Europe Offers Afghan Help, But No Combat Troops
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 4, 2009 11:01 AM CDT
President Obama speaks during a media conference at the NATO summit in Strasbourg, France on Saturday April 4, 2009.   (AP Photo/Michael Sohn)
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(Newser) – President Obama today hailed "concrete commitments" from NATO allies for the fight in Afghanistan, though Europe spurned his request for more combat troops, the AP reports. Instead, allies approved 3,000 temporary deployments to provide security for elections, and another 2,000 or so troops to provide police and military training, notes the New York Times. Obama praised the help but noted, "This effort cannot be America's alone."

"All of NATO understands that al-Qaeda is a threat to all of us and that this collective security effort must achieve its goals," said Obama, who chose to emphasize the agreements over the differences. The police training, for instance, meshes with the long-range goal of getting Afghanistan ready to stand on its own. "I am pleased that our allies pledged their strong and unanimous support for our new strategy," said Obama.