments rush out to stock up on food and other necessities More

Video Information War Rages Alongside Real One in Ukraine

Downing of Malaysian airliner, allegations of cross-border shelling move information war in war-torn country to a new level More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Information War Rages Alongside Real One in Ukrainei
X
Al Pessin
July 31, 2014 8:13 PM
The downing of the Malaysian airliner two weeks ago, and allegations that Russians are shelling Ukrainian troops across the border, have moved the information war swirling around the Ukrainian conflict to a new level. VOA's Al Pessin reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video Information War Rages Alongside Real One in Ukraine

The downing of the Malaysian airliner two weeks ago, and allegations that Russians are shelling Ukrainian troops across the border, have moved the information war swirling around the Ukrainian conflict to a new level. VOA's Al Pessin reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video When Fighting Eases, Gazans Line Up at Bakeries

When there is a lull in the conflict in Gaza, residents who have been hunkered down in their apartments rush out to stock up on food and other necessities. Probably the most important destination is the local bakery. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Gaza City.
Video

Video US-Funded Program Offers Honduran Children Alternative to Illegal Immigration

President Obama and Central American leaders recently agreed to come up with a plan to address poverty and crime in the region that is fueling the surge of young migrants trying to illegally enter the United States. VOA’s Brian Padden looks at one such program in Honduras - funded in part by the United States - which gives street kids not only food and safety but a chance for a better life without, crossing the border.
Video

Video 'Fab Lab' Igniting Revolution in Kenya

The University of Nairobi’s Science and Technology Park is banking on 3-D prototyping to spark a manufacturing revolution in the country. Lenny Ruvaga has more for from Nairobi's so-called “FabLab” for VOA.
Video

Video Gazans in Shelled School Sought Shelter

Israel's air and ground assault against Hamas-led fighters in Gaza has forced many Palestinians to flee their homes, seeking safety. But safe places are hard to find, as VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Jabaliya.
Video

Video Rapid Spread of Ebola in West Africa Prompts Global Alert

Across West Africa, health officials are struggling to keep up with what the World Health Organization describes as the worst ebola outbreak on record. The virus has killed hundreds of people this year. U.S. President Barack Obama and other world leaders are watching the developments closely as they weigh what actions, if any, are needed to help contain the disease.
Video

Video Michelle Obama: Young Africans Need to Embrace Women's Rights

U.S. first lady Michelle Obama urged some of Africa's best and brightest to advocate for women's rights in their home countries. As VOA's Pam Dockins explains, Obama spoke to some 500 participants of the Young African Leaders Initiative, a six-week U.S.-based training and development program.
Video

Video Immigrant Influx on Texas Border Heats Up Political Debate

Immigrants from Central America continue to cross the U.S.-Mexico border in south Texas, seeking asylum in the United States, as officials grapple with ways to deal with the problem and provide shelter for thousands of minors among the illegal border crossers. As VOA's Greg Flakus reports from Houston, the issue is complicated by internal U.S. politics and U.S. relations with the troubled nations that immigrants are fleeing.
Video

Video Study: Latino Students Most Segregated in California

Even though legal school segregation ended in the United States 60 years ago, one study finds segregation still occurs in the U.S. based on income and race. The University of California Los Angeles Civil Rights Project finds that students in California are more segregated by race than ever before, especially Latinos. Elizabeth Lee reports for VOA from Los Angeles.

AppleAndroid