McCain slams Pentagon for Afghan policy delay

Mattis promised on Tuesday to brief lawmakers on a new war strategy by mid-July that is widely expected to call for thousands more United States troops. There are presently just under 10,000 US service members in the Asian nation.

McCain said their deaths should spur a sense of urgency within the Trump administration.

They said this will be separate from the request to increase the number of advisers for training and assistance and the U.S. would expect to increase the frequency of airstrikes launched. The move could lead to a deployment of thousands more troops as commanders decide the way forward in the now 15-year-old war. "And we will correct this as soon as possible". We can not keep piling missions on our service members without ensuring they have all they need to succeed, ' Thornberry said.

Afghans have been waiting for Washington to make a decision on its force size since February, when the top USA and North Atlantic Treaty Organisation commander in the country Gen. John Nicholson said he needed "a few thousand" more troops. "There are problems within this administration". He added that the uS Ministry of Defense is working on a new strategy, which will be reported to the legislators in the middle of July.

Mr Mattis told the panel that just under 10,000 U.S. troops were now stationed in Afghanistan. "It's yours", he said. In 2016, there were more than 11,000 civilian casualties, including 3,498 killed.

McCain, however, listed the names of the three 101st Airborne Division soldiers who were killed Saturday and said, "Let's not ask these families to sacrifice any further without a strategy which we can then take and implement and help you".

The increased violence in Afghanistan also includes a huge blast in the capital of Kabul last month that claimed the lives of more than 150 people.

Although the United States is also asking its North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies to send more troops to Afghanistan, Mr Mattis said that even after the suggested addition, the "bulk of the fighting" would continue to be carried out by the Afghan forces.

Washington D.C. [U.S.A.], June 14 (ANI): The White House is expected to grant Pentagon full authority to decide over the number of USA troops deployed in Afghanistan.

Incensed, chairman of the committee, Sen.

But he said the United States can not quit on Afghanistan because problems that threaten the USA and its economy arise out of "ungoverned spaces".

This week Mattis and Gen. Joseph Dunford are scheduled for four House and Senate budget hearings to justify the Pentagon's $575 billion baseline budget request for 2018. We could generally deploy our forces when we wanted, assemble them where we wanted and operate how we wanted.

The defense secretary also was asked what winning looked like in Afghanistan.

Mattis later described winning in Afghanistan as forming a central government that, with global help, "will be able to handle the violence". The Army and Air Force said they had vastly more space for training and basing troops than they need and trimming the surplus would generate savings that could be used to strengthen the military.