According to reports, President Biden is expected to announce a full withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan by September 11th, 2021. We enthusiastically commend the White House for taking this important step toward ending endless wars.
This two-decades-long conflict has cost our military families dearly. 8,363 American families have been irreversibly altered by casualties and major injuries in Afghanistan and Iraq. Thousands of additional families have been worn down by the separation, uncertainty, and anxiety that come from operating at wartime tempo for so long. This announcement will finally allow our families to breathe a sigh of relief.
This is not the end to U.S. engagement with Afghanistan. As the reporting states, the U.S. will continue to provide non-military support for the peace-building process. Additionally, it remains crucial that the U.S. fulfill its obligations to the 17,000 Afghans who supported our troops on the ground and are now waiting in the Special Immigrant Visa pipeline. These diplomatic tools remain indispensable.
We want to take this moment to express our pride and gratitude for the many veteran and military families across the country who raised their voices, shared their stories, and advocated for this policy. Your bravery helped get us to where we are today. Never doubt the power that grassroots activism can have on the issues we all care about.
We know firsthand how devastating endless wars are for our military families. Milestones like today’s are why SFI will continue our work in elevating our community’s voices.