President Trump announced Monday night a dramatic escalation of US war in Afghanistan, with no definition of success and no exit plan – in fact, very few specifics of any kind. Reports before his speech included speculations of sending 4000 more troops to join the 8400 already there.
The simple truth is that sixteen years after the initial U.S.-led invasion of Afghanistan, there’s nothing a few more thousand troops will do to finally put an end to a war that simply does not have a military solution.
As an organization based in principles of nonviolence and dedicated to peace with justice, our PJALS community continues to oppose US war in Afghanistan. After 16 years of war, more than 104,000 lives have been taken. American families are paying $4 million for each hour of this war. There is no military solution and the costs of war are unacceptable. We call on Senator Murray and Senator Cantwell to re-assert Congressional authority and lead in prioritizing diplomacy and development to bring about peace.
Please call – Our Congressional electeds have not yet responded to Trump’s announcement!
As the Congressional Progressive Caucus stated:
“As an alarming range of life-and-death decisions are being relinquished to unelected military officials, Congress must urgently step in and fulfill its constitutional duty to oversee war. We must repeal the ill-fated Authorization for Use of Military Force of 2001, which has been used as a blank check by three administrations for a conflict that has dragged on for nearly 16 years, has cost taxpayers nearly $1 trillion, and has killed thousands of Afghans and Americans.
“Neither Trump nor his top military officials have offered a plausible explanation of how more U.S. troops and weapons in Afghanistan will lead to a victory. They have offered no clear idea of what success might look like or any metrics for gauging success. A fresh deployment of additional U.S. personnel will, instead, aggravate the war’s human costs. After almost 16 years, it is clear that there is no military solution in Afghanistan: only a diplomatic approach, which acknowledges the complexities of the country, can bring about a just and lasting peace for Afghans.”
Background: In 2001, in response to al Qaeda’s attacks on the United States on September 11, the United States launched its combat mission in Afghanistan, which was then harboring the terrorist organization. What began as a mission to destroy al Qaeda and drive the Taliban from power became the longest-running overseas war in American history. More than six years after the successful operation in Pakistan to kill Osama bin Laden and 11 years after Khalid Sheik Mohammed, the alleged ‘mastermind’ of 9/11, was captured, the war rages on with no real plan for a lasting, sustainable peace.
There is no military solution in Afghanistan.
America’s endless war in Afghanistan comes with high costs of immense human suffering and trillions in taxpayer dollars.
Congress must reassert its war-making authority.