On Thursday July 6, President Barack Obama announced that he will leave 8,400 American troops in Afghanistan when his term as president ends, instead of his previous promise of 5,500 American troops. Obama says that he came to this decision after consulting with military experts in Afghanistan. At first glance, it may seem like this is a terrible idea. After all, more American lives will be at risk in a foreign country. However, I think slowing the American troop removal from Afghanistan is a good idea.
Slowing the American troop withdrawal from Afghanistan would help ensure a situation similar to the current situation in Iraq doesn’t happen in Afghanistan. Although a lot of factors besides the withdrawal of troops have contributed to ISIS’ stronghold in Iraq, such as systemic disenfranchisement and political corruption, slowing troop withdrawal in Iraq could have slowed the growth of ISIS in Iraq in Syria. The main reason for this is that American troops could have supported ISIS’ opponents and possibly stopped ISIS from spreading into Syria.
Slowing the American troop presence in Afghanistan is a good and safe decision. It would help ensure that extremist organizations are not able to gain a stronghold in Afghanistan and it would allow the US to have more accurate intelligence information pertaining to Afghanistan. More information about the withdrawal of American troops from Afghanistan can be found at the Associated Press.