Amid a substantial US pullout from Afghanistan, the administration still doesn’t have a proper US Ambassador for that country. Reports, however, are that the short list includes a long-time war critic, Will Ruger.
Though not nominated yet, Ruger is undergoing vetting, and has been meeting with officials. The Vice President for Research and policy at the Charles Koch Institute, Ruger has frequently advocated ending the Afghanistan War.
Though the US is heading toward ending that war anyhow, with so many officials taking a wait and see approach, having a proper ambassador who is known to want a pullout would be a clear signal the administration intends to complete the process.
According to Politico:
Ruger, a Naval Reserve officer who served a year in Afghanistan a decade ago, is aligned with the president’s thinking about the U.S. footprint in the Middle East and the wars in Afghanistan and Syria, and has been especially vocal about getting out of Afghanistan.
“President Trump has correctly concluded that a full and speedy withdrawal of our troops is imperative,” he wrote in the American Interest in late May. “Our national interest isn’t served by continuing to wage a futile battle but by exiting it.”
The US is well ahead of its pullout schedule, down to about 8,500 troops in Afghanistan. Officials sayt hey want 4,000 by the election, and some are saying a complete pullout is possible by then.