After the elections, US President Donald Trump announced the drawdown of the US troops in Afghanistan, reducing numbers to 2500. This means that about half of the US military presence was to be called back, but the announcement came before the military had a properly devised plan on how this would take place without jeopardizing the gains of the past 20 years. Although the peace process is at a historically positive point with the first written agreement between the two sides,

However, at an event at Brookings Institution Think Tank, some of the details of the drawdown plan to be followed have just been publicly declared by Chairman of Joint Chiefs of Staff, Army General Mark Milley. 2000 troops will return to the US, leaving 2500, and many bases will close down. However, the US will keep 2 large bases, along with several satellite bases. No information has been revealed about which bases are shutting down and which will remain. The military has also not revealed their predictions of what the upcoming administration will decide regarding the US’ presence in Afghanistan.

There is a general commitment by the military to continue their major roles in Afghanistan, even with the smaller remaining force. These roles are to support the Afghan Security forces in countering Taliban insurgents, and to continue the fight against ISIS, Al Qaeda, and their smaller offshoots.

Globally, regionally, and at the level of Afghanistan, it is expected and hoped that the US will not completely withdraw until Afghanistan has attained stability and is more self-reliant, as at the current stage, a major change like withdrawal of US and Allied Forces, can only further destabilize the region. Despite the ongoing peace process, violence and insurgency continue to regularly take lives in Afghanistan.


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