The New York Times reported yesterday that President Obama is expected to make an announcement on Wednesday evening (June 22, 2011) regarding troop reduction in Afghanistan.
“As he closes in on a decision, another official said, Mr. Obama is considering options that range from a Pentagon-backed proposal to pull out only 5,000 troops this year to an aggressive plan to withdraw within 12 months all 30,000 troops the United States deployed to Afghanistan as part of the surge in December 2009. Under another option, a third official said, Mr. Obama would announce a final date for the withdrawal of all the surge forces sometime in 2012, but leave the timetable for incremental reductions up to commanders in the field — much as he did in drawing down troops after the surge in Iraq.”
It is important to remember, however, that even after withdrawing 30,000 troops, 68,000 will remain in Afghanistan, which is twice the number as when Obama assumed office.
With support for the war in Afghanistan dwindling, increased pressure has been placed on the President to utilize American resources ($120 billion just last year) here rather than abroad.