We hope Afghanistan leaders heard all of Trump’s speech, strategy

No doubt leaders of Afghanistan’s government were delighted to hear President Donald Trump’s speech last Monday night. Let us hope they listened to all of it.

Instead of pulling U.S. troops out of Afghanistan, regardless of the situation there, Trump plans to step up military action against the Taliban and other Islamic terrorists.

But ours is not an open-ended commitment “and our support is not a blank check,” the president emphasized.

Trump recognized the regional nature of Islamic terrorism, calling on other countries victimized by it to do more to defeat the enemy. He also put Pakistan on notice it must do more.

The message to Afghan leaders was clear: That nation’s armed forces need to be more capable and more aggressive.

Political leaders need to stamp out corruption. Afghans must be true partners rather than dependents on U.S. aid — and the blood of Americans.

The best thing Trump may have said of the new strategy is, “we’re not nation-building, we are killing terrorists.”

For now, that is the correct backdrop for stepped-up U.S. military activity to keep Afghanistan from falling back into the hands of the Taliban.

But long-term, unless Afghan officials and troops do more, Trump should end our involvement.

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