With three US troops killed in Afghanistan earlier this week, President Trump was pressed on the matter of why, 17+ years in, the US military remains in the country. He told interviewers that “every expert that I have and speak to says if we don’t go there, they’re going to be fighting over here. And I’ve heard it over and over again.”
When Trump announced his escalation of the war last year, he said his first impulse was to pull out, but that the experts had assured him the war was still winnable. In recent months, officials have been very public about trying to convince Trump to stay in the war despite how poorly its going.
Trump’s claims that all the experts he’s hearing are telling him the same thing suggests his administration is limiting his access to dissenters. The war is plainly going disastrously, and it wouldn’t be hard to find people who would tell the president as much.
But the war continues, and President Trump says he intends to go to Afghanistan at some point in the unspecified future to meet with the troops. He didn’t say when, beyond that it would be “the right time” when he does go.