President Obama announced tonight that he will withdraw 33,000 troops from Afghanistan by Summer of 2012. News reports show that Mr. Obama has ignored the advice of his military leaders, who were advocating a more measured draw down. Army veteran Congressman Mike Pompeo (KS-04) issued the following response to the President's speech:
"Over the past 10 years our troops in Afghanistan have taken the fight to the terrorists. They have performed with distinction and honor. Given the tremendous gains made by our troops, at the terrible expense of many young American lives lost, it is evident that our mission in Afghanistan is starting to wind down. The Afghan security forces are improving on a daily basis and will eventually be able to ensure terrorists do not regain control of their nation.
"While I agree a drawdown of our troops in Afghanistan is necessary, I am very concerned that President Obama has placed political expediency over experienced military judgment. He has once again ignored the sage advice of his military leadership, apparently for the convenience of his re-election campaign timetable. As a former Army officer, it is gravely concerning to see any President of the United States play politics with critical national security issues. This decision puts both the lives of American troops and the gains made on the ground in Afghanistan at risk. I urge President Obama to reconsider his rapid and telegraphed withdrawal, and I hope he will instead heed the advice of the commanders in the field ," stated Pompeo.