The resignation of General Austin Miller was a symbolic end to the Afghan campaign.
The commander of the US forces in Afghanistan, General Austin Miller, resigned on Monday, which was a symbolic end to the longest armed conflict in US history.
The official completion of the military mission is scheduled for August 31.
Marine Corps General Kenneth McKenzie, who heads the Central Command that oversees the activities of American forces in hot spots, including Afghanistan, Iraq, and Syria, flew to Kabul to emphasize that the United States will continue to assist Afghan security forces.
“It should be recognized that this will be very different from what it was before. I’m not going to downplay it,” McKenzie told reporters. “But we will support them.”
At the same time, he warned that the Taliban, apparently, are aimed at a “military solution” to the conflict, which the United States unsuccessfully tried to resolve through negotiations between the Taliban and the government of Afghan President Ashraf Ghani.
He warned that the provincial capitals are under threat, but noted that the Afghan security forces are “determined to fight very hard” for them.
Even after Miller resigned, McKenzie will still be able to authorize airstrikes against the Taliban until August 31, and after that, he will focus directly on counter-terrorism operations against Al-Qaeda and the Islamic State.
As noted by Congresswoman Elissa Slotkin, who belongs to the Democratic Party, many lawmakers want to get more detailed answers from the Biden administration to questions about how the United States will identify potential Al-Qaeda plots after leaving Afghanistan.
“I don’t need them to tell the whole world what our plan is for the next day. But I think it is important that they tell us some details in private,” Slotkin said.
The Pentagon has thought through a transition process for the period after Miller’s resignation, which will continue to provide support to the Afghan security forces, mainly from abroad.
For example, Brigadier General Curtis Buzzard, based in Qatar, will focus on providing financial support to the Afghan security forces, and Rear Admiral of the Navy Peter Vasely, based in Kabul, will lead the newly created forces that will guard the embassy in Afghanistan and the airport.