Common Defense Veterans on the One Year Anniversary of the American Withdrawal from Afghanistan: The Time Is Now To Do Right by Our Afghan Allies

08-30-2022

WASHINGTON — On the one-year anniversary of the end of the withdrawal of American troops from Afghanistan, Common Defense, the nation’s largest grassroots organization of progressive veterans, considers how we can honor those we lost and move forward to support those still here after the end of the Forever War.

Common Defense Political Director Naveed Shah released the following statement:

“On the anniversary of the withdrawal of U.S. forces from Afghanistan, we reflect on our movement’s success to end America’s longest war, as well as acknowledge our nation’s failure to fulfill our promise to our Afghan allies and the Americans who served there. President Biden kept his promise to American voters by accomplishing what his predecessors did not, and as veterans we celebrate this progress towards the End of the Forever Wars. We also acknowledge and honor the thousands of American, Afghan, and coalition partners’ lives lost during the 20-year conflict as well as the evacuation process.

“Many of Common Defense’s veteran members who served in Afghanistan said they promised their Afghan counterparts that we would repay them for helping keep our troops safe, and now we have an opportunity to fulfill that commitment. The bipartisan Afghan Adjustment Act represents a significant step forward in providing a pathway to permanent residency for our Afghan allies who fled Taliban control after the fall of the Afghan government last year. Common Defense has joined a coalition of veterans and human rights organizations to urge leaders in Congress to support the Afghan Adjustment Act and pass the bill when they return to Washington after the August recess.

“The Afghan Adjustment Act will follow the Honor Our PACT Act as the next piece of major federal legislation that intends to heal the wounds incurred over the course of the last twenty years of war. Importantly, we must demonstrate through action that our commitments to our allies are strong and meaningful if American forces are ever again to rely upon assistance from local people. We, the veterans of Common Defense, will continue to work toward the end of all Forever Wars and build a future where social, racial, environmental, and economic justice is guaranteed for all.”

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