January 15, 2008

3,200 additional troops to Afghanistan

US President George W. Bush has signed off on a recommendation by US Secretary of Defense Robert Gates to send some 3,200 additional troops to Afghanistan. The move to beef up US forces there comes amid growing concerns about rising insurgent violence and turmoil in neighboring Pakistan.

The deployment however, is a stop-gap measure at a time when a revamped, unified strategy is needed to halt a worrying two-year slide in public confidence in the government of President Hamid Karzai. Currently, there are 26,000 US troops in Afghanistan, most of them under the 40,000-strong NATO-led International Security Assistance Force.

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