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America’s longest war gets more troops

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Old 01.12.18, 10:20 AM
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America’s longest war gets more troops

01.11.18 10:01 PM

The Pentagon is currently in the process of implementing President Donald Trump’s Afghanistan plan, shipping new armed drones and 1,000 new “combat advisers” to the country the U.S. has occupied since 2001.

As reported by The Wall Street Journal:
The idea is to bulk up the U.S. military presence in Afghanistan by the time the traditional fighting season begins in the spring. The military will send a larger number of drones, both armed and unarmed, to Afghanistan for air support as well as for intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance.

The Pentagon also plans to bolster capabilities such as helicopters, ground vehicles, artillery and related materiel, U.S. officials said, moves made possible by a reduction of combat operations in Syria and Iraq against the Islamic State extremist group.

Adding to the U.S. military presence in Afghanistan, the administration will deploy as soon as February members of an Army security-force assistance brigade from Fort Benning, Ga., to work as combat advisers to Afghan National Security Forces, expanding the U.S. training commitment, the officials said.

According to other reports, 2018 is likely to be a busy year for U.S. military involvement in Afghanistan following Trump’s August strategy realignment.

Task and Purpose noted in a recent report:
As recently as late October, the DoD*suggested*that U.S. troop levels in Afghanistan would be capped at about 15,000. But it’s worth remembering that Trump*gave*Secretary of Defense James Mattis authority to adjust troop levels according to what he deems necessary to quell a revitalized insurgency and strengthen Afghan forces enough to handle their country’s security on their own. And that condition-based approach could, of course,*take a very long time.

Hundreds of soldiers with the U.S. Army’s first security force assistance brigade, or SFAB, currently in training at Fort Benning, Georgia, are expected to deploy to Afghanistan in early 2018 as part of that ANDSF training mission. The Army intends to stand up a total of six SFAB brigades by 2022 with the*primary mission is to train and advise foreign troops. In Afghanistan, the focus will be bolstering government forces, which have sustained heavy losses and ceded huge swaths of territory to the Taliban since the U.S. combat mission ended in 2014.

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