The country debates over sending more troops to Afghanistan

The New York Times reported Tuesday that President Obama may send 30,000 American troops to Afghanistan, but the final number will be announced Tuesday next week.


Obama said his approach to the war will be different from the previous administration's methods, although the goals of containing Al-Qaeda will be similar.


There has been heated discussion at the White House between Obama and his top aides, according to an administration official who said "there was a lot of back and forth" at a two-hour meeting earlier this week.


Even Nancy Pelosi, the House speaker, said there was "serious unrest in our caucus about can we afford this war."


"The American people believe that if something is in our national security interest, we have to be able to afford it," she said.

According to a Wednesday Associated Press report, polls show Americans' support for the war has dropped significantly and most say the war is not worth fighting anymore.

In a Wednesday commentary for The Progressive, Matthew Rothschild said that "it would take at least ten times [the number of troops proposed] to have a decent chance of vanquishing the Taliban ... [it is] an enormous cost in U.S. and Afghan lives, and in U.S. tax dollars."

Calling Obama's choice a "muddle path," Rothschild added that only more civilian and U.S. soldier deaths would result "with no end in sight."

However, press secretary Robert Gibbs said Wednesday that the troops will focus on securing areas taken from the Taliban so that U.S. forces can leave soon, according to the AP.

"We are not going to be there another eight or nine years," he said.



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