From the Denver Post: The U.S. designation Saturday of Afghanistan as its newest "major non-NATO ally" amounts to a political statement of support for the country's long-term stability and solidifies close defense cooperation after American combat troops withdraw in 2014.
"We see this as a powerful commitment to
Afghanistan's future," U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton
said at a news conference during a brief stop in the Afghan capital. "We
are not even imagining abandoning Afghanistan," she said in the grand
courtyard of the presidential palace after talks with President Hamid
The non-NATO ally declaration allows for streamlined
defense cooperation, including expedited purchasing ability of American
equipment and easier export control regulations. Afghanistan's military,
heavily dependent on American and foreign assistance, already enjoys
many of these benefits. The non-NATO ally status guarantees it will
continue to do so.
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