World: Most American veterans say the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq were 'not worth fighting,' as the US flexes its military muscles at Iran - PressFrom - US
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WorldMost American veterans say the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq were 'not worth fighting,' as the US flexes its military muscles at Iran

23:35  11 july  2019
23:35  11 july  2019 Source:   businessinsider.com

Israel says it is bracing militarily for possible U.S.-Iran escalation

Israel says it is bracing militarily for possible U.S.-Iran escalation Israel is preparing for its possible military involvement in any escalation in the Gulf confrontation between Iran and the United States, the Israeli foreign minister said on Tuesday. The unraveling of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal under U.S. diplomatic pressure, Iran's downing of a U.S. drone and its alleged role in the holing of oil tankers in the Gulf have driven up tensions and stirred war worries. require(["medianetNativeAdOnArticle"], function (medianetNativeAdOnArticle) { medianetNativeAdOnArticle.

Most American veterans say the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq were 'not worth fighting,' as the US flexes its military muscles at Iran© Reuters

The US government's so-called war on terror is nearly two decades old, and strong majorities of US veterans and the general public do not approve of its biggest efforts - the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan - according to a new poll from Pew Research Center.

The survey found 64% of veterans said Iraq wasn't worth fighting, along with 58% who said the same about Afghanistan.

Meanwhile, 62% of US adults said Iraq wasn't worth it, along with 59% who expressed the same view on Afghanistan.

Most veterans (52%) and US adults (58%) also said the US military campaign in Syria has not been worth it.

The US invaded Afghanistan in October 2001 following the terror attacks on September 11, 2001. Almost 19 years later, the US military is still present in the country and American service members are still dying there.

Premature exit from Afghanistan would be 'strategic mistake': U.S. general

Premature exit from Afghanistan would be 'strategic mistake': U.S. general A premature withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan would be a strategic mistake, President Donald Trump's nominee to be the top military officer said on Thursday, as the United States and Taliban make progress to end the nearly 18 years of war. "I think pulling out prematurely would be a strategic mistake," General Mark Milley, currently the Army's chief of staff and nominee to head the joint chiefs of staff, told a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing. Milley said he believed the war would eventually be brought to an end through a negotiated settlement with the Taliban. He added that there was "some progress" in that effort.

Indeed, though the US declared an end to combat operations in Afghanistan in 2014, the fight there is ongoing.

Read more: America's 'war on terror' has cost the US nearly $6 trillion and killed roughly half a million people, and there's no end in sight

Roughly 14,000 US troops are still in Afghanistan as the Trump administration pushes for peace talks between the Taliban and the Afghan government. It's estimated the Taliban now controls or contests roughly 61% of the country's districts, and the Islamic State group - also known as ISIS - has gained a strong foothold in the country.

But Afghanistan remains a country consumed by conflict and violence, which helps explain why it was recently ranked the least peaceful country in the world - replacing Syria - in the 2019 Global Peace Index report.

House votes to require congressional approval for military strike against Iran

House votes to require congressional approval for military strike against Iran The House voted for a measure that would block President Donald Trump from initiating military action against Iran without congressional approval. require(["medianetNativeAdOnArticle"], function (medianetNativeAdOnArticle) { medianetNativeAdOnArticle.getMedianetNativeAds(true); }); Lawmakers adopted the amendment from Reps. Ro Khanna, D-Calif., and Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., in a 251-170 vote with more than two dozen Republicans in support. The measure was wrapped into the 2020 National Defense Authorization Act that the House passed Friday afternoon.

At least 10 US soldiers have been killed in Afghanistan in 2019 in a war that's claimed the lives of over 2,400 Americans.

There are also currently about 5,200 US troops in Iraq, who are training Iraq forces amid fears of a resurgence of ISIS.

The US ended combat operations in Iraq in 2010 and withdrew most of its troops by the end of 2011, but has maintained a presence there since. The US military's activities in Iraq ramped up significantly there since 2014, when the first air strike against ISIS was conducted.

The US also maintains a presence in Syria, where it conducted operations against ISIS, despite President Donald Trump's professed desire to withdraw all 2,000 troops stained there back in December - a move that prompted the resignation of James Mattis as defense secretary. It's not clear how many troops remain there, but some reports place the number around 400.

When the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq began, polling showed most Americans were in favor of them. Much has changed in the time since, but the "war on terror" rages on for new generations of Americans to fight in multiple parts of the world.

The 27 Republicans who voted with Democrats to block Trump from taking military action against Iran

The 27 Republicans who voted with Democrats to block Trump from taking military action against Iran The House on Friday passed an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) to block the Trump administration from funding military action against Iran without congressional approval. The vote came amid rising tensions between Washington and Tehran as Iran surpassed the uranium enrichment limitations imposed by the Obama-era nuclear agreement. President Trump withdrew the U.S. from the pact in 2018, but until recently Iran had stayed within the deal's bounds. "Iran better be careful. They're treading on very dangerous territory. Iran of you listening, you better be careful," Trump told reporters Friday.

The US launched the war in Afghanistan on 2001 on the grounds the Taliban had harbored Al Qaeda training camps, and is now in talks to withdraw from the war on the condition the Taliban no longer shelters terrorists capable of striking the US or its allies.

In recent weeks, the US has flexed its military muscles at Iran in a standoff that has sparked fears of a new conflict in the Middle East. The Trump administration sent a number of military assets to the region, including an aircraft carrier strike group and more troops, in response to the tensions.

After Iran shot down a US Navy drone last month, the president nearly responded with a military strike. The situation has only become more contentious in the days since.

A Reuters/Ipsos public opinion poll released in May found about half of US adults believe the US will be at war with Iran "within the next few years."

The poll also found 60% of Americans would oppose a preemptive strike against Iran, but a strong majority (79%) said the US should retaliate if attacked - 40% expressed support for a limited response involving airstrikes while 39% said they'd back a full-scale invasion.

Despite the fact most Americans don't look back on Iraq or Afghanistan with approving eyes, it seems they're not necessarily opposed to military action against another majority-Muslim country.

What's behind Iran's aggression in the Strait of Hormuz?.
The seizure of a British oil tanker in the Strait of Hormuz by Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps is the latest example of how tensions between the U.S. and Iran have spilled into one of the world's most strategic and vital waterways for oil. Since May, Iran has been accused of harassing and attacking oil tankers in the strait. 

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