Daines says withdrawal from Afghanistan not an option, visits Montana troops deployed to Middle East

Posted at 4:15 PM, Dec 04, 2018
and last updated 2018-12-04 22:28:35-05
Senator Steve Daines visited troops with the Montana Army National Guard who are deployed to the Middle East. (Photo credit: the 495th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion)

Senator Steve Daines (R-MT) visited troops with the Montana Army National Guard overseas and brought them a taste of the Big Sky State.

The Republican visited the 495th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion, which is deployed to the Middle East on Saturday. The 495th CSSB is stationed out of Kalispell.

Sen. Daines brought the troops gifts from home, including a good supply of Hi-Country beef jerky.

Bringing Hi-Country beef jerky to Montana’s 495th CSSB

U.S. Sen. Steve Daines (R-MT) is convinced progress is being made in the conflict in Afghanistan and a U.S. withdrawal is not an option.

Daines returned this week from a fact-finding mission to the region, including stops in Turkey and Afghanistan. In Afghanistan he was able to connect with soldiers from the 495th Support Battalion from Kalispell.

Daines made remarks and answered questions from the Montana press on Tuesday morning from Washington D.C. He said Afghanistan remains a very dangerous place and we need to maintain a military presence to force the Taliban to the bargaining table.

The U.S. has been in Afghanistan for 17 years, since 2001, when it removed the Taliban government from power.

The Montana National Guard troops deployed in Afghanistan have been there since June. They will spend the holidays overseas and are scheduled to return in mid-March.

Bringing Hi-Country beef jerky to Montana’s 495th CSSB

Daines was asked if President Trump should visit the troops overseas. He said he would encourage the Commander in Chief to go.

“It means a lot to the troops” to see officials there in support of their mission, he said. Deputy Communications Director Press Secretary Katie Schoettler says Sen. Daines is holding meetings with high-level government and military officials to discuss U.S. involvement in the Middle East and Asia and the evolving geopolitical situation.

He will also make sure service members have everything they need to keep America safe, Schoettler said.

Sen. Daines sits on the U.S. Senate Defense Subcommittee on Appropriations.

Daines meeting Montana’s 495th CSSB in Kabul