Local veterans react to President Trump's new policy

Local veterans react to President Trump's new policy

LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - The president vowed the US would find victory while no longer "nation-building" in Afghanistan. This comes after he initially said he wanted to pull troops from the country. Some local veterans like this new policy... while others think he should have stuck to his campaign promises.

The US currently has about 8,400 troops in Afghanistan.

U.S. military generals have said a few thousand more troops would help the U.S. break the current stalemate against the Taliban. President Trump has changed his policy in order to do so.

David L. Frank Jr., who served a tour in Iraq from 2005 to 2006, says he doesn't agree with the president's change in stance.

"There's no basis for us to be there, especially because the troops were supposed to get pulled out from what our president ran on his campaign basis," said Frank.

The additional troops would serve in two roles: counter-terrorism and training Afghan forces.

Desean Lockett, who served a tour in Afghanistan from 2010 to 2011, says he thinks the President's new goal to prepare the country and get other countries like Pakistan involved would be effective.

"When I was there, the whole agenda was building the hearts and minds of the people and what he's saying right now is not concentrating on a nation but defeating terrorists," said Lockett.

Frank thinks there should be a bigger focus on the state of our nation here at home.

"Us as American people, we're trying to get ourselves established as a country that loves each other instead of all the hate," said Frank.

The president also announced he would give military commanders more authority.

"I agree with some of the things he said, such as taking the authority and leadership out of Congress and more on the personnel that's on the ground because we had simple rules of engagement that we had to follow during the whole time," said Lockett.

While there is a lot of confidence in a more centralized and focused strategy, some are still left doubtful about remaining engaged in the longest war in U.S. history.

"It's your job, it's what you do you have to do," said Frank. "He's the Chief but I still feel bad for them and their families to have to stay away for so long for a pointless reason."

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