Lloyd Austin on War & Peace
Another factor is the Taliban's continued refusal to reduce violence. The Taliban demand the withdrawal of all U.S. troops as a condition of the deal; the United States wants to see violence decline first. Austin acknowledged to reporters that it was "obvious" the level of violence in the country remained "pretty high."
"We'd really like to see that violence come down, and I think if it does come down, it can begin to set the conditions for some really fruitful diplomatic work," Austin said.
"Our force remains ready to 'fight tonight,' and we continue to make progress toward the eventual transition of wartime Operational Control to a [Republic of Korea]-commanded, future Combined Forces Command," the defense secretary said. He continued: "While meeting all the conditions for this transition will take more time, I'm confident that this process will strengthen our alliance."
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