Taking a break from his Christmas vacation in Hawaii, President Obama gave a speech at a Marine base claiming that "Next week, we will be ending our combat mission in Afghanistan." This is not true. Nominal control over military bases may have been handed over to the Afghan government, but the U.S. government is set to continue its occupation indefinitely with nearly 11,000 troops. They will be joined by thousands of soldiers from other NATO member countries.
The term "combat mission" is used in a highly misleading way by generals and politicians to sell their strategy to a U.S. public that has largely turned against the war. U.S./NATO forces in Afghanistan have been gradually withdrawing from the country, but by the end of 2014 this process will end. It will be immediately followed by a mission with an indefinite mandate that will supposedly focus on training and "advising" the soldiers of the pro-imperialist Afghan government.
Operating under the mandate of a Bilateral Security Agreement signed by the United States and the Afghan government, the stay-behind mission was initially supposed to involve 9,800 troops. However, after intensification in the fighting, U.S. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel announced that an additional 1,000 soldiers would remain deployed, and emphasized the flexibility they will have to engage in combat if their commanders decide it is necessary.
Read the full article at Liberation News