90% of US troops withdrawn from Afghanistan, local veterans react
COLUMBUS, Ga. (WTVM) - After two decades of fighting the war on terrorism in Afghanistan, U.S. troops continue to be withdrawn - today marking 90%.
The remaining troops are expected to be out of the third world country by August, according to the Pentagon.
Some people are rejoicing. Others are fearful that the U.S. troop withdrawal in Afghanistan could lead to advances from enemy forces looking to gain control.
“Afghanistan has once again, become a base for terrorism. There is a lot of unknowns and that is what worries me,” said John House, veteran and councilman.
At it’s peak, over 100,000 troops passed through it’s walls in 2012.
But now, with what some people call the “forever war” coming to a close, former service members fear what could come next.
“We are fighting people that don’t mind strapping up a bomb and killing themselves to get their point across. So, this war is so much bigger than just territory,” said Toyia Tucker, veteran and councilwoman.
With 90% of U.S. troops withdrawn, according to the Pentagon, and the other 10% concentrated in Kabul, it leaves Bagram in a very vulnerable place.
“When you are in a war, you are not going to bring everything home. You don’t bring weapons or transportation, or vehicles home. Now, the enemy is just waiting in the wings,” said Marvin Broadwater, Sr., veteran.
Another big concern, according to Broadwater Sr., is that the United States has left friendly forces behind. Thousands of Afghan interpreters who worked alongside troop, now have zero protection from the Taliban. “That is going to rain over our service member’s heads for some time as they have established friends with them over there.”
According to the White House, a full withdrawal is expected this fall.
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