How a troop drawdown in Afghanistan signals American weakness and could send Afghan allies into the Taliban's arms

Afghan security forces gather near the site of an attack in Jalalabad in August 2020. AP Photo/Rahmat Gul President Donald Trump’s recent call to withdraw just over half of the 4,500 U.S. troops in Afghanistan has been condemned as an act that “would hurt our allies and delight, delight, the people who wish us harm” by members of his own party and key military leaders. The Nov. 17 announcement of troop reduction is part of a ceasefire agreement with the Taliban, but may not help deliver a lasting peace to the Afghan people. The Taliban are a fanatical minority who seek to replace Afghanistan’s…

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