May 27, 2014
U.S. Will Complete Afghan Pullout by End of 2016, Obama to Say
Source: The New York Times
Journalist Mark Lander
WASHINGTON — President Obama plans to withdraw all combat troops from Afghanistan by the end of 2016, a senior administration official said on Tuesday, a rapid drawdown that will end more than a decade of American military engagement in the country where the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks were incubated.
Under the plan, which Mr. Obama is set to announce in the Rose Garden on Tuesday afternoon, the United States would leave 9,800 troops in Afghanistan after 2014, but reduce that number by roughly half in 2015, according to the official. By the end of 2016, the United States would be down to “a normal embassy presence with a security assistance office in Kabul,” similar to what now remains in Iraq.
All of these deployments hinge on the United States’ signing a security agreement with Afghanistan, which the administration has not yet been able to do.