U.S. in Afghanistan ‘Achieved Modicum of Success’: Top General Mark Milley

Army Gen. Mark Milley, the Joint Chiefs of Staff chair told Brookings Institution’s Michael O’Hanlon on Wednesday morning that the United States has achieved “a modicum of success” after two decades of “consistent effort there.”

The Killid Group
3 Dec 2020
U.S. in Afghanistan ‘Achieved Modicum of Success’: Top General Mark Milley
Army Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Milley testifies before the Senate Armed Services Committee as his nomination to become the next Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff was considered on Thursday, July 11, 2019, on Capitol Hill in Washington. CARLOS BONGIOANNI/STARS AND STRIPES

“We went to Afghanistan … to ensure that Afghanistan never again became a platform for terrorists to strike against the United States,” Gen. Milley said during the virtual event. “And to a large measure we have been, at least to date, successful in preventing that from happening again.”

Gen. Milley reiterated on a negotiated settlement for ending decades-long conflict in Afghanistan.

He offered first details on the U.S. military draw down, saying in addition to the two larger bases, the United States would also keep “several satellite bases.”

“As a general comment: You’re looking at a couple of larger bases with several satellite bases that provide the capability to continue our train, advise, and assist mission and continue our counterterrorism mission,” Milley said.

He did not provided further details on which bases would remain and/or shut.

“What comes after that, that will be up to a new administration,” the U.S. top General said.

The U.S. will continue its core missions. First to assist Afghan government forces and second to conduct counterterrorism operations against IS and al-Qaeda, he continued.

U.S. President Donald Trump earlier ordered an accelerated withdrawal of U.S. troops, down to 2,500, before President-elect Joe Biden takes office on January.

All U.S. forces could leave Afghanistan by May under an agreement with the Taliban.

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