Speaking to the Senate Armed Services Committee, Gen. Robert Abrams, the nominee to be the next US commander on the Korean Peninsula, insisted the troops need to remain in South Korea, saying there would “be a significant amount of risk tactically” if the US withdrew.
Officials have insisted there are no intentions of withdrawing US troops from South Korea at this point, though there has been some speculation that, if North Korea diplomacy ends in a peace treaty, there may be no need for the troops to stay.
That’s not an imminent concern for Gen. Abrams, though being commander of US Forces in South Korea is a major post, and the post wouldn’t be available if there aren’t troops there. South Korea has also pushed back against any withdrawals, fearing economic fallout of not having a large, costly US presence.
Gen. Abrams also told the committee that the suspension of US wargames in South Korea, done to prevent provocation of North Korea during the talks, had led to a “slight degradation” of capabilities in Korea.