LONDON – US Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Martin Dempsey says “no one has ever suggested zero” U.S. troops in Afghanistan post-2014 to him, but that he believes the military numbers in the country can be “modest” after that year.
In an interview aired Sunday on CNN’s “State of the Union,” Dempsey the number of U.S. troops deployed after 2014 “can be modest,” but no number has been selected yet.
“No one has ever suggested zero to me,” Dempsey said. “I think that the ultimate number will be based on the mission and how deeply we want to be involved with their continued development. And also what they want.”
U.S. troop levels will likely be able to be “modest” after 2014, Dempsey said.
“My instinct that their development is moving at a pace, and their acceptance of responsibility, is moving at a pace that our numbers after ’14 can be modest. I can’t give you a number, because first off all, I’m not going to announce a number on CNN on a Sunday afternoon. I don’t know the number.”
“We really don’t have a number selected yet,” he added. (CNN)