Thursday, December 10, 2009

US lawmakers push withdrawal from Afghanistan, Pakistan

WASHINGTON — A US lawmaker sharply opposed to the war in Afghanistan plans to offer twin resolutions come January aiming to force President Barack Obama to bring home any US forces there and in Pakistan.

Democratic Representative Dennis Kucinich's proposals, unveiled Wednesday, could lead to a first test vote to gauge support among Obama's congressional allies for his decision to send 30,000 more troops to Afghanistan.

In a letter to colleagues made public by his office, Kucinich pointed to Afghan President Hamid Karzai's warning Tuesday that his country will need aid to fund its security forces for up to 20 more years.

"We cannot afford these wars. We cannot afford the loss of lives. We cannot afford the cost to taxpayers. We cannot afford to fail to exercise our constitutional right to end the wars," said Kucinich.

Kucinich's resolutions call for Obama to withdraw all US forces 30 days after the resolutions are adopted or, if the president determines that would be unsafe, by April 15, 2010 at the latest.

The lawmaker also said his resolutions would not fall afoul of the congressional authorization, overwhelmingly approved after the September 11, 2001 terrorist strikes, to use military force in Afghanistan.

Obama cited that measure in his December 1 speech unveiling his plans to deploy 30,000 more US troops to Afghanistan, and underlined that the authority given eight years ago "continues to this day." US lawmaker pushes withdrawal from Afghanistan, Pakistan (AFP) –

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