Republican Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul introduced a bill Tuesday to end U.S. involvement in Afghanistan.
The libertarian-leaning senator introduced the “AFGHAN Service Act,” to end conflict that has been taking place since October 2001, a month following the September 11 attacks. Paul has been a long-time skeptic of American intervention, and a staunch critic of U.S. efforts in the region. (RELATED: Rand Paul: Trump Should Trust His Gut On Syria)
Paul made the announcement in a video released on his Twitter page:
This week, I am introducing legislation to end a war that should have ended long ago, the war in Afghanistan. The United States has been fighting the War on Terror since October of 2001 and it has cost 6 trillion dollars. pic.twitter.com/UBxeq0NsQe
— Senator Rand Paul (@RandPaul) March 5, 2019
“This week I’m introducing legislation to end a war that should’ve ended long ago,” Paul said in his announcement. “It’s important to know when to declare victory and leave a war.”
Paul’s bill would also award a $2,500 “victory bonus” to everyone who has served in the War on Terror, a one-time bonus that Paul estimates would cost $7 billion.
Last year, President Donald Trump announced his intention to begin withdrawing troops from Syria and Afghanistan, which would bring troop levels in Afghanistan to its lowest since the war began in 2001. After Trump announced his decision, Paul allied himself with the president, and defended his decision amid a wave of bipartisan criticism.