Congressman Dave Loebsack today released the following statement regarding President Obama's plan to start bringing home troops from Afghanistan. Loebsack is a member of the House Armed Services Committee and has traveled to Afghanistan six times to meet with the troops and receive briefings from the commanders on the ground.
"Our troops, including the 2,800 Iowa National Guard Soldiers deployed in Afghanistan, have bravely carried out every mission given to them and have made real progress across Afghanistan. Our nation owes them and their families a debt of gratitude for their service and sacrifice.
We must ensure that Afghanistan never again becomes a safe haven for terrorists, but I have long said that an open ended commitment does not benefit our security. As we focus on our economic recovery here at home and the global security threats that face our nation, it's time for the Afghan people to take responsibility for their country. The President's announcement tonight was a first step but I believe we should bring our troops home as quickly as we can responsibly do so. I have cosponsored legislation calling for the President to provide a plan and timeframe for the accelerated transition of combat operations to Afghan authorities. I believe it is time the President provides the American people with a clear explanation of the timeline to transition security responsibility to the Afghan National Security Forces and safely bring our troops home."