Pentagon: No Change In Afghan Plans

The Pentagon Thursday attempted to downplay Defense Secretary Leon Panetta’s suggestion that the U.S. might accelerate its withdrawal from Afghanistan.

The Pentagon Thursday attempted to downplay Defense Secretary Leon Panetta’s suggestion that the U.S. might accelerate its withdrawal from Afghanistan, saying that his recent statement implying a transfer of security responsibilities in 2013 represented the Secretary’s personal goal.

Speaking with reporters, Pentagon spokesperson Captain James Kirby said that plans to remove the U.S. presence in 2014 remain in place and emphasized that any major shifts in strategy, including transfer of responsibilities, would not be finalized until this May, when international leaders will gather in Chicago for a Summit.

While traveling to Brussels, Belgium Wednesday for a meeting with NATO Ministers, Panetta categorized 2013 as a “critical year” in terms of security responsibilities.

“Hopefully, by mid- to the latter part of 2013, we’ll be able to make … a transition from a combat role to a training, advice and assist role, which is basically fulfilling what Lisbon was all about,” Panetta told reporters.

The comments raised eyebrows both home and abroad, with U.S. lawmakers and foreign dignitaries claiming that they had no knowledge of the 2013 date.

Tags: , ,

Justin Duckham
Justin Duckham is a Senior Washington Correspondent with the Talk Radio News Service. Justin is a proud alumnus of UC Merced, where he studied History, Philosophy and American Studies. Prior to making the jump to politics in 2008, Justin was a music journalist in California. Follow Justin on Twitter @Jduckham

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply

Pentagon: ISIL Fortifying Defenses In Iraq, Syria

And roughly 6,000 ISIL fighters out of 20,000 – 30,000 have been killed since Operation Inherent Resolve began in August.

LISTEN: The World in 2:00 – January 23, 2015

The World in 2:00 continents logo

Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah is dead, Yemen’s president steps down and the European Central Bank embarks on its own ‘quantitative easing’ plan.

Pentagon: Yemen Situation Still Unclear

Just who is in control of Yemen?

Senate Dems Blast GOP Over Pipeline Amendments

Schumer said that Democrats were only able to move forward with approximately a third of their proposed amendments.

Alarm Raised On Stalled South Sudan Peace Negotiations

The U.S., U.K. and Norway expressed alarm over the lack of progress since hostilities began in Dec. 2013.

DNC Sets Date For 2016 Convention

Photo/Democratic National Committee

What hasn’t been decided, however, is where the convention itself will be held.