Central Command chief reassures Senate on July 2011 “withdrawal” date: No US military exit from Afghanistan
In congressional testimony this week, Gen. David Petraeus, commander of American forces in the Middle East and Central Asia, made clear that the July 2011 timeline announced last December by President Obama to begin withdrawing US troops from Afghanistan could be extended.
He further stressed that the date did not imply either a rapid drawdown of troops or an early end to the nearly 9-year war. On the contrary, Petraeus and other top officials, including Defense Secretary Robert Gates and Admiral Mike Mullen, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, used congressional hearings to underscore Washington’s commitment to the indefinite military occupation of Afghanistan.
Imagine my (absence of) surprise.