On Monday, President Trump hosted Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan at the White House where the two discussed the United States’ presence and its role in Afghanistan.
Speaking to a group of reporters, Trump said the United States would be leaving Afghanistan after being a participant in the Afghanistan War for more than 19 years. During his 2016 presidential campaign, Trump similarly said the U.S. has maintained a presence in Afghanistan for far too long and that it was time to leave the country.
Amid the discussions, President Trump contended he had a military strategy that could end the war in Afghanistan very quickly but said he did not wish to pursue it as it would result in the death of millions of people.
Trump claimed the war could be over “in a week. I just don’t want to kill 10 million people.”
“I have plans on Afghanistan, that, if I wanted to win that war, Afghanistan would be wiped off the face of the earth. It would be gone. The war would be over in literally ten days. I don’t want to go that route,” he said.
“So, we’re working with Pakistan and others to extricate ourselves and nor do we want to be policemen—because basically, we’re policemen right now. We’re not supposed to be policemen. We’ve been there in Afghanistan for 19 years. It’s ridiculous,” Trump continued.
The president said the U.S. military was spending taxpayer dollars to build gas stations and schools in Afghanistan. “We shouldn’t be doing that. That’s for them [the Afghanistan government] to do,” he said.
“We could do a number of things the likes of which they’ve never seen before,” Trump added. “I don’t want to do that because you’re talking about millions of people, and I don’t want to do that.”
Pres. Trump claims he could win Afghan war "in a week. I just don't want to kill 10 million people."
"I have plans on Afghanistan, that, if I wanted to win that war, Afghanistan would be wiped off the face of the earth…I don't want to go that route." https://t.co/t9eQmlCZZu pic.twitter.com/ityhUGryyi
— ABC News Politics (@ABCPolitics) July 22, 2019