Mike Pence: Donald Trump's new American strategy for Afghanistan will undo past failures
August 21, 2017
"President Trump has no higher priority than the safety and security of the American people. Since the very first day of our administration, he has taken decisive action to protect our citizens, our country and our very way of life — and on Monday, President Trump announced a new strategy for addressing threats from Afghanistan and South Asia that will enhance the security of our homeland and protect our people from those who would do us harm.
"America must prevent terrorists from regaining a foothold in Afghanistan — the country from where al-Qaeda, aided by the Taliban, planned and directed the attacks on Sept. 11, 2001. Yet the previous administration publicly placed an arbitrary end date on military operations in Afghanistan, enabling the Taliban to bide its time and begin a renewed campaign to reconquer its lost territory. We need only look at Iraq, and the rise of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria following the last administration’s withdrawal of U.S. forces, to see where this path leads.
"President Trump has reversed that policy. And important, he has ensured that our armed forces will have the resources and authorization they need in order to succeed.
"President Trump has determined that conditions — not arbitrary timetables — will guide our strategy. The previous administration alerted our enemies ahead of time by announcing troop numbers and timelines, something President Trump has wisely refused to do.
"A stable Afghanistan will mean a safer America. To achieve this goal, President Trump’s new strategy for South Asia also calls for a shift in America’s policy towards Pakistan, a place he refuses to ignore.
"Finally, the president's strategy for South Asia involves a stronger strategic partnership with India — the world’s largest democracy and a key security and economic partner. India has made important contributions towards Afghanistan’s stability and security, and India has also pledged critical support to Afghanistan’s development needs. Because they directly affect America’s interests, America will continue to work closely with New Delhi on these issues.
"President Trump’s strategy for South Asia will undo the failed policies of the past and put the safety and security of the American people first. And with the president’s leadership, with the courage of our armed forces, and with the prayers of our people: America will be stronger, safer and more secure than ever before."
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