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KABUL —Afghan officers on Thursday denounced President Trump’s reward of the 1979 Soviet invasion and occupation of their nation, which he described this week as a combat in opposition to terrorism, breaking with a long time of Republican anti-communist dogma.

Based on the revisionist historic account Trump delivered throughout a Cupboard assembly Wednesday, “the explanation Russia was in Afghanistan was as a result of terrorists had been going into Russia.” He added: “They had been proper to be there. The issue is, it was a troublesome combat.”

The feedback marked a shocking cut up with U.S. conservatives courting again to President Ronald Reagan, who noticed the invasion as an try to unfold communism and aided rebel forces preventing Soviet troops.

The remarks additionally raised eyebrows amongst officers in Afghanistan at a time when Kabul has voiced frustration with Trump’s sudden announcement of a plan to withdraw as much as half of U.S. troops as peace talks with Taliban insurgents proceed with out Afghan authorities involvement.

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A press release from President Ashraf Ghani’s workplace described the battle in opposition to the Soviets as a “nationwide rebellion for gaining freedom” and famous that the Soviet invasion was condemned by the United Nations and United States on the time.

“All presidents of America not solely denounced this invasion however remained supporters of this holy jihad of the Afghans,” learn the assertion, which added that the federal government can be searching for readability from the USA.

Overseas Affairs Minister Salahuddin Rabbani mentioned the Soviet occupation violated Afghan sovereignty. “Every other declare defies historic’l details,” he mentioned on Twitter.

The White Home didn’t instantly reply to a request for remark.

Saleh Mohammad Saleh, a lawmaker representing Konar province, additionally famous that the USA funded the rebels preventing the Soviets. To now hear Trump justifying the invasion was “actually unusual,” he mentioned.

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“Our struggle in opposition to the Soviets was righteous. The worldwide group stood by us. We gave greater than sufficient sacrifices,” Saleh advised The Washington Publish. “This man proves to be extra mad than folks assume.”

He additionally criticized the plan to drag out at the least half the 14,000 U.S. troops within the nation as unhealthy for Afghanistan’s stability, particularly within the midst of peace negotiations.

Sayed Ikramuddin Masoomi, a lawmaker representing Takhar province who additionally fought the Soviets, mentioned their occupation “was crystal clear and was particularly for supporting [Moscow’s] puppet communists in Afghanistan.”

Trump’s invitation for Russia and India to hitch the combat in opposition to the Taliban — together with Pakistan, the place the militants have loved secure haven — additional sophisticated issues, Masoomi advised The Publish.

Rahmatullah Nabil, a former head of the Afghan intelligence company, blasted Trump in a string of tweets.

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“Even Russia not says that or tries to justify it,” he mentioned concerning the invasion and occupation. “People who fail to be taught from the teachings of historical past are doomed to repeat it; hopefully you might be sensible sufficient to not make the identical mistake on the subject of abandoning [Afghanistan].”

Trump additionally puzzled officers when he instructed the December 1979 invasion and decade-long occupation, which resulted in a Soviet withdrawal in 1989, was the principal purpose the Soviet Union collapsed two years later, and never a pricey and escalating arms race with the USA.



Afghan children and a soldier bid farewell to Soviet soldiers riding atop an armored personnel carrier as the official troop withdrawal begins after nearly a decade long military intervention in war-torn Afghanistan, Sunday, May 15, 1988, Kabul.


© Liu Heung Shing/AP
Afghan youngsters and a soldier bid farewell to Soviet troopers using atop an armored personnel provider because the official troop withdrawal begins after almost a decade lengthy navy intervention in war-torn Afghanistan, Sunday, Might 15, 1988, Kabul.

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