Germany, Italy, and Turkey Agree to Open-Ended Afghan Presence

NATO General Says 'Assurances' Troops Will Remain at Current Levels

Speaking to the media today, NATO commander Gen. Philip Breedlove confirmed that several NATO nations, identified later as Germany, Italy, and Turkey, have agreed to extend their involvement in the military occupation of Afghanistan in an open-ended manner.

The US announced last week that it’s latest pushed-back date for a withdrawal was being scrapped outright, and officials suggested no new date. Gen. Breedlove appeared to discourage the idea of ever setting a date for a pullout, saying troop levels shouldn’t be based on “schedules.”

NATO invaded and occupied Afghanistan way back in 2001, and 14 years in, the most recent UN report has suggested the security situation is worse now than at any point in the entire occupation. That is being presented as justification for keeping the troops around.

Yet. with the situation just getting worse in the face of a continuing occupation, there seems to be no pretense that a couple of more years if going to magically turn the situation around, and rather this open-ended commitment is more open-ended than ever, and one coming with no real plan for ever succeeding.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.