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U.S. News and Commentary



Monday
Nov112013

On Veterans Day, 60,000 U.S. troops still in Afghanistan

U.S. Army Sgt. John Keller, a mortarman with Charlie Company, 2nd Battalion, 30th Infantry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division, sets up an M224 60 mm mortar system during live-fire training at Forward Operating Base Torkham, Nangarhar province, Afghanistan, Sept. 27, 2013. (Caption: DoD; photo by Staff Sgt. Jerry Saslav, U.S. Army National Guard)When President George W. Bush was in office, media paid a great deal of attention to the war in Afghanistan. After President Barack Obama took the Oval Office, coverage declined steeply even though troop deaths increased significantly.

Many Americans may not realize the U.S. military still has approximately 60,000 troops still serving in Afghanistan. [Brookings/Aug., 2013] Yet media pay scant attention to that or the notable increase in casualties.

As Obama’s troop drawdown continues, the country of India “is bracing for more militancy in the battle-scarred region of Kashmir,” said the site Military.com.

Afghanistan has been viewed by most as the “righteous” war because that country harbored the Taliban, fanatics who are among the fiercest oppressors of women and freedom in general in the world today. The Taliban gave refuge to Osama bin Laden and al Qaeda, managing for years to do what they wanted when President Bill Clinton ran the White House.

Each generation of Americans has been touched by war. For my children, the War on Terror is a defining moment in their youth. The Gulf War, when many in this generation had parents who served, is another. The fact our military is now all-volunteer is an indication of the commitment to service that generation holds.

On Veterans Day, we should remember those sons and daughters still serving in a country torn by war and tyranny for generations. And we should concern ourselves with what comes after, especially to the women there, once our troop withdrawal is complete.

The Daily Caller said, “73 percent of American troop deaths in Afghanistan have been under President Obama.”

Restrictive rules of engagement, largely due to leftwing dove influence on Democrats, are one factor in the deaths. Breitbart reported an interview with a U.S. Marine:

“During the Bush administration, we were able to engage terrorists planting IEDs with greater ease. Now, if we see two guys on the side of the road and it looks like they're planting an IED, we are told to wait -- because they might be farmers.”

Insider attacks have also been a factor in the casualties.

(Commentary by Kay B. Day/Nov. 11, 2013)

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