November 17, 2020

Duckworth Releases Statement in Response to Trump Administration's Plan to Withdraw Troops from Afghanistan and Iraq


[WASHINGTON, D.C.] — U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) released the following statement after Donald Trump’s newly appointed but unconfirmed Acting Secretary of Defense Christopher Miller announced the Pentagon’s plan to reduce the number of U.S. troops in Afghanistan and Iraq despite national security experts and even Republican Leader Mitch McConnell expressing opposition and concern about the risks this drawdown could pose:

“We all want our troops to be brought home safely, but this announcement is a mistake. At a time when we are finally seeing serious peace negotiations between the Afghan government and the Taliban, Donald Trump is unilaterally taking one of our best bargaining chips off the table—and getting nothing in return.

“Any decision to draw down U.S. troops in one of the world’s most unstable regions is one that needs to be carefully planned and safely executed, but instead Trump and his newly-installed, unconfirmed lackeys at the Pentagon are undercutting our long-standing allies, potentially dooming the peace process and putting our remaining troops at greater risk.

“To be clear, I want our brave men and women who are in harm’s way right now to be brought home as quickly and safely as possible, but we cannot sacrifice our long-term national security interests or regional stability in exchange for a reckless, chaotic drawdown aimed more at meeting Donald Trump’s desired timeline than keeping our nation or our troops safe.”