US Commandos to Serve as ‘Main Force’ During Afghanistan Withdrawal

General warns plan requires reduction of violence

The US committed to withdrawing from Afghanistan, but the Pentagon is still trying to come up with a way where the main force focuses on the pullout, but the US can also keep the war basically going.

Centcom commander Gen. Frank McKenzie says that the plan is to shift combat duties to US special forces. Whether they can do this by themselves appears to depend a lot on best-case scenarios.

McKenzie conceded that this is going to require the Taliban to come through with reduction in violence, and progress in intra-Afghan talks. The assumption is that joint Afghan-Taliban forces will ultimately do more.

McKenzie’s comments suggested that the US envisions having to keep some forces in Afghanistan well beyond the pullout date, saying that if the reduction of violence was good enough the special forces could close some bases and that would really help.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is senior editor of