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Is NATO Ending the Afghan War?
WASHINGTON - May 22 - REBECCA GRIFFIN, rgriffin at peaceactionwest.org,
Griffin is the political director of Peace Action West. She said today: “President Obama clearly feels the pressure to end the war. However, the plan endorsed at this week’s NATO summit leaves the door open to a substantial U.S military presence as far out as 2024. This is clearly out of step with the vast majority of Americans who want our troops out of Afghanistan as soon as possible. Despite the administration’s efforts to sell this plan as an end to the war, we’re still talking about thousands of soldiers and billions of dollars for another twelve years.
Opposition to this war is not going away. Last week, House Republicans tried to beat back the inevitable tide by blocking a vote on an amendment supporting withdrawal that many believe would have passed. But the writing is on the wall and the American people will continue to speak up until our government brings us a clear plan to end this war.”
Congressman Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) on Monday released the following statement as world leaders met in Chicago for the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) summit: “The [NATO] talks are being billed as discussions of plans to end the war. The war in Afghanistan is not ending. These talks are simply about financing the next phase of the war.”
“The Strategic Partnership Agreement between the U.S. and Afghanistan commits us to the country for at least another decade, despite public support for the war being at an all time low. The United States will pay for half of the estimated $4.1 billion per year cost of supporting 352,000 Afghan army and police officers. Afghanistan’s contribution will be $500,000. The rest will be financed by our ‘NATO partners.’ It is not surprising that support for the war among NATO members is waning, with France threatening to pull out its troops by the end of this year.”