On Wednesday night, President Barack Obama gave a speech “on the Way Forward in Afghanistan.” Addressing the nation live from the East Room of the White House, the President shared his plan to draw down the number of troops in that country.
“By the time I took office, the war in Afghanistan had entered its seventh year… (In) one of the most difficult decisions that I’ve made as President, I ordered an additional 30,000 American troops into Afghanistan,” the President said. “(S)tarting next month, we will be able to remove 10,000 of our troops from Afghanistan by the end of this year, and we will bring home a total of 33,000 troops by next summer.”
The President also said that by 2014, all United States troops would be gone, “and the Afghan people will be responsible for their own security.”
Obama also discussed further military action in Pakistan, saying “there should be no doubt that so long as I am President, the United States will never tolerate a safe haven for those who aim to kill us.”
The President also addressed naysayers who claim the U.S. should not be involved in so many conflicts abroad, including Libya: “Some would have America retreat from our responsibility as an anchor of global security, and embrace an isolation that ignores the very real threats that we face.”
“When innocents are being slaughtered and global security endangered, we don’t have to choose between standing idly by or acting on our own,” the President said. “Instead, we must rally international action, which we’re doing in Libya, where we do not have a single soldier on the ground, but are supporting allies in protecting the Libyan people and giving them the chance to determine their own destiny.”