The United States intends to send many more combat forces to Afghanistan next year, regardless of whether troop levels in Iraq are cut further this year, Defense Secretary Robert Gates said Friday.
It is the first time the Bush administration has made such a commitment for 2009. Gates, speaking to reporters on his way to Muscat, Oman, from a NATO summit in Bucharest, Romania, said President Bush made the pledge at the summit on Thursday.
Bush was not specific about the number of additional troops that would go to Afghanistan in 2009, Gates said. The United States now has about 31,000 troops there — the most since the war began in October 2001 — and has been pressing the allies to contribute more. Until now, the heavy commitment of U.S. forces in Iraq has been a constraint on the ability to increase U.S. troop levels in Afghanistan. But Gates said he did not believe that would be the case in 2009.
Well the new president will spend a whole term trying to fix the things George W. Bush did the last ten years and the man never stops screwing up till the very last moment!