President Trump still undecided as Afghanistan security situation deteriorates

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WASHINGTON, Aug 10 (APP): An unexpected delay in decision by
President Trump on Afghanistan has surprised many US and Afghan military commanders, as the security situation is worsening in the country bartered by 17 years of war against Taliban and other militants.
The US State Department and the White House are reviewing a policy on
Afghanistan and other regional countries including Pakistan, but that is apparently taking a longer time than expected and is also causing delay in taking a decision on sending additional troops to Afghanistan.
President Trump had authorized his military leaders in Pentagon to
decide on the troops surge in Afghanistan and it was expected that a few thousands troops may be dispatched to Afghanistan to boost troops’ force which currently stands at about 8,400. But, a delay in policy review on Afghanistan has delayed that decision too.
A report by the online news magazine ‘Politico’ said that months of
indecision by President Trump on sending troops to Afghanistan has caught many US and Afghan military commanders by surprise.
“Instead of approving their plan for more troops as anticipated, the
president has caught his generals off guard by questioning whether the 16-year-long effort to stabilize Afghanistan is still worth it, according to current and former military officials familiar with the conversations,” the report said.
Added to the confusion were unconfirmed media reports that President
Trump has suggested to his top military commanders, during a meeting in early August, that they should consider replacing US military commander in Afghanistan, Gen John Nicholson.
Media reports have suggested that doubts about the war in Afghanistan by
President Trump have led to the delay in completing a new US strategy in South Asia.
The delay in any clear-cut US strategy comes amid the deteriorated
security situation in Afghanistan which is evident by the “shockingly high” number of death of Afghan security forces in the early month of 2017, as reported recently by the special inspector general for Afghanistan.
“The Afghan government ‘controls or influences’ only 60 percent of
the country’s 407 districts as of early this summer, down from 65 percent the same time last year, according to the US military headquarters in Kabul,” the report said.
According to the report delay in approving a plan on Afghanistan by
President Trump has surprised US commanders in Afghanistan who were hoping for a swift approval to their request for additional troops.
And, while President Trump in June authorized his military commander to
decide on raising the number of troops in Afghanistan, he continues to insist in National Security Council meeting that he wants to consider other options, the report said.
“The president has conflicting impulses and is hoping someone can give
him a better strategy,” the report said quoting an unnamed government official.
“But the impasse, combined with reports that Trump has considered
replacing Gen John Nicholson, the top US commander in Afghanistan, and a proposal to privatize large portions of the war, have shaken top commanders and their allies in the Afghan government and security forces,” the Politico report said.
The US indecision on troops surge is also holding its NATO allies to
commit reinforcement they had been considering.