The Associated Press reports:
President Barack Obama says the U.S. mission in Afghanistan can be successful, but he is not ready to declare victory just yet.
Speaking at a White House news conference, Obama says the U.S. mission in Afghanistan is narrowly focused on making sure al-Qaida cannot attack the U.S. and helping Afghans maintain their own security. Obama says he believes the U.S. will succeed in those objectives because of the “extraordinary work” of the U.S. military.
Obama says the progress the military has made so far is allowing him to begin bringing troops home. Last week he announced plans for the 33,000 surge forces he sent to Afghanistan to leave the country by the end of next summer.
The first 10,000 troops will come home by the end of this year.