I also thought about something Putin said regarding the lie of the US withdrawal from Syria.
Putin: "I don't know what US withdrawal from Syria means, Americans have been in Afghanistan for 17 years and every year they say they're withdrawing."As was the situation in Iraq. To Syria and now Afghanistan. As Putin pointed out what does American withdrawal, anywhere, mean? Clearly it's meaningless. Hollow. Pointless. Without substance. It's just gibberish. Drivel. Then repeated as if the sheer act of repetition will somehow give the claim of withdrawal some sort of legitimacy. But, it won't.
HAS HE OR hasn’t he? In late December American media reported that Donald Trump had ordered the Pentagon to begin withdrawing half of America’s troops in the country. The reports seemed credible, in so far as Mr Trump had just announced a withdrawal from Syria and had very publicly wavered about keeping any troops in Afghanistan at all in 2017, before deciding to increase their number from 8,400 to 14,000. Yet the sudden reversal had come out of the blue. The Afghan government and startled allies with troops in Afghanistan, such as Britain, said they had not been consulted and were awaiting confirmation.Trump increased troop numbers from 8,400 to 14,000. Pretty darn close to doubling the troops.
Zalmay Khalilzad. Doesn't that name ring a bell? It sure does if you've been paying attention to geo politics for as long as I have! Afghan born and in the administration of George W before the 9/11 attacks-
Confirmation has not been forthcoming. Instead, a White House spokesman contradicted the reports on December 28th, saying Mr Trump had not ordered a pull-out. The commander of American forces in Afghanistan also said he had not received any marching orders, as it were. Nonetheless, the rumoured wobble has again called into question the president’s commitment to the 17-year-old war in Afghanistan.
American forces originally showed up in late 2001 to hunt for Osama bin Laden and to help the militias that had just overthrown the Taliban regime maintain security. The American presence peaked in 2010, at more than 100,000 troops. But even then, America failed to root out the insurgency led by the remnants of Taliban.
The Afghan army has formally taken the lead in the war since 2014. The remaining American soldiers are there mainly to train Afghan ones, although Mr Trump’s mini-surge has allowed American advisers to be stationed with Afghan soldiers on the frontline, to provide more hands-on assistance. Even so, the Taliban and other insurgents are thought to have been killing perhaps 30-40 Afghan soldiers and police a day in recent months. Many analysts wonder whether the Afghan army can sustain such punishing losses in the long run, let alone the higher casualties that would presumably follow if it lost American training and air support.
The biggest immediate impact of the rumours of a withdrawal may be on peace talks with the Taliban. After years of trying to battle the insurgents into submission, America embraced attempts to find a political settlement in 2018. It held meetings with Taliban envoys, in the hope of initiating formal negotiations. Zalmay Khalilzad, Mr Trump’s point man on Afghanistan, told the militants that America would never abandon the Afghan government, and that peace talks were therefore the only way to end the current stalemate. The confusion of the past few weeks, however, will have left the Taliban wondering yet again if they would do better simply to wait out their weary adversary.
In 2001, President George W. Bush asked Khalilzad to head the Bush-Cheney transition team for the Department of Defense, and Khalilzad briefly served as Counselor to Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld. In May 2001, National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice announced Khalilzad's appointment as Special Assistant to the President and Senior Director for Southwest Asia, Near East, and North African Affairs at the US National Security Council. In December 2002, Bush appointed Khalilzad to the position of Ambassador at Large for Free Iraqis with the task of coordinating "preparations for a post-Saddam Hussein Iraq."
The claim of withdrawals most definitely mean more war. As IS the case in Syria most recently. As was the case in Iraq not so long ago. Where withdrawal meant increased bombing and civilian displacement and hell even the "arrival" and expansion of ISIS