Obama's Afghan Plan: About 40K More Troops - CBS News
That's certainly a surprise, and quite different from what was being floated as a trial balloon over the past few weeks.Tonight, after months of conferences with top advisors, President Obama has settled on a new strategy for Afghanistan. CBS News correspondent David Martin reports that the president will send a lot more troops and plans to keep a large force there, long term.
The president still has more meetings scheduled on Afghanistan, but informed sources tell CBS News he intends to give Gen. Stanley McChrystal most, if not all, the additional troops he is asking for.
McChrystal wanted 40,000 and the president has tentatively decided to send four combat brigades plus thousands more support troops. A senior officer says "that's close to what [McChrystal] asked for." All the president's military advisers have recommended sending more troops.
I found this part in particular quite interesting:
Given that Obama's proposed pace for withdrawal is largely identical to the timetable that President Bush negotiated, it looks like the total number of troops deployed overseas will be essentially identical to what it would have been had McCain been elected.The buildup would be expected to last about four years, until McChrystal completes his plan for doubling the size of the Afghan army and police force.
With 68,000 Americans already there, the Afghan surge would mean there would be 100,000 U.S. troops in Afghanistan by the end of the president's first term.