Afghanistan was on the agenda as President Barack Obama and India Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, shown Tuesday during Singh’s arrival ceremony, met at the White House.
Those who hoped that President Barack Obama would consider withdrawing U.S. troops from Afghanistan anytime soon are likely to be disappointed, judging by the hints Obama dropped about his plans for America’s military involvement in the volatile South Asian nation. —KA
The New York Times:
President Obama said on Tuesday that he will announce his decision on how many more troops to send to Afghanistan next week, and that it is his intention to “finish the job” that began with the overthrow of the Taliban government in the fall of 2001.
Mr. Obama, offering a tantalizing preview of what looms as one of the momentous decisions of his presidency, said he would tell the American people about “a comprehensive strategy” embracing civilian and diplomatic efforts as well as the continuing military campaign.
While he avoided any hints of the new troop levels he foresees in Afghanistan, the president signaled that he will not be talking about a short-term commitment but rather an effort muscular enough to “dismantle and degrade” the enemy and ensure that “Al Qaeda and its extremist allies cannot operate” in the region.