Sunday, December 27, 2009

Hillary Clinton: We'll Still Be In Afghanistan In 50 or 60 Years

On December First President Obama talked about withdrawing troops from Afghanistan within 18 months. Everyone knows there is no firm withdrawal date from Afghanistan. But in testimony to the Senate Armed Services Committee on December 2, Secretary Of State Hillary Clinton actually gave a much longer Horizon for the presence of U.S. troops in Afghanistan. Sen. Udall.- So in a ideal world, we would get the job done militarily in the short term: in the medium and long term, we would have a presence in the region, economically, politically and diplomatically. Secretary Clinton. Well as we have with so many countries obviously, we have troops in a limited number of countries around the world; some have been there for 50 or 60 years, but we have long term economic assistance and development programs in many others. And we think that is a likely outcome in both Afghanistan and Pakistan, that we would be there with a long term commitment. Does this mean that U.S troops will be in Afghanistan for 50 years? On the surface, Clinton's statement could be interpreted to mean that troops will be leaving sooner, but America will have long term economic assistance and development programs in Afghanistan for many decades to come. However, U.S Charities working in Afghanistan report that they are subject to Pentagon sponsorship and control, and so the Afghani people view them as part of the U.S. military (Which hampers aid work). Therefore, whether or not troops will remain in Afghanistan for a half century or more, the Afghani people and the rest of the world may consider it permanent occupation. Remember, also that while U.S. government has promised to withdraw by December 31, 2011 from Iraq, the U.S. is building numerous permament military bases in that country. So talk is cheap. By "Washington Blog" Friends.

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