WASHINGTON, D.C. — An estimated 75 percent of the all U.S. military deaths and about 90 percent of the injuries linked to the ongoing war in Afghanistan have occurred under President Obama’s watch, according to a Breitbart News tally.
President Obama, citing a “fragile” security situation at risk of deteriorating, announced today that he will be extending the U.S. military presence in Afghanistan for an undetermined amount of time, handing over the conflict to his successor.
In making the announcement, the President appeared clueless as to how many Americans were killed in Afghanistan in 2014 and this year.
“Afghanistan remains dangerous; 25 brave Americans have given their lives there this year… Now, the 25 military and civilians who were killed last year, that always weighs on my mind,” said Obama from the Roosevelt Room.
According to Obama’s own Department of Defense (DOD) however, 14 U.S. service members and one DOD civilian have been killed so far this year.
A Pentagon tally shows that in 2014, at least 55 American troops lost their lives in Afghanistan.
President Obama provided an estimate of the American fatalities in recognizing the sacrifice made by U.S. troops in Afghanistan, but he made no mention of how many were wounded in action.
“They served there with extraordinary skill and valor, and it’s worth remembering especially the more than 2,200 American patriots who made the ultimate sacrifice in Afghanistan,” said Obama from the Roosevelt Room.
Since the president was inaugurated for his first term on January 20, 2009, at least 1,672 U.S. soldiers, Marines, and sailors have lost their lives, and another estimated 17,425 have been wounded in action while supporting the Afghanistan war effort.
Overall, at least 2,230 U.S. service members have been killed and another 20,127 injured in the ongoing conflict, which started on October 7, 2001.
That means about three out of every four U.S. military deaths (75 percent) and an estimated 9 out of every 10 injuries (87 percent) in Afghanistan have taken place since Obama became president.
Breitbart News’ count is gleaned from Department of Defense (DOD) casualty reports, a now-retired database compiled by The Associated Press (AP), a detailed CNN count, and various news articles.
The Pentagon’s “Afghanistan only” total death tally of 2,229, which includes fatalities under the old Operation Enduring Freedom (2,215) and the new Operation Freedom’s Sentinel (14), is one less than Breitbart News’ count.
The majority of American fatalities throughout the war have been combat-related.
Most clashes between the U.S.-led coalition and insurgents have been concentrated in areas along the Afghanistan-Pakistan border. More than half of all American casualties have taken place in and around Afghan provinces that lie along the Af-Pak international boundary.
The U.S. and Afghanistan have accused Pakistan of providing sanctuary to terrorists fighting American forces in Afghanistan.
President Obama escalated America’s military presence in Afghanistan soon after taking office in 2009, eventually bringing the number of U.S. troops to its peak of about 100,000 in 2012.
However, he is also responsible for withdrawing most American troops by the end of 2014.
President Obama ended the U.S. combat mission in December of 2014, one of the deadliest years of the war for Afghan civilian and security forces.
In January, American troops embarked on their new train and assist mission, placing the Afghan security troops in the lead of security operations.
Afghanistan has experienced a Taliban resurgence since President Obama ended the combat mission. Military officials have also warned against the rise of the Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL) in Afghanistan. ISIS, which is reportedly making major military gains in a turf battle against the Taliban, is operating in about 75 percent of all 34 Afghan provinces, according to the United Nations.
A top Russian military official recently estimated that there are about 40,000 Taliban terrorists and up to 3,000 ISIS jihadists in Afghanistan.
Today, President Obama revealed that he will be handing the Afghanistan conflict to his successor.
He said the U.S. will maintain 5,500 troops in Afghanistan beyond 2016. He did not specify how long they will remain there.
Gen. John Campbell, the top commander of U.S. and NATO troops in Afghanistan, recommended that America leave behind more than the 1,000 troops that the president had promised would remain in Afghanistan after 2016.
Obama has vowed to end the U.S. war in Afghanistan and withdraw most American troops by the time he officially leaves the White House in January 2017.
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