U.S. troops walk off a helicopter at Camp Bost in Helmand Province, Afghanistan, on Sept. 11, 2017.Andrew Renneisen / Getty Images file
One of the officials called it “prudent planning.”
Another official described the president’s current approach to Syria as “a dress rehearsal” for what could happen in Afghanistan.
Trump has long threatened to withdraw all American forces from Afghanistan, but his repeated emphasis in recent weeks on the need to end all foreign wars has infused a new sense of urgency into the renewed Pentagon effort, officials said.
“I got elected on bringing our soldiers back home,” Trump told reporters Monday.
To underscore the point, the president said the biggest applause he received during a campaign rally in Dallas last week was when he talked about building a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border and bringing American troops home. “When I said, ‘We’re bringing our soldiers back home,’ the place went crazy,” Trump said.