Concerned about the faltering war in Afghanistan, President Barack Obama plans to dispatch thousands more military and civilian trainers on top of the 17,000 fresh combat troops he’s already ordered, people familiar with the forthcoming plan said Thursday.
Obama also will call for increasing aid to neighboring Pakistan as long as its leaders confront militants in the border region. The president plans to lay out his revamped strategy for Afghanistan and Pakistan on Friday.
Several sources told The Associated Press the strategy includes 20 recommendations for countering a persistent insurgency that spans the two countries’ border, including sending 4,000 military trainers to try to increase the size of the Afghan army.
Many senior Bush Adminstration officials had speculated that the new president’s conduct of the Afghan war on terror would quickly come to resemble the outgoing Administration’s conduct of the Iraq war, with victory in the latter allowing reinforcement of the former. This is what is coming to pass, and it is a bright mark in an otherwise dismal start to the Obama years.
It remains remarkable that not one question at the president’s press conference touched directly on the two front war and the escalation underway in central Asia.