Congressman André Carson issued the following statement tonight after President Barrack Obama outlined his new strategy in Afghanistan.
"First of all, I applaud President Obama's thoughtful deliberation on our future strategy in Afghanistan. If only the previous administration had taken the time to make the thorough assessment that President Obama has, we'd likely be in a much better position in that region than we are today.
"As President Obama has said, Iraq was a war of choice, but Afghanistan is a war of necessity. There is no question the safety and security of the American people and our long-term foreign policy interests are still tied to Afghanistan. But the pursuit of success cannot equate to an endless commitment of money, troops and sacrifice. When I talk to constituents, they're concerned about whether our mission is truly defined right now, and they're asking how long we're going to be putting our brave men and women in the military in harm's way.
"Simply put, the American people want to see a strategy that contains defined goals, clear benchmarks and a path to successfully ending the war in Afghanistan. I think our President understands this, as evidenced by his emphasis on the stepped-up role the government of Afghanistan and its security forces will need to take. Focusing more on strengthening the social, political and military infrastructure of Afghanistan will not only allow us to draw down our forces more quickly, it will serve our long-term national security interests as well.
"I look forward to hearing additional details about this new direction in Afghanistan. And while there are still questions that need to be answered, I remain committed to working with our President to make sure we have an effective strategy in place in Afghanistan."