Tags: Afghanistan | Donald Trump | ISIS/Islamic State | Middle East | Trump Administration | War on Terrorism | presidential

Ex-Amb. Hill: Afghan Address Likely Full of 'Tough Love'

MSNBC's "Morning Joe"

By    |   Monday, 21 August 2017 03:10 PM

President Donald Trump's address Monday will probably contain a "lot of tough love" for the government of Afghanistan, and the strategy he outlines will likely tell the Afghan government "we're going to give you more time but not forever," former Ambassador to South Korea Christopher Hill said Monday.

"It used to be said that Afghanistan was a good war and Iraq was a bad war," Hill told MSNBC's "Morning Joe." "I think everyone has kind of concluded that Iraq was a bad war, and Afghanistan was the worst war. And certainly this president wanted nothing to do with this and kind of turned it over to his secretary of defense."

Hill further said he believes Defense Secretary James Mattis said there would be a strategy worked out, "but you have to be a part of it and announce it."

"I think this represents Mr. Mattis's approach, this needs to be set in a regional context," Hill said. "You need to understand how this works with Qatar. They've helped the Taliban over the year. People hate dealing with Pakistan. Pakistan has not been helpful on issues of trying to hold down the Taliban, but we're going to have to deal with them. I think we're going to see a strategy that will be broad-based in terms of the region. I think that's a good sign."

He said he does think Trump, "if he had his druthers," would rather be out of Afghanistan.

"I think his advisers have convinced him having helicopters leaving the roof of the embassy is probably not something he wanted to see during his term," Hill said. "He's been in over sixth months. He can't blame everything on [Barack] Obama. I think he's essentially going to have to deal with the problem out there, and realizing that a bigger problem would be the perception that we have lost and lost now."

He also said there will be less talk about issues that have been going on for years in Afghanistan, such as corruption.

"Corruption didn't just descend on them from Mars a couple of years ago," Hill said.

"Corruption has been there for centuries, and this idea we're going to wag our finger at the Afghan government and get them to do more on this is probably not going to happen. I think you'll see a note of realism, and I think thanks to Gen. Mattis, perhaps a note of more regionalism."

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President Donald Trump's address Monday will probably contain a "lot of tough love" for the Afghanistan government, and the strategy outlined will likely tell it "we're going to give you more time but not forever," former Ambassador to South Korea Christopher Hill said Monday.
presidential, address, military, troops
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2017-10-21
Monday, 21 August 2017 03:10 PM
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