This year is a “pivotal year” in Afghanistan, U.S. President Barack Obama told reporters Tuesday, saying that 2014 will mark the conclusion of the U.S. combat mission there. “We will bring America’s longest war to a responsible end,” he said. Obama also announced that the United States plans to keep 9,800 troops in Afghanistan after this year if the Afghan government signs a security agreement. That number would be cut by roughly half by the end of 2015, he added. By the end of 2016, he said, the military “will draw down to a normal embassy presence in Kabul, with a security assistance component.” There are 32,000 American service members in Afghanistan. Operation Enduring Freedom began on October 7, 2001.
Withdrawal from Afghanistan