"They (the Taliban) have made advances and eroded some of our success," Mattis told members of the Senate Armed Services Committee during his confirmation hearing while responding to a question from its Chairman, Senator John McCain.
"I believe that we are in serious trouble in Afghanistan as the Taliban is able to mount greater and more serious attacks on capitals across that nation, do you agree with that assessment?" McCain asked.
He also asked if the Afghan National Army was "unsustainable" after losses over a long period of time.
"I need to review the actual casualty figures and the recruitment, sir. But I believe that's correct," Mattis responded, referring to the large number of casualties and desertions being experienced by the ANA.
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