DTN News: McCain Slams US Withdrawal Date From Afghanistan
Defense News:DTN News: McCain Slams US Withdrawal Date From Afghanistan
Source: DTN News / AFP
(NSI News Source Info) WASHINGTON - July 5, 2010: US Senator John McCain Sunday slammed the July 2011 target for beginning to pull US troops out of Afghanistan, saying setting a firm date for withdrawal would raise questions about US commitment there.
US Senator John McCain Sunday slammed the July 2011 target for beginning to pull US troops out of Afghanistan
"I'm concerned about the perception of our friends and our enemies as well as the people in Afghanistan, as to the depth of our commitment," McCain told ABC news in an interview from Kabul.
The Republican lawmaker and former prisoner of war said the policy of announcing a planned draw down date was a "bad idea," and that the United States should only leave Afghanistan when the country is stable enough to maintain a strong government.
"I'm all for dates of withdrawal, but that's after the strategy succeeds, not before. That's a dramatic difference," he said.
Afghanistan's ambassador to the United States, Said Jawad, agreed on CNN. He said any deadline must be "based on the reality on the ground," to send a clear message that "NATO and Afghans are there to finish the job."
"If we had a fully functioning system in Afghanistan, there would be no need for the rest of the world to be there. It will take some time," he said. "The threat of terrorism is still imminent."
McCain warned that the Taliban would fill any vacuum left by departing US troops.
"I know enough about warfare," he said. "I know enough about what strategy and tactics are about."
"If you tell the enemy that you're leaving on a date certain, unequivocally, then that enemy will wait until you leave," he said.