Afghanistan’s security forces are taking unsustainable casualties and would collapse if all U.S. troops withdrew, the nominee to lead U.S. Central Command said on Tuesday.

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A “Washington gaffe” is defined as telling the truth, and Defense Secretary James Mattis may have just done that when talking on Tuesday about Afghan casualties.

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The Taliban celebrated the conclusion of a three-day ceasefire with Afghanistan's security forces on Wednesday by launching a brutal attack against an Afghan military base in the western part of the country, killing 30 soldiers and occupying the installation, officials told Reuters.

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U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl. Tyler Harrison

It’s no surprise that the state of affairs in Afghanistan isn’t what the Department of Defense hoped for as the U.S. enters its 16th year of war with the Taliban, but a new analysis of the $70 billion spent trying to shore up the Afghanistan National Security Forces, paints an even more dire picture: The U.S. has failed miserably at building up Afghan security forces.

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U.S. Army photo by Master Sgt. Michael J. Carden

Two Americans, a service member and a civilian, were shot and killed Wednesday by an Afghan wearing a military uniform at a base near Kabul, according to the U.S. and Afghan officials.

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