US Troops Prepare to Leave Afghanistan

US Troops Prepare to Leave Afghanistan by Eric Thomas, ABC News.

The Afghan Army and police are taking the lead now in combat operations against the Taliban as U.S. troops get ready to leave. But in this case, the administration is not declaring victory or even saying that the violence is under control.

It's America's longest war. And in many ways it's most frustrating...

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After 16 months in Afghanistan I’m sitting in Kuwait waiting for a flight home, presumably for the last time. I tend to wonder what desired end-state has been met in Afghanistan. Even I, as one who never breaks the wire, feel a sense of frustration. Knowing what many others have given up for a fractured/failed state and a fad strategy driven by fad policy. I particularly remember days that we lost people. Recently, I supported a unit that lost 3 soldiers in a SVIED attack. They were conducting a dismounted patrol in a village known to harbor and provide tacit support to the insurgency. Parts of the village celebrated immediately after the attack. Whether or not the people of that village feel any safer now is a moot point to me. I have come to realize that no matter how logical or beneficial it may be to stand up and govern your own village, the people of Afghanistan (this has been replicated country-wide) have been beaten down by external actors for so long that they will willingly give up all and celebrate with whoever the victor may be that particular day.