Pullout may not be necessary

Monday - 3/17/2014, 11:53am EDT

The U.S. has threatened to pull all troops out of Afghanistan by the end of the year, because Afghan President Hamid Karzai has refused to sign the a new status of forces agreement. But that may not be necessary, because the 33,600 U.S. forces still deployed are covered by an existing status-of-forces agreement. The arrangement took effect shortly after 9/11 as the U.S. engagement there started. That agreement has no expiration date and prevents U.S. military personnel from being prosecuted under Afghan law.