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Biden vowed US would be ‘totally out of’ Afghanistan by 2014

 

Vice President Biden in 2010 vowed that U.S. troops would be “totally out of” Afghanistan by 2014, “come hell or high water.”

"We're starting it in July of 2011, and we're going to be totally out of there, come hell or high water, by 2014," Biden said on NBC in December 2010.

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President Obama is set to announce Tuesday that he plans to leave 9,800 troops in Afghanistan after the combat mission ends this year, breaking Biden’s pledge. The troop presence will roughly halve by the end of 2015 and fall to zero by the end of 2016, a senior administration official said.

Biden had been pushing Obama to withdraw "virtually all U.S. troops from Afghanistan by the end of 2014,” The Wall Street Journal reported earlier this year.

It's not the first time Biden has ended up on the losing end of a White House debate on Afghanistan. In 2009, he pushed for the president to drawdown the more than 50,000 U.S. troops that were there at the time and transition to a smaller force focused on a counterterrorism mission.

Former Defense Secretary Robert Gates was critical of Biden's push for a smaller troop presence in his memoir Duty, saying the vice president had been "wrong on nearly every major foreign policy and national security issue over the past four decades."