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Pentagon May Boost US Troops in Afghanistan

Number would be highest since war began
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted May 3, 2008 10:45 AM CDT
Pentagon May Boost US Troops in Afghanistan
U.S. Marine 2nd Lt. Mark Greenleaf, from the 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit, calls orders to his men as they return fire on Taliban positions in Helmand Province of Afghanistan yesterday.    (AP Photo/David Guttenfelder)

(Newser) – The Pentagon may send 7,000 more troops to Afghanistan to make up for a NATO shortfall, administration officials say.The move would bring US troop levels there to 40,000 and require relocating American forces from Iraq, the New York Times reports. While NATO countries have promised to send about 2,000 additional troops, so far only France, which has pledged 700, has begun preparing forces.

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The decision would amount to “the re-Americanization” of the war in Afghanistan, an administration official said, raising US forces from about half of the 60,000 troops stationed there to two-thirds. “There are simply going to be more American forces than we’ve ever had there,” he noted. Still, no definite plan has appeared on President Bush’s desk; the increases may be left to his successor. (Read more Afghanistan stories.)

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