RETREAT

U.S. Closes Risky Afghan Outpost

After four years of near daily violence and casualties, the U.S. has decided to close the Korangal Outpost in Afghanistan, deciding that the high risk outweighed any strategic value the area might have held. It is a tacit admission that the base was originally a mistake, and could signal the beginning of American retreat. "There's never a perfect answer," U.S. forces commander General Stanley McChrystal said. "I care deeply about everybody who has been hurt here, but I can't do anything about it. I can do something about people who might be hurt in the future." Hundreds of American troops have been wounded in the Korangal Outpost and 42 others have been killed, with most falling between 2006 and 2009. "It is frustrating, because we bled there and now we're leaving," said Captain John P. Rodriguez, echoing the feelings of many soldiers who served there.