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President Donald Trump on Monday, Aug. 21 during his speech on US military involvement in Afghanistan in front of troops from the Fort Myer military base in Arlington, Virginia. EFE / MARK WILSON
President Donald Trump on Monday, Aug. 21 during his speech on US military involvement in Afghanistan in front of troops from the Fort Myer military base in Arlington, Virginia. EFE / MARK WILSON

When your approval is low, just call for a war

Last Monday the US president asked the Armed Forces and the country to trust his new military strategy in Afghanistan. But he did so without giving precise…

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Donald Trump made public on Monday his long-awaited strategy to resolve the conflict in Afghanistan, which has been ongoing for nearly 16 years. The president has not met the expectations of those who awaited an immediate resolution, obviating specific data on the amount of total troops that will be committed in the process or the conditions necessary for the success of the operation.

During the national broadcast, Trump addressed troops in Fort Myer (Virginia) asserting his full commitment to the mission, thus prolonging US military intervention in Afghan territory, something he had otherwise considered a “complete waste”, openly criticizing the strategies adopted by the Obama administration.

The President has admitted that decision-making is very different "once you are sitting in the Oval Office".

"My first instinct was to withdraw and historically I have always followed my instincts," Trump said. "But all my life, I've heard that the decisions are very different when you sit behind the desk in the Oval Office."

After "thoroughly" deliberating with his war cabinet at Camp David, Trump said he was convinced that "a hasty withdrawal could create a vacuum for terrorists, including ISIS and Al Qaeda," according to The New York Times.

While the US president campaigned on the promise of withdrawing the United States from foreign conflicts, his "strategic" decision in Afghanistan only seems to continue the approaches of previous administrations, thus prolonging a conflict that has profoundly affected the Afghan people.

His proposal combines conventional military force and diplomatic pressure on Pakistan, encouraged by a teleprompter-read discourse, which does not honor the iconic US war speeches, but does carry a much more aggressive voice.

“The killers need to know they have nowhere to hide, that no place is beyond the reach of American might and American arms,” Trump said. “Retribution will be fast and powerful.”

His firm promise against terrorism was plagued by adjectives and unusual statements in a president’s speech: "(terrorists) are thugs, criminals and predators, and that's right, losers," filling the air again with words and few punctual data.

The President also authorized the Pentagon to deploy 4,000 more troops to bolster the 8,400 already on the ground, while Vice President Mike Pence informed Congress that 3,900 extra troops would be deployed, The Guardian reported.

As usual, during the presentation of his military strategy, Trump didn’tt elaborate on the possible scope nor a plan of development of the military prolongation, arguing that the decisions will be taken by the military command and will be determined by "the conditions on the ground and not arbitrary timetables."

While the new military strategy on Afghanistan is seen as a "definitive" fight against terrorism, President Trump's political condition seems to indicate that war is once again the best marketing strategy for a government with the approval rating at ground level”.

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