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US troops may stay in Afghanistan until 2024!
 Part of channel(s): Afghanistan (current event)

America and Afghanistan are close to signing a strategic pact which would allow thousands of United States troops to remain in the country until at least 2024, The Daily Telegraph can disclose.
By Ben Farmer, Kabul 19 Aug 2011 The Telegraph (UK)
The agreement would allow not only military trainers to stay to build up the Afghan army and police, but also American special forces soldiers and air power to remain.

The prospect of such a deal has already been met with anger among Afghanistan’s neighbours including, publicly, Iran and, privately, Pakistan.

It also risks being rejected by the Taliban and derailing any attempt to coax them to the negotiating table, according to one senior member of Hamid Karzai’s peace council.

A withdrawal of American troops has already begun following an agreement to hand over security for the country to Kabul by the end of 2014.

But Afghans wary of being abandoned are keen to lock America into a longer partnership after the deadline. Many analysts also believe the American military would like to retain a presence close to Pakistan, Iran and China.

Both Afghan and American officials said that they hoped to sign the pact before the Bonn Conference on Afghanistan in December. Barack Obama and Hamid Karzai agreed last week to escalate the negotiations and their national security advisers will meet in Washington in September.

Rangin Dadfar Spanta, Mr Karzai’s top security adviser, told The Daily Telegraph that “remarkable progress” had been made. US officials have said they would be disappointed if a deal could not be reached by December and that the majority of small print had been agreed.

Dr Spanta said a longer-term presence was crucial not only to build Afghan forces, but also to fight terrorism.

“If [the Americans] provide us weapons and equipment, they need facilities to bring that equipment,” he said. “If they train our police and soldiers, then those trainers will not be 10 or 20, they will be thousands.

“We know we will be confronted with international terrorists. 2014, is not the end of international terrorist networks and we have a common commitment to fight them. For this purpose also, the US needs facilities.”

Afghan forces would still need support from US fighter aircraft and helicopters, he predicted. In the past, Washington officials have estimated a total of 25,000 troops may be needed.

Dr Spanta added: “In the Afghan proposal we are talking about 10 years from 2014, but this is under discussion.” America would not be granted its own bases, and would be a guest on Afghan bases, he said. Pakistan and Iran were also deeply opposed to the deal.

Andrey Avetisyan, Russian ambassador to Kabul, said: “Afghanistan needs many other things apart from the permanent military presence of some countries. It needs economic help and it needs peace. Military bases are not a tool for peace.

“I don’t understand why such bases are needed. If the job is done, if terrorism is defeated and peace and stability is brought back, then why would you need bases?

“If the job is not done, then several thousand troops, even special forces, will not be able to do the job that 150,000 troops couldn’t do. It is not possible.”

A complete withdrawal of foreign troops has been a precondition for any Taliban negotiations with Mr Karzai’s government and the deal would wreck the currently distant prospect of a negotiated peace, Mr Avetisyan said.

Abdul Hakim Mujahid, deputy leader of the peace council set up by Mr Karzai to seek a settlement, said he suspected the Taliban had intensified their insurgency in response to the prospect of the pact. “They want to put pressure on the world community and Afghan government,” he said.


Added: Aug-21-2011 Occurred On: Aug-21-2011
By: agatsa
In:
Afghanistan
Tags: Afghanistan, us
Views: 5372 | Comments: 68 | Votes: 1 | Favorites: 0 | Shared: 0 | Updates: 0 | Times used in channels: 2
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  • It is in America's short and long term strategic interest to deny safe haven to the Taliban in Afghanistan and beyond. The Taliban, allied with AQ, would become an even more dangerous terrorist organization than before if they were "victorious" over western powers. The caliphate fails in A-stan.

    Posted Aug-21-2011 By 

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    • @USA1
      The mission must change. In order to save Afghanistan, Afghan troops as well as NATO elements must enter Pakistan and establish fire bases along border passes.
      If the ISI doens't like it,
      well, punish the Pak civilian government in islamabad. They are already heating up the civil war after the bin Laden safe house was hit

      Posted Aug-21-2011 By 

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  • Comment of user 'CommanderInChiefObama' has been deleted by author (after account deletion)!
  • I was completely against both wars, special forces and drones should have been used to wipe out al-Qaeda. BUT now that we are there the USA, UK and NATO need to stay in these places for good it's as simple as that wtf is the point in leaving after the massive sacrifices of money and men. The reason to stay is that it will take about 30 years to sort these shit holes out, but when its done just like korea and japan these places will become great countries ONLY if we stay. Simply look at the diffe More..

    Posted Aug-21-2011 By 

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    • @MiKE0nE

      I can understand being against the Iraq war, but not Afghanistan. I guess if 9/11 happened in your backyard, you might change your mind about going into Afghanistan.

      Posted Aug-21-2011 By 

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    • Comment of user 'FSB' has been deleted by author (after account deletion)!
  • don't worry Mr. Hamid Karzai, with your great help and licking ass talent for CIA's wages, they will be permanently stay there at least with the US army military base. They won't leave the opium to Taliban just like that.;p

    Posted Aug-21-2011 By 

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  • This is BS, i got one kid and he ain't goin to no BS war!.

    Posted Aug-21-2011 By 

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  • Its always been a lie. The goal post keeps moving. Its in the parking lot now and is heading down the street.

    Posted Aug-21-2011 By 

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    • @buttkracken
      The goal of the US military has always been to set up strategic bases in Afghanistan, it borders Iran,Pakistan and China and is also close to Russia,in other words the perfect location for permanent military installations.

      Posted Aug-21-2011 By 

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  • Ya see, here is the thing....

    Prior to being elected as president, Obama slammed Bush on the Iraq war and Guantanamo. He said we had been in Afghanistan too long. He slammed Bush on other policies as well.

    Very soon after a U.S. president gets sworn into office, he gets a major briefing. It is always a real doozie. He will learn things that they did not know before, that was kept under the highest security because of fear of being leaked by the fail-senate.

    You have to wonder what Obama l More..

    Posted Aug-21-2011 By 

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    • Comment of user 'tinabeans' has been deleted by author (after account deletion)!
    • @tinabeans

      I agree with you 100%. I am not defending Obama.

      I was not a fan of Bush, but I cannot stand Obama because of his handling of the economy, over-spending, and other reasons. It has nothing to do with race, because I would have voted for Colin Powell if he had run for president.

      When you say, "do what the public wants", I understand what you are saying, but it depends on what segment of the public you are talking about? The public is vast with many different classes, ide More..

      Posted Aug-21-2011 By 

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  • god bless america

    Posted Aug-21-2011 By 

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  • Now I posted about this in a comment yesterday and the LL Libs gave me thumbs down ?

    guess msnbc 'filters' the kool-aid wfor a better,watered down spin.

    ALL HAIL obama
    obama ahkbar !!!
    truely, he is a man of his word
    his man many words.

    /LIB PWN3D

    Posted Aug-21-2011 By 

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    • @Airedale this is his way of bringing them home, you have to understand democrats. They mean the exact opposite of what they say. Like when they wanted us to invade iraq and said so. They really meant they were aginst it. And when clinton said he didn't have sexual realations with his monica he meant he choked her down w his junk...and when obama said he would fix the economy. He meant he would make it worse.and when he said he would bring the troops home what he really ment is he would increse More..

      Posted Aug-21-2011 By 

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  • I would rather have permenant US bases there rather then having Karzai rule alone and further mess up things over there.

    Posted Aug-21-2011 By 

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  • Obama lied!! soldiers died!!

    Posted Aug-21-2011 By 

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    • @star53
      obama's blood lust knows no ends!
      he told his progressive butt buddies a few lies, they swallowed it like a SF Bay party boy(D)

      lol
      half of these supportes should move to the muslim dominated countries and organize GAY PRIDE DAY parades.

      and they thought and claim the xtian fundies were mean spirited

      Posted Aug-21-2011 By 

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    • @star53 nice rim

      Posted Aug-21-2011 By 

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  • Comment of user 'MrPadaso' has been deleted by author (after account deletion)!
  • First Iraq and now Afghanistan,these occupations will continue to bleed the American taxpayer dry, time to borrow some more from the Chinese I guess.

    Posted Aug-21-2011 By 

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  • Comment of user 'CommanderInChiefObama' has been deleted by author (after account deletion)!
  • USA will be there, and anywhere else, as long as there is oil.

    Posted Aug-21-2011 By 

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  • what the fuck for enough is enough
    It's just another Vietnam the US supporting
    a totally corrupt government even Karzai’s
    brother is dealing in drug's
    The war was lost before it was even started
    the US will leave just like the Russians did
    and the Taliban will move in and take over the
    government and all the soldiers will have died
    for nothing

    Posted Aug-22-2011 By 

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  • And this is news? Which dumb ass thought the US will leave any of the countries it has occupied?

    Posted Aug-22-2011 By 

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  • Well, somebody has to protect the opium from the religious militias who want it destroyed.
    Can't have our western drug cartel's business interupted because a handful of religious nuts don't like the heroin industry or who we put in charge of their country....

    Posted Aug-21-2011 By 

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    • @michael567

      LOL I do believe most of the poppy fields have been wiped out, but your sarcasm always makes me chuckle.

      Posted Aug-21-2011 By 

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    • @ArrestU no they havent, actually theres more poppy now then during Taliban times, astonishing to know how much idiots still believe what the mainstream media tells them.

      Posted Aug-21-2011 By 

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    • @azn99

      Yep. Except I wouldn't call ArrestU an idiot.
      He, like many others, want to believe their government is doing what's right.
      Sadly, they are being mislead and misinformed.

      Posted Aug-22-2011 By 

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  • Fuck That.

    Posted Aug-21-2011 By 

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  • i guess it will be 100 year war, just say until every body dies

    Posted Aug-21-2011 By 

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  • Nuke it then blame it on pakistan, then nuke pakistan and blame it on india. Problem solved.

    Posted Aug-21-2011 By 

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  • Like fuck...

    Posted Aug-21-2011 By 

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  • LOL@all the comments, you will do as your told and nothing else, pussy's

    Posted Aug-21-2011 By 

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  • Job security.

    Posted Aug-21-2011 By 

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  • There have been US troops in South Korea for over 50 years....

    Posted Aug-22-2011 By 

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