Washington, December 12 (RHC)-- The United States military says it will deploy an armored brigade and an aviation unit totaling about 2,300 soldiers to Afghanistan this winter. The Pentagon made the announcement, saying 1,500 soldiers will be sent to Afghanistan, in addition to another 800 troops that will be deployed in support of a training mission known as Operation Freedom’s Sentinel.
"This deployment is part of a regular rotation of forces in support of Operation Freedom's Sentinel," the press release stated, adding that the soldiers were “well-trained, well-led and fully prepared for the challenges this mission will bring.”
No exact date was given in the announcement for when the U.S. troops will leave for deployment to Afghanistan. The United States -- under Republican George W. Bush’s presidency -- and its allies invaded Afghanistan on October 7, 2001 as part of Washington’s so-called war on terror. The offensive removed the Taliban regime from power, but after about one-and-a-half decade, foreign troops are still deployed to the country.
After becoming president in 2008, Barack Obama, a Democrat, vowed to end the Afghan war -- one of the longest conflicts in U.S. history – but he failed to keep his promise. Now, U.S. President-elect Donald Trump, who speaks against the Afghan war, has dubbed the 2001 invasion and following occupation of Afghanistan as "Obama's War."
Obama has ordered the military to take on the Taliban more directly and empower Afghan forces battling the militant group. In October last year, Obama announced plans to keep 9,800 U.S. troops in Afghanistan through 2016 and 5,500 in 2017, reneging on his promise to end the war there and bring home most American forces from the Asian country before he leaves office.
According to U.S. officials, Washington would also maintain a large counter-terrorism contingent of terror drones and Special Operations Forces to fight militants in Afghanistan.
There are now about 10,000 U.S. troops in Afghanistan, as well as some 6,000 NATO service members, to “train and advise” Afghan security forces fighting Taliban. Over the past several months, Taliban militants have intensified their pressure with numerous offensives on other key Afghan provinces, including Kunduz and Takhar.
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