Donald Trump’s strategy to win war has better chance than Obama’s: Ashraf Ghani

Afghanistan's President Ashraf Ghani speaks at a panel discussion at Asia Society in Manhattan, New York, U.S., September 20, 2017. REUTERS/Jeenah Moon
Vastavam web: U.S. President Donald Trump’s strategy to win the war in Afghanistan will work where his predecessor’s failed because the Afghan army is stronger and Trump wants a regional approach and a harder line with Pakistan says Afghan President Ashraf Ghani.Ghani also said that former President Barack Obama “did not have a partner in Afghanistan,” implicitly criticizing former Afghan President Hamid Karzai, who frequently disdained U.S. policy and the U.S.-led international military force.
At the same time, Ghani said, Obama’s decision to maintain some U.S. forces in Afghanistan “ensured our survival” despite advances by Taliban insurgents.U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis announced on Tuesday that more than 3,000 additional U.S. troops are being deployed to Afghanistan under the new strategy announced last month. The number of U.S. forces would rise to around 12,000, compared to a high of more than 100,000 under Obama.
He also vowed to take a tougher line to end what U.S. officials say is Pakistan providing refuge and other support to the Taliban and other extremist groups. Pakistan denies the charge.Asked how Trump’s strategy differs from Obama‘s, Ghani said Trump’s plan takes “a regional approach” to security and a harder line with Pakistan while providing a new opening for peace talks.
“If Pakistan does not take this opportunity, I think they will pay a high price,” he said, without elaborating.“Afghans are determined to fight,” he said. “No one should mistake our will to defend our country.”Not only is the army better trained and profiting from a new generation of soldiers, but it gained experience because the massive cuts in the U.S.-led international force under Obama forced Afghans to assume a bigger role in the fighting, Ghani said.The next phase of reforming Afghanistan’s security forces will focus on the police, he said.