News / Asia

Obama Orders Cuts in 'Surge' Troops in Afghanistan

President Barack Obama delivers a televised address from the White House in Washington on his plan to drawdown U.S. troops in Afghanistan, Wednesday, June 22, 2011.
President Barack Obama delivers a televised address from the White House in Washington on his plan to drawdown U.S. troops in Afghanistan, Wednesday, June 22, 2011.
TEXT SIZE - +

U.S. President Barack Obama announced he is withdrawing 10,000 US troops from Afghanistan by the end of this year and will bring home a total of 33,000 troops by the middle of next year.

In a nationally televised address, the president said is he able to make the withdrawals because the United States and its allies are meeting their goals in Afghanistan.

He said the withdrawal will begin in July.

He said that by 2014, the process of transition will be complete, and the Afghan people will be responsible for their own security.

VOA News Analysts Comment on President Obama's Afghan Speech

In 2009, Mr. Obama announced a surge of 30,000 American troops to Afghanistan.  He described the surge as one of the most difficult decisions he has made as president.

President Obama says al-Qaida is under more pressure than at any time since the September 11 terrorist attacks.

In his speech, Mr. Obama calls Osama bin Laden's death a victory for all who have served since the attacks.  He says information recovered from the al-Qaida leader's compound show the terror group under "enormous strain" and on a "path to defeat."

Images from the War in Afghanistan

The president says U.S. forces have inflicted losses on the Taliban and taken a number of its strongholds. He says Afghan forces have grown and are already taking responsibility for security control in their country.

The president also says the "tide of war is receding," with fewer Americans serving in harm's way. He says 100,000 U.S. troops are already out of Iraq and that the "light of a secure peace" can be seen in Afghanistan, with both wars coming to a "responsible end."

Afghan Map

Mr. Obama says the United States must chart "a more centered course, " responding to threats with a "targeted force" and not necessarily deploying large armies overseas.

He says the U.S. must rally international action, like in Libya, where there is not one single American soldier on the ground.

U.S. opinion surveys indicate that Americans are increasingly weary and disillusioned about the war. A Pew Research poll released Tuesday shows a record 56 percent of Americans say U.S. troops should be brought home as soon as possible.

Hours before Mr. Obama's speech Wednesday, lawmakers in Congress passionately debated the costs and benefits of the war.

Afghan war: From Bombing to Drawdown

<object width="480" height="300" id="kickWidget_45137_301823" name="kickWidget_45137_301823" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" data="http://serve.a-widget.com/service/getWidgetSwf.kickAction">
<!-- Firefox uses the 'data' attribute above, IE/Safari uses the param below -->
<param name="movie" value="http://serve.a-widget.com/service/getWidgetSwf.kickAction"></param>
<param name="FlashVars" value="affiliateSiteId=45137&amp;widgetId=301823&amp;width=480&amp;height=300&amp;playOnLoad=0&amp;revision=178&amp;autoPlay=0&amp;varsToAppendToLinks=http%3A%2F%2Faffiliate.kickapps.com%2Fservice%2FgetFeed.kickAction%3FmediaId%3D1599452%26mediaType%3Dvideo%26as%3D45137&amp;mediaType_mediaID=video_1599452" ></param>
<param name="wmode" value="transparent" ></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true" ></param>
<param name="allowScriptAccess" value="always" ></param>
</object>

You May Like

Photogallery Pope's Easter Prayer: Peace in Ukraine, Syria

Pontiff also calls for end to terrorist acts in Nigeria, violence in Iraq, and success in peace talks between Israelis and Palestinians More

Abdullah Holds Lead in Afghan Presidential Election

Country's Election Commission says that with half of the ballots counted, former FM remains in the lead with 44 percent of the vote More

Russia-Ukraine Crisis Could Trigger Cyber War

As tensions between Kyiv and Moscow escalate, so too has frequency of online attacks targeting government, news and financial sites More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Ukraine, Russia, United in Faith, Divided in Politicsi
X
Michael Eckels
April 19, 2014
There is a strong historical religious connection between Russia and Ukraine. But what role is religion playing in the current conflict? In the run-up to Easter, Michael Eckels in Moscow reports for VOA.
Video

Video Ukraine, Russia, United in Faith, Divided in Politics

There is a strong historical religious connection between Russia and Ukraine. But what role is religion playing in the current conflict? In the run-up to Easter, Michael Eckels in Moscow reports for VOA.
Video

Video Face of American Farmer is Changing

The average American farmer is now 58 years old, and farmers 65 and older are the fastest growing segment of the population. It’s a troubling trend signaling big changes ahead for American agriculture as aging farmers retire. Reporter Mike Osborne says a new report from the U.S. Census Bureau is suggesting what some of those changes might look like... and why they might not be so troubling.
Video

Video Donetsk Governor: Ukraine Military Assault 'Delicate But Necessary'

Around a dozen state buildings in eastern Ukraine remain in the hands of pro-Russian protesters who are demanding a referendum on self-rule. The governor of the whole Donetsk region is among those forced out by the protesters. He spoke to VOA's Henry Ridgwell from his temporary new office in Donetsk city.
Video

Video Drones May Soon Send Data From High Seas

Drones are usually associated with unmanned flying vehicles, but autonomous watercraft are also becoming useful tools for jobs ranging from scientific exploration to law enforcement to searching for a missing airliner in the Indian Ocean. VOA’s George Putic reports on sea-faring drones.
Video

Video New Earth-Size Planet Found

Not too big, not too small. Not too hot, not too cold. A newly discovered planet looks just right for life as we know it, according to an international group of astronomers. VOA’s Steve Baragona has more.
Video

Video Copts in Diaspora Worry About Future in Egypt

Around 10 percent of Egypt’s population belong to the Coptic faith, making them the largest Christian minority in the Middle East. But they have become targets of violence since the revolution three years ago. With elections scheduled for May and the struggle between the Egyptian military and Islamists continuing, many Copts abroad are deeply worried about the future of their ancient church. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky visited a Coptic church outside Washington DC.
Video

Video Critics Say Venezuelan Protests Test Limits of Military's Support

During the two months of deadly anti-government protests that have rocked the oil-rich nation of Venezuela, President Nicolas Maduro has accused the opposition of trying to initiate a coup. Though a small number of military officers have been arrested for allegedly plotting against the government, VOA’s Brian Padden reports the leadership of the armed forces continues to support the president, at least for now.
Video

Video More Millenials Unplug to Embrace Board Games

A big new trend in the U.S. toy industry has more consumers switching off their high-tech gadgets to play with classic toys, like board games. This is especially true among the so-called millenial generation - those born in the 1980's and 90's. Elizabeth Lee has more from an unusual café in Los Angeles, where the new trend is popular and business is booming.
Video

Video Google Buys Drone Company

In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
AppleAndroid