The UN Security Council unanimously adopted a resolution on Tuesday afternoon welcoming recent steps towards ending the conflict in Afghanistan. All 15 members supported the resolution, tabled by the United States, which endorses a joint US-Afghan declaration on peace and an agreement signed between Washington and the Taliban.
The United States signed a deal with the Taliban on Saturday that sets the stage to end America’s longest war — the nearly two-decade-old conflict in Afghanistan that began after the Sept. 11 attacks, killed tens of thousands of people, vexed three White House administrations and left mistrust and uncertainty on all sides.
That split over what direction the party should take is now a major issue in the current primary, with Mr. Sanders arguing for the full-throated leftist agenda and others counseling moderation.
Incredibly, Americans will vote this year in the fifth straight presidential election haunted by the Iraq war — proof of the trauma seared on the nation’s psyche.
At CNN’s Democratic debate last night in Iowa, candidates exhumed the decision to topple Saddam Hussein, prompted by fears Donald Trump could plunge the US into another Middle East war — with Iran.
Sanders’s campaign declined to make him available for an interview.
Mr. Sanders’s speech on Friday also indicated how he might use foreign policy to separate himself from other senators who are running for president: He pointed out that he has voted against all of Mr. Trump’s military budgets, a distinction that Ms. Warren and Ms. Klobuchar cannot claim.
We must end our involvement in the Saudi-led intervention in Yemen. We must bring our troops home from Afghanistan.
Started streaming 47 minutes ago
Bernie Sanders will address Trump’s dangerous escalation in the Middle East at 1 p.m. ET/12 p.m. CT.
From July 2009 to March 2010, I served as one of the U.S. Air Force’s designees for a nation-building mission, and I witnessed the disconnect between what happened on the ground and the messages the public heard about it. As my team’s information operations officer, I played a direct role in crafting those messages. I employed “strategic communication” during events like the 2009 Afghan presidential election and directed embedded reporters to only the sunniest stories, keeping them away from disgruntled troops who might not stick to tidy talking points. But my job wasn’t only to mislead the American public: Our information campaign extended to the Afghan people and to higher-ups within the American military itself.
“The Afghan forces are better than we thought they were,” Marine Gen. John Allen told Congress in 2012. “The Afghan national security forces are winning,” Army Lt. Gen. Joseph Anderson told reporters in 2014.
But in a trove of confidential government interviews obtained by The Washington Post, U.S., NATO and Afghan officials described their efforts to create an Afghan proxy force as a long-running calamity. With most speaking on the assumption that their remarks would remain private, they depicted the Afghan security forces as incompetent, unmotivated, poorly trained, corrupt and riddled with deserters and infiltrators.
We are now in a position to seal a United States-Taliban agreement that would lead to intra-Afghan negotiations and move the conflict into the political realm. We should not miss this opportunity.
The war has exacted an overwhelming cost: 1,892 American military personnel killed in action and 20,589 wounded, about a trillion dollars spent, the psychological and emotional impact on veterans and their families, and similar material and human costs to our allies. And there is the devastating cost paid by the people of Afghanistan: Of the 147,000 killed in the war since 2001, more than 38,000 have been civilians. This long war must end.
After a three-year freeze in negotiations over the conflict between Ukrainian government forces and pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine, a meeting is set for Monday at France’s Élysée Palace.
Gabbard is the only Democratic hopeful to place foreign policy—specifically ending the absurd wars she was a part of herself—at the top of her campaign agenda. Love her or hate her, that is profound in post-9/11 America. She’s been an outspoken opponent of the U.S.-backed Saudi genocide in Yemen, repeatedly calls out the lie of an Iraq War that shattered the Middle East, and is almost alone in criticizing Obama’s repeatedly counterproductive actions that armed and fueled anti-American Islamists in Syria. These are vital truths in an age of obfuscation and foreign policy apathy.
Nearly two decades after the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, polls show that a majority of all veterans have grown disenchanted with the continuing wars, even if the national security elite in both parties continue to press for an American military presence in Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan. The view is in stark contrast to widespread support for the wars across the military and veterans community — and the general population — when President George W. Bush first sent American troops to Afghanistan and then Iraq.
“It is time for us to get out of these ridiculous endless wars, many of them tribal, and bring our soldiers home. We will fight where it is to our benefit, and only fight to win.” Fifty-eight percent (58%) of Likely U.S. Voters agree with Trump’s statement, according to the latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone and online survey. Just 20% disagree, while 22% are not sure. (To see survey question wording, click here.)
Even 55% of Democrats agree with the statement, although it is important to note that Rasmussen Reports did not identify Trump as the source of the quotation in its question.
What was Saudi Arabia’s involvement in the 9/11 attack? Americans deserve an answer to this question. Join me in calling on the Trump Administration to declassify and release all information regarding the 9/11 attack. Add your name to our petition.
“Our government should not be invoking secrecy to keep its own mistakes hidden from the American people and should certainly not be used to protect the Saudis from embarrassment or, worse yet, accountability,” said Terry Strada, a Sept. 11 widow and the chairwoman of 9/11 Families and Survivors United for Justice Against Terrorism. “Until there is an accounting, we will never go away.”
Embroiled in a dispute with former Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI) defended her foreign policy views in a Wall Street Journal opinion piece. She joins Ali Velshi to respond to her critics.
Hillary Clinton emerged recently to claim, with no basis in fact, that I am being “groomed” by the Russian government to undermine America. As a major in the National Guard who served in Iraq—one of the many disastrous regime-change wars Mrs. Clinton championed over her career—I swore an oath to only one authority: the U.S. Constitution.
I’m running for president to undo Mrs. Clinton’s failed legacy. From Iraq to Libya to Syria, her record is replete with foreign-policy catastrophes.
„We have done them a great service,“ Trump said of U.S. efforts to end fighting between Turkey, a NATO ally, and the mainly Kurdish Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), who have been a key partner in the U.S.-led campaign to defeat IS.
„This was an outcome created by us, the United States, and nobody else,“ he said. „Now we’re getting out. … Let someone else fight over this long-bloodstained sand.“
Only 37 percent of voters support Trump’s decision regarding Syria, the poll shows, less than the 43 percent who oppose it. But a sizable number, 20 percent, say they don’t have an opinion about Trump’s decision.
Hillary, your foreign policy was a disaster for our country and the world—resulting in the deaths and injuries of so many of my brothers and sisters in uniform, devastating entire countries, millions of lives lost, refugee crises, our enemy al-Qaeda/ISIS strengthened, increased Iranian and Russian influence in the region, Turkey emboldened, and exacerbated the problem of nuclear proliferation by overthrowing Gadhafi in Libya. Yet despite the damage you have done to our country and the world, you want to continue your failed policies directly or indirectly through the Democratic nominee.
“America will always be grateful for our Kurdish allies and the Syria defense forces who fought shoulder to shoulder and bravely with us in this fight,” Pence told the crowd.
“Now that our military and our allies have achieved our objectives against ISIS, President Trump is keeping his word to the American people and our troops are starting to come home,” he said.
Too bad there wasn’t…..
…..this thinking years ago. Instead, it was always held together with very weak bandaids, & in an artificial manner. There is good will on both sides & a really good chance for success.
Then-candidate Trump said often that the Iraq War was a mistake, and that we were in too many places for too long. Fast-forward to 2019, and the president is now moving forward to stop the “endless wars.” I stand with him.
The idea that our president would make this decision from this perspective is refreshing and long-awaited. Virtually every president in my lifetime has ended up in a new conflict or extending and expanding the old ones.
In particular, in the past 18 years, from Iraq to Libya to Syria, past presidents went into one bad misadventure after another.
“There is a chance that Assad and Erdoğan — if Assad will guarantee his side of the border — that there could be a retreat of Turkey back within its borders and you actually could maybe set up something where the Kurds actually get some provincial or semi-autonomous control,” he told Hill.TV.
Vice President Mike Pence, heading a U.S. delegation that includes Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo and White House national security advisor Robert O’Brien, arrived in Turkey on Thursday, a day after Trump dismissed the very crisis he sent his aides on an emergency mission to douse.
“The same people that got us into the Middle East Quicksand, 8 Trillion Dollars and many thousands of lives (and millions of lives when you count the other side), are now fighting to keep us there. Don’t listen to people that haven’t got a clue. They have proven to be inept!”
The tweet represents one of the most significant indictments that a US president has ever issued against the foreign policy that his own country has pursued in the Middle East for several decades.
A Democratic source familiar with how the meeting transpired said it “devolved into the president calling the Speaker a name. He was quite nasty, so she stood up to go. She started to sit back down but Rep. Hoyer got her to go. Pelosi and Hoyer walked out of the meeting.”
The source added that when Pelosi and Hoyer were preparing to walk out of the meeting, Trump said to them: “I’ll see you at the polls.”
Trump defended his decision in a series of early-morning tweets on Monday. “The same people who got us into the Middle East mess are the people who most want to stay there!” he wrote. “Never ending wars will end!”
Charlie D’Agata is following developments in neighboring Iraq and has more on the pace of the U.S. withdrawal.
President Trump on Wednesday tweeted out photos from his contentious meeting with Democrats and Republicans on Syria, accusing Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) of having an „unhinged meltdown.“
I fear this is a complete and utter national security disaster in the making and I hope President Trump will adjust his thinking.
Trump’s call for ending U.S. military involvement in the Middle East and bringing the troops home was a feature of his presidential campaign, but it flies in the face of many decades of bipartisan American policy, even as the Trump administration and its immediate predecessor have tried to give additional attention to what they see as long-term security threats elsewhere, including from China and Russia.
Trump suggested that Republican predecessor George W. Bush, whose military invaded Iraq based on bad intelligence, was responsible for entangling the United States in a regional quagmire that has resulted in more 50,000 American casualties since 2001.
‚We went to war under a false & now disproven premise, WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION. There were NONE! Now we are slowly & carefully bringing our great soldiers & military home. Our focus is on the BIG PICTURE! THE USA IS GREATER THAN EVER BEFORE!‘ he proclaimed.
Trump said that religious clashes in the Middle East will never be resolved by an American military presence.
As of today, American troops have been engaged in Afghanistan for 18 years—America’s longest war ever. This means today’s recruits may be sent to fight in a war that started before they were even born, and many of those currently deployed are likely too young to remember the events of 9/11.
There’s no question we were justified in responding to those attacks, and the men and women who have been sent to Afghanistan have served honorably. But our continued involvement in the region does not serve American interests and only works to destabilize the region further. After nearly two decades of fighting, thousands of lives lost, and trillions of taxpayer dollars spent, it is past time to bring our troops home.
Dave Rubin of The Rubin Report talks to Tulsi Gabbard (Presidential Candidate) about ridiculous questions from the media, why she is anti war, and if the Democrats are rigging the debates and losing the trust of Democratic Voters.
“Every time your local city council member, your state representative, your member of Congress tells you there’s not enough money to make sure we have clean water, there’s not enough money to have quality health care for all … there’s just not enough money to make sure our kids have the tools they need to get the best education possible,” that’s the cost of current foreign policy, said Gabbard, who is seeking the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination.
In the 18 years since Sept. 11, 2001, taxpayers have spent $6 trillion for the War on Terror, she said. The bill continues to go up at a rate of $4 billion a month for the war in Afghanistan.
During a separate interview on NBC, Pompeo noted Camp David’s history in peace negotiations, “sometimes with some pretty bad actors.”
“The president ultimately made the decision that … if we could get commitments and then put in place a verification regime that would give us confidence that we could observe that those commitments were being honored, that … it was a useful effort to try and get all of those parties in one place so that we could have serious conversations.”
Tulsi is speaking at the New Hampshire Democratic Party Convention in Manchester, NH.
„This is not about being an isolationist or turning our back on the world. This is about making the right decisions and making sure our country is a force for good in the world,” she said. “A lot of people feel threatened by this message and this change that we’re talking about because they’ve profited from it for so long.”
Service — in particular, her own military experience — shapes much of her worldview. After voluntarily deploying to Iraq, she felt betrayed by the Bush administration’s false claims of weapons of mass destruction. „I went and deployed to Iraq and enlisted in the military believing the lie that was told to so many of us, to the whole country.” Gabbard’s military focus is attracting a unique cross-section of voters as she campaigns. At the Sweet Corn Parade in Adel, a man approached her to say that he was a Republican but voting for her. „I love your military background…we’ve got to stop these wars,” he said as cars lined up for the annual event.
WASHINGTON — Withdrawing American troops from Afghanistan too soon would be a “strategic mistake,” President Trump’s nominee for Joint Chiefs of Staff chairman said Thursday, clearly outlining the Pentagon’s position as the White House wrestles with whether to pull military forces and end the 18-year war.
They would withdraw all US troops from Afghanistan within their first year in office.
Japan said last week it would end expedited shipments of chemical compounds used by South Korean companies in the manufacture of microchips and smartphones.
Tokyo is angry at South Korean court rulings that Japanese firms must compensate forced laborers from Japan’s 1910-1945 rule of the peninsula.
According to sources, the UNC is seeking to include Japan as one of the UNC’s „sending states,“ a move likely to inflame public sentiment in South Korea amid renewed historical tensions with Tokyo.
Should Japan obtain the membership, it would pave the way for its military involvement in the event of an armed conflict on the Korean peninsula — a scenario unthinkable for many Koreans who harbor grievances stemming from Japan’s 1910-45 colonial rule.
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, meeting with visiting President Xi Jinping, said his country is waiting on a response in stalled nuclear talks with the United States.
„North Korea would like to remain patient,“ state broadcaster CCTV reported Kim as saying. „But it hopes the relevant party will meet halfway with North Korea.“
My amendment to repeal the 2001 AUMF was included in the passage of HR 2470, which will sunset the 2001 AUMF after eight months, giving Congress and the Executive Branch plenty of time to debate and vote on a new AUMF once signed by the Executive.
“Two years ago, this same amendment was passed out of the Appropriations Committee on a bipartisan basis but was undemocratically stripped out by House Speaker Paul Ryan. The passage of this spending bill with the 2001 AUMF repeal included is a historic and timely step forward in reasserting Congress’ constitutional authority on matters of war and peace.
This month could mark the first time a chamber of the U.S. Congress has moved to repeal the 2001 AUMF, which has been used by three presidents to keep the U.S. in a state of war for nearly 18 years.
In May, the House Appropriations Committee adopted an amendment to the annual defense spending bill from Representative Barbara Lee that would repeal the 2001 law eight months after enactment. The amendment passed through committee on a party-line vote of 30-22. It could pass, should the Democratic majority remain unified, as early as this week when it comes up for consideration.
Asked by reporters whether he was prepared to ease some sanctions on North Korea, Trump said he and Moon were discussing „certain humanitarian things“ and the possibility of South Korea helping the North with food. He did not rule out participating in a three-way summit with both Kim and Moon.
The foreign policy establishment and military industrial complex wage one regime change war after another under the guise of humanitarianism—wars that INCREASE the people’s suffering and devastation in those countries, and strengthen jihadists like al-Qaeda.
Published on Feb 28, 2019
2020 Democratic presidential candidate Rep. Tulsi Gabbard says efforts to denuclearize North Korea have been hampered by U.S. policy of regime change.
Choe also said the U.S. was „gangster-like“ in their demands for denuclearization. To that,… Pompeo said it was not the first time that North Korea had portrayed him in a negative light,… and added that the two sides have continued to have „very professional conversations“ despite such accusations. He also said he has every expectation… that they’ll be able to continue such discussions.
In a recent fundraising email, Gabbard slammed „corporate media“ and claimed „Russia-baiting propaganda is being deployed“ against her campaign because she’s spoken out against „regime change“ and a „new Cold War.“
Gabbard’s fiercely anti-interventionist disposition puts her in line with many on far end of the political left, and journalists like Glenn Greenwald have emerged as her fiercest defenders.
Leaders in both parties think that we should be acting as the policemen of the world and that we should continue to go around overthrowing and toppling dictators or countries who we don’t like. These wars are causing more suffering and costing us, the American people, trillions of dollars in the process. Unless we end these regime-change wars we will not have the resources we need to serve the needs of our people and our communities right here at home.
Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard explains a 2020 foreign policy platform that is largely informed by her own experience serving in the military.
[FULL] CNN TOWN HALL WITH TULSI GABBARD 3/10/19 | CNN BREAKING NEWS TODAY MAR 10, 2019