Washington: US President Donald Trump said in his remarks to graduates of the United States Military Academy that his country is “ending the era of endless wars.”
“We are ending the era of endless wars. In its place is a renewed, clear-eyed focus on defending America’s vital interests,” Trump said before more than 1,000 cadets of the academy also known as West Point on Saturday.
He noted that the task of the US military is neither to rebuild foreign nations nor to “solve ancient conflicts in faraway lands that many people have never even heard of.”
“We are not the policemen of the world,” he added.
Trump’s speech came at a moment when his administration is drawing up plans to pull out troops from various places around the globe, says a Xinhua news report.
A joint statement issued by Washington and Baghdad on Thursday said that the United States would continue reducing its military presence in Iraq over the coming months.
Trump reportedly directed the Pentagon to reduce nearly 9,500 US troops from the 34,500 troops that are permanently assigned in Germany, which led to opposition from Republican lawmakers.
Last week 22 Republican members of Congress wrote Trump, warning him a significant force drawdown in Europe would serve Russia’s interests at the expense of US national security.
There are also reports saying that the Trump administration is looking at a range of options to withdraw all US troops from Afghanistan at an early date, with one possible option targeting this November.
The peace agreement signed late February between the United States and the Afghan Taliban called for the full withdrawal of the US military from the war-torn country by May 2021 if the Taliban no longer supports terrorist groups.
“If conditions will allow, we’re prepared to go to zero,” Commander of US Central Command Kenneth McKenzie said in a think tank event on Wednesday, but adding “those conditions have not been fully met.”