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Barbara Lee - January 10, 2013

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' Re "U.S. Is Open to Withdraw Afghan Force After 2014" (news article, Jan. 9):

'The question remains what would be gained by keeping several thousand troops in Afghanistan past 2014 given the reality that there is no military solution to the fundamentally political problems that plague Afghanistan. Any residual presence needed beyond 2014 should be heavily limited in scope and scale.

'As President Hamid Karzai returns to the United States this week, he will meet President Obama at a time when the overwhelming majority of the American people and a strong bipartisan coalition in Congress believe that it is long past time to bring the war to a safe and expedited close.

'Now is the time to hand over security responsibility to the Afghans, ensure that our brave troops have a seamless transition from active duty to civilian life, and invest in jobs and nation-building here at home.'