Sunday, November 8

30 or 40 Thousand more Troops to deploy to Afghanistan?

Gen. Stanley McChrystal, the commander of US and NATO forces in Afghanistan is recommending an increase of 40,000 additional troops to hit the ground in Afghanistan. Currently, there are about 67,000 US troops on the ground in Afghanistan. In addition to the US troops in Afghanistan, there are approximately 40,000 troops from other NATO allied nations in combat and combat support rolls currently entrenched in Afghanistan.

President Obama is considering increasing the troop levels in the Afghanistan war by only 30,000 total troops. The total falls far short of what Gen. McCrystal is recommending but may be far more than what US and other nations citizens may support.

Gen. McChrystal has stated that an additional 40,000 troops on the ground would help secure the Afghanistan towns and cities and would give NATO the additional resources needed to take on Taliban and al Qaeda strongholds that still remain in the Afghanistan border lands near Pakistan.

In the US, public support for the Afghanistan war has been dropping continuously as the war is now being seen as possibly turning into another Vietnam. President Obama's decision to expand troop levels could become a major liability for the upcoming Congressional elections.

Republicans are calling for an increase in troop levels and during morning talk shows were offering support for the President if he "does the right thing" and increases troop levels in the war effort. Why would the Republicans offer support and backing for such an unpopular political position?

It is not just the US support that is waining, in the UK public sentiment is turning decidedly against continued involvement in the Afghanistan war. With the high levels of public disdain for the previous involvement in the Iraq war there may be little that the Prime Minister, Gordon Brown, can do to sway public opinion. Especially since the British death toll is rising quickly. The current UK service related death's has now reached 232.

In August the public support for the war was low and hovering at 28 percent. Now the British public support has dropped even further and is now around 21 percent. 63 Percent of the public in England want all British troops withdrawn from the region.

England has roughly 9,500 troops on the ground in Afghanistan.

The United States currently has approximately 68,000 troops in country.

Gen. McCrystal that he does not see coalition troops handing over security to Afghan forces until 2013.

The British government is looking to have answers quickly as to the direction of the war in Afghanistan. President Obama is expected to announce his decision within the next few weeks.

It will probably follow Afghan President Hamid Karzai's inauguration.

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