A look into the future:
In the latest sign of the enduring financial costs of the Afghan war for the United States and other NATO countries, President Hamid Karzai said Tuesday that Afghanistan would not be able to pay for its own security until at least 2024.
“For another 15 to 20 years, Afghanistan will not be able to sustain a force of that nature and capability with its own resources,” Mr. Karzai said during a press conference here with Secretary of Defense Robert M. Gates. He was referring to the number of Afghan forces needed to provide security for the entire country.
Mr. Gates, who was in Kabul on an unannounced visit, acknowledged that there was a “realism on our part that it will be some time before Afghanistan is able to sustain its security forces entirely on its own.”