A U.S. Special Forces member who was killed in Afghanistan, marked the 17th U.S. service member to die this year—the highest number of losses since 2014.
The Defense Department said the fallen soldier was a Green Beret but did not reveal the operator’s unit. The soldier was killed in Wardak Province while working with Afghan commando forces.
The death comes after peace talks between U.S. diplomats and the Taliban broke down earlier this month. At that same time, President Trump cited the death of Sgt. First Class Elis A. Barreto Ortiz, who was among 12 people killed in Kabul in a suicide bombing, as the reason behind his abrupt cancelation of a secret meeting he had arranged with Taliban and Afghan leaders aimed at ending America’s longest war.
President Trump has been talking of a need to withdraw U.S. troops from the “endless war” in Afghanistan since his 2016 presidential campaign. Last week, the president tweeted on Monday, Sept. 9, saying, “We have been serving as policemen in Afghanistan, and that was not meant to be the job of our Great Soldiers, the finest on earth.”
He added, without explanation, “Over the last four days, we have been hitting our Enemy harder than at any time in the last ten years.”