Mattis: Authority Delegated by Trump in Afghanistan is Tactical, Not Strategic

Mattis: Authority Delegated by Trump in Afghanistan is Tactical, Not Strategic by Tara Copp - Military Times

Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis clarified on Friday that while the Defense Department now has authority to set troop numbers for Afghanistan, President Donald Trump is still setting the strategy that will drive those numbers.

“What he delegated was a tactical decision about what forces to send,” Mattis said of Trump. “He delegated not one bit of the strategy by the way. Not one bit. That is his and his alone.”

There’s still no Trump-administration strategy for Afghanistan, although both the White House and Pentagon have said one is coming soon. However the lack of an overall strategy has not kept Mattis from making tactical adjustments that support a more aggressive approach.

“We’ve changed what we’re doing,” Mattis said. “We’ve moved some [troops] out that we don’t need and put different ones in. It’s not like we’ve just been stalled out here.” …

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