Members of the US Senate’s Armed Services Committee on Tuesday slammed the Trump administration for not coming up with a strategy for Afghanistan despite being in office for six months.
Committee chairman Senator John McCain rued that despite all the sacrifices made by US soldiers, Afghanistan is still a nation at war.
“We’re now six months into this administration, we still haven’t got a strategy for Afghanistan. It makes it hard for us to support you when we don’t have a strategy. We know what the strategy was for the last eight years, don’t lose. That hasn’t worked,” McCain said.
“The sacrifice of these heroes is a painful reminder that America is still a nation at war. That is true in Afghanistan where, after 15 years of war, we face a stalemate and urgently need a change in strategy, and an increase in resources if we are to turn the situation around,” he added.
McCain’s remarks came after US Defence Secretary Jim Mattis admitted that the US is not winning the fight against terror in Afghanistan as of now. Mattis acknowledged that the Taliban is surging in the war-torn country.
US Defence Secretary, however, assured McCain that the current regime will brief them about the policy on Afghanistan by mid-July.
“I believe by mid-July we will be out to brief you in detail. We are putting it together now and there are actions being taken to make certain that we don’t pay a price for the delay. But we recognise the need for urgency and your criticism is fair,” he said.
“We are not winning in Afghanistan right now. We will correct this as soon as possible. I believe the three things we are asking for stand on their own merit, however, as we look more broadly at the protection of the country. But that in no way does that relieve me of the need to deliver that strategy to you,” he added.
(With PTI inputs)