U.S. national security adviser H.R. McMaster was in Kabul on Sunday for what is the first visit by a Trump administration official to Afghanistan, officials here said, coming just days after U.S. forces dropped a 22,000-pound bomb on militants there and revived debate over the war.
President Trump has said little about the conflict in Afghanistan, spurring concerns among Afghan officials about his administration’s commitment to the fight.
More than 8,000 U.S. troops are helping Afghan forces battle the Taliban. The commander of U.S. forces in Afghanistan, Gen. John W. Nicholson Jr., has said that he will need thousands of additional troops to better support the international coalition’s mission.
On Friday, U.S. forces used the largest conventional bomb in the military’s arsenal — the GBU-43 — to hit a stronghold of Islamic State militants in eastern Afghanistan.
The deployment of such massive weaponry stunned many in Afghanistan and around the world, jolting the public’s attention back to what has been a grinding war that began in 2001. The U.S. military has not released its assessment of the bomb’s impact, but officials here say that more than 90 militants were killed.
Senior U.S. officials said last week that a review of the Afghanistan strategy is underway.
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Featured image courtesy of The New York Times.