The Washington Post conducted a lengthy interview with General and Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Joseph Dunford on several issues including US military excellence and fierce competition with Russia, along with the recent maritime incident between Russia and Ukraine in addition to the US military presence in Afghanistan and its alliance with SDF to fight Daesh in Syria.
The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Joseph Dunford, discussed the major threats facing America now and in the future and how the US military is preparing for these threats.
Speaking about the challenges coming from Russia, especially after the Russian seizure of Ukrainian boats off the Crimea, Dunford said that what happened in the Azov Sea is very similar to what Moscow did in Georgia, Crimea and Donbas in Ukraine.
Asked how long the US forces would stay in Afghanistan, Dunford said the United States should stay in Afghanistan and noted that the years-long war in Afghanistan had created chaos in the region. "I recommend that we do not leave Afghanistan because it might create a situation of instability in south Asia and will give terrorist gangs the space to plan their operations against the American people. "
The Chairman of Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Joseph Dunford, spoke of what will be coming in Syria and discussed the US presence there, citing his main objectives of defeating IS gangs, and the assistance of the US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in diplomatic efforts to resolve the conflict and stabilize the war-torn country.
In response to the timeframe for US troops to stay in Syria, Dunford said "We have not thought about that. Our allies in SDF have done a great deal in Syria against Daesh, that is great. But with regard to stability, we still have a long way to go and I will give you an idea of the scale of work to be done."
"We estimate that 35 to 40 thousand local troops should be better trained to provide stability, and so far 20 percent of these troops have been trained," said Dunford. "We train the troops and enhance their combat capabilities to be better despite the high skills in the battles.
It is clear that there are combat forces led by SDF and composed of all components of the Syrian people who are the only ones that have been able to defeat the largest terrorist organization in the Middle East and represented by Daesh."
Regarding stability in Syria, General Dunford said "we still have a long way to go it" and that he will support Pompeo in his diplomatic efforts for years to resolve the "Syrian civil war." That is why it is difficult for me to predict how long our forces would stay in Syria."
General Joseph Dunford also spoke of arms control agreements with Russia and said there was no doubt that arms control agreements with Russia in the past have provided a degree of strategic stability."
The head of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Joseph Dunford, questioned the possibility of extending the "New Start" with Russia, in the event of the fall of the medium and short-term missile treaty with them.
"Russia is seriously violating the medium and short-range missile treaty signed in 1987, and the United States will withdraw from the treaty if Russia does not comply with it," he said.
Dunford said it would have been better if Russia had complied with the medium and short-range missile treaty, allowing conditions to discuss issues relating to arms control treaties more widely.