News / USA

Gates: More Casualties in Afghanistan to be Expected, Allied Strategy Will Work

Multimedia

Audio
TEXT SIZE - +

U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates said Thursday that nearly all of the American surge forces have arrived in Afghanistan to press the new strategy President Barack Obama announced in December.  At a news conference in Kabul with Afghan President Hamid Karzai, Gates predicted more U.S. and Afghan casualties, but he said the strategy will work.

Secretary Gates said the U.S. and allied effort in Afghanistan finally has the right resources "to begin delivering tangible, lasting results."  He said, however, that progress will not come without cost.

"As we expected and warned, coalition forces as well as Afghan Army and police are taking heavier casualties as we go into areas the Taliban has dominated for years.  Having said that, our enemies are paying a very steep price and feeling more pressure than ever."

Gates said that pressure will intensify as coalition military operations expand.  He said he believes it will lead to the reintegration of Taliban fighters and reconciliation with the group's senior leaders.

Gates noted that in addition to the 30,000 more U.S. troops, there are 7,000 fresh international troops - nearly three-quarters of their commitment - as well as triple the number of American diplomats and aid workers, and a substantial increase in the size and capability of the Afghan security forces.

The secretary also acknowledged that American aid money has contributed to corruption among Afghan officials.  He said steps are being taken to change that, and he welcomed the Afghan government's anti-corruption efforts.

"The U.S. must make sure that American dollars and other foreign assistance do not fuel corruption.  [U.S.] Ambassador [Karl] Eikenberry and [U.S. Army] General [David] Petraeus are putting in place new procedures and controls to accomplish this objective.  And we fully support the Afghan government in its own efforts to address corruption."

Gates also said he and Afghan President Karzai agreed that the anti-corruption effort must be Afghan-led.  Mr. Karzai issued a passionate defense of his stance on corruption in the face of mounting international criticism.  He blamed the press for painting an inaccurate picture of his efforts.

"I hope you would do the job of conveying the concerns of the Afghan people and me as the president of this country to work toward building an Afghanistan, with the help of the United States and our other allies, that is a state based on proper laws and regulations that is a lawful state, not an abusive police state," said Gates.

The Afghan president accused foreign elements of involvement in the recent arrest and alleged mistreatment of a corruption suspect.  He said that is why he intervened to get the man released.  

Mr. Karzai also said that his decision to ban security contractors in four months, except on foreign compounds, is final.  U.S. officials said the controversial decision will make it difficult for diplomats and aid workers to safely move around the country.

You May Like

Video Pope Francis Hopes Dual Canonizations Will Reconcile Church

John the XXIII and John Paul II will be made saints in a ceremony at St. Peter’s Square on April 27 More

Thailand Reacts to Plots Targeting Israelis

Authorities hope arrest of two Lebanese suspects will disrupt plot to attack young Israeli tourists More

Video In Capturing Nature's Majesty, Film Makes Case for Its Survival

'Once Upon a Forest' takes viewers deep into heart of tropical rainforest 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.
Pope Francis Hopes Dual Canonizations Will Reconcile Churchi
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X
Jerome Socolovsky
April 22, 2014 4:14 PM
On April 27, two popes - John the XXIII and John Paul II - will be made saints in a ceremony at St. Peter’s Square. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky says the dual canonization is part of the current pope’s program to reconcile liberals and conservatives in the Roman Catholic Church.
Video

Video Pope Francis Hopes Dual Canonizations Will Reconcile Church

On April 27, two popes - John the XXIII and John Paul II - will be made saints in a ceremony at St. Peter’s Square. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky says the dual canonization is part of the current pope’s program to reconcile liberals and conservatives in the Roman Catholic Church.
Video

Video In Capturing Nature's Majesty, Film Makes Case for Its Survival

French filmmaker Luc Jacquet won worldwide acclaim for his 2005 Academy Award-winning documentary "March of the Penguins". Now Jacquet is back with a new film that takes movie-goers deep into the heart of a tropical rainforest - not only to celebrate its grandeur, but to make the case for its survival. VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports.
Video

Video Boston Marathon Bittersweet for Many Runners

Monday's running of the Boston Marathon was bittersweet for many of the 36,000 participants as they finished the run that was interrupted by a double bombing last year. Many gathered along the route paid respect to the four people killed as a result of two bombings near the finish line. VOA's Carolyn Presutti returned to Boston this year to follow two runners, forever changed because of the crimes.
Video

Video Pacific Rim Trade Deal Proves Elusive

With the U.S.-led war in Iraq ended and American military involvement in Afghanistan winding down, President Barack Obama has sought to pivot the country's foreign policy focus towards Asia. One aspect of that pivot is the negotiation of a free-trade agreement among 12 Pacific Rim nations. But as Obama leaves this week on a trip to four Asian countries he has found it very difficult to complete the trade pact. VOA's Ken Bredemeier has more from Washington.
Video

Video Robotic Mission Kicks Up Lunar Dust

A robotic mission to the moon was deliberately crashed onto the lunar surface late last week, but not before scientists had collected data gathered by the spacecraft which was designed to self-destruct. VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports on the preliminary findings of the craft, called LADEE - an acronym for Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer.
Video

Video Boko Haram Claims Responsibility for Bombing in Nigerian Capital

The Nigerian militant group known as Boko Haram has claimed responsibility for a bombing in the capital on April 14th that killed 75 people. In the video message, Abubakar Shekau, the man who says he ordered the bombing, says nothing about the mass abduction of more than 100 teenage girls, most of whom are still missing. Heather Murdock has more for VOA from Abuja.
Video

Video Ukraine Developments Hang Over Obama Trip to Asia

President Barack Obama's trip to Asia this week comes as concerns over Beijing's territorial ambitions are growing in the region. Those concerns have been compounded by Russia's recent actions in Ukraine and the possibility that Chinese strategists might be looking to Crimea as a model for its territorial disputes with its neighbors. VOA's Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video Autistic Adults Face Housing, Job Challenges

Many parents of children with disabilities fear for the future of their adult child. It can be difficult to find services to help adults with disabilities - physical, mental or emotional - find work or live on their own. The mother of an autistic boy set up a foundation to advocate for the estimated 1.2 million American adults with autism, a developmental disorder that causes communication difficulties and often social difficulties. VOA's Faiza Elmasry reports.
AppleAndroid